What the Pew Research Says about Bisexuals

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The Pew Research Center is just analyzing a 2013 study of 1,200 LGBT adults and made some recent findings about bisexuals.

They say:

* Bisexuals are much less likely than gay men and lesbians to say that their sexual orientation is an important part of who they are.

* Only 20% of bisexuals say being bisexual is extremely or very important to their overall identity. (It’s nearly half for gays and lesbians.

* Bisexuals are also much less likely than gay men or lesbians to have “come out” to the important people in their life.

* Only 28% of bisexuals say all or most of the important people in their life know they are bisexual. By comparison, 77% of gay men and 71% of lesbians say the important people in their life know about their sexual orientation.

* Relatively few bisexuals report that they have experienced discrimination because of their sexual orientation.

* There’s also a sense among all LGBT adults that society is more accepting of bisexual women than it is of gay men, lesbians or bisexual men.

* Bisexuals realized their orientations at nearly the same ages as lesbians and gay men. The median age when bisexuals report first thinking that they might be bisexual is 13.

* The median age at which they say they knew for sure that they were bisexual is 17.

* Bisexuals were a median age of 20 when they first told someone about their sexual orientation.

* Of the sample of 1,197 self-identified LGBT adults, 479 (or 40%) of the respondents were bisexual.

* Bisexuals are much more likely than gay men or lesbians to be married, and most have a spouse of the opposite sex.

* Only 9% of bisexuals have same-sex partners; fully 84% are involved with someone of the opposite sex.

Overall, the stats were not surprising.

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Mike Szymanski
Mike Szymanski has written about bisexual issues since 1989 and has one of the longest-running regular bisexual columns as the National Bisexuality Examiner. He came out as bisexual in a cover story of Genre magazine, which resulted in more than 50 television appearances, including Ricki Lake, Phil Donahue Show and 20/20. Szymanski won the Lambda Literary Award in 2007 for co-authoring an informative humor book “The Bisexual’s Guide to the Universe: Quips, Tips and Lists for Those Who Go Both Ways.” Write him at [email protected]