Call for Papers: Sexual and Gender Diversity in Families

Special Issue of Journal of Family Theory & Review

Sexual and Gender Diversity in Families: Theoretical Advances in the Context of Social Change

Guest Editors: Gaëlle Meslay and Stephen T. Russell
Deadline Extended to Feb. 1, 2024


Throughout the last decades in Western countries, the numbers of same-gender couples and LGBTQ+ families have grown, along with social acceptance and legal rights. In 1989, Denmark became the first country in the world to offer registered partnerships to same‐gender couples, a practice rapidly extended to other countries around the world. During the 2000s and the 2010s, marriage – an institution hitherto restricted to different‐gender couples and criticized for being heterosexist – also became an option, leading to changes in access to parenting and thus a diversity of experiences of family life. Despite this rising recognition, social and legal barriers remain in the family life of sexual and gender diverse people. Consequently, the legal and social contexts matter greatly for understanding sexual and gender diversity in partnerships and families, and the challenges that LGBTQ+ people face in partnership and family life.

This special issue – Sexual and Gender Diversity in Families: Theoretical Advances in the Context of Social Change – will build from the JFTR 2016 Special Collection on LGBT-Parent Families nearly a decade earlier. It aims to update understanding of LGBTQ+ couples and families from multiple theoretical and international perspectives, in the context of remarkable sociohistorical change. We seek articles that address changes and evolutions in LGBTQ+ family patterns – and within LGBTQ+ families. We seek articles that attend to intersectionality, including differences across generations or considerations of contextual and cultural differences – national or political, regional or cultural, religious or racial or ethnic differences. We encourage new theoretical analyses and conceptualizations, as well as integrative reviews.

Examples of key issues guiding the special issue include:

  • What theoretical perspectives illuminate sociohistorical change in access to and experiences of family life – including partnership and parenthood – for LGBTQ+ people?
  • What theoretical innovations are useful for analysis and action with respect to shifting laws and policies regarding parenthood and family life for LGBTQ+ people?
  • How can family theories advance understanding of the experiences of children in diverse LGBTQ+ families?
  • How can theoretical frameworks inform understanding of the diversity of family life among sexual and gender diverse people and populations? For example, are there points of convergence – or departure – for people who are or who live in families with people who are: transgender, gender diverse, bisexual, lesbian, gay, or queer?
  • What theoretical perspectives illuminate new family forms that are characterized by sexual or gender diversity?

Manuscripts are due by Feb. 1, 2024, and the special issue will be published in June 2025. Manuscripts must be submitted via the Manuscript Central submission portal at Be sure to note that the submission is for this special issue. JFTR follows the style guidelines of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (7th ed.). For manuscript guidelines, please refer to

For more information or questions or to discuss submission ideas, please contact the special issue editors: Gaëlle Meslay: [email protected] or Stephen T. Russell: [email protected]