China gays under pressure to stay in the closet – Reuters

From Reuters, via Stuff.co.nz:

China is becoming more tolerant of , which until 2001 was listed as a mental disorder, but gays remain widely misunderstood and under heavy pressure to stay in the closet, state media said.

Attitudes towards heterosexual relationships have relaxed since China began Western-style market reforms in 1978, unleashing a boom in extramarital sex which the Communist Party has blamed on liberal, bourgeois mores imported from the West.

But few of the “official number” of 30 million homosexuals among China’s 1.3 billion people were open about their sexual orientation, the China Daily said.

Pressure on gays to keep silent came less from society at large than from families, driven by traditional beliefs that homosexuality is amoral, the newspaper said.

“On the mainland, 80 to 90 per cent of homosexuals are prepared to marry or have married the opposite sex,” Professor Gao Yanning was quoted as saying. He did not elaborate.

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