“When gay couples become parents, they become very focused on the kids, they are tired, there is less time for communication and less desire for sex,” Colleen Hoff, professor of sexuality studies at San Francisco State University, said in a statement. “They go through a lot of the same changes as heterosexual couples who have kids.”
About one in five gay male couples are raising children. Hoff and colleagues hypothesized that becoming parents could change the gay couple’s lifestyle in such ways that would reduce risky sexual behavior and as such reduce their risks of contracting HIV.
To find out, the researchers interviewed 48 gay male couples who were parenting together in either Salt Lake City or San Francisco. Raising kids seemed to bolster couples’ commitments to one another and deepen their relationships.