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Results

865 people responded to the Relationships Australia June 2019 survey. Seventy-two percent of respondents were female, a majority (27%) of those were aged between 30-39, with another forty percent of women aged between 20-29 and 40-49 (Figure 1).  Fifty-one percent of men were aged between 30-49 (Figure 1).

As for previous surveys, the demographic profile of survey respondents is consistent with our experience of the groups of people that would be accessing the Relationships Australia website.


Partners and Politics

Over half (52%) of respondents said they would, or have had, a long-term relationship with someone who supported a different political party than them. People aged below 19 and above 60 were less willing to cross political lines in their romantic relationships (Figure 2). However, despite an overall willingness to date cross-politically, forty-six percent of respondents were in a relationship with someone with the same political views (Figure 3).

Further, only five percent of respondents said they had experienced a relationship break‑down due to political differences (Figure 4). This suggests the willingness of respondents to enter into relationships with political counterparts (illustrated in Figure 2) is either theoretical (they are willing to but have not done so) or, if the relationship has broken down, it has done so for reasons other than politics.

 

Family and Politics

Overall, fifty-nine percent of respondents said they did not share their family’s political views (Figure 5 - these statistics did not include answers ‘unknown’ or ‘not applicable’). However, of those who provided a rural postcode, it was even less common to share their family’s political views (63% did not) [rural postcodes defined with reference to the Department of Health 2018 list]. Contrastingly, those with non-rural postcodes were more likely to share their family’s political views (55% did). This suggests that differences in political affiliations among family members is more prominent in rural locations.

 

When discussing politics, fifty-three percent of respondents suggested that they would adopt a neutral/positive response, stating that they would either listen respectfully (49%) or reconsider their own opinion (4%) (Figure 6). Despite this, only nineteen percent of these respondents felt positively (happy or very happy) when speaking about politics with their families (Figure 7). This suggests that politics remains a somewhat uncomfortable topic, despite widespread understanding that openness to others’ opinions is appropriate.

Relationships Australia State and Territory websites