Friday, April 1, 2011
Bisexual Invisibility: Impacts and Recommendations
This is is an excerpt from Bisexual Invisibility: Impacts and Recommendations, a report by San Fransisco Human Rights Commission. The report is an important resource and the first of it's kind to focus on research, and data about the bisexual community.The report is available at http://www.sf-hrc.org/Modules/ShowDocument.aspx?documentid=989
“Maybe it’s about learning to see my dual desires as two magnets that stick instead of two magnets that push each other away.”
I like men. I have spent my whole life in their company. I’ve been married and have had countless
boyfriends. I have been in love with many men and sexually attracted to even more. I get
something from a man that feeds my soul in the most authentic way. I am heterosexual.
I like women. Almost every erotic dream or sexual fantasy I have ever had has been about
women. I’ve had many sexually supercharged lesbian encounters. All of them fleeting, some of
them sneaky, every one of them blazed on my memory in a way that makes my skin tingle to this
day. I am a lesbian.
There’s a more accurate word for what I am though: it’s “bisexual”. But I struggle with this term.
First of all, it contains the word “sexual” which is limiting as it makes it uncomfortable to talk
about with children, for example.
Plus, aren’t there periods of my life when I long for men and can’t imagine being with a woman?
And when I’m longing for women, I can’t imagine being with a man. The two states never coexist.
When I was married, I was happy, as long as I was in a man-longing state; during my
woman-longing states, my marriage felt like a forced sexual nightmare. In the end, the marriage
couldn’t survive. Would a lesbian relationship be any different?
I’m beginning to think that I will never find out. Many lesbians say they “don’t date bisexuals.”
Discrimination? “No, it’s a choice,” they say. Fine. Whatever. Maybe I even see what they mean.
I do come out, though, to people I date and to others. Admitting that I’m bisexual to my
heterosexual friends is embarrassing, though
Like the next thing I’m going to say is, “Do you want to watch me go down on your girlfriend?”
Admitting that I’m bisexual to my gay friends is just as awkward, like admitting that I’m not a “real”
lesbian. As if I had parts missing or am contaminated by the semen that still lingers inside me.
But maybe it’s really more about my own attitude. Maybe it’s about learning to be able to see my
dual desires as two magnets that stick instead of two magnets that push each other away.
I’ve noticed that unless you’re in the habit of walking into rooms with a woman on one arm and a
man on the other, it’s hard for anybody to ever see the whole of you all at once. How do we ever
know who the bisexuals are unless we reach out to each other in a very purposeful way? I have
literally never been invited to do this―like admitting to a certain brand of sluttiness.―until now. Thank you.– Gina C., 50, female