After a lengthy discussion this past weekend with our friends, we’ll call them- Josh and Vanessa- about bisexuality it got me thinking about the often unwelcome judgements and comments about being bi sexual. I’ve heard a lot of comments about Bisexuals simply being indecisive or greedy or not knowing what they want. I don’t buy in to these myths, I know a few Bis’ and they seem to be good people and judging them unkindly seems unfair, excluding them from circles simply because they date both men and women seems ludicrous considering the negativity many of us have faced being gay or straight for that matter.. Between myself and 2 friends of mine, I will examine three points of view in terms of what “Bi sexuality means to them.
Josh and Vanessa have been married for 20 plus years, they are still young, attractive and in love. Vanessa, I would describe as being a 50/50. She loves her husband but is also quite attracted to women. They have a rule as a married couple that when Vanessa meets a woman she likes, she also has to like Josh, if she doesn’t, Vanessa moves on, if she does however, the three of them will enjoy some “quality time together”. I asked Josh how he felt about his wife sleeping with women. His answer was honest and simple, “I love my wife, I think she’s sexy and if it turns HER on, it turns ME on.” It’s not a regular occurrence for them, they’re a normal family with 3 grown children but for them, this is something they share together. Vanessa is committed to her husband and family and she has no plans of changing her life, but for her, this is just an extension to her sexuality, her husband knows this, accepts this, enjoys this, so… why not?
Before I came out at 34, I lived as a straight woman. I lived with men and although I was attracted to women physically, I hid that part of myself for a very long time. People close to me knew but my family did not. Frankly, I was afraid to make the leap in fear that my family would reject me. I feel this is the case for a lot of bisexuals. Depending on where you’re from or what your upbringing, being gay can be unwelcome, misunderstood and chastised. Some people remain in a straight life simply because it’s easier and far less complicated, choosing a traditional family life even though it may mean a lifetime of unhappiness . I almost fell in to that category. I describe myself as 80% gay, 20% straight, I do believe there is a spectrum. I have been attracted to men in the past, although, just a few and some of which were quite feminine, and I do have an uncontrollable crush on Jason Bateman but that being said I am usually far more attracted to women. Now that I am married to a woman, I have officially and legally declared my major. I happy with my major.
Choices, it’s all about choices right? We live in a world of categories, subject headers, tags, indexes and hash tags. You must choose where you fit so that others can better understand you. You’re a triangle shape trying to fit in to a square box. This is a touchy topic to discuss with gay friends. I mean, I’m gay, but I once lived like I was straight so to their standards, I may not really be gay. It’s so confusing. You have to fit in to a box with hetero friends as well as gay friends. I tend to reserve my comments on this matter to my ‘Bi” friends.
My friend, “J” we’ll call her, has relationships with men but has also dated a couple of women. She usually prefers to reserve the relationship status exclusively for men. She has said for years that the ‘chemistry’ is a little different between men and women,
“I think a lot of bisexual woman living ‘straight’ lives either with women on the side or monotonous to their man, have a sort of instinctual attraction to men, with an almost addictive reaction to the chemical imbalance between them. So while relationships with men and women can be equally satisfying sexually and emotionally, there’s not that addictive quality to the relationship.”
That being said she has also told me that an early attempt to date a woman left her briefly homeless by her family so this leads me to think that, like many, she is afraid due to the trauma of abandonment as a young woman to fully pursue a lesbian relationship.
We also agree that a lot of gay women live a straight life simply because it’s easier and far less complicated. Depending on where you are from there can be certain societal constructs to living your life genuinely and that can be intimidating to many. Of course, not to ignore the obvious, some people are equally attracted to men and women. My friend Josh eloquently put it like this: “Sometimes, it’s just the person, not what’s between the legs that matters.”
This is a topic I plan to explore more in the future as I delve a little deeper in to sexuality, what I do know for now is that Bisexuality does exist. It exists in all walks of life and all cultures present and historically. Keep an open mind and try not to subscribe to the myths and misconceptions of Bisexuality.
Live Humbly, Be Charitable, Live Graciously,
(Bi Heart) Gay or Straight or Neither/ WordPress http://idunnonews.wordpress.com/2012/06/12/gay-straight-or-neither/
Bisexual Umbrella/ Deviant Heart http://drynwhyl.deviantart.com/art/Bisexual-umbrella-version-2-339083077
Trigon/ Multi Cultural Council http://www.clubs.psu.edu/bd/mcc/Organizations/Trigon.htm
The Bisexual Index http://www.bisexualindex.org.uk/index.php/Bisexuality