Take Autostraddle’s Important Lesbian and Queer Stereotypes Survey!

Lesbian stereotypes: we love ’em, we hate ’em, they destroy us, they define us. But are they true? In this big Autostraddle reader survey, we’re getting into it.

It’s chock full of questions on important topics like spirituality, U-Hauling, cat ownership and so much more. We had so many more things we wanted to ask about than we had time for, but we think this’ll be a good start.

Most of the questions and answers on this survey were pulled from other surveys so that we can make direct comparisons between this data and data conducted by Harris Interactive, the Pew Research Center and a whole bunch of consumer groups and academic researchers. Usually we put great care into making sure each question is catered to our audience — that won’t always be the case this time. So just a heads up!

This survey is open to all lesbian, queer-identified and bisexual women as well as any non-binary people who consider themselves a member of this community. Basically if you think this survey is relevant to you, go ahead and give it a go.

Also — in a weird collusion of the stars or whatever, a research group out of Los Angeles launched a grant-funded game today that looks at a similar topic. It’s called LezParlay, it’s for lesbian and queer identified women in Los Angeles and if that describes you, you should check it out! You can win money! On this survey, all you win is a bunch of really interesting posts about you.

Take the Autostraddle Queer Stereotypes Survey now!

Before you go! Autostraddle runs on the reader support of our AF+ Members. If this article meant something to you today — if it informed you or made you smile or feel seen, will you consider joining AF and supporting the people who make this queer media site possible?

Join AF+!


Riese is the 41-year-old Co-Founder of Autostraddle.com as well as an award-winning writer, video-maker, LGBTQ+ Marketing consultant and aspiring cyber-performance artist who grew up in Michigan, lost her mind in New York and now lives in Los Angeles. Her work has appeared in nine books, magazines including Marie Claire and Curve, and all over the web including Nylon, Queerty, Nerve, Bitch, Emily Books and Jezebel. She had a very popular personal blog once upon a time, and then she recapped The L Word, and then she had the idea to make this place, and now here we all are! In 2016, she was nominated for a GLAAD Award for Outstanding Digital Journalism. She's Jewish and has a cute dog named Carol. Follow her on twitter and instagram.

Riese has written 3198 articles for us.


  1. Heads up: On question 73 (“Do you identify as a person of color?”), if you select “No” you are still directed to the POC section, which includes required question about which race/ethnicity you identify as—but the only options are for POC, so I can’t progress in the survey.

  2. Question 20 (hair removal) requires an answer but does not have a none option. Also, after a lot of the questions once I mark something, it makes me hit “ok” which is just slightly annoying!
    Thanks for all your work on these surveys, I really value them and I know survey testing is difficult.

    • I fixed that, thanks for the catch!

      The “OK” thing I can’t change unfortunately because I agree that it is annoying!

  3. Ahhh, I love interesting surveys! And I am looking forward to all your impressive analyses!
    Though I guess I fell into an error-trap: The last question I got was the one about whether I buy local/organic/GMO-free food, after hitting “next” I had the intropage again, followed by the “what is your age” etc – or is this volitional? I didn’t have any questions on hair-removal much less PoC – do you think my answers so far have been registered? And would there be a possibility to answer the missing bunch?

    • This happened to me too. Also curious if there is a way to continue of if I did anything wrong…

      • it’s because I made an edit to the survey while you were taking it. :-/ You didn’t do anything wrong, but that’s what happens when I do edits after the survey has gone up, which I had to do this time ’cause a lot of it was set up wrong! (I am doing this while at a conference)

  4. I love participating in your surveys, I can’t wait to see the results! I am seriously exited and happy that I could participate.

    Just to let you know Riese. The question about having been married is formatted a little weird, to choose N/A you still have to specify to a man, a woman or non-binary. Or you can just skip it?

  5. Thank you for letting me know I have no skill whatsoever. I can iron a shirt but I rarely wear shirts, I can cook but not without a recipe, I can drive a stick shift but I don’t have a car.

    Anything else? I’m just clueless.

    • Way harsh, Tai! “CLUELESS” on everything!!! Oh man, I felt so called out. So glad I’m not the only one.

  6. I had to comment because the stock photo used as the thumbnail for this post is my girlfriend : ) I’ve seen her a couple of times on your site and I do a double take every time. Love Autostraddle and love your surveys!

  7. I can’t wait to see the results! By the way, here I was thinking I was an ineffective un utilitarian oxygen thief who couldn’t do any basic home renovation work, and I ticked yes for all of the activities you listed!! thanks for making participation in basic home renovation the focus for success and not skill level! You made my day.

  8. Clearly I don’t have enough to do this evening because I prattled on in almost all of the comment boxes, having a great time. More surveys!

  9. Surveys like this are the best, they satisfy my need to talk incessantly about myself without inflicting it on some poor unsuspecting soul in real life. Also, we get to read analysis later! I can’t wait!

  10. I was so excited to be able to check off ALL THE BOOKS in question 71, since I just read both Fried Green Tomatoes and The Color Purple in the past few weeks! I feel like I have really reached peak gay.

    • I was surprised to see so few queer books I’ve read on that list, since it’s very unusual for me to actually read a heterosexual book. I guess I don’t read the classic wlw ones?

      • I was v sad there was no comment box under that one so I could rant about how much I loved some and hated others!

  11. Help! I’m trying to submit the survey, but it keeps looping back to the first page! I spent a long time filling it out, I don’t want it to lose what I wrote! What do I do?

  12. Twice now I have filled it out as far as how old I was when I knew, hit ok, and then been taken back to the intro screen. Which then takes me to the beginning of the survey again. :(

  13. In the sports section I think flag football should of been an option and something about non-organizational playing of sports, because not everybody got to play on a school or recreation department team not matter how much they wanted to.

    Either by parental degree, lack of availability, or it was against rules/cultural norms but played that sport how ever they could.

    • Yeah, I played some of those sports as a school thing but I wouldn’t say I played them on the regular!

  14. I forgot to mention this in the survey but I’m surprised there weren’t more questions about media habits esp nothing online!

  15. Hi, I know this is sort of political, but when I couldn’t find ‘Taiwan’ in the residential country list, I couldn’t proceed. Hope this survey goes well for other folks here!

      • Thank you, perlagator, for telling me this, and thank you, Autostraddle, for modifying the survey form. Unfortunately I did not check again, so hopefully I’ll get to take the next survey when there is one!


    i was a lil disgruntled that sydney australia was a a city option and melb australia wasn’t BUT THAT’s OKAY

  17. I understand wrt the poc question it’s more of a self iding question, but I always have trouble answering that question as I’ve mentioned a few times before. Could there for the next time be the options of no, but also not white. It feels wrong saying no as I don’t ID as white but also don’t ID as a poc.

  18. Listen, I lied about having a dog. I am still not ready to admit that I don’t anymore and feel this makes the survey more accurate as my dog having years were and will be many.

  19. Now that I’ve finished with the survey, I keep thinking of other stereotypes!!

    For example: When I first came out to my mom, she was weirdly concerned that I would get mixed up with an older woman with a corruptive influence (I’m paraphrasing here but that was the implication) – I think bc there are stereotypes about intergenerational queer relationships/that specific dynamic???Thankfully, it was many years ago and “Carol” hadn’t come out yet or else I would have been like “Yeah, mom, that’s like, the whole point.”

    As an aside, my mom is totally over this now, is 100% supportive of me, loves my fiancee who’s 5 years older than me (who, for the record, was corrupted by MY influence), etc.

  20. With the religion one, it would be interesting to have another question like if you used to be religious or if you are culturally aligned with a religion but don’t practice it as a religion. I wanna know in more accurate detail if we are alienated from our religious identities or still practicing.

  21. Where’s our stereotype of what vehicle we drive? “We are lesbians, we must ride a bike” – Queer Diety Cameron Esposito

  22. Love this so much, thank you for putting this together!!

    My only quibble was that as a Canadian queer who is heavily invested in and deeply observant of American politics, I was disappointed I couldn’t answer any of the politics questions after I ticked “not American”. I appreciate that you guys don’t have the ability to follow politics in every country on earth, and that politics everywhere do not necessarily easily map onto the American liberal/left-conservative/right dynamic, but even though I’m not American I would have liked to share my political views with ya’ll!

  23. I enjoy the surveys and reading the compiled data once you’re done. Truly.

    But I am beginning to wonder what Autostraddle is doing with all this reader data. Is it being used to entice advertisers? Sold to market researchers or political focus groups? I’m having a hard time believing its only purpose is reader entertainment.

    Sorry if I’m paranoid, but I see this as a potential revenue stream (and have no problem with that!) and would appreciate some clarification/transparency.

  24. Something just occurred to me, and I’m not sure if it makes any sense or if you and/or other poll creators have already taken it into account. But for relationship questions, since the queer community is smaller and sort of more… concentrated(?) is it possible that it’s more likely for two people who are in a relationship with each other to both answer, for example, that they U-Hauled, and have it seem to count as two relationships instead of one? Whereas among straights there may be fewer members of the same relationship both answering? Does my question even make any sense

      • Can confirm- my wife has directed me to fill this out, so you will get our U-Hauling story from both sides!

        • On the other hand, that’s still two queer woman who have U-Hauled, so as long as you present the data that way (rather than number of relationships), that should be fine!

  25. honestly shocked that i wasn’t asked whether or not i even know how to drive (i do not) (i will never)

    • ^this!! you have no idea how relieved i was to find out that there’s a “gays can’t drive” stereotype, after years of agonizing over not being able to drive.

  26. also, the bird question made me feel rlly seen, as your self appointed Resident Parrot Person struggling through life in this queers-with-cats culture

    • We can’t currently have a pet, but are constantly weighing up birds vs cats for when we can! Birds are just so Good.

  27. now that i’ve submitted the survey (I love surveys!!) i realize that you never asked anything about the web of sapphic dating. i haven’t done a lot of actual dating but i went to a women’s college and my friend and i made an L Word chart for our friend group at one point (my friend was 100% Shane). kind of surprised there wasn’t a question about dating your friend’s ex, or your ex’s ex, or your ex’s friend. or all of the above.

  28. I U-Hauled accidentally after three months of dating and feel very seen by this survey.
    Also, Europeans will falsify your skills result. All of us drive stick shift cars.

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