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Equal level of commitment and relationship satisfaction found among gay and heterosexual couples
Date:1/21/2008

ion that committed same-sex relationships are atypical, psychologically immature, or malevolent contexts of development was not supported by our findings, said lead author Glenn I. Roisman, PhD. Compared with married individuals, committed gay males and lesbians were not less satisfied with their relationships.

Furthermore, said Roisman, Gay males and lesbians in this study were generally not different from their committed heterosexual counterparts on how well they interacted with one another, although some evidence emerged the lesbian couples were especially effective at resolving conflict.

In the second study, researchers from the University of Washington, San Diego State University and the University of Vermont wanted to examine how sexual orientation and legal status affected relationship quality. To do so, they followed 65 male and 138 female same-sex couples with civil unions, 23 male and 61 female same-sex couples not in civil unions and 55 heterosexual married couples over a three-year period. One member of each heterosexual couple was a sibling to a member of a civil union couple.

Both partners in all of the couples answered questions regarding their demographics, status of their relationship, number of children, sexual behavior, frequency of contact with their parents with and without their partners and perceived social support. Partners in same-sex relationships also answered questions regarding disclosure of their sexual orientation to their family, peers and work associates.

The researchers found that same-sex couples were similar to heterosexual couples on most relationships variables, and that the legalized status of a relationship did not seem to be the overriding factor affecting same-sex relationships.

Despite the legal status of their relationships, the civil union couples showed no differences on any of the relationship measures from the same-sex couples who were in committed relationships but not
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Contact: Pam Willenz
pwillenz@apa.org
202-336-5707
American Psychological Association
Source:Eurekalert

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