Men adopt twice as often as women. Gay couples may contribute to substantial difference

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention [CDC] – offers a new report which indicates men are twice as likely as women to adopt a child.

Data from the 2002 National Survey of Family Growth shows men aged 18-44 years are more than twice as likely as women of the same age group to have adopted a child. As of 2002, more than 1.2 million men and 613,000 women had adopted children.

Kim M. Hober, LMSW, an obstetric social worker at New York’s University of Rochester Medical Center provides one explanation:

We’ve seen an increase in same-sex couples adopting, and this is a trend all over the country,” Hober tells WebMD. “If you think about same-sex couples, gay men who want children really have to adopt, but gay women can have their own children. I don’t see as many gay female couples adopting as gay male couples.”

Other discoveries from the latest survey:

  • Americans adopt more than 50,000 foster-care children each year
  • Approximately 100,000 never-married women and 73,000 never-married men had adopted a child
  • The number of international adoptions nearly tripled from 7,093 in 1990 to 19,237 in 2002
  • There are between 118,000 and 127,000 adoptions each year in the U.S. As of 2000, 65.6 million children under age 18 – about 2.5% of U.S. kids – are adopted
  • Image: proudtobedad

2 thoughts on “Men adopt twice as often as women. Gay couples may contribute to substantial difference

  • August 9, 2008 at 6:04 am

    the actual report, which can be found online (, mentions nothing about gays, lesbians or same-sex couples. The only remote reference is that never-married men are adopting. Yet, WebMD does state some specifics regarding lesbians and gays ( Hmmm.

    When reading the report’s discussion of results, the authors state, “More men than women have adopted children in their lifetimes. Among adopters, 17% of women and 6% of men were never married.” The first statement was actually attributed mostly to men who adopted their spouses children. The second statement specifically refers to “never”-married men and “never”-married women. While I would like to think this number characterizes those who are gay, we cannot assume this to be true. There is nothing in the report to substantiate this assumption.


  • November 22, 2009 at 12:15 pm

    After reading, I thought this might be a useful resource for your site:

    The site is free, and perhaps the most comprehensive biomedical site on the web. It has all PubMed and MedLine documents, plus mililons more including full-text journal articles and a large database of theses and dissertations.

    And, you don’t have to register but if you do you can use portfolios to save documents, share documents (and comment on them) between users, and set up automatic alerts.

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