Bisexuals. They’ve gained our attention over the last few months. With even BuzzFeed launching a catchy talking head video, the B in LGBT seems to finally be getting the attention it deserves. Because myth be damned, a lot of people still don’t believe bisexuality is actually “A Thing”.
I believe that debate is being written for me. What I’d like to address is the confusion we’ve seen over the internet. Lately, people have started to question what it actually means to be bisexual. Some claim Bisexuality is inherently binary, and literally seen, they could be right.
Bisexual; a person who is sexually attracted to both men and women.
Ho. Men? Women? That’s so 2000 and never! We don’t care for gender. We refuse to discredit transsexuals, ignore intersex, and erase queers from the equation. Bisexual; discriminatory. Or is it?
Funny thing; bisexuality was never invented to exclude people, rather to include all kinds of attractions that were… Slightly off. It’s the category for the un-categorized. It comes to us from a scientific definition and describes a person with both homosexual and heterosexual attractions. It is an open and inclusive word that describes many kinds of people with same-sex and different-sex attractions. As a scientific term, bisexual is not just an identity label; it is also a sexual orientation and can also describe a set of behaviors.
In the recent years; we’ve come to add to our dictionary with terms as pan- (all), poly- (many), omni- (all), ambi- (both, and implying ambiguity in this case), causing a lot of confusion in even our own circles. By replacing the prefix bi- (two, both), we actively seek to emphasize the idea that we don’t factor gender into our sexuality. That we’re allies, and/or are more attracted to non-binary folks, than to the traditional male/female. Which is fine. However; no matter your newborn prefix, you still fall under term “bisexual”.
It is not because we started toying around with words, trying to answer the question “What does bisexuality mean?” that all people still calling themselves plain old Bi are automatically fixated on traditional notions of gender. Being Bi does not automatically make you an asshole. Really. Haven’t we had enough of that? Bisexuals aren’t cheating, lying, double-dipping, unreliable people.
As we seek to make sense of gender, sexuality and attraction as a spectrum; we must be careful to not start stigmatizing in our own ranks. The term “Bisexual” isn’t an inherently Binary, noninclusive term, quite the contrary. It’s the spectrum all us non-hetero/-homo folk fall into.
The term “Bisexual” was really called into existence for those who fell in love with people, no matter their gender. Some are equally attracted to women and men, some are attracted to genderqueer people, some feel more for one sex than the other. It does not matter. All these people, and more, can claim bisexuality. Or as the Urban Dictionary so beautifully states;
Bisexual; the ability to reach down someone’s pants and be satisfied with whatever you find.