By Hannah Clay Wareham -
"As it becomes safer to come out, people come out," said Kara Suffredini, executive director of MassEquality, offering one theory as to why that number is on the rise.
The census counted same-sex couples who self-identified as "unmarried partners" or as "married" on the forms.
According to the census, the numbers of gay and lesbian couples living throughout the state are spread evenly -- not grouped in gay-friendly cities like Boston, Northampton, and Provincetown.
"That’s been a huge change," said Arline Isaacson, co-chair of the Massachusetts Gay & Lesbian Political Caucus. "The joke used to be that we all live in gay ghettos. But you can’t make that joke any more. They have expanded significantly in the suburbs."