A new study has found that bisexual woman in a relationship with straight male partners are less likely to be open about their sexual orientation.
Researchers of the new study speculated that bisexual women may feel more comfortable about disclosing their sexual orientation when in a relationship with a woman.
However, bisexual women are also more likely to be out if they are in a relationship with a bisexual man rather than if they are with a straight male partner, the study states.
It means that both the gender and sexual orientation of a bisexual woman’s partner play a role in how open they are about their own orientation, researchers said.
A new study released this week found that both the gender and sexual orientation of a bisexual woman’s partner play a role in how open they are about their own orientation
The study, published in the Journal of Bisexuality this week, questioned 600 bisexual women about mental health, how open they are about their sexuality, their experiences with discrimination, and any symptoms of depression, according to NBC.
‘Most research about relationships has been focused on heterosexual couples,’ Casey Xavier Hall, a postdoctoral research fellow at the Institute for Sexual and Gender Minority Health at Northwestern University and lead author on the article, told NBC.
‘There is very little relationship research around bi people’s relationships. There are meaningful differences in relationships depending on the sexual and gender identity of bi women’s partners.’
The participants were asked about their level of ‘outness’ with answers ranging from ‘out to nobody’ to ‘out to everyone’.
The answers led researchers to speculate that bisexual women in relationships with cisgender lesbian women, bisexual cisgender women partners, and bisexual cisgender men partners are more likely to be out.
‘What’s unique about our finding is that bi women in relationships with bi men were also more likely to be out, compared to bi women in relationships with heterosexual cisgender men,’ Xavier Hall said.
‘It’s about both the sexual and gender identity of the partner.’
The study also found, however, that bisexual woman who are in relationships with straight men are less likely to experience discrimination to the same extent.
‘Relative to participants in relationships with heterosexual cisgender men, reports of discrimination experiences were higher among participants in relationships with lesbian cisgender women, bisexual cisgender women, bisexual cisgender men, and participants who are single,’ the study adds.
‘The visibility of your identity could be at play,’ Xavier Hall said of the finding. ‘If you are visibly queer, you may experience more discrimination.’
The study also found that bisexual women in a relationship with a straight man were less likely to experience discrimination. Pictured, World Pride Parade in New York in 2019
‘More research is needed to understand what leads to the discrimination piece,’ he continued, explaining to NBC that bisexual woman can experience both homophobia and monosexism – discrimination against those who are attracted to multiple genders.
Xavier Hall added that the findings of the study have led him to believe that there is a need for more research on female-female relationships.
His research had uncovered that bisexual women with cisgender lesbian partners showed less symptoms of depression than single bisexual women.
It follows previous research that showed differences in the mental health of bisexual women dating a woman versus those dating a man.
‘This makes me want to see more research looking at female-female relationships accounting for differences in partner sexual identity to really know if there are differences and to understand what might account for those differences,’ Xavier Hall said.
‘I think it is important to give voice to the experiences of bisexual people’.
The study comes a week after a new Gallup survey found that a record 5.6 percent of Americans now identify as LGBTQ, which equates to an estimated 18 million adults.
An estimated that a record 5.6 percent of all Americans now identify as LGBTQ
A record 15.9% of Generation Z Americans now identify as LGBTQ, according to a new poll from Gallup published Wednesday. Less than 2% of those born before 1965 do
The results found that younger generations were more likely to say they are LGBTQ with one in six Generation Z adults aged between 18 and 23 – or 15.9 percent – identifying as such.
This dropped to less than two percent in respondents who were born before 1965.
In prior years, Gallup had not asked respondents to identify their exact sexual orientation, only asking for yes or no answers in response to whether or not they were LGBTQ.
With the inclusion of the question in 2020, it found that 54.6 percent identify as bisexual while almost a quarter say they are gay.
Another 11.7 percent identified as lesbian and 11.3 percent as transgender.
And a further 3.3 percent volunteered another non-heterosexual preference such as queer or same-gender-loving.
The results found that an estimated 11.5% of Gen Z Americans identify as bisexual. This drops to below 2% for Americans born before 1980, as pictured above
The Gallup poll found that most LGBTQ Americans identify as bisexual, as pictured
The Gallup poll in 2020 had marked the biggest increase in Americans identifying as LGBTQ
Gallup estimates from these results that within the entire US adult population, 3.1 percent of Americans identify as bisexual, 1.4 percent as gay, 0.7 percent as lesbian and 0.6 percent as transgender.
The number of Americans identifying as bisexual is far higher among younger generations.
The Gallup poll found 72 percent of Generation Z adults who identify as LGBT say they are bisexual compared to half of millennials. It falls significantly lower in older generations.
The survey estimated as a result that 11.5 percent of American Gen Z adults identify as bisexual. This falls to 5.1 percent among Millennials, 1.8 percent in Generation X and 0.3 percent in Baby Boomers and Traditionalists.
As well as the divide by generations, the poll also found significant gender difference among the respondents.
According to the Gallup report, women are more likely than men to identify as LGBT – 6.4 percent vs. 4.9 percent, respectively – and women are also more likely to identify as bisexual.
Gallup had previously found in 2015 that Americans greatly overestimate the percentage of the population who are gay or lesbian.
A survey they conducted that years found that Americans believed 23 percent of the population to be gay or lesbian when they found only 3.8 percent of the adult population identified as LGBTQ that year.