Originally posted by
I am bi sexual and my fiance excepts this. But some people in my life are a bit put off by this and frankly it hurts. How do you feel about bi sexuality?
Shari and I always knew that launching ourselves onto the Public Bisexual scene would be a real mixed bag - scary, exciting, affirming, strange. Her and I believed it would be a warm and fuzzy place where we would be welcomed into the fold with eager arms. We expected to meet a plethora of interesting, diverse and accommodating people, united in the big happy family of sex.
Shari and I grew up in California - Shari being from San Diego and I being from Beverly Hills. Now don't get me wrong, We love San Diego and Beverly Hills, but the "Alt" lifestyle is so dull that no one in their right mind would choose to go to either place for it.
Shari and I moved away for College and suddenly we were free, and ready to explore the bisexual side Shari had been aware of since realizing she fancied Claire Danes and Jared Leto in 'My So Called Life'. For me, after several false starts, a tricky bisexual love triangle and an unforgettable episode of "Gay Speed Dating", I finally found myself more or less on the scene - I knew where to go and had gay and bi friends. I'd also managed to persuade a spectacularly beautiful and intelligent woman, that understood who and "what" I was, to go out with me.
For Shari and I, this was a major achievement. Shari, having long hair, nice boobs and ex- boyfriends apparently undermined her gay credentials and left her prone to being used as the curious woman's "Big Gay Adventure". People of all persuasions had suggested my bisexuality was a fad....
Biphobia towards bisexual people is usually far less violent and obvious than other forms of homophobia. It manifests itself as ridicule, pornographic fantasy or disbelief, resulting in a sense of exclusion and the erasure of identity. Bisexuality is perceived as an easy target for a bad joke.
This suggests that bisexuality is simply not taken as seriously as other forms of non-heterosexual behavior. The reluctance to see bisexuality as a valid and real orientation has also engendered the particularly irksome view that all bisexuals are indiscriminate, sex mad nymphomaniacs, or for females, simply a women indulging in some lesbian fun until a penis arrives.
This assumption has inspired a deep sense of mistrust from some areas of the gay and lesbian community. Our Friend Jennifer says that she has never experienced biphobia on a personal level, she has encountered a number of profiles on on Dating Websites stating "Don't contact me unless you are GAY". She believes this comes from a fear of being used as someone's test run, and can understand why people would think bis are just seeing if they like it or not.
'No Bisexuals please' is a common and depressing theme in many personals.
For individuals new to the scene, or their sexuality, it can seem like one more hurdle to overcome. It's also incredibly unfair since, All people are not the same, so I think people should treat (others) as individuals, not take a blanket approach.
Since there has never been any real formation of a visible, easily identifiable bisexual look or lifestyle, bisexuals are more likely to avoid such aggression by 'fitting in' - whether they want to or not. In this way, bisexuality is perceived as a betrayal of the values, lifestyle and identity that has been fought for so hard by gay and lesbian activists.
Despite the view that bisexuals not only have their cake but eat it too, those leading bi lives can, in reality, experience a double sense of not belonging. Our Friend Jennifer, again says, "For ages I didn't really know where to go - I felt unwelcome in lesbians clubs but didn't want to go to straight bars."
Despite the undeniable benefits of a burgeoning bisexual community, Shari and I maintain reservations about the ever-increased splintering of the gay community. We live in an age of a dizzying proliferation of labels; of femmes and butches, bois and andros, tops and bottoms, dykes and power lesbians.... Whilst Shari and I welcome this diversity, I also believe that identity tags, including that of bisexual, need to be treated with caution and used as a means to include rather than exclude.
If bisexuality has taught me anything, it is the importance of choice when it comes to sexual practice and lifestyle. 'Bisexual' is not an exhaustive identity label and comes with its own limitations. To this end I often find myself adopting different labels to suit different stages of my life which is, I believe, something a bisexual identity can accommodate. We just need to ensure that as our community grows, the boundaries do not shrink or restrict our crucial ability to exercise free will.
If you have a choice, be Bisexual.