That Stereotype About Lesbians “U-Hauling?” This Study Says It’s a Myth

OK, science...

New research indicates that perhaps there isn’t as much truth to the “lesbians move fast” stereotype as we thought.

Two sociologists at Stanford University used data from the relationship trajectories of 3,000 American couples to figure out just how quickly the average couple moves in together after they begin dating. Their findings, published in the journal Population Review, determined that the one-and-a-half-year mark was the overall average.

There were some trends that came as no surprise to researchers: Older couples and pairs with at least one religious person were more likely to co-habitate sooner, reports Quartz.

However, one pattern emerged that did buck some stereotypical conventions: “Contrary to popular conceptions of lesbians as eager to commit,” the researchers wrote in their study, “our results indicate that after controlling for couple age there are no significant differences in relative rates of cohabitation among couple types.”


The researchers’ note about “popular conceptions of lesbians as eager to commit” is a nod to the “U-Hauling” stereotype about lesbians and queer women moving in together quicker than most. First popularized by out comedian Lea DeLaria in the ’90s, U-Hauling as a phenomenon within lesbian culture has endured, though this new research from Stanford might prompt us to pause before we order that van for the second date…

Brooklyn-based writer and editor. Probably drinking iced coffee or getting tattooed.