Book Discussion on We Are Family: The Modern Transformation of Parents and Children

If you are looking for an incredible resource on psychological studies on the impacts on children born via third party assisted reproduction and the impacts on their parents, I encourage you to read, We Are Family - the Modern Transformation of Parents and Children, by one of the world's leading experts on new family formation, Susan Golombok. The book focuses on various third party reproductive methods and family scenarios, and breaks the studies into various topics:
  1. Lesbian mothers
  2. Donor conception families
  3. Sperm, egg, and embryo donors
  4. Surrogacy
  5. Gay fathers
  6. Single mothers by choice
  7. Trans parent families
  8. Future families
The overall takeaway message from the book is as follows: the research highlighted by the author showed that people assume what matters when analyzing how children do in non-traditional family structures is the actual structure of family (i.e. a traditional mother and father, both genetically related to the child), however, the reoccurring theme in the book as reflected in the research shows that what really matters is the quality of the relationship between the parent(s)/child and the social environment in which parties are situated. The book also provides very helpful insight into the importance of disclosure to children about their method of conception and re-emphasizes the best practices established by the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, which provide, in part:
Disclosure to donor-conceived persons of the use of donor gametes or embryos in their conception is strongly encouraged, while ultimately the choice of the recipient parents.
This book can provide comfort to an intended parent who may be worried about the psychological consequences of their children being born from third party assisted reproduction. The book incorporates not only studies performed on these topics, but also includes wonderful personal stories from different families sharing their experience with third party reproduction and the mental health implications.