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Same-sex marriages have been legal in the UK since 2014, and legal in all US states since 2015.

The status of gay marriages means a spate of studies have been released which look at the ways in which same sex couples behave, and their quality of life.

A recent study by the UW School of Social Work found that of the LGBT participants, those who were married reported better physical and mental health, as well as financial and personal resources, than those who were single.

The study took 1,800 LGBT people aged 50 and over, and surveyed them in 2014 in the 32 states (and Washington DC) where marriage was already legal.

Of those, approximately one quarter were married, one quarter were in committed relationships and the remaining half was single.

The findings were published in The Gerontologist in February.

Results showed that participants who indicated they were married had spent an average of 23 years together, whereas those who reported being in a committed relationship spent an average of 16 years. More women than men were married.

One reason for the increase in gay marriage may have something to do with the benefits afforded to married couples, like tax exemptions and Social Security survivor benefits.

Heterosexual marriages however, seem to be on the downturn.

Lead author of the study Jayn Goldsen says that this is because:

More older people are living together and thinking outside the box. This was already happening within the LGBT community -- couples were living together, but civil marriage wasn't part of the story.

HT EurekAlert

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