This week we continue with our monthly topic discussing coming out bisexual. I’m handling this as a separate topic because bisexual invisibility is real and the bisexual journey is unique.
Our culture is obsessed with binaries. Maybe our brains are wired that way. But, as we evolve we must grow. Bisexual people don’t suddenly become gay when they’re in a same-sex relationship any more than they’re straight when dating a member of the opposite gender.
We’ve fought hard for our rights, and we’ve made some great advances. But, acceptance of bisexual people isn’t the norm, even among queer folks. Our need to put people in neat little boxes doesn’t serve us. It’s high time we embraced everyone’s orientation as unique and valid. We can’t just erase bisexual people because we don’t understand them.
Why Coming Out Bisexual is Different.
The fluidity of bisexual orientation is what people struggle with. Other people’s need to have predictable patterns makes it much more difficult for bisexual folks to be open. They challenge many of our preconceptions about sexuality.
One of the most difficult parts of your coming out journey can be the denial that bisexuality even exists. Many people see coming out bi as a first step to being honestly gay. Sadly, you may be doing a lot of education. Most often you’re coming out will be about your same-sex attraction. Most people probably assume you’re straight. If you’ve identified as gay and come out as bisexual you’ll face similar challenges. Sadly shock and rejection can be part of how people respond.
Coming Out Bisexual
In many ways, your coming out isn’t that different. All my advice about finding an ally and having a plan still applies. Remember that coming out must always be done on your terms and in your time. Don’t let anyone pressure you into it.
Yes, more out bi folks will help increase visibility. Your openness will be a political statement that challenges the binary. But, that isn’t a reason to do it before you’re ready.
Being direct and simple is always best when dealing with a topic as nuanced as sexuality. So just come out and say it. Be ready for questions. Remember, you only have to answer them if you want to. It’s okay to say you don’t know or aren’t comfortable answering.
The most unfortunate question I’ve heard comes down to why you wouldn’t just choose to be “normal”. Your sexuality isn’t a choice any more than mine is. If you’ve come this far you’ve may have faced a fair bit of internalized homophobia to get here. Don’t let others’ ignorance derail you. Saying “This is who I am, it’s who I’ve always been.” is the best way to shut them down.
Why It’s So Important for You to Be Out
Even if you’re in a committed monogamous relationship it’s still important for you to come out. Your sexuality is an important part of your identity as a person. You suffer as much from being in the closet as anyone else. It’s impossible to feel seen and loved by another if you’re hiding who you really are. We all long for acceptance. If you’re struggling, your hiding may be the source of that pain.
If people find it confusing that you are dating people of different genders, good. Hopefully, that confusion will lead to curiosity and acceptance. If it doesn’t, find accepting people elsewhere. You deserve to be seen, and loved, for being exactly who you are.
The coming out journey is intimidating for everyone. Because so many people don’t understand what it means to be bi it can be even more difficult. But, having to explain some things can be a gateway to a deeper understanding of yourself. In the end, coming out may be the best thing you can do to develop a deeper understanding of who you are.