Dr. Nancy L. Segal: Twin Births in Gay Couples Through New Reproductive Tech | All Together #53

In this episode, host Dina Sargeant is joined by Dr. Nancy L. Segal, a respected Professor of Psychology at California State University, Fullerton (CSUF), and the visionary Director of the Twin Studies Center

This episode focuses on how surrogacy and techniques like in-vitro fertilization are allowing more gay partners to realize their dream of becoming parents. Whether you’re hoping to expand your knowledge or just curious about the twin experience, this episode will surely enlighten and warm your heart.

Meet Dr. Nancy L. Segal

Dr. Nancy Segal is a Professor of Psychology at California State University, Fullerton, and the Director of the Twin Studies Center, which she founded in 1991. She has an impressive academic background, including degrees from Boston University and the University of Chicago.

Dr. Nancy is a highly respected figure in twin research. She has received numerous accolades, such as the Distinguished Professor in Humanities and Social Sciences award, the Outstanding Professor of the Year award, and the prestigious James Shields Award for Lifetime Contributions to Twin Research.

Her fourth book, Born Together-Reared Apart: The Landmark Minnesota Twin Study, earned the 2013 William James Book Award from the American Psychological Association. Dr. Nancy was also the 2016 recipient of California State University’s campus-wide Wang Family Excellence Award.

She has also been invited to speak and participate in various international conferences, including events organized in the Netherlands (2018), Brazil (2020), and Japan (2022, scheduled). In 2017, she delivered a TEDx talk in Manhattan Beach, CA. Most recently, she was an invited panelist for an Intelligence Squared debate in New York City, “Parenting is Overrated,” held on October 29, 2019.

About the episode

In this thought-provoking episode, Dr. Nancy shares moving stories of what family means today. She introduced a story of gay fathers who worried about papers for their twins. You learned how modern magic like surrogacy and IVF helped their family dreams come true. 

Dr. Nancy explains the stress LGBTQ parents feel bringing new life into the world, from picking perfect embryos to proving at hospitals they’re legal guardians too. You heard how far people have come, yet bias lingers. 

She talks about how having gay parents is pretty normal these days. She discusses how doing multiple embryo implants in IVF can be more cost-effective, as well as how the ways people are forming families have been changing over time.

Dr. Nancy dives into the nitty-gritty of family life with twins. She talks about how parents tend to try and match their parenting style to each twin’s personality, and how that can play out with twins. She’s a big believer in letting each twin develop their own distinct identity, rather than trying to treat them exactly the same.

She also mentions how twins can have some advantages when it comes to sports—she says watching how twins interact can give you useful insights that apply to any teammates, not just twins.

In conclusion

In this episode, Dr. Nancy L. Segal highlights the intricacies of family dynamics surrounding twins. She’s got tons of great insights that are relevant whether you’ve got a gay or straight couple raising kids. She also highlights how important it is to understand the unique dynamics at play when you’re parenting twins. It’s all about finding that balance—nurturing those close family bonds while also making sure each kid can thrive as their own individual.

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