We’re going to continue our exploration of sexual orientation by talking about the difference between being bisexual or bicurious. If you’re trying to figure out where you sit I hope this post helps clarify things for you.
What is Bisexuality?
First, let’s define how I’m looking at things. I’m doing this partly for clarity and partly to honor those who think about their sexuality differently than I might. Let’s define bisexual as someone who is physically and/or emotionally attracted to cisgender people of either gender. As opposed to a pansexual whose attraction includes people of any gender expression.
Curiosity is Sometimes Just That.
It’s possible for anyone to be curious about an orientation other than their own. When we consider all the possibilities things get complex very quickly. Let’s define bicurious as a desire to sexually explore a gender you haven’t before. I’ll focus on straight-identifying men who are curious about being with a man.
If you’re someone who’s wondering whether your view of yourself as a sexual being is incomplete, the word curious is important because fantasizing about another man, or watching gay porn, is entirely different from having actual sex. It’s up to you to figure out how much experience you need before you adopt a new identity. But, after a lot of positive experiences adopting that new identity serves you best.
What to Do With Your Curiosity.
It’s powerful to recognize that you may be attracted to men. That’s true for any shift in your attraction dynamic. But, how do you start to figure out what’s going on?
The first thing is to embrace your fantasies. Remember, they’re only fantasies. You might not feel the same way in the real world. Next, watch some porn. Just to see if you’re turned on by watching two guys, or two guys and a woman. That’s only a baby step. Enjoying gay porn doesn’t mean you’re bisexual.
When you’re ready to try things out do some planning. If you’re in a committed relationship it’s important that your partner knows before you act. It may be a difficult conversation but it’s best for your relationship.
You also need to have an idea who you’re attracted to. You may think that any guy will do. That’s definitely not true. It’s good to have an idea of what type of guy you’re looking for.
Taking it into the Real World.
There are many ways to meet guys. I’m not going to get into that here. Instead, let’s focus on making your search better. Honesty, and safety, and are at the top of the list.
It’s critical for you to be honest up-front that you’re exploring. Whoever you may hook up with, they should know you’re inexperienced. There may be some men who are uncomfortable with that. Better that they bail before you meet them than angrily in the middle of an encounter.
Next, educate yourself about sexual safety in the queer world. Consider things like what PreP (pre-exposure prophylaxis) is, and what HIV Status undetectable means. You also need to be clear about STI risks and condom use.
Know what you want to try and prepare yourself. Get comfortable with the guy you’re going to spend time with so you can shut things down if you need to. It isn’t the guy’s fault if he tries something you don’t like. Stay calm, and communicate.
With a little common sense, you can create an experience that will help you answer your questions about your sexuality. When, and if, you shift to identifying as bi is up to you. Don’t let one amazing experience or one bad one make the decision for you. The chemistry between two men is different. If it works for you it’s likely that you’re bisexual. Welcome to the family.