We hope this post helps clear the air about bisexuality. Bisexuals have always existed and have made incredible contributions to the LGBTQ+ movement. Bisexuality is often misunderstood, and bi folks experience biphobia from both queer and straight people, giving them a particular experience with marginalization. There are many myths out there about the bi community, even circulated within the queer community. This week (and always!) we celebrate our bi friends, survivors, and family!
MYTH: Bisexuals are confused. FACT: Bisexuals are not confused! Bisexuality is a valid identity on its own, and bi folks don’t need to “choose a side.”
MYTH: Bisexuals are transphobic because bisexual means attraction to men and women. FACT: Bisexuality has always questioned the gender binary. Bisexuality means an attraction to same AND different genders than yourself, or, an attraction to two or more genders. This leaves plenty of room for ALL genders, and recognizes that trans men are men and trans women are women.
MYTH: Bisexuals are equally attracted to men and women. FACT: Bisexuality recognizes all genders, so a bisexual person may not experience attraction to men/women at all! A bisexual person may be more attracted to women than men, or more attracted to nonbinary folks than women! There are endless possibilities, and sexuality is fluid - preferences may change over time!
MYTH: Bisexuals are promiscuous and always cheat. FACT: Bisexuality just means an attraction to multiple genders, and has nothing inherently to do with how someone chooses to be sexual. This myth may contribute to the alarming rate of violence that bisexuals experience due to societal perceptions about how they should behave sexually.
MYTH: Bisexuals experience privilege because they’re not visibly queer. FACT: Bisexuals may not experience violent homophobia when they are seen in a relationship with a person of a different gender from themselves, but that doesn’t mean that they experience privilege. This myth is largely based on assumptions about what someone’s sexuality is due to their appearance, and the assumption that someone’s sexuality only exists when they are seen with a partner. More on this in the next myth. Bisexuals also experience the highest rates of abuse among various sexualities, which is not a privilege. Swipe to the third slide to see some statistics.
MYTH: Bisexuals aren’t bisexual anymore once they enter a relationship. FACT: Bisexuality is within a person, regardless of who their partner(s) are! A person’s sexuality doesn’t exist only when they are in a relationship! A straight person is still straight even if they don’t have a partner. Bi people who are dating people that are a different gender than them are still bi! Bi people who are dating someone who is the same gender as them are still bi!
What are some other myths you’ve heard about bisexuality? Comment down below!
Image Description: 1. The bi flag (pink, purple, and blue) behind white text. The Initiative logo is in the corner. Happy Bisexual Awareness Week! September 16-23, 2020 *Scroll for bi facts! CN: Abuse statistics on 3rd slide. 2. Bi flag with The Initiative logo. Text is in white speech bubbles. What is Bisexuality? Bisexual: A person whose primary sexual and affectional orientation is toward people of the same and other genders, towards people regardless of their gender, or to two or more genders. Some people may use bisexual and pansexual interchangeably. Bisexuals are not confused. They are not half gay and half straight. They have always existed, and have made significant contributions to the LGBTQ+ movement!. 3. Bi flag with white speech bubbles. Bisexual Survivors. 46% of bisexual women have been raped, 22% by an intimate partner. 61% of bisexual women and 37% of bisexual men experience rape, physical violence, or stalking by an intimate partner. 47% of bisexual men have experienced sexual violence other than rape. 48% of bisexual women who are rape survivors experienced their first rape between ages 11 and 17. *information not collected about other genders.
The Initiative advocates for persons with disabilities who are victim-survivors of abuse. Through our direct services and our outreach program, The Initiative strives to create an
abuse-free culture for all.