More Americans See No Problem with Same-Sex Relationships

Close-up of two women holding handsAlmost half of all Americans, and 63% of millennials, say same-sex relationships are “not wrong at all,” according to a new study published in the journal Archives of Sexual Behavior.

The study marks a dramatic shift in public perceptions of same-sex relationships. Between 1973 and 1990, the number of adults who said same-sex relationships are not wrong increased by just two points, from 11% to 13%. Researchers also found an increase in same-sex sexual experiences, particularly among women.

Changing Attitudes About Same-Sex Relationships

The study relied on data from the General Social Survey, a nationally representative survey of American adults that has been conducted since 1972. The survey included 33,728 participants.

In 2014, 49% of adults found no issue with sexual relationships between same-sex adults. Sixty-three percent of millennials agreed. Although millennials were more accepting of same-sex relationships than Generation Xers were at the same age, the study showed a shift in attitude among all adults.

An Increase in Same-Sex Sexual Experiences

Researchers also uncovered an increase in same-sex sexual experiences. Between 1990 and 2014, the percentage of men who reported such experiences increased from 4.5% to 8.2%. Among women, the number increased from 3.6% to 8.7%. Among adults as a group, the percentage of people with both male and female partners rose from 3.1% to 7.7%.

The largest increase was among people living in the Midwest and South. Researchers say this increase was not due to an increase in the number of people identifying as lesbian or gay. Instead, more men and women had bisexual experiences, reporting both male and female partners.

Although attitudes are shifting about same-sex sexual relationships, discrimination and stigma remain common. A 2013 PEW survey found 21% of LGBT survey respondents had experienced discrimination in hiring, promotions, or pay. Among transgender individuals, discrimination is even more common. A 2011 survey found 78% of transgender individuals faced at least one form of discrimination or harassment at work.

References:

  1. Employment discrimination against LGBT workers. (2013, October 30). Retrieved from http://williamsinstitute.law.ucla.edu/headlines/research-on-lgbt-workplace-protections/
  2. Oaklander, M. (2016, June 1). Same-sex hookup rates have doubled in the U.S. Retrieved from http://time.com/4352899/sex-relationships-hookups/
  3. Feltman, R. (2016, June 1). Study: Same-sex experiences are on the rise, and Americans are increasingly chill about it. Retrieved from https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/speaking-of-science/wp/2016/06/01/study-same-sex-experiences-are-on-the-rise-and-americans-are-increasingly-chill-about-it/

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  • Rosie

    Rosie

    June 7th, 2016 at 6:01 PM

    What a reason to celebrate!

  • William

    William

    June 8th, 2016 at 3:31 PM

    Things are so much different now that what they used to be, and I don’t know, I am not sure how I feel about it. I am still pretty old school so it is hard for me to consider that same sex relationships are right, but I know that it is what makes some people happy so why should I be the one to judge? You have to understand that for some of us it is not that we are necessarily against this but it is such a different way of thinking than it was when I grew up that it is is just something for me to having to truly ponder and pray about before deciding what I really believe about ti.

  • georgia

    georgia

    June 11th, 2016 at 2:54 PM

    Obviously these studies were not done where I live

  • Harold

    Harold

    June 11th, 2016 at 8:10 PM

    Hey what ever turns you on. Ain’t to sure about opposite sex marriages. Been married twice and it’s not an easy ride. I guess that’s why there is so many divorces. If I had it to do over, I think I would just ride the fence. It’s hard for two people to live together.

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