The 25 gayest cities in Texas

We’re still working to get in touch with demographer Gary Gates of UCLA’s Williams Institute, the guru of all things gay and Census, to go over those freshly released data on same-sex couples in Texas. Gates says via email that he’s been slammed with media calls all morning and will get back to us as soon as he can. In the meantime, he sent over another tidbit in the form of an Excel spreadsheet listing all cities in Texas ranked according to the rate of same-sex couples per 1,000 households. As we mentioned earlier, Dallas has the highest rate of same-sex couples in the state, followed by Galveston and Austin. The list, which we’ve posted below, contains some major surprises — with cities like Hutto and Jollyville appearing in the top 10, for example. And yes, this does go to show that we are everywhere, but also keep in mind that the cities are ranked according to rate per 1,000 households. So, while Houston has the highest total number of same-sex couples (8,290), it has a much larger population than Dallas and therefore a lower rate. Also, my headline is deliberately misleading because the Census doesn’t count single gays. And in case you’re wondering, the city with the lowest rate of same-sex couples in Texas is College Station, with 131 or 3.74 per 1,000 households. Stay tuned for more as soon as we’re able to talk to Gates.

Check out the top 25:

—  John Wright

Study shows same-sex couples in Texas are among most likely to be raising kids

Courtesy of Gary Gates/UCLA

Roughly one in four same-sex couples in North Texas are raising children, a rate that’s among the highest in the country.

Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington ranks 12th on the list of metropolitan areas in the U.S. where same-sex couples are most likely to be raising children, according to a recent study by Gary Gates, a demographer at UCLA who studies U.S. Census data.

According to Gates, 3,178 of the estimated 12,761 same-sex couples in North Texas are raising children, or 24.9 percent.

San Antonio is No. 1 on the list of 52 metropolitan areas nationwide with populations of more than 1 million, with 33.9 percent of same-sex couples in the Alamo City raising children, according to Gates. Houston is No. 7 at 27.2 percent, while Oklahoma City is No. 10 at 25.4 percent.

Last week, The New York Times reported on Gates’ study, noting that child-rearing among same-sex couples is more common in the South than in any other region. Gay and lesbian couples in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas are more likely to be raising children than their counterparts on the West Coast, in New York and in New England. From the NYT:

Experts offer theories for the pattern. A large number of gay couples, possibly a majority, entered into their current relationship after first having children with partners in heterosexual relationships, Gates said. That seemed to be the case for many blacks and Latinos in Jacksonville, for whom church disapproval weighed heavily.

“People grew up in church, so a lot of us lived in shame,” said Darlene Maffett, 43, a Jacksonville resident, who had two children in eight years of marriage before coming out in 2002. “What did we do? We wandered around lost. We married men, and then couldn’t understand why every night we had a headache.”

Moreover, gay men who have children do so an average of three years earlier than heterosexual men, according to census data, Gates said. At the same time, there are fewer white women of childbearing age nationally, according to demographers, while the number of minority women of childbearing age is expanding.

—  John Wright