Census Bureau: 150,000 Same-Sex Couples Report as Married in 2008

Offering a preview of what's to come in the 2010 Census, the Census Bureau has reported that almost 150,000 couples reported being in marriages last year:


"About 27 percent of the estimated 564,743 total gay couples in the
United States said they were in a relationship akin to 'husband' and 'wife,' according to the Census Bureau tally provided to The Associated
Press. That's compared with 91 percent of the 61.3 million total
opposite-sex couples who reported being married. A consultant to
the Census Bureau estimated there were roughly 100,000 official
same-sex weddings, civil unions and domestic partnerships in 2008. Analysts
said the disparities are probably a reflection of same-sex couples in
committed relationships who would get married if they could in their

Previous years, however, have revealed even higher numbers (341,000 in 2007 and 390,000 in 2005 and 2006), a statistical disparity attributed to "confusing survey layouts and formatting errors."


  1. Jesse says

    That seems awefully low. Where do they come up with these numbers. I live in Chicago and would guess that there are at least 150k gay couples in marriage like relationships in the Chicago metro area alone!

  2. Sean R says

    Interesting, but we must be cautious on such statistics, so I hope the US census is straightforward and can help capture a crucial historical change for scholars. It is a pity it will be so long before modern day census information can be digitised and presented publicly. (I’m currently doing my family history, and find all these documents so interesting).

    As I recall, in Ireland, it was so difficult to accurately list myself as living as a gay couple in Ireland in the last census. Why there wasn’t a simple same-sex relationship box to tick was puzzling. but I persevered and made sure the enumerator checked and verified how I recorded the info. (I had to list partner *as* my partner, ensure it was clear both of us were male, and so on…)

    So do please make an effort when the census comes around to record it accurately… try and leave a L/G/B/T imprint somehow! Don’t leave it ‘open to interpretation’, as it were.

    OK, I’m gonna take my anorak off now Andy!!