Top 4 Myths About Bisexuals

Excuse my lack of a blog post this past Monday. I’ve just graduated this past weekend and have been busy moving  from San Diego to Los Angeles.

Today I’m happy to present a guest post from A.J. Walkley. Without much further ado:

We’ve all heard the stereotypes: indecisive, confused, wanting the best of both worlds, promiscuous, gay or lesbian in transition, engaging in a fad, seeking attention. If you identify as “bisexual,” you’ve likely encountered at least a few of these clichés during and after your coming out process. I know I have. Despite the slew of us out there attempting to dispel such myths on a daily basis, they continue to be perpetuated, and they continue to make life difficult for us all.

The truth is that it can be more of a hardship to be bisexual than gay or lesbian in this world we live in, a world of black and white, this or that. When you aren’t one way or another but straddling the line, life can be fraught with problems, both external and internal, that homosexuals and heterosexuals do not encounter.

1. Bisexuals Are Just Unable to Choose

It always boggles my mind when I encounter people, particularly within the LGBT community, who believe bisexuals simply have not “chosen” one sex/gender or the other to be attracted to. The LGBT community is constantly battling the nature-vs.-nurture debate, coming up against those who believe homosexuality is a sin and a choice. If it isn’t a choice for gays and lesbians, why would anyone think it was a choice for bisexuals? The same rules apply.

Cynthia Nixon got a lot of flak for using the word “choice” to describe her relationship with a woman. Though she qualified it by saying that she did not “choose” to be bisexual but simply to enter into her current homosexual relationship, I’d challenge that concept by saying that none of us “choose” whom we are attracted to — gay, straight, or bisexual. We have no control over attraction. Cynthia no more chose to be attracted to the man she was with for a decade and a half than she chose to be with the woman she is now going to marry.

Although some may still see bisexuality as wanting the best of both sexes, the truth is that more often than not, bisexuals date one person of one sex/gender at a time.

bisexual myths

2. Bisexuals Can’t Be Monogamous

Many if not all of us who are bisexual have likely been presented with the claim that we cannot possibly be monogamous if we are attracted to more than one sex/gender. One past employer of mine even had the gall to ask me if I “thought about sex more than other people” because I was bi. I know there are times when people we are attracted to choose not to date us because we identify as bisexual, believing incorrectly that we are more likely to cheat on them. While I can’t speak for everyone, from my own perspective I’d say that the fact that someone might be attracted to more than one gender doesn’t mean they will want to be in more than one relationship or be sexual with more than one person at one time. Sure, there are polyamorous individuals who do have multiple relationships at once, but many who identify as bisexual want to be in a loving relationship with one person at a time. Being bisexual does not automatically equal promiscuity or the need/want for multiple partners at any given time.

3. Bisexuals Are Just in Transition

This may be one stereotype that male bisexuals deal with more than females, but it is almost a certainty that if you identify as bi, someone in your life will comment that “maybe you are really gay/lesbian and you don’t know it yet.” It is also likely that the reverse will occur: “Maybe you’re just experimenting and you’re really straight” — you know, that whole “going through a phase” argument. For some, it may be true that a transition or phase is occurring, but for most who identify as bisexual and maintain that identity, it is not, and for such people it can be very insulting to hear these lines of reasoning time and time again.

4. Bisexuals Are Just Following a Trend

“LUG” and “GUG” are typical acronyms that many college-aged men and women hear, translating to “Lesbian Until Graduation” or “Gay Until Graduation,” respectively. These days, it is almost considered “cool” to be “bicurious” at some point in your life, mostly for women in college, who are encouraged to make out for the amusement and excitement of the heterosexual men around them. While sexual experimentation should be encouraged, in my opinion these representations are harmful to actual bisexuals. For us, it’s no fad, and we aren’t participating in bisexual behavior for the attention of others; it’s our lives.

We’re Here, We’re Queer…

When all is said and done, bisexuals exist, no matter whom we may or may not be in a relationship with at any particular point. We are just as much a part of the LGBT community as the Ls, Gs, and Ts, and to not acknowledge us as such is denying an important aspect of our identities and an important component of the community as a whole.

If you would like extra guidance... I HIGHLY recommend that you grab yourself a copy of The Lesbian Lifestyle Book. It is the only guide you will ever need as a lesbian or bisexual woman.

Click Here To Get The Lesbian Lifestyle Book.

A.J. Walkley is the author of ‘Queer Greer’ and ‘Choice.’ She is currently writing her third novel, Vuto, inspired by her experience as a U.S. Peace Corps health volunteer in Malawi.

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Comments

  1. Brittany says

    I always explain being “bi” as being a person who loves dogs and cats. A dog and cat each have their own personalities and attributes that attract people into buying one or the other. If you’re bi, you just find yourself attracting and liking both, and sometimes, you may lean more towards getting a dog than a cat or vice versa. Doesn’t mean you like the other less. One day you might just walk by a pet shop and instantly feel a connection to a pet, regardless if it’s a dog or cat.

    As you listed above, you can’t choose who you are attracted to, it’s a chemistry.

    As cliche as this phrase is used, I at least fall in love with the person with whom I am attracted to. I could care less what body parts you have – if I’m attracted to you, you make me happy, and we are each other’s best friends- than I am sticking with you.

  2. Amy says

    i love girls a lot and i’ve had a relationship with a girl. she actually broke up with me because i cheated on her with some other girls, that explains how much i love sex with a fellow girl. but deep inside me, there’s this desire to have my own kids too, and that can only come to pass when am married to a guy (don’t wanna have a child out of wedlock). presently i have a boyfriend who i’ve had sex with and it was fun too, though i prefer it with a fellow girl.

    given this situation, wouldn’t i be considered a Bisexual? a reply will be apreciated

  3. Elizabeth says

    I am in 7th grade and have a crush on this girl. I also have a crush on this guy but its stronger for the girl. I found out the guy is bi and se i told him i was too. That was the first time i had really thought about what i was. I havent had crushes on girls before so it maybe is just a phase but i really am attracted to her and dont know what to do.

  4. David says

    very good article as while I born heterosexual without a choice so I understand bi and gays simply had the same choice i.e. none

  5. Randi says

    Well written :) I’ve heard a bunch of these before admitting to loved ones I was bisexual, and since then I have heard all of them directed at me from many people, lived ones and strangers both. *hugs* thanks or posting this.

    • Anonymous says

      If you are bi, don’t worry about it. It doesn’t mean you have to act on it before you’re comfortable, nor that you have to justify your sexuality to friends who may doubt you. Maybe you are bisexual, maybe you’re not, but it isn’t something you have to arbitrarily figure out this second, you have all the time it takes.
      Some view sexuality is fluid, meaning it changes as they age. Perhaps this will be true for you, perhaps not.
      Just let the future be what it will be, and be proud of who and what you are :)

  6. Anyonymous says

    It’s been kind of strange for me as a bisexual growing up in a very accepting northeastern college town where some of my friends feel weird because they are straight heterosexuals, and that seems almost abnormal in a way, around here. And many of my guy friends who identify as straight sometimes hook up with guys (or have expressed the desire to do so). Identifying/labeling feels so required in our society, but labels are often inadequate to define a person’s sexuality. When I was a kid, I felt I needed a label, and I chose bisexual because there was a girl I had a crush on, and I thought that’s what that meant. Later, in junior high, I decided that really that had been just a phase. Eventually, though, I discovered and came to terms with the fact that I am actually attracted to both men and women. I struggled for a long time because I had feelings for my best friend, but she’s straight and I really didn’t want that to be the case, so I attempted to deny it to myself. And, of course, I couldn’t get over it until I’d acknowledged and accepted it. Since, I’ve dated guys and girls, and I’m still in the process of discovering where on the spectrum of sexuality I fit. Because it is, like almost anything else, a spectrum. It’s kind of a funny thing, though, being bisexual, because most people in our society engage in monogamous relationships. So generally speaking at any given moment, regardless of your individual sexual orientation, you are fulfilling one particular role. Attraction (or its potential) doesn’t actually matter that much unless you’re acting on it. (For example, my mother has been married to my father for almost 20 years. Growing up, I always assumed she was straight. But as I’ve grown older, she’s started telling me more about her sensational past, and the women she had serious long-term relationships with during and after college. She is bisexual, but once you choose a life partner, what does a label really matter?)

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