Recent US research still making waves

Last week we posted an article on bisexuality published in the LA Times that included some of the results from the recently published Pew survey of LGBT Americans. Some of these findings has also been cited in an article published in the UK, with a focus on the findings that far fewer bisexual people are out of the closet than gay or lesbian people. At the invitation of the hosts, Bi-Alliance spoke with Gay News Week (Joy 94.9) on the evening of Tuesday 23 July about this research.

For anyone interested, Pew Research’s page LGBT in Changing Times provides links to their research on a number of topics, including attitudes to marriage equality and the recent survey of experiences of LGBT Americans. The survey was completed online over a two week period by nearly 1200 respondents.

The results that appear to be most controversial are that 40 percent of respondents identified as bisexual (27 % men and 73% women*, see Table: Profile of LGBT Americans) and that people who identify as bisexual were significantly less likely to be out of the closet, with bisexual men in turn considerably less likely to be out to significant people in their lives than bisexual women. Additionally, people who identify as bisexual are less likely to come out to their parents. Bisexual respondents were less likely to report a wide sense of acceptance of LGBT within their town or city than gay and lesbian respondents.

The above findings suggest that we still have a way to go when it comes to creating a sense of acceptance and safety for people who identify as bisexual. However, it is heartening to see that these issues are gaining increasing attention from the broader ‘queer’ communities.

May we see a day where the ‘B’ in LGBTIQ is far from silent and ignored, and is instead embraced and considered of equal importance to the other sex, sexuality and gender identities.

*trans and intersex not reported in results.

*update 26 July* two more pieces inspired by the above research that I forgot to add at the time.

An interview on Southern California Public Radio with Allen Rosenthal whose study on bisexual men confirmed that they exist and Denise Penn, director of the American Institute of Bisexuality. And this article on bisexual invisibility, published on an LGBTI group blog blog

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