A little over a year ago I dated a man who joked that bisexuality is “gay-layaway”, e.g., “bi now, gay later.” Normally, I would be able to brush this off, but as I reflected I realized it bothered me. Even little remarks like that hint at a subtle prejudice that exists within the GLBT community. There are times when I wonder if there’s an invisible line separating the BT in GLBT (transgender people may feel the same way, but as I’m not transgender, I cannot speak on the topic). Bisexual people don’t seem to get much attention in mainstream queer media. I can’t remember the last time Lavender or the Equality reported on someone who’s openly bisexual, or a film or TV show portrayed bisexuals as something other than psychopaths, sex-maniacs, or the butt of jokes.
In a way, I’m not surprised. Truthfully, there isn’t an easy way in which bisexual people can be visible since we tend to make assumptions about people’s relationships based on the sex of their partner. When we see a heterosexual couple we tend to assume they’re both heterosexual, just as we assume both partners in a homosexual relationship are homosexual. I do realize that the majority of people in the queer community identify as gay or lesbian, but that doesn’t mean everyone is, and if we don’t correct people, that assumption persists. People have tried to tell me overreacting, usually dressing it up in language akin to “What does it matter? Gay, lesbian, bisexual, it’s all the same essentially.” Therein lies the problem, because bisexuality is not the same thing.
-read the full reflection by Guest Writer Philip Jacquet-Morrison
- The Bisexual: “Living Consciously and Continually in the Place Where the Twain Meet” (The Wild Reed)
- Alexander’s Great Love (The Wild Reed)
- Oxford: Transgender priest gives sermon in Hertford Chapel (queeringthechurch.com)
- B.J. Epstein: Bisexuality and Marriage (huffingtonpost.co.uk)
- Anna Paquin: ‘Being Bisexual Is Actually A Thing.’ (towleroad.com)
- My Bisexual Guilt (persephonemagazine.com)
- New Studies Illuminate The Unique Experiences Of Bisexual Men And Women (thinkprogress.org)