Discussion Response To Classmates

please no plagiarism and make sure you are able to access all resources on your own before you bid. Main references come from Murray, C., Pope, A., & Willis, B. (2017) and/or American Psychological Association (2014). You need to have scholarly support for any claim of fact or recommendation regarding treatment. Please respond to all 3 of my classmates with references separately. You need to have scholarly support for any claim of fact or recommendation like peer-reviewed, professional scholarly journals. I need this completed by 04/19/2020 at 5pm.


Responses to peers. Note that this is measured by both the quantity and quality of your posts. Does your post contribute to continuing the discussion? Are your ideas supported with citations from the learning resources and other scholarly sources? Note, that although it is often helpful and important to provide one or two sentence responses thanking somebody or supporting them or commiserating with them, those types of responses do not always further the discussion as much as they check in with the author. Such responses are appropriate and encouraged; however, they should be considered supplemental to more substantive responses, not sufficient by themselves.

Read a your colleagues’ postings. Respond to your colleagues’ postings.

Respond in one or more of the following ways:

· Ask a probing question.

· Share an insight gained from having read your colleague’s posting.

· Offer and support an opinion.

· Validate an idea with your own experience.

· Make a suggestion.

· Expand on your colleague’s posting.

1. Classmate (C. Rod)

There are many factors that counselors should be aware of that can specifically influence the satisfaction and stability of same-sex partners. “Such factors include internalized homonegativity, lack of social support and barriers to leaving the relationship, which may impair individuals’ ability to connect with their partners and cope with relationship distress.” (Murray, Pope & Willis, 2017, p. 217). Relating to the above scenario there are other characteristics that must be known. Such as, the couple’s gender identity, are they 2 males or females or other choices that are listed in Table 7.1. There are an estimated 690,000 same-sex couples households in the United States and 19% of those couples are raising a child under the age of 18 (Oakley, Farr, & Scherer, 2017). Another factor would be are the two kids adopted, donor insemination, in vitro fertilization, surrogacy or from previous relationships? These two factors plus many more will influence the couple’s experience.

Rural vs Urban

The majority of lesbians live in urban areas but 12% of same-sex couples live in rural areas for affordable housing, beautiful landscapes, privacy and slower pace of life (Barefoot, Rickard, Smalley, and Warren, 2015). Also, lesbians may choose rural over urban because women tend to make less money than men and more likely to have children. Although there are many benefits of living in a rural community for same-sex couples, there are also some negative possibilities. In rural communities, traditional gender roles, conservatism, patriarchy, fundamental religiosity, hetero-normative family structures, and conformity take place (Barefoot et al., 2015). Unfortunately, in rural communities, they have not been exposed to sexual minorities as an urban community has which leads to developed negative perceptions.

Sexual minorities that live in rural communities report frequent experiences of discrimination and victimization. Some examples of discrimination are discrimination from employment benefits, credit or banking decisions; and victimization of verbal harassment or property damage (Barefoot et al., 2015). Gay men in rural areas report feeling shame, guilt and low self-esteem and lesbians report isolation and the feeling of loss of their own religious beliefs.  Despite the possible negative possibilities of being open with same-sex relationships, it is encouraged to be open. By not hiding their sexual orientation it provides positive support for the youth and provides a sense of empowerment and advocacy.

Socioeconomic Status

It is no secret and proven by research that one’s socioeconomic status is related to the satisfaction and stability in romantic relationships and parent-child relationships (Conger, Conger & Martin, 2010).  43% of same- sex couples that have children have less than a high school diploma and only 18 % have a graduate degree. Despite the misconception from the popular TV show Modern Family, that portrays white, urban, wealthy gay men raising an adoptive child; in 2000 the U.S. Census analyses reported that 20% of children in same sex house holds are living in poverty ( Gates, 2011). Same-sex couples that do participate in child-rearing with lower education status are at an economic disadvantage.


When sexual minorities feel the need to self-isolate due to fear of repercussions from their community, it causes negative effects on their mental health, self-esteem, and identity. With lack of positive support all these external/internal struggles can have a negative influence in their romantic relationships and the relationship with their children. No matter if an heterosexual or same-sex relationship, higher SES can have positive impact on their relationship and the family’s overall happiness. Because same-sex couples get discriminated against and do have a higher probability of having lower education levels, these relationship encounter hardships that an hetero couple would not. Yes, today’s society is becoming more accepting of same-sex couples, but is it up to the allies of this vulnerable population to advocate and ensure everyone regardless of sexuality receive equal rights.


Barefoot, K. N., Rickard, A., Smalley, K. B., & Warren, J. C. (2015). Rural lesbians: Unique challenges and implications for mental health providers. Journal of Rural Mental Health39(1), 22–33. https://doi-org.ezp.waldenulibrary.org/10.1037/rmh0000014

Conger, R. D., Conger, K. J., & Martin, M. J. (2010). Socioeconomic Status, Family Processes,and Individual Development. Journal of Marriage & Family72(3), 685–704. https://doi-org.ezp.waldenulibrary.org/10.1111/j.1741-3737.2010.00725.x

Gates, G. (2011). Family Formation and Raising Children Among Same-Sex Couples. Retrieved from:  https://escholarship.org/uc/item/5pq1q8d7

Murray, C., Pope, A., & Willis, B. (2017). Sexuality counseling: Theory, research, and practice. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage

Oakley, M., Farr, R. H., & Scherer, D. G. (2017). Same-Sex Parent Socialization: Understanding Gay and Lesbian Parenting Practices as Cultural Socialization. Journal of GLBT Family Studies, 13(1), 56–75. Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.

2. Classmate (M. Neg)

Rural/ Urban

There are different aspects of a couple’s life that could impact their relationship and how they parent. Being aware of demographic differences when working with same sex couples and their children is important because it provides information that could be beneficial to the counseling process. Same sex couples face different challenges depending if they live in a rural or urban area. The percentage of same sex couple’s living in rural areas is about 12% which could be due to the rural culture of traditional gender roles, conservatism, patriarchy, religiosity, hetero-normative family structures, and conformity (Barefoot, Rickard, Smalley, & Warren, 2015). Being aware of the culture in rural areas gives insight to the possible challenges same sex couples could experience that would impact their relationship and parenting. It is common for lesbians living in rural areas to experience feelings of isolation due to discrimination and victimization (Barefoot et al., 2015). Living in isolation can add stressors to the couple’s relationship that will impact the way they interact with one another. Same sex couples in rural communities refrain from public displays of affection out of fear of victimization leading to devalue or minimize commitment to the relationship (Barefoot et al., 2015). Raising children in a rural area can also be challenging for same sex couples because of the discrimination they experience. Lack of family and community support and difficulty interacting with traditional institutions are challenges that are often experienced by same sex couples in rural areas when it comes to parenting  (Barefoot et al., 2015). Knowing if a same sex couples live in a rural or urban area gives insight to the counselor about what struggles or challenges they could be facing. This demographic information allows the counselor to better understand the support and resources needed in order to properly help the couple.

One stay-at-home parent/ Dual Career

A household can run differently when both parents are working compared to a household where one parent is home and the other is out working. Separation of household tasks could look different between households that have both parents working and those that do not. The separation of tasks can determine how same sex couples parent and their relationship with one another. It has been shown that the parent that is employed participates in child care tasks less than the parent who stays home (Sutphin, 2013). It would make sense that the stay at home parent would take part in more child care tasks because they are home more often with the child or children. For same sex couples employment status has a higher impact on child care tasks where heterosexual couples are more likely to separate tasks based on gender (Sutphin, 2013). One parent having more child care tasks than the other could impact the couple’s relationship depending on the understanding they have with one another. It is possible that the stay at home parent becomes burnt out from picking up most of the child care tasks which could cause a strain in the couple’s relationship. Or it could be that the couple has discussed different household tasks and have divided them up in a way that works for them and with an understanding of what is expected of the stay at home parent and the one who is working. This could look different for same sex couples who both are working. Dividing up tasks equally for parents who both work could be a possibility. Or dividing up tasks depending on each parents career whether one has one that is more time demanding than the other. There are a number of different factors that can impact the parenting and relationship of same sex couples when it comes to careers. As a counselor, knowing if both individuals are working or not can determine the approach taken with the family because their experiences or goals could be different.


Barefoot, K. N., Rickard, A., Smalley, K. B., & Warren, J. C. (2015). Rural lesbians: Unique challenges and implications for mental health providers. Journal of Rural Mental Health, 39(1), 22–33.

Sutphin, S. (2013). The division of child care tasks in same-sex couples. Journal of GLBT Family Studies9(5), 474–491.

3. Classmate (A. Lac)

Week 8 Discussion Counseling Same-Sex Couples

This week’s example of Mark and Roman shows how same-sex couples may experience different situations compared to those who are heterosexual couples. This kind of example is important for educating future counselors in being aware of certain unique relational and social issues they experience (Jacqui & Reenee, 2015).


During this week I was able to learn a few statistics surrounding urban and rural same-sex couples. According to our readings, a large portion of same-sex couples resides in urban areas however each year same-sex couples are being drawn towards rural areas (Barefoot, Rickard, Smalley & Warren, 2015). Vulnerability to discrimination has been linked to rural areas. Reports have shown that rural areas are generally less supportive of the LGBT community compared to that of urban areas. Rural areas tend to have a tight fit structure which makes harassment harder to bear.


According to our readings When these lesbians can meet other women and enter romantic relationships or partnerships within a rural community, they face numerous vulnerabilities to not only their own well-being but also a variety of unique stressors on the relationship (Barefoot, Rickard, Smalley & Warren, 2015, p. 25). These include maintaining relationships in secrecy compared to that of living in urban communities. Many individuals reported the constant stress of hiding displays of effect and concealing their sexual orientation in their community.

Parenting Style

When same-sex couples decide to become parents, they become faced with additional challenges in rural and urban communities. These challenges not only affect the couple but the entire family system. Risk factors and challenges include discrimination, heterosexism, homophobia, and heightened sexism (Jacqui & Reenee, 2015). When families are faced with such challenges it makes it difficult to find support within their community.

Counseling Approach

As a counselor my goal is to work in the school system and work with a wide range of clients. If offered the opportunity to work with families with same-sex couples my goal will be to help families find additional support and care within their school and in the rural communities. Another counseling approach will involve attending to the client’s sexual identity development and stressors. Therapy also may entail interventions related to planning and networking because the therapist can help rural lesbians recognize the importance of visibility, while at the same time recognizing safety issues (Barefoot, Rickard, Smalley & Warren, 2015).


In summary I found this week’s discussion question informative. As a future counselor, my goal will be to help d actively improve rural life for individuals of the LGBTQ community.


Barefoot, K. N., Rickard, A., Smalley, K. B., & Warren, J. C. (2015). Rural lesbians: Unique

challenges and implications for mental health providers. Journal of Rural Mental Health,

39(1), 22–33. Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.

Jacqui, G., & Reenee, S. (2015). Reflections on the challenges of understanding racial, cultural

and sexual differences in couple relationship research. Journal of Family Therapy, (2),

210. Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.

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Also posted onMay 7, 2020 @ 5:56 pm