“In a first for Asia, Taiwan’s Constitutional Court ruled in favour of same-sex marriage, punctuating a yearslong campaign by advocates for gay rights in one of the continent’s most liberal democracies” (Yeh, 2017). Until 1 January 2019, same-sex marriage has been legally performed and recognized in a total of 29 countries or regions (Baidu Baike, 2019). It seems that gay marriage is becoming a heated human right and civil right issue. Polls show continuously rising support for gay relationships in most of the developed democracies.
Gay relationship shares a few common features with straight relationships, such as self-identification and the couple lifestyle. However, there are some major differences between gay and straight relationships, which include social recognition, marriage legality, maturity problem and dating pool. Basically, the chief similarity between gay and straight relationships is that it’s just two people committed to each other. According to Li Yinhe (2002), compared with heterosexual emotional life, those true homosexual relationships are very similar in terms of forms, content and the level of sincerity, and the only difference is that homosexual’s lover is the same sex.
The truth is that gay people don’t consider themselves as some kind of weirdos or freaks, and there’s nothing wrong with their sexual orientation. They are ordinary people just like heterosexual. As for couple lifestyles between the two relationships, some are similar while others are not. In those 29 countries or regions I’ve just mentioned above, gay couples can get married, raise a kid and their relationships are under the protection of the law. So it doesn’t affect their life too much whether they are gay or straight. However, things could be way more complicated in the rest of the world. The social acceptance for homosexual and heterosexual is different. It is common sense to a lot of people that a couple should be a man and a woman. The majority of people in the world are heterosexual and because of this they usually don’t discriminate against straight relationship. But for gay people, it’s totally another story. Just envisage a picture of two men or women holding each other’s hand and walking on the street. It could be strange and annoying to some people. Why? Because from their perspective, it is not acceptable that there is love between two people of the same sex.
Gay couples are experiencing a great deal of discrimination, which can impact their relationships at any stage. Discrimination is everywhere. For example, rude people may use nasty words to insult homosexual, and gay people could be kicked out of the firm once they come out. Most importantly, their family are very likely to look down on them and may disown them so that they have no choice but to break up with their family. However, for heterosexual, it won’t cause them these troubles while having an intimate relationship. Homosexual and heterosexual relationships differ greatly in legalization. Straight relationships and marriages are legalized and respected all over the world. However, there are still a large number of countries that do not allow legalization of gay couples. The LGBT community has been fighting for their rights and trying to gain acceptance of the law for many decades. Now it’s 2010s, and although the environment is becoming more accepting toward gay marriages, many gay couples are still not allowed to form a legal union like straight couples can in those countries. Without the protection of law, gay couples’ rights are strictly restricted. They may get rejection to adopt kids. Even though one person can have a child by surrogacy, the other doesn’t have the custody of the child. Additionally, because their relationships aren’t recognized by legalization, gay people can’t visit his/her partner in hospital as a family member or make medical decisions for his/her love. Thus, gay marriages and straight marriages are usually unequal.
Homosexual tend to mature later than heterosexual. What I mean is that straight people can easily date each other and fall in love at puberty and all through their high school. But most gay people may don’t have access to a variety of other homosexuals or even simply are in the closet until their 20s. So for those people, their 20s are often called a period of experimentation, and some refer to it as “the slut phase” (Nenoff, 2015). Regardless, their 20s tend to be when they have a relationship with other men/women, start to date and sleep with others and finally learn to know what they love. Therefore, it often seems like their development is postponed by 5 to 10 years and it also explains why there are numerous gay guys are less mature than straight people.
Homosexual oftentimes have a smaller dating pool compared with heterosexual. More than 90 percent of the world population are heterosexual (Grant, 2013), and it has been seen that a few straights also have been in a same-sex relationship once, so it’s usually not a difficulty for straight people to date or have sex with someone. However, according to Diana Cage (2011), lesbians generally meet each other through other lesbians. Bunch of online dating apps customized for homosexuality have exploded these years, but the truth is that most gay people merely treat these apps as the way to hook up, not to mention short-term or even long-term relationships. And due to the fact that homosexual are high-risk group infected with AIDS, they are inclined to be extremely cautious when choosing their partners. Thus, for gay people, finding someone that they love is way harder than straight people. In essence, there aren’t supposed be too many differences between homosexual and heterosexual relationship. Because technically, either gay or straight, they are all just human beings, and humans are born equal. More and more countries have joined the league which insists on eliminating this inequality, and what we are supposed to do is to be tolerant of this diversified world, letting go of judgment and putting aside our prejudice.