Last updated on: 3/19/2008 | Author:

Is There a Connection between Sexual Orientation and Handedness?

General Reference (not clearly pro or con)

Martin L. Lalumiere, PhD, Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology and Neuroscience at the University of Lethbridge, et al. wrote in a 2000 article titled “Sexual Orientation and Handedness in Men and Women: A Meta-Analysis,” in Psychological Bulletin:

“Recent findings suggest that sexual orientation has an early neurodevelopmental basis. Handedness, a behavioral marker of early neurodevelopment, has been associated with sexual orientation in some studies, but not others.”


PRO (yes)


Cheryl McCormick, PhD, Associate Professor and Canada Research Chair in Behavioral Neuroscience at Brock University, et al., wrote in a 1990 article, “Left-Handedness in Homosexual Men and Women: Neuroendocrine Implications,” published in Psychoneuroendocrinology:

“Using neuropsychological testing, we found an increased incidence of left-hand preference (defined as non-consistent right-hand preference) in a group of 32 homosexual women. A trend in the same direction was found in a group of 38 homosexual men. These results suggest that homosexual orientation has a neurobiological component possibly related to hemispheric functional asymmetry.”



Angela M. Pattatucci-Aragón, PhD, Director of the Center for Evaluation and Sociomedical Research at the University of Puerto Rico, et al. wrote in the 1998 article, “A Crossover Interaction Between Sex, Sexual Orientation, and Handedness,” published in Laterality:

“[H]eterosexual men were, on average, more left-handed than heterosexual women. By contrast, gay men were more right-handed than lesbians or heterosexual men, and lesbians were more left-handed than gay men or heterosexual women. This crossover interaction suggests that a common variable influences sex, sexual orientation, and hand preference.”



Richard Lippa, PhD, Professor of Psychology at California State University Fullerton wrote in the 2003 article, “Handedness, Sexual Orientation, and Gender-Related Personality Traits in Men and Women” in Archives of Sexual Behavior:

“For men and women combined, homosexual participants had 50% greater odds of being non-right-handed than heterosexual participants, a statistically significant difference. Homosexual men had 82% greater odds of being non-right-handed than heterosexual men, a statistically significant difference, whereas homosexual women had 22% greater odds of being non-right-handed than heterosexual women, a nonsignificant difference.”


CON (no)


Archives of Sexual Behavior stated in a 1996 article by Anthony F. Bogaert, PhD and R. Blanchard titled “Handedness in Homosexual and Heterosexual Men in the Kinsey Interview Data,” that:

“The present study analyzed a large sample of homosexual and heterosexual men to examine the relationship between sexual orientation and handedness. No relationship was found: Both the heterosexual and homosexual males had levels of adextrality around 11-12%, similar to what is typically found for the general male population (see Annett, 1985; Bryden, 1982; Gilbert and Wysocki, 1992; Lansky et al., 1988). When the present study is added to previous ones on this topic, the cumulative data offer at best only weak support for an association between sexual orientation and handedness.”



Psychoneuroendocrinology published a 1995 article by B.A. Gladue and J Michael Bailey, PhD titled “Spatial Ability, Handedness, and Human Sexual Orientation,” that stated:

“We investigated the relations among mental rotations and spatial perception abilities, handedness, and sexual orientation in both men and women… Significant sex differences were obtained for mental rotations and spatial perception, but not for handedness. None of these measures was significantly related to sexual orientation within either sex.”



Cortex published a 1991 article, “Left-Handedness, Homosexuality, HIV Infection and AIDS,” in which S.E. Marchant-Haycox et al. wrote:

“Left-handedness was assessed in a large sample of male homosexuals and male and female heterosexuals, some of whom had been tested for HIV infection, and others of whom had AIDS. No association was found between left-handedness and homosexuality”