Social Question

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

Think of your partner + 5 closest friends - how similar are you in terms of race/sexuality/gender identity (details inside)?

Asked by Simone_De_Beauvoir (38980points) April 22nd, 2011

So The Queer Commons and I are putting on another workgroup next week around race within the queer community and we’ve been sending out these really cool surveys about who people interact with and which races/sexualities/gender identities stick more with like vs. unlike and whether there are any patterns. So I decided to ask Fluther about the same kinds of things.

Think of your partner and 5 closest friends besides your partner. Of these 6 people, how many are: 1) the same race as you (mention your race) b) the same sexuality as you (mention your sexuality) c) the same gender identity as you (mention your gender identity)*

*only mention said things if comfortable; if you are single, use 6 closest friends.

I’ll do my own circle as an example: of the 6 people closest to me…

1) 4/6 are the same race as me (white)
2) All are part of the LGB/queer community (queer)
3) 2/6 are genderqueer/GNC (gender non conforming)

Let me know what feelings this exersize brings up or what conclusions you draw. I find it interesting that most of my friends are the same race and sexuality as me but aren’t the same gender identity.

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57 Answers

raven860's avatar

Same nationality, Each from a different ethnic group, I am religion A, Three are religion B, One is religion C, One is religion D. All are straight as far as I know.

gailcalled's avatar

My best friend and his partner were just here. Allan and Kevin. They live up the road. They are white also. Jewish

I have two close women friends, both white, both hetero, one married and one divorced.One Jewish, one protestant.

I have two week-end friends, also up the road, who are white and female… a couple. Both atheists.

Partner; white and black, male by birth, agnostic.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@raven860 Huh, it would be interesting to add in religion as another factor. I suppose because we’re activists within the queer community, we know less about each other’s religious leanings, it’s more private than the other aspects I’m looking into. That, in itself, is telling because, I’m sure, for other groups of people, the case is reversed (whereas sexuality is more private, etc.). Let me think, of the 6 people I mention, 2 are atheists like me and I have nothing definitive on a religious inclination for the other 4, I’m unsure.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

Two out of six are mixed race,the rest are white like myself.
Four out of six are men.I am female.
One out of six are gay.I am heterosexual.
I like my friends for reasons other than race and sexuality.
They are all a pain in the @ss and I love them anyway. :)

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@lucillelucillelucille Oh, I like my friends only based on sexuality and how activist they are. Jk, :)~

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir—I’d like mine better if they’d do yardwork when they visit.;)

raven860's avatar


My stupidity strikes again. I skimmed through your question and gave an answer which doesn’t make much sense in regards to your question lol. One may look at my previous answer and wonder what was I thinking…


a) Same race
b) All straight as far as I know
c) 2 are same. 3 are different

Aethelwine's avatar

Four are white, one is black and one West Indian. I am white.
Four are male, two are female. I’m female.
Two are gay, four are heterosexual. I’m heterosexual.

Cruiser's avatar

All of them are white, as far as I know heterosexuals and married.
3 Males and 3 Females

JLeslie's avatar

I am white, straight, female, Jewish

My husband is:
Hispanic (sort of, he is second generation Mexican, technically caucasian I guess? His background is ½ Israeli (middle eastern) ¼Spanish and ¼French, does that make him the same race?)



Raised Catholic, converted to Judaism

The other friends are:

Same race
1 is bisexual the others straight
All female
1 is same religion others not.

If I widen it to more friends than 5 those stats change drastically. If you had asked me 10 years ago it would be much different also.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@JLeslie Race is, of course, tricky. I think it’s up to the invididual, as always. So if he considers himself of mixed race, then it’s different. I also like your point about time, things change over time, and that who we are friends with now may be really different based on location, even.

aprilsimnel's avatar

I am currently not partnered, so this represents my current Best of the Besties:

I identify as mixed-race: two are black, four are white.

I identify as atheist: one was raised culturally Jewish, two were raised Episcopalian/Church of England (don’t practice now), two were Catholics (one lapsed, one high holiday) and one was Baptist (now more “spiritual than religious”). I was raised Pentecostal and converted to Catholicism before I admitted to being atheist.

I identify as female: five are female, one is male.

I identify as heterosexual: all identify as heterosexual; three of them are married and one will probably be engaged shortly.

And of those six, three are over 50, one is 40 and two are in their early 30s.

If this stretched out to 10–20 people, then we’d start getting into different races, sexual and gender identities, and types of romantic partnerships of my not-quite-so-besties, but still good friends.

ucme's avatar

4 males
2 females
1 gay
& a partridge in a pear tree :¬)

KatawaGrey's avatar

I’m not sure how to decide who are my best friends but I will talk about the ones I have spent the most time with in the last few months.

Two are female, like myself. The rest are male and we all identify as the traditionally corresponding genders.

Four are white, like myself. One is black. One is half black and half hispanic.

Two are gay men. I am bisexual. As far as I know, the rest are straight.

I am spiritual. Two are atheists. One is Christian. One is agnostic and I do not know about the rest.

Also, the two gay men are a couple and the black girl and one of the white men are a couple. I think this makes a difference as to why we hang out because most of my social life is my boyfriend so couples are more likely to hang out with us.

Oh, also, all of these people fall within an age range of 21 to 25 and I am 22. Like @JLeslie and @aprilsimnel, if this was expanded, there would be significant changes in demographics.

Also, all are the sex they were born and intend on staying that way as far as I know.

An interesting note: Almost all of my non-white friends are female and almost all of my gay friends are male. I don’t know if any of my friends are bisexual.

Blackberry's avatar

Straight black male.
2 females 4 male, all white except for the female, who is hispanic/white.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@aprilsimnel I do like your addition of age as a factor as well. I didn’t consider that at all. Of the 6 I mention, all are between the ages of 25–35 as am I. Interesting. Of course my last two partners would shatter that as one was 20 and the one before her was 55.

Aethelwine's avatar

If I add ages to the list, we are all within the same age range of 39 to 41.

DominicX's avatar

Out of the six:

4/6 are white (including my partner), but 1 is half-white, half-Asian
1/6 are are homosexual (my partner), the rest are heterosexual
3/6 are male
All are 19–21

I just am a bit disappointed that I don’t know too many non-heterosexuals. There’s only one gay guy I know who’s an acquaintance (though I have been hanging out with him more lately).

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@DominicX Are you no longer with your boyfriend? I’m sorry, :(

incendiary_dan's avatar

Can I get a metric for deciding who my closest friends are? There are some friends I see more often but relate less to, some I only see every month or two but talk to regularly, etc. It really changes the answers, too.

DominicX's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir Sorry, I answered it wrong. Fixed now :) We are still together, though still very much long-distance.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@incendiary_dan Sorry, babe, no such metric exists. Just think of the people you’d call first if you were stuck in the toilet and needed help getting removed out of there.
@DominicX Okay, good

incendiary_dan's avatar


I’m also now curious as to how one would get stuck on a toilet.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@incendiary_dan An ex-best friend of mine did, she was tiny enough. She called me, I oiled her butt out. True fucking story.

Zaku's avatar

Basically my partner and 5 closest friends are almost all “European/White” and “Straight” (male or female) and “Gender Conforming” except one is a queer female, and another one is from a country in Asia.

tinyfaery's avatar

1. Me: ½ white, ½ Mexican. Bisexual. Woman. Late 30s.

2. Wife: White. Lesbian. Woman. Early 30’s.

3. Friend 1: White. Heterosexual. Male. Early 50s.

4. Friend 2: Black. Heterosexual. Male. Married to a German national. Mid 40’s.

5. Friend 3: Phillipina. Heterosexual. Woman. Late 20’s.

None of these people identify as transgendered.

creative1's avatar

1) 1/6 are all white same race
2) 1/6 are gay
3) There is 1 male and 5 females all gender conforming

Neizvestnaya's avatar

1.) My partner and 5 closest friends are not of my race.
2.) We all identify as heterosexual.
3.) 2 males (partner included) the rest female.

JLeslie's avatar

@creative1 I don’t understand number 1.

sinscriven's avatar

Me: 26/M – Hispanic (Mexican) – 98% Straight – Buddhist – Liberal – LGBT Supportive
Partner: 25/F – Hispanic (Mexican) – Has had bisexual experiences but would identify as straight – Roman Catholic – Liberal – LGBT Supportive

Of my top friends list, 2 are male, 3 are female. Three are white, one is hispanic, and one is black. One is bisexual, one is straight but has occasional bisexual tendencies, the rest are straight. One’s a Jehova’s witness, one’s an atheist, one’s a christian, and two are spiritual.

All of the above identify with their expressed gender.

JLeslie's avatar

@sinscriven Do you consider Mexican a race? I just ask because of my own answer near the top.

MissAnthrope's avatar

1) 6/6 are the same race as me (white)
2) 5/6* are part of the LGB/queer community (queer/lesbian)
3) 4/6** are genderqueer/GNC (gender non-conforming)

* One of these friends is a transman and while I’m respectful of how people would like to label themselves, I really am not sure where he fits in, exactly.. like if you’d consider that queer still or if, since he’s living as a guy and dating a woman, whether he’d be considered straight?

** We get into the issue of self-labeling versus how I perceive these individuals. I’ve not had discussions with all of my friends about where they feel they fit on the gender scale. It’s a big deal to me on one hand, but then on the other hand, it’s really not because it’s just who the people are, if that makes sense. I’ve rated here the people that I perceive as living outside of gender norms (very ‘girly’ gay boy, transman, ‘boyish’ dykes, etc.)

sinscriven's avatar

@JLeslie Nah, just being more culturally specific. Hispanics are for the most part mestizo, mixed with native american and european blood which i guess would put latinos in between, but not quite one or the other. I figured that the national culture was somewhat relevant.

I edited my post to reflect not looking like a tard. hehe.

Aster's avatar

All are straight, one is Hispanic the rest white, all females (except s/o) who happens to identify with the male gender. (;
All are married except one.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@MissAnthrope Well, it’s about knowing how they identify. If that transman identifies as straight man, that’s what he is even though you and I are privvy to his history and that could be a separate note.

MissAnthrope's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir – We haven’t talked too much about it, even though I want to. I mean, we’ve talked some about it, especially since he just recently had his top surgery, but nowhere near the depth that I would like. I’ve been hoping it’ll happen kind of organically, cause I’m dying to ask him all sorts of questions. :)

Facade's avatar

My SO/best friend is all I have to work with, so he’s the same race as me, hetero, and he’s a man. It’s ⅓– I’m Black, mostly hetero, and a woman.
If I had it my way, my friends would be a mixed bag.

seazen_'s avatar

I don’t have a partner and I have no friends. I only have fluther, and it’s mostly gay. Does that count?

etignotasanimum's avatar

I’m single, and of my six closest friends, 5 are the same race as me (I’m white). One is Latina. As far as I know, four are straight, one is asexual/questioning, and one is bisexual (I’m straight). 2 are male, 4 are female (I’m female), and as far as I know they all identify with the gender they were born into. 5 of them are atheists, though at 1 or 2 of them were Christians as children. 1 is still a Christian (I’m an atheist). Together, we range in age from 19–25.

aprilsimnel's avatar

Yeah, @Simone_De_Beauvoir, age does make a difference for certain things. I find more often than not that the older people I’m friends with, if not necessarily older people in general, are more comfortable in their own skins and “own” their lives more. Even my 40-year-old friend is still going though some “finding herself” turmoil.

My wider friendship circle skews much younger than the inner circle.

incendiary_dan's avatar

I’m white, Asian (Filipino), and American Indian. My partner is very white. We have in common that we are both ¼ Italian. Both heterosexual, and I guess fairly gender conforming, even though we defy a lot of gender roles.

I’ll break it down into the two basic groups of people I hang with.

One is the group I nerd out with once a week playing Dungeons and Dragons.

4/5 are white, 1/5 is Vietnamese. (There are more people, but that’s the core group)
All, to my knowledge, are hetero, but aside from those in relationships it tends not to come up.
All are gender conforming, sometimes sickeningly so.

The other group is my “alternative” group (people into radical politics and natural living)

4/5 are white, one is black.
3/5 Are hetero, one is bi, one is gay.
Mostly all gender conforming, if particularly critical of gender roles.

FluffyChicken's avatar

I am a white bi female who is agnostic.

My best friend is an atheist white male of Semitic descent.
the rest of the best friends roster is as follows:
A pagan white girl who is also bi
An atheist puerto-rican girl who is straight
A white Kleinfelters but straight man who is pagan
A white straight man who is a hard core Christian, but used to be pagan.

Both of us bi women tend to prefer men. All of these folks fall pretty well into gender roles.

Seelix's avatar

1) All are the same race as me (white)
2) All are heterosexual, at least in practice
3) 4 are female, 2 are male, and identify as such

2 are Christian, 4 are agnostic/atheist

I lead a pretty vanilla life, I guess.

bkcunningham's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir the last part of your question, “Let me know what feelings this exersize brings up or what conclusions you draw. I find it interesting that most of my friends are the same race and sexuality as me but aren’t the same gender identity..” Well, the first part of the last part of your question, lol.

I haven’t read the responses yet cause I’ve been having fun with my sister-in-law and her kids and I’ve have a few glasses of wine and I’m lazy. Buttt, the first thing I think is, what difference does it make. Not saying that in a smartass way. Just a serious way. What difference does it make really.

I love you for the work you are doing and for your strong beliefs (and for your beautiful boys and handsome fellow) but what difference does it make to me what others race or sexual preference or whatever is?

We just played shuffleboard with this little girl who was so badly burnt or something that had cause her skin to look grafted and her fingers, what was left of them, like little stiff twigs. She came up to us on her own and was so flipping brave I coulda cried. I couldn’t have cared less and never thought about any of those things your group is asking. Don’t you know, her Mom came and got her after about an hour and she looked the same way.

She was so beautiful I stood in awe when I shook her hand at her elegance, poise and aweness of life and living. Sorry.

dialectical1's avatar

Ethnicity: All are white. [My whiteness is not 100%, but I pass & have enough family connections that I have virtually no disadvantage regarding my ethnicity relative to most people of color]

Sexuality: At least 3/5 are of a different sexual orientation (I’m essentially straight). One’s pan, 2 are bi, one’s straight, & I’m not sure about the other. One’s polyamorous, another’s open to it, everyone else is monogamous. I doubt any are asexual. [Oddly, in my group of friends – the people I hang out with most, not who I’m closest to, there’s probably more bisexual women than straight. At our ladies night out at a bar, I’m almost always the only straight one there]

Gender identity: While 2 of them have a pretty gender-balanced mix of traits/expression/personality, and the rest are much less restricted by the gender binary than most, none of my close friends identify as transgender. Two are men, the rest are women.

Class: 4 were raised pretty solidly middle class, though at least 2 have dealt with extreme economic insecurity… either involving unabashed hunger or having no housing but a tent. One has & gets support from upper middle class parents and a solid job, everyone else is less well-off. My family & I have been as or more privileged than most of my friends, but I’m now facing housing potential/likely housing insecurity in the near future.

Education: 2 have degrees, everyone else was either unable or decided against completing college (at least for the time being).

Philosophies: Most identify as feminist (one is mostly progressive 2nd wave stuff with lotsa sex-positivity, another’s the “gender is nothing but a social construct” sort who’s down with some critique of other’s privileged viewpoints but neither are great on examining their own own; the others seem not to have ). One’s an absurdist existentialist, at least one is a Unitarian Universalist, at least 2 have nature-focused spiritual beliefs of some sort, one’s a theist of some sort, one’s into Zen buddhism & I’m sure all have meditated. [most have a mix of beliefs, so several individual’s are mentioned more than once.]

prolificus's avatar

1) the same race as you (mention your race)

I am white, my partner is black. My three closest friends: two are white, one is black. Partner’s two (our friends): one white, one black.

b) the same sexuality as you (mention your sexuality)

I’m queer (haven’t landed on a fitting label yet). Partner is lesbian. Friends: 1 pansexual, 2 lesbians, and 2 heterosexual.

c) the same gender identity as you (mention your gender identity)

I’m genderqueer. Partner is female. Friends: All female (varying degrees of expression).

We have tons other friends, not just female and/or queer. Just sayin’.

What feelings brought up from exercise? Well, I had to acknowledge I have other friends than just those who mirror my partner and me, didn’t I? Didn’t want to come across as exclusive even within a diverse group of close people.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@bkcunningham I wasn’t asking to figure out a ‘difference’ that it makes. Obviously, it makes no difference.

takeachance's avatar

1. Races – 1/6-me- i am a tanned aboriginal, my friends are 4/6 white Australians, 1/6 polish.
2. Sexuality – 6/6 straight
3. Gender – 4/6 – female- Me, Meg, Sarah, Matilda. 2/6 – male – Hayd, Lockie.
I also have gay, bi and lesbian friends.

augustlan's avatar

I’m a white, mostly hetero-ish, atheist female in my 40s. I’m a raging liberal.

My husband is a white, mostly hetero, deist, male in his 50s. He’s a republican/libertarian.
Friends: All white, but different ethnic backgrounds. 3 females, 2 males, all identify as such. The two males are married to each other, so, that’s 2/6 gay. One of the females is vehemently straight, the other two are more fluid. One of the females is Eastern Orthodox (sort of like Catholic). Interestingly enough, she is not the one who is super straight. I don’t really know the religious beliefs of the rest of them.

It’s interesting to think of time and location in relation to this. When I was younger, I had far more male than female friends, and we were mostly a 50/50 mix of black and white, with some Asian and some mixed race in there, too. I knew several bi or gay people, but none in my closest circle. I lived in a metropolitan city, and now I live in West Virginia. Interesting thought exercise.

FluffyChicken's avatar

@augustlan I really like the label “mostly hetero-ish”

OpryLeigh's avatar

I’m British/White, bisexual (in a straight relationship) and I identify as a female (not a girly girl at all, sometimes a bit of a tomboy but I definitely identify as female).

My partner also British/White, he is straight and identifies as male.

Out of my five all are white/British, 1 is gay, 1 is bisexual and 3 are straight, I’m pretty sure all of them identify as female although my best friend (the one that is gay) is happier in male clothes and acts like a “rough and tumble” boy! Ihave never asked herif she identifies as female or if she feels that her gender is fluid. I know she definitely doesn’t identify solely as male.

KatawaGrey's avatar

@augustlan: Wait, your husband is a Republican deist and you haven’t killed each other yet. Now that’s love.

augustlan's avatar

It is! <3

Nimis's avatar

– 3 Caucasian (2 Jewish, 1 White)
– 2 Asian
– 1 Mixed Race (Mestizo-Asian)
[33% similar]

All self-identified as heterosexual.
[100% similar]

– 5 male
– 1 female
[17% similar]

– All between the ages of 32–36.
[100% similar]

– 2 Jewish
– 2 Catholic (1 lapsed, 1 practicing)
– 1 Atheist
– 1 Non-religious
[17% similar]

Marital Status:
– 2 married, soon-to-be parents (not w/ each other)
– 1 married w/ children
– 1 married
– 1 in a relationship
– 1 single
[17% similar]

wildpotato's avatar

1) I am Ashkenazi. 2/6 are also Ashkenazi, 3/6 are white (feel free to smush these two together if that’s your view) and 1 is Kurdish.

b) I am asexual. None of my friends overlap with this. 1 is gay; the other 5 are straight.

c) I am female. 4/6 are male; 2 are female.

hearkat's avatar

I have a partner and 3 close friends who are like siblings. We all hail from the same state.

I am a straight, white female in my late 40s, who was raised Protestant but now consider myself agnostic. My father was a gay man who was pressured to go through “conversion therapy” in the 1950s – his was a miserable life for more reasons than that.

My fiancé is a straight white male, who was raised Protestant and is now a liberal and atheist. His sibling is married to an African-American who had an African-American child, and they have a bi-racial child together.

My oldest friend is a straight female, but was raised in a different culture/religion (Jewish) and we’ve known each other since Kindergarten. My second oldest friendis a gay male, and he is my oldest friend’s oldest friend: they’ve known each other since they were ~3 through their families’ synagogue. Neither of them are religious as adults, but they still self-describe as Jewish. We were all in 1st grade together over 40 years ago.

My third oldest friend is a white female, raised as a Catholic Republican, whom I met when we were teens more than 30 years ago. Her sexuality has been fluid over the years; and she straddles the line between trying to please her family’s conservative values, and her true beliefs; she’s a bit neurotic as a result.

These are my inner circle – my true family, which is somewhat circumstantial since we met as kids under the influence of the environments that were still controlled by our parents. The next layer out is far more diverse. I’ve also been in interracial relationships in the past.

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