Friday, 13 May 2011
The hospital I volunteer at has a very tolerant attitude to same sex situations. This is as I would expect but it might come as a surprise to some given that the Church which 'runs' the hospital is not seen as being particularly tolerant or inclusive.
This attitude may be a factor of the area in which the hospital is located but in fairness I think it derives from a mostly open and progressive management, not just the administrative managers but the Congregation of Sisters as well. No doubt it helps that there are many same sex couples employed across the campus.
We receive many patients with same sex partners. The partners are recorded and communicated to without question or judgement as next of kin and person to notify.
I see many more male couples than female couples amongst the patients but have noticed an interesting difference between the two groups. For the most part the male couples tend to be aged between the mid twenties and the mid forties. There have been some male couples aged in their sixties and seventies but they are far fewer in number. The female same sex couples on the other hand have been mostly aged in their fifties and sixties. I see far fewer female couples aged in their twenties and thirties.
I suspect there has been a tendency for female couples to come to their relationships at a much later age in some cases after heterosexual marriages and children have reached adulthood. This is only an off the cuff opinion, I don't have any specific evidence for the age trend nor what else the age differences might indicate.
This situation could be fertile ground for an eager PhD student.