Research shows that gay relationships are “happier and more positive” than straight ones.
The popular perception that gay relationships don’t last is not surprising, but it’s a myth. We all know that same – sex relationships face difficulties not encountered by our opposite – sex counterparts, arising from some measure of public disapproval, hostility or active discrimination or even violence, and from the greater difficulties in arranging the emotional and legal support of family and community in marriage ceremonies and contracts. So the misperception that our relationships are fragile, and the companion allegation often heard from our opponents that gay men are doomed to unhappiness, is not surprising – but is contradicted by the evidence.
The latest study to show this result comes from the UK Open University, widely reported this week in the British press. This research, based on a survey of 5000 people, including in-depth follow – up interviews with 50 of the participants, examined much more than just the sexuality of the couples, which explains the headline of the report in the Independent:
The key to a happy relationship? Be gay. Or childless. Or make tea
Gay couples are likely to be happier and more positive about their relationships than heterosexuals, according to a major study by the Open University published today
However, they are less likely to be openly affectionate towards each other – holding hands in public, for instance – because they still fear attracting disapproval.
The study of 5,000 people – 50 of whom were later followed up with in-depth interviews – aimed at finding out how modern couples keep their relationships on track through life’s difficulties.
It found that simple things – like making a cup of tea in the morning and taking it up to them in bed – were the most treasured by couples as examples of intimacy rather than more dramatic gestures such as declaring “I love you”.
It was on the relative happiness of people within different types of relationships that the survey threw up the most interesting insights into modern day life, however.
“LGBQ participants (lesbian, gay, bisexual and queer) are more generally positive about and happier with the quality of their relationship and the relationship which they have with their partner” the research concludes.
“Heterosexual parents are the group least likely to be there for each other, to make ‘couple time’, to pursue shared interests, to say ‘I love you’ and to talk openly to one another.”
- Large UK Study Finds That Gay Couples Are Happier Than Straight Couples (slog.thestranger.com)
- Same-Sex Couples Happier Than Straight Couples: Study (bilerico.com)
- Study: Gay couples more likely to be happy and positive than straight couples (pinknews.co.uk)
- Study Finds Gay Couples Are Happier, Less Likely To Display Public Affection (towleroad.com)