PUBLIC OPINION > Having More Than Two Parents Is Controversial

Living 2012/07/05 21:00:00
California lawmakers are pushing a new bill that would allow children to legally have more than two parents in order to address complicated parenting situations. However, opponents have pointed out that the bill would bring equally complicated legal issues into the mix -- tax deductions, citizenship, and assistance, to name a few. We asked the public if it was OK for a child to have more than two parents.

After more than 800 votes, the public still couldn't come to a consensus. It was split right down the middle. This is a pretty complex issue. On the plus side, additional parents are a reality that many kids are dealing with, especially in non-traditional homes. On the other hand, additional parents can potentially cause more disagreements and confusion within the non-nuclear family and among society at large. Needless to say, there are a lot of elements at work.

Parents Limit Parents

Though parenthood didn't have the strongest effect on how voters responded, it's the most immediate demographic. They are the ones who are going to make that decision (or at least fall into that position), after all. What's interesting is that people who don't want kids were most likely to OK additional parents. It's fine by them, as long as they aren't the ones doing it.

Modern Families

As you might expect, age had an enormous correlation. Voters under the age of 45 were about 35% more likely to give their blessing, while very few voters over 45 were OK with additional parents. We assume the primary reason for this is that younger voters are more likely to have either grown up with multiple parents, or known people who grew up with multiple parents. Or maybe they're just more open-minded.

The Man of the House

The gender correlation was interesting. Based on the results, women are about 23% more likely to be OK with additional parents than men. This could be the result of two elements. First, previous polls have suggested women are more comfortable with the thought of homosexual relationships. Second, men are sometimes expected to be the "head of the household." If a father has to share that responsibility with a step-parent, it could create difficulty.

If you'd like to vote on this question, dig deeper into the demographics, or engage in existing discussion about the topic, visit our poll about having more than two parents. We'd love to hear from you!
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Top Opinion

  • darlenedoskas1969 2012/07/06 14:24:35
    if my stepfather had had parental rights, I wouldn't have been left with my mother to be sold (sorry, I meant rented) to the highest bidder on a regular basis... my brother wouldn't have been murdered after one of her drug deals went bad... my sister wouldn't be a PTSD addled nutcase who is unable to care for her own child, or even herself... we could, instead have been raised by someone who actually gave a damn about us... but he didn't have rights... only our bio-dads had rights, and they were like mom, and didn't give a damn...

    having more than 2 parents shouldn't be controversial, if indeed it is... what should be controversial is abusing your kids... hurting your kids... letting other people hurt your kids... how about we worry more about helping kids, and making their lives better than about what sex their parents are or are not having?

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  • Red Branch sandra.... 2012/07/08 15:54:41
    Red Branch
    Nothing would have prevented guidance from numerous adults. How many people do you want to be directing your children's lives?
  • A Founding Father 2012/07/06 03:13:01 (edited)
    A Founding Father
    I suppose that since about 25% of the children born in California could not be linked to a male parent without costly DNA matching, why not let several claim a little bundle of joy that will make Section Eight Housing, Food Stamps, Medicaid, Aid to Dependant Children, and a dozen other sources of money become available to all who want to play the game. And, think of the benefit to the little one who no longer will have to explain to friends why "Aunt Tanahaia" or "Uncle Shawn" sleep in the same bedroom with "Dad" or "Mom", or whomever happens to be in charge. Those Californians are always ahead of the curve.
  • gvc 2012/07/06 02:28:15 (edited)
    Under 45 more open minded? Maybe it's because they lack foundations. They have grown up in a era where any and everything goes and no longer know right from wrong. That would be my guess.
  • Marvelo... gvc 2012/07/06 05:20:21
    Marvelous Wildfire
    Or maybe they are so open-minded . . . their brains fell out.
  • gvc Marvelo... 2012/07/06 06:02:18
    Hahahaha true!
  • sdfwdg 2012/07/06 01:34:14
  • Walter Harris 2012/07/06 01:15:29
    Walter Harris
    and they are going bankrupt for what reason. It is not for smart laws, you wouldn't believe it if I told you.
  • cudlow 2012/07/06 00:48:41
    Can't we kick California out of the union?
  • Angela Chambers 2012/07/06 00:38:06
    Angela Chambers
    Shuu, everything is controversial. Hell, what's next? Wearing underwear?
  • Sam DePecan 2012/07/06 00:05:41
    Sam DePecan
    This is so stupid. More Political Homosexuals burning down the barn to kill the rats.
  • Gwen Sam DeP... 2012/07/06 09:28:56
    what are you talking about?
  • Sam DeP... Gwen 2012/07/06 14:45:53
    Sam DePecan
    Overkill. It's like saying burning down the barn to kill the rats. The reason that a small amount of politically-minded people want to made an issue about being irresponsible, useless scum; and not being able to take on the task of PARENTING, is because they themselves came from a family where the parents also sucked.
  • CA Gal 2012/07/06 00:02:51
    CA Gal
    These kinds of questions and/or problems is what is screwing up the world. I think it's rather simple. Every child should be limited to 2 parents only. Typically it should be the biological father and biological mother. In the case of adoption, limit it to 2 whether the couple is gay or straight. When you start adding in the stepmoms, stepdads, etc...it only complicates things. Chances are if they divorced once it's likely they'll do it again.
  • Leagh 2012/07/06 00:01:29
    Yea i defo tink ya shud be able ta av more den 2 parents i do nd ihs great cause i dont really get to see my real dad dat often but he's still apart of my life nd my step dad is brilliant ta me nd he's sound ouh nd ih also means more money:) Jokes dahs not de only reason ihs gudd:P
  • Osaka 2012/07/05 23:29:59
    One of the issues I see is people claiming their friend's kids just to get a tax exemption.
  • IC Freeley 2012/07/05 23:29:56
    IC Freeley
    The divorce rate in the United States is 60%. Kim Kardashian was wed to Kris Humphries for 72 days (which many believed to be a publicity stunt) but some will say they have more of a right to get married than a same-sex couple who've been together for years because they're of opposing genders. Wow. Some family values.

    Still, this sounds less like a "win" for children and more like a "win" for practicing attorneys in California. I think it would be best considered on a case-by-case basis and that the kid should be able to say who they want to live with (or if they want to live with multiple parents.) If a step-dad broke his back for a cheating woman who was the biological parent of the child he helped raise because the real dad is MIA, he should have a say as to whether or not he should have some form of custody of the kid if the two of them genuinely have a solid relationship. And perhaps the best way to address custodial values for a surrogate would be to enter into a pre-natal agreement, much like a pre-nuptual agreement.
  • blissful 2012/07/05 23:26:43
    With all the divorcees around. This in its-self should be confusing enough for the children. Now some people want to make it even more complicated than it is for the children! Another that will go all wrong with this setting is the fact that the kid can choose which parent will be more easier to take advantage-of. When things don't go there way. Wow! what a mess to dealt with!!..
  • lori 2012/07/05 23:24:56
    California is so screwed up.. It is another planet.. Kids today are already messed up and California makes the top of the list. This is so stupid it doesn't deserve a answer.
  • Alvin 2012/07/05 23:18:23
    OK, let me see if I get this straight. California lawmakers want to made a law that a child cannot have more than two parents. So far so goo. Now.. what about the children of divorced and re-divorced parents with 5 or six parents?
  • gvc Alvin 2012/07/06 02:31:43
    Read it again. They want to make a law that would allow children to have MORE than two parents.
  • Alvin gvc 2012/07/06 23:52:24
    Exactly, many kids today have a multitude of parents. Do they need to make a law about it?
  • gvc Alvin 2012/07/07 06:54:13
    I wouldn't think so, but then again we are talking about California. :-)
  • JustineRulz 2012/07/05 23:10:19
    This topic has a lot to do with a paper I am writing for my Logic class. WOW!
  • 098765 2012/07/05 23:01:54
  • Red Branch 098765 2012/07/08 15:58:10
    Red Branch
    A poet laureate in the making you are.
  • 098765 Red Branch 2012/07/10 22:24:24
  • Bcounted 2012/07/05 22:56:20 (edited)

    Our current standard of two parents is challenging and will become more challenging as those growing up without or limited moral standards become parents. As it stands the chances of a Childs parents staying together through its 20's is less than good and now let's throw 2 more parents in the mix to break the Childs heart. Sure say's a lot about where we are heading. Where is Child Perfective Services cause this is sure to screw them up.


  • FrozenH... Bcounted 2012/07/06 20:19:26 (edited)

    Sorry. The inner grammar nazi in me jumped out.
  • Bcounted FrozenH... 2012/07/07 02:36:56
    No apology necessary ... good catch.
  • aSeattleConservative 2012/07/05 22:49:52 (edited)
    It's even more complicated when a lesbian, a bisexual, and a straight guy who just wants sex without committment are in the picture.

    Marriage and the traditional family: One man, one woman creating children while in wedlock. God created the institution that way, let's keep it that way.
  • bags the Indigenous Guru 2012/07/05 22:34:12
    bags the Indigenous Guru
    As someone once said, it takes a village to raise a child.

    In my native culture we all have 2 Moms and 2 Dads. Your parents are your parents....always. But your second Mother and Father are adults that love you for YOU, the person that you are. Many parents have dreams and ambitions for 'their son/daughter'. The 2nd Mother and Father don't have that kind of influence. And, can any child ever get too much love?
  • Justine... bags th... 2012/07/05 23:14:29
    I like the way you think. It was kinda like that with me when I was a child but my grandparents were the second parents. We didn't live with them or anything but we sure did spend a lot of time with them.
  • aSeattl... bags th... 2012/07/14 20:56:20 (edited)
    That was pro abortionist (baby killer) Hillary Clinton who made that quote famous. You know the name, her husband is a unrepentant adulterer.

    Great "family values" people the Clintons are.
  • bags th... aSeattl... 2012/07/14 22:29:09
    bags the Indigenous Guru
    She may have made it famous, but the words, and sentiment, existed long before she espoused the attitude. Your sentiments relative to the Clintons have nothing to do with the validity of the statement.
  • The_Infidel_Atheist 2012/07/05 22:27:42
    It's unorthodox, but not controversial.
  • cupcakes 2012/07/05 22:24:36
    quit your fear mongering you hypocrite!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • Anonymouse ~superdoge~ 2012/07/05 22:22:06
    Anonymouse ~superdoge~
    Unorthodox, but it happens - tax deductions should be to the custodial parents, citizenship to the natural parents, or in the case of surrogacy the adoptive parents. They should be able to have multiple parents on there, but under different headings - custody of child, natural parents, legal parents, etc.
  • jeffeh 2012/07/05 22:19:41
    It is totally ridiculous that this is controversial. A mother or a father or not always a parent we should be happy that so many people want to be a good parent.
  • ben 2012/07/05 22:10:09
    Yes since the norm is 2..even when grandparents and aunts and uncles step in and call themselves raising you. Lol
  • Gracie - Proud Conservative 2012/07/05 21:48:24
    Gracie - Proud Conservative
    Here's the further destruction of the family and society in general.

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