Maybe you read the article in the New York Times, stating that marriage was for younger gay males. Contributing writer Benoit Denizet-Lewis, a resident of Boston, found that 700 gay men age 29 or younger were wed in the state of Massachusetts between May 2004 and June 2007. For some reason, this very small sample size was used to state that if you were over 30, your chances of getting “gay married” were slim.
This isn’t just an issue of semantics and word-play as it illuminates the cultural fears about growing older as a gay man; life is over after 30, and you will die alone! But many guys who have crossed that magical line, and lived to tell about it, assure us that love and marriage can and do happen even much later in life.
The result from a 2017 study by The Knot revealed that the average age for gay males to marry is 46! This number might seem high when compared to opposite sex couples but a few thing need to be taken into account.
- These are marriages we are talking about, not boyfriends, or partners, who might have been together for a long(er) period of time.
- Marriage equality has only been the law in all 50 states for two (2) years.
- Gay men “come out” at various ages and thus more time might be needed to find the right partner to marry.
- Marriage is not for everyone. Even if they still want some form of committed relationship.
Whether you marry or not, or at what age, does not matter, it’s your choice. We would love to post links to lots of studies that detail the effects/affects of marriage on gay males but, as usual, the research is not there. Studies abound discuss the health and social benefits on straight guys but no one knows if they truly transfer over to gays, and if they do, to what extent. This is important because homosexuals still must face the added burdens of discrimination, isolation, racism and poz-phobia that could be reduced or possibly increased with a visible marriage.
But, we did find this from study author Jayn Goldsen. She’s a research study supervisor in the University of Washington School of Social Work. Ms. Goldsen’s work polled more than 1,800 LGBT adults, aged 50 and older, and were surveyed in 2014 in U.S. states where gay marriage was already legal.
“In general, those who were married or in long-term relationships had better physical and mental health, more support and more financial resources than those who were single. Married respondents had an edge on those in long-term relationships, according to the study.”
“Those who were single were more likely to have a disability; to report lower physical, mental, social and environmental quality of life; and to have experienced the death of a partner, especially among men, researchers said.”
It will take time before the true effects of marriage on the gay male are known, as research will need to be conducted and guys of all races and backgrounds will need to participate. The honest take-away from any study about partnerships and marriage is that nothing is universal. Any benefits to being married come from being with a compatible partner, binded by love and mutual respect. If you marry the wrong guy, you will never be happy.
Finally, If you have heard about the Dutch Study, here is the truth about it. If you have not, consider yourself lucky.
The featured image is of David Harris and Tre’Darrius Anderson of Memphis, Tenn, In 2013 the, then 19 year olds, married in Washington D.C. in front of the Lincoln Memorial. The lovely couple is believed to be the youngest African-American gay males to marry. We caught up with the young men and they are still living in wedded bliss.