restricted access Commitment Timing in Same-Sex and Different-Sex Relationships


Using the representative and longitudinal dataset How Couples Meet and Stay Together (HCMST), we analyze the relative timing of relationship formation and cohabitation entry among same-sex and different-sex couples. In doing so, we consider the extent to which gender and sexuality affect private negotiations regarding the progression of intimate relationships. We find that rates of romantic relationship initiation are highest for male same-sex couples relative to female same-sex couples and different-sex couples. Contrary to popular conceptions of lesbians as eager to commit, our results indicate that after controlling for couple age there are no significant differences in relative rates of cohabitation among couple types.