9 Stupid Myths About Bisexuals That Will Make You Laugh
You’ve probably heard a lot of stereotypes/jokes about bisexuality, the bastard stepchild of sexual orientations. Most people can’t even agree on a definition of bisexuality, which has led to a lot of confusion, angst and reality shows starring Tila Tequila.
Ironically, part of the reason bisexuality gets a bad rap and why so few people openly identify as such, is because it’s associated with many negative cultural connotations. For our purposes, I’ll define a bisexual as someone who is drawn to emotional and/or sexual relationships with different genders, although terms relating to bisexuality run the gamut and can include descriptors such as "pansexual," "queer," "ambisexual," "omni-sexual," and “Larry King.”
In this article, I aim to dispel the biggest bisexual misconceptions and stereotypes, shed light on some new ones, and help to document a sexual identity that is often shrugged off as a "phase," a "gateway," "homosexuality lite" or "college."
1. Bisexuals are sluts. Okay, I’ll be the first to admit that I would probably f*ck a jar of Nutella if it looked at me the right way, but just because bisexuals technically have more options for sexual partners doesn’t mean they are more promiscuous. As a friend wrote to me in an email recently, “I'm glad I'm not bisexual because then I'd be rejected by men and women.” Naturally, there are bisexuals who are non-monogamous, and who want to sow their oats into as many Quakers as possible, but the same could be said for every sexual orientation. Perhaps the truer statement is we all have the potential to be slutty, regardless of which way we swing.
2. Bisexual women only do it to turn straight guys on. We call these ladies beersexuals, and yes, they do exist, but not usually outside of college campuses or David Schwimmer parties. There are also, of course, the Madonna/Britney Spears make-outs of the world, though that was more of a straight-up gay-for-pay publicity stunt than to give America a collective stiffy. Katy Perry pulled the same stunt with her “I Kissed A Girl” song, which is so tepid it’s downright laughable. Lyrics paraphrased: “I kissed a girl, but I was drunk! And I have a boyfriend! And it’s human nature, but I’m still really rebellious!” Pair that with her song against feminine men, “UR So Gay” and you’ve got a recipe for an Out magazine award waiting to happen. (I’m not kidding. She was “Person of the Year” in 2009.) Barring celebrity bisexuals and Girls Gone Wild girls though, I can assure you that most bisexual chicks are highly annoyed by leering dudes who catcall, whistle, or are generally all up in their biznass when they are courting another lady.
3. Bisexuals are indecisive or confused. A gay man I met at a bar once told me that bisexuals “just can’t make up their minds.” And I replied, “I don’t have a problem making up my mind. For instance, I think you’re an asshole.” Derogatory statements like the above are all too common to a bisexual’s ears. And yes, it comes from both the gay and straight communities, which sometimes think bisexuals are either cowardly or are taking advantage of straight privilege. However, being attracted to more than one gender is about as likely to make you “indecisive” as watching a lot of musical theater is likely to turn you gay. Also, isn’t it odd that it’s always the gays and straights who are confused about bisexuality, and not bisexuals themselves?
4. Bisexuality is a cop-out or a phase. It’s always scary to come out of the closet for the first time, despite what you may have seen on Bravo, but coming out as bisexual is essentially declaring that you don’t have a preference. It’s a revolving closet, so it’s somewhat understandable that people tend to view bisexuality as a stepping stone to a more “valid” or “realized” sexual identity. And sometimes this is indeed the case. Elton John comes to mind. But this rationale is just another way people try to devalue bisexuality as an identity, the same tactic used to devalue homosexuality, or being transgender, etc. A lot of thought, turmoil and struggle goes into the decision to come out, and to dismiss it so readily is deliberately insulting.