“I Cannot Wait to Build that One Day”: Lesbian and Bisexual College-Age Women’s Views on Marriage and Family

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After the US Supreme Court ruled in favor of marriage equality in 2015, the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community has gained visibility. One cohort that is affected by this decision is lesbian and bisexual college-age women. The present study, through six face-to-face semi-structured interviews with self-identifying lesbian and bisexual college-age women, sought to understand how these women view marriage and family. Three themes emerged are: (a) Heteronormative socialization, (b) Personal endorsement of marriage, and (c) LGBT Parenting. The results of this study suggest that college-age women still carry the effects of growing up and entering adulthood in a largely heteronormative society, endorse marriage as an institution, and find profound personal meaning in the prospect of forming a family. Even in the face of protracted legal battles that are eventually won, the humanity of individual and personal motivation remains the most salient factor in forming bonds and building families.

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