Perceived importance of childbearing and attitudes toward assisted reproductive technology among Chinese lesbians in Hong Kong: Implications for psychological well-being

Iris Po Yee Lo, Celia Hoi Yan Chan, Timothy Hang Yee Chan

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Objective
To assess the perceived importance of childbearing and attitudes toward assisted reproductive technology (ART) among Chinese lesbians and the impact on their psychological well-being.

Design
Survey-based study using a 39-item questionnaire.

Participant(s)
A total of 438 Chinese lesbians between the ages of 18 and 35 years.

Intervention(s)
None.

Main Outcome Measure(s)
Perceived importance of childbearing; attitudes toward ART; and levels of anxiety and depression.

Result(s)
Perceived importance of childbearing to Chinese lesbians was negatively associated with age (r = −0.23), relationship length (r = −0.18), and full-time employment (F = 4.29). Compared to heterosexual childless women, Chinese lesbians thought childbearing was significantly less important (3.30 vs. 6.00 on a 1–10 scale, t = 14.6). Most lesbian respondents (92%) supported legalizing same-sex couples' access to ART, although less than half (41%) wanted to use it themselves to have children. Among lesbians who thought childbearing was important to their parents or their partners, not wanting ART was associated with higher anxiety levels.

Conclusion(s)
This is the first quantitative study of childbearing attitudes of lesbians in Asia. The data suggest that Chinese lesbians in the study who perceived childbearing as important to their parents or to their partners but did not want to seek ART reported higher anxiety levels. This study helps raise health care professionals' awareness of Chinese lesbians' attitudes toward childbearing as well as calls for a better delivery system of fertility and mental health services to address the psychological burden of Chinese lesbians in relation to reproductive issues.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1221-1229
JournalFertility and Sterility
Volume106
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2016
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Lesbian
  • childbearing
  • assisted reproductive technology
  • attitude
  • psychological well-being

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Perceived importance of childbearing and attitudes toward assisted reproductive technology among Chinese lesbians in Hong Kong: Implications for psychological well-being'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this