I’ve decided it’s time to come out on the internet!
I’ve got a book release tomorrow and I’d like to talk more publicly about how my own orientation influences and inspires that.
Some people have issues with the bi label and I feel I want to address that. When I don’t, it gets swept away under a rug and becomes a weird awkwardness that’s so not necessary.
This next bit is a tad long and perhaps not new info for you, but hey, it’s my mission to share this stuff more, so here goes.
The Bi Issues As I’ve Seen Them:
I’ve run into many open minded people that are accepting of gay people, but don’t believe bisexuality exists. Even members of the gay and lesbian communities feel this way. They often think that bisexuality is for people who are secretly gay and in fear of “coming all the way out.” For me, that would mean that my 20+ year relationship was a lie. A bit hilarious to me. It also presumes that there are no people in the middle of a continuum. Kinsey’s sex survey came up with 4 categories of bi people – not that I love his measuring stick, but he at least kicked this door open.
2. Sex Addiction
As I’m sure you know, sex addiction means you seek sex all the time, often with a mixed gender base. The bi people I know don’t find EVERYone attractive. They don’t sneak off to bang people. Unless that’s part of their natural personality! Ha! For me, I’m very rarely attracted to anyone.
3. Binary Thinking
We are often taught that things are black or white, and that translates to orientation too. For me, bisexuality means that I’m not actually attracted to gender at all. I’m attracted to “sparkly eyes” for example – doesn’t matter about the attached equipment – what matters is the personhood. There isn’t any “fence sitting” going on, because for me there is no fence. The word “bi” implies “both of a pair” but in my experience, it would be more accurate to say “neither” because gender isn’t on the list of qualifications for attractiveness. It’s not a matter of being “undecided.”
Most bi people I know allow themselves to be called straight or gay, depending on the partner they have. It just feels easier. If they change partners, friends are often shocked by the “change” in their orientation. I’m all for doing what’s easy, but the outcome I’ve seen is that when everyone remains quiet, there is no awareness or community of bi people. That’s dangerous for everyone, especially youth. Did you know that the lastest stats show that if you put gay and lesbian people together, there are the same number of bisexuals to match that whole group?
5. Child Molesters
People who molest kids don’t always target one gender. That doesn’t make them bisexual. In my mind, the fact that kids make them hot makes them mentally ill and wikipedia backs me up: Pedophilia is classed as a disorder. It’s not an orientation issue.
I’ve had many bi friends who have been under red alert suspicion as “cheaters.” There’s this idea that because you “like both genders,” you are never fully satisfied with one. There’s always something that you’re longing for or missing and so bi people can’t be trusted to be monogamous. From my point of view, this is simple bigotry. Cheating comes from a relationship breakdown and a lack of connection, not from bisexuality or any other orientation.
7. Results of Non-Community
Having no community is not a inert thing. It eats at people. We are designed to want to find some kind of belonging.
A study showed that gay kids in rural areas had high stress (duh) and that moving to a city resulted in lowered stress (makes sense as they found more diversity and community.) The study showed that bi kids in rural areas had high stress levels, but that moving to an urban area didn’t reduce stress at all.
My belief is that this comes from that whole culture of silence thing. If you’re bi, you never “come out.” I worry about what this does to kids who are already under so much pressure. Teen depression, anxiety and suicide are all too common, and part of that has always been the pressure to conform vying with our individual desire to find our authentic self and be true to that.
I never want my women friends to think I’m sizing them up. Ideally, I’d like to be treated like a gay male friend – someone who might have an opinion on what top looks sexier, but who is totally safe. At events like clothing swaps or places like pool changing rooms, I go into “girl friend mode” and just enjoy the camaraderie and hilariousness and diversity of women. It’s not a peep show for me, maybe because I’m not a straight man? LOL!
Anyway, hopefully this finds you well, and is of interest, or use to you in some way. I’m open to discussing such things but please note that asshole comments will not be permitted.