LGB Families and Relationships: Analyses of the 2013 National Health Interview Survey
By Gary J. Gates
The addition of a sexual orientation identity measure to the 2013 National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) offers a new data source to consider characteristics of families and explore differences among those led by same-sex and different-sex married and unmarried couples and LGB individuals who are not married or cohabiting. These analyses consider differences and similarities across these groups with regard to demographic characteristics including gender, age, race/ethnicity, educational attainment, geographic location, and child-rearing. In 2013, there were an estimated 690,000 same-sex couples in the US, of whom approximately 124,000 were married. In the last three years, the number of married same-sex couples in the US has increased by an estimated 50%. Same-sex couples were raising an estimated 200,000 children under age 18, of whom 30,000 are being raised by married same-sex parents. LGBT individuals who are not part of a couple are raising between 1.2 and 2 million children (depending on which estimate is used regarding the proportion of adults who are LGB or LGBT).