New Research Reveals Price of Parenthood for LGBTQ+ Community

Study Reveals Paths to Parenthood for LGBTQ+ Prospective Parents Vary Significantly According to Household Income 

NEW YORK —  Today Family Equality released a new research report examining the financial burden of family building for members of the LGBTQ+ community. Building on data released in February 2019 that revealed that a majority of LGBTQ+ millennials are considering becoming parents, “Building LGBTQ+ Families: The Price of Parenthood” explains the complexity and cost of different paths to parenthood for the LGBTQ+ community.

Data collected by Family Equality’s nationally-representative survey of LGBTQ+ prospective parents builds on previous research, indicating that LGBTQ+ people — particularly women, people of color, and transgender and gender non-conforming people in the LGBTQ+ community — are disproportionately likely to experience poverty. Most significantly, the report released today reveals similar family-building aspirations rates regardless of income level, showing that the desire to have children exists independent of financial security. However, income is clearly a significant factor in determining which paths to parenthood are accessible to different members of the LGBTQ+ community; the research reveals that the options being considered by LGBTQ+ prospective parents vary dramatically according to household income.

“Family Equality is dedicated to breaking down barriers for LGBTQ+ people who wish to become parents, and our research published today reveals that the financial barriers facing many in our community are significant,” said The Rev. Stan J. Sloan, CEO of Family Equality. “Becoming a parent is expensive, regardless of who you are, where you live, or how many adults will be raising the children. For LGBTQ+ people, that number can increase significantly when the cost of bringing a child or children into a family is included, whether through adoption, foster care, or assisted reproductive technology. We are committed to providing all members of the LGBTQ+ community with the information and resources they need to find their path to parenthood.”

Key findings from the “Building LGBTQ+ Families: The Price of Parenthood” report include:

  • 29% of all LGBTQ+ respondents reported an annual household income under $25,000 compared to 22% of non-LGBTQ+ respondents.
  • 33% of black LGBTQ+ respondents, 32% of female-identified LGBTQ+ respondents, and 31% of trans/gender non-conforming LGBTQ+ respondents reported annual household incomes below $25,000.
  • Regardless of annual household income, 45-53% of LGBTQ+ millennials are planning to become parents for the first time or add another child to their family. Those making less than $25,000 a year are considering becoming parents at very similar rates as those making over $100,000.
  • Data from the Family Building Survey reveals that LGBTQ+ households making over $100,000 annually are considering the full range of paths to parenthood, from surrogacy and private adoption to foster care and IVF. At the other end of the economic spectrum, for LGBTQ+ individuals in households making less than $25,000 annually, the most commonly considered paths to parenthood are intercourse, foster care, and adoption.

Learn more about the LGBTQ Family Building Survey and view the full report at 

About Family Equality

Family Equality advances legal and lived equality for LGBTQ+ families, and for those who wish to form them, through building community, changing hearts and minds, and driving policy change. Family Equality believes every LGBTQ+ person should have the right and opportunity to form and sustain a loving family, regardless of who they are or where they live. Learn more at

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Media Contact

Ed Harris / Chief Communications Officer
646.880.3005 x117