Friday, August 27, 2010

Studying LesBians: Are we happy to be single and/or hoping to find true love online?

Studying LesBians is a monthly column in which I discuss recent and not so recent research involving LesBians or the LGBT community as a whole.

This month I want to talk about a study that was published this week that shows lesbians and gay men are happy to be single. At least, that's what the headlines in the queer media say.

Qoud.TV a website that offers queer TV channels and movies on demand, together with Stonewall, conducted a survey among over 1,000 gay men and lesbians about their relationship status and how they felt about it.

It showed that 61% of all single people questioned said they were quite happy to be single. I think this result is not very surprising, as these days we're no longer all sitting at home desperate and lonely, waiting for Miss Right to come along.

Still, as a researcher I cannot help but feel these numbers are a little misleading. First of all, when you only ask single people how they feel about being single you don't get the whole picture, because it just might be they are happier and more able to be single than those in relationships.

Secondly, just because you might answer you are happy to be single, doesn't mean you are not secretly hoping for that one perfect girl to share your life with.

Another part of this survey that I found interesting was that 51% percent of queer respondents thought they could find true love on the internet, compared to 36% of straight respondents. I think those numbers are pretty high for both groups, but it's not that surprising it's a lot higher for us.

After all, if you're gay it's much easier to meet someone online than it is in every day life. Unless, of course, you have lots of queers at work, at home and everywhere else you go.

It's a shame the results are not divided by gender, as I am pretty sure gay men score higher on being happy with being single than lesbians. I also think that more lesbians are in relationships than gay men are, but unfortunately I couldn't find any comparable studies to confirm this.

So what does this survey really tell us and how representive is it for all lesbians everywhere? I think it tells us that many of us enjoy spending time online, and because we do we also think it's not too unlikely we'll find a girlfriend there.

However, I do not think the majority of lesbians is happily single, or they might be quite happy, but they would prefer to be in a relationship. Or am I just thinking of stereotypes?

When I look at my personal situation, I know that I was single for a long time, and I was quite happy with this fact too. But then I met the love of my life online, and I have to say, it's made me so much happier than I ever was.

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What do you think of the study results and if you are single, what's your answer to the question Are you happy to be single and/or are you hoping to find true love online?

Read previous Studying LesBians columns here.

This post was first published on eurout.

1 comment:

Beach said...

Both. I'm happy to be single, but I'm also hoping to find true love online. I think most people would prefer to be in a relationship (at least a happy, healthy one); after all, humans are social creatures. But if you're not happy with yourself, I'm not sure you will be happy in a relationship; you'll always be looking for the other person to fulfill your emotional needs (which no one is capable of except you), and that's not healthy. At least that's what I keep telling myself.