Stereotypes!

(Excerpt from an interview with a couple of bisexual friends)

Since college, I’ve known a number of bisexual folks. They, like many bisexuals, have had to cope with negative preconceptions and internalised biphobia, which made coming out tough for me. There are a lot of negative perceptions about bisexuals out there, and while no one can alter people’s views, there are a few that I’d like to refute right now.

1.Bisexuals are only attracted to Men or Women

Because of the gender binary, it’s widely assumed that bisexuality is limited to attraction to two genders: male and female. This not only excludes nonbinary persons and those who do not fit into the gender binary, but it also limits bisexuality, requiring you to just be attracted to men and women. Bisexuality, in reality, refers to a person’s attraction to more than one gender, which can imply various things to different individuals. Bisexuals who are attracted to nonbinary persons exist, as do nonbinary bisexuals. Sexual attraction, like gender, is a continuum, and there is no one-size-fits-all sexuality.

2. Bisexuals are equally attracted to Men or Women

Many people assume that bisexuals are equally attracted to men and women because of the first myth. If you find a man appealing, you should find women appealing as well, and vice versa. One of the reasons it took me so long to come out was because of this stereotype. I used to think that because I don’t feel the same way about men and women, that meant I was merely straight and “experimenting.” I didn’t know that attraction isn’t binary until I met other bisexuals. People’s sentiments are always genuine, and sexuality is multifaceted.

3. Bisexuals are attracted to everyone

Would you ever claim that a heterosexual person is drawn to people of the opposite gender? No, although many people tend to believe that bisexuals are attracted to everyone. Bisexual refers to a person who is attracted to more than one gender but not to all of them. We all have our own tastes, which are influenced by a variety of variables, many of which are beyond our control.

4. Bisexuals always cheat

People believe that since bisexuals are attracted to multiple genders, we are more inclined to cheat on a spouse in a monogamous relationship. That, however, is not the case. Straight people cheat on their marriages for a variety of reasons that have nothing to do with their desire. Sexuality has no bearing on whether or not someone would betray their partner’s confidence once they’ve made a mutual commitment. That has something to do with who they are as individuals.

5. Bisexuals want threesomes

This is consistent with the notion that bisexuals are drawn to everyone. You might be attracted to people of different genders yet still desire to be in a monogamous relationship. Similarly, you may be drawn to only one gender but wish to participate in a threesome. It’s simply a matter of personal taste for the type of sex you enjoy.

6. Bisexuals are “straight” if they date someone of the opposite gender or “gay” if they date someone of the same gender.

People mistake bisexuals for heterosexual if they date someone of the opposite gender. People assume bisexuals are gay if they date someone of the same gender. Your sexuality is unaffected by who you date. You are the only one who can categorise your sexuality and decide what is best for you.

7. Bisexuality is a phase

People believe that because we live in a monosexual culture, you can only be straight or homosexual, and that there is no other sexuality. True, some people identify as bisexual at one time in their lives, only to subsequently discover that they are straight or homosexual, or that another identification fits them better. Many people’s sexuality is flexible. Of course, this is all good, but it does not imply that bisexuality is a phase and hence not a genuine sexuality. Yes, it is. A bisexual individual does not “grow out of” their sexual orientation. Because of society’s restrictive view of sexuality and gender binary, bisexuals should be embraced for who they are, not judged.

Don’t allow anyone tell you that your sexuality isn’t valid. You’re the person you’re supposed to be. Your perception of yourself may shift, but you are the only one who can decide which identity, if any, is the most appropriate for you. And while this may alter over time, it is entirely up to you—not anybody else. No one else can tell you who you are; only you have the ability.

Next blog will be out soon.
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Desai Thoughts MEdia.

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One response to “Stereotypes!”

  1. All excellent points! I also find it particularly maddening when I’m told I don’t “qualify” as bi because I’ve only ever been in relationships with men. Well, I lean towards long-term monogamous relationships, so in 50 years, I’ve only been with two people. Yes, they both happen to have been men, but it’s not like I’ve done a lot of dating around to be able to reach whatever arbitrary number of women I’d need to date to “qualify”! Great article. Thank you for sharing.

    Like

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