Good ways to come to grips with ones sexuality?
June 23, 2010 11:42 AM   Subscribe

Good ways to come to grips with ones sexuality?

Possible alternate title: Is there a basis for bisexuality? And no this isn't another post by that one kid who made like 3 poorly written posts about his sexuality (although I can understand his frustration!). For background, I'm early an early 20's college grad (who probably drove my gay friends nuts in college…)

This got longer than expected. Sorry. TLDR: wanting to be with men scares me, I am not 10000000% gay so it makes me want to like women more than I do, which makes me anxious and sad. Gays hate bisexuals. How do you guys deal with these things? Are these questions "normal"? I always feel like everyone else has things so figured out and I'm the only one who is unsure..

Basically, I've always felt bad for having bisexual tendencies. I think atm that I'm definitely leaning toward the gay side of things...guys get me going, I'd rather date a guy, etc. But I mean, I've slept with women, I didn't hate it, and I'm sure I would be fine with doing it again it again (to me it's about the person, but I mean, in general just hooking up can be a fun activity…but penises are a lot of fun…). There's no "my god it's like a ham thrown from a window ahhhahsjahsj" factor or anything when it comes to women. If some fabulously beautiful woman came on to me I do not think I would say no but barring that right now my interest is in guys. Thus, bisexual. But I've always felt so lame for that (which is probably why I just pretended to be straight for so long)...gays seem to really hate bisexuals. I mean, when I meet gay people, I just sort of gloss over the fact because bisexuals seem to be considered slutty or indecisive or whatever. I mean, obviously I should do my own thing, fuck the haters, etc, but it's just so hard for me to pin down my own sexuality. How can someone like both, you know? Was I born this way? Was it something developmental? Does it even matter? It's just also makes so-called "coming out" difficult because I don't want people to think that I was lying or something if one day I decide to date a woman or something (my current coming out philosophy is sort of a need to know thing...I'm not going to lie, but I'm not going to go out of my way to be like HEY HO DICK SUCKIN. I'll probably tell my mom soon, and if I dated a guy would tell the rest of my fam...but not if I just keep hooking up with them). Either way, blah. Sexuality. It just feels like everyone has it so figured out, whereas for me in my head it's this constant barrage of "why can't you just be 100% this or that or whatever!"

Furthermore, whenever I see an attractive guy, it is fairly depressing to think that 99% of them won't be attracted to me, not to mention beyond that the conflicting desire to have a family and wanting to be with men. It makes me wish I liked women more, so it makes me sort of want to force the issue…but that doesn't really work, because (at least at the moment) I'm more interesting in men. It creates a complicated set of emotions…maybe if I had everything figured out, if I was 100% sure of my sexuality, I'd be better able to sort of be like "that's just how it is" but since I'm not, I criticize myself thinking "really? men? why? what's the point if you could make it work with a girl!" Like if I see a girl who is cute but I don't really have any sexual feelings for, I'll be like "hmm you'd be happy enough with someone like that, right? And it'd be easier to have kids and be happy!" But it's usually ultimately hollow. It gets to the point where if I see a cute boy I just sort of get a knot in my stomach. I guess just the sort of more realistic difficulties exacerbate my uncertainty. I think I'm getting a little ramble at this point. I imagine that an upcoming move to San Francisco might be a good way to confront this, just being in a nice big accepting city.

I appreciate any help, clarity, yelling at, etc. on the subject. Just in case I made a throwaway account
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (31 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
I understand you are very clear about your sexuality. You like both genders, but usually like guys more. That's it. Why would one need more clarity on that?

If you're not happy with this clear situation then that's a different story. But you seem to enjoy live in general, so why think about it? You don't seem to have any real-life issue with your sexuality apart from thinking about it too much.
posted by oxit at 11:53 AM on June 23, 2010

Mid-40's chick, here. I've dated men. I've dated women. Mostly, I date nerds. (mmm. nerds.) I've found my sexuality has fluctuated over time -- to be more precise, I've always been interested in women, but my interest in men has fluctuated over time. There were years where I was actively interested in both men and women, years when I was only interested in women, and years where I was interested in women but open to the idea of men.

Also, I don't think gays hate bisexuals. *some* individual people do, and (imao) they need to get the fuck over themselves about it. Biphobia is about as awesome as homophobia.
posted by rmd1023 at 11:53 AM on June 23, 2010 [4 favorites]

I think the real question here is "how do I get comfortable with mySELF" rather than with "my sexuality".

When you see a guy you find attractive you think about stuff like "99% of them won't be attracted to me, not to mention beyond that the conflicting desire to have a family and wanting to be with men"? You've "always felt lame about" being bisexual? This is a self esteem thing.

You need to learn what it is that makes you awesome - and really get that firmly in mind. When you understand what it is about you that attracts others, it makes it easier to understand what about others you're attracted to.

Personally, the whole "gay/straight/bi" thing has always, always, always seemed bogus to me. From the get-go, before I really even understood sex, much less sexuality, I just saw it as liking people. As far as I can tell, people are attracted to people - some people are 90% attracted to the same sex. Some people are more like 50/50. Some people are only 2% attracted to the opposite sex but are with them because that one *person* stands out. Are they bi? Are they gay? Does it matter? Nope. Not really. You like who you like. If guy bits turn you on, that's fabulous. If girl bits also turn you on, hey, you've got more options in your life.

You don't have to settle - and you can do that with any gender, whatever your preferences might be. Don't. Just don't. You can have a family, even if you like a wide variety of girl and boy bits. Honest. In the meantime, learn how to like yourself, learn what it is you like in people, and then start worrying about families and long term stuff.
posted by lriG rorriM at 11:54 AM on June 23, 2010 [5 favorites]

Listen, I am a straight dude who lives in NYC.....My roomate is gay and so are many of my friends...let me tell you the market for straight acting "gay" dudes is high...Many times I go to this Karaoke place with said friends and my girlfriend and dudes have often hit on me or have asked my girlfriend if I dont go both ways, and that if I were to go they would be interested.......this is only one piece of data but at least here in New York, bi is long as you are gay when you are with them, you are not ashamed of what you are....then you should be fine.........

And really this goes for all aspects of your soon as YOU become comfortable with what you are..other people will accept you for that as well....

Also you can have a family and be with men (gay man can adopt) can have a family with a woman and be with men also (heard of poly-amory???), basically you really have a chance to be YOURSELF if you just accept whatever it is that you are.
posted by The1andonly at 11:57 AM on June 23, 2010

Gays hate bisexuals.

I don't. I'm married to one. Most of my girlfriends have been bi. Many of the gay men I've known have had at least a few experiences with women and/or happily have sex with guys who have or have had sex with women. (Data point: I'm not bi. Never slept with a guy, never wanted to. If the Kinsey scale went to 7, that's probably where I'd be. But I'm the outlier.)

I think your sample is screwed up.
posted by rtha at 11:57 AM on June 23, 2010

First off, there is absolutely nothing wrong with being bisexual or questioning. Stop beating yourself up - you like what you like. So long as what you like is with consenting adults, it's good and you're good. And chances are you'll find someone who likes it too. Fortunately for you, you should have a decent sized pool of people who might want to do it with you.

Secondly, what do you want? Experimentation? One night stands? A long term relationship? If it's just experimentation and sex (and because it seems to be stressing you out so much), why not take sex with women off the table for a set amount of time? Tell yourself, 'For X months, I'm gay. I like men.' At the end of X months, you can re-evaluate and figure out what your preferences are. But, for the time being, stop worrying and start experimenting!
posted by brambory at 11:58 AM on June 23, 2010

Speaking from lesbian perspective YMMV.

The whole bi-phobia thing I’ve found levels off in other people as they get more comfortable in themselves. Based on my sample group of me in college vs. me out of college. I don't really care what someone calls themselves just if they're interesting and available, the rest is details. There's a lot of posturing and defining and labeling when people first come out, because they've either a) been hiding it or b) been repressing it, so they really need to be in the in crowd and to be able to tell who else is. As people start to get laid and start to feel more comfortable with who they are they get less pre-occupied with proving that they can label you. Also Dan Savage’s advice on coming out generally, is that it’s super stressy at the beginning, because it’s new and no one knows how to deal with it. As you fold it into your life more and it becomes more of a known background hum thing. You think about it less and you can’t imagine not living like this anymore, which has definitely been my experience. My guess is being out about the bi- thing will work the same way if you let it.

AND oh my god being in cities helps. Just hold out, dude.
posted by edbles at 12:01 PM on June 23, 2010 [2 favorites]

Let's go through your questions!

Is there a basis for bisexuality?

I don't know what you mean by "basis" really. But it exists! In all sorts of forms. Everyone's a little bit different!

How can someone like both, you know?


Was I born this way?

No one knows!

Was it something developmental?

No one knows!

Does it even matter?

Not in the slightest.

You're a very lucky person. You have an adventurous, complicated, fun, sexy, smart life ahead of you, and you get to do whatever you want!

Best regards,

A gay dude who is friends with bisexuals, who do exist.
posted by RJ Reynolds at 12:01 PM on June 23, 2010 [1 favorite]

Gays hate bisexuals.

This isn't true. A few might, and some might be confused by bisexuals, but all-told, gays tend to err on the side of inclusive. In fact, a lot of them are going to enjoy the idea of helping you "experiment".

If you talked to more gays instead of just feeling upset and isolated, you'd probably find that a lot of them have gone through what you're going through on their way to sexual self-knowledge. We are all on our own paths, coming and/or going.

Also, the more you talk to people, the less you'll doubt how "normal" your questions are. I'm glad you're talking to us (albeit anonymously), but it's only a start. Bridging the gap into actual IRL interpersonal conversations may be the only thing that will break you out of your own head and relieve your feeling of isolation.

I identified as bisexual for years, but I don't anymore. Does this mean I am not attracted to any women, ever? No. Would my gay friends shut me out if I suddenly started dating a woman? No (though they might tease me a little bit, but I'm sure I could take it). Mostly for me it is a cultural choice. It's different for everyone.

I will say though, that concealing your bisexuality and initiating relationships with women because you want kids and a more traditional lifestyle is an incredibly cruel thing to do to someone (that counts for the wife AND any kids). It would not be "easier" for you. Quite the contrary, in fact.

I think you need to stop thinking in terms of what you may (or may not) want for the rest of your life and start thinking in terms of how you could be happy right now. You're not binding yourself to a lifetime commitment by dating one sex or the other. Do you want to fall asleep watching a movie next to a guy? Make that happen. Do you want to suck more dick? By all means, but see if you can maybe learn a little more about the brain hooked up to the other end of it.

You don't have to lie to people about your confusion or your misgivings, but neither does that have to be the first thing you spell out for them. First and foremost, act like a person who wants to get to know another person. And please please feel free to memail myself or others if you want to talk about this stuff, you can't continue to hold everything in like this or you'll drive yourself nuts.
posted by hermitosis at 12:06 PM on June 23, 2010

It just feels like everyone has it so figured out, whereas for me in my head it's this constant barrage of "why can't you just be 100% this or that or whatever!"

Lots of people either don't have it figured out or live somewhere on a fluid scale. It's useful for social conventions to have an elevator pitch about whatever your deal is for the purposes of dating and/or talking to parents, but that doesn't have to be "I'm straight" or "I'm gay" it can just be "I'm mostly attracted to men, and sometimes women" or whatever else. My own is "I'm rarely attracted to anyone but I tend to date men" there you go. If people think it's weird, that's okay with me. If people want to argue with me, I don't have much to argue about. If I decided I want a family there are many ways to have a wonderful family no matter who you sleep with. People who disagree with this last sentence are actually incorrect.

Most gay people I know are fine with bi people. You'll find the occasional person who isn't and you can shrug and move on. I don't really understand people on the paleo diet either, but I hear it works for some people. Same with marathon runners, what motivates those people? BUT, who cares what I think. And if one of my best friends was a marathon runner [I am mostly joking here, I know marathon runners] I'd figure out what made them tick, not just get all hostile about their choices.

Are these questions "normal"?

They sure are. While I'm sorry you feel conflicted and anxious about this, it really seems like you're in touch with how you feel, you're just worried about other peoples' reactions. This will ease over time once you meet more people who like and love you the way you are, and know a wider variety of people doing things a lot of different ways. You're in charge of your own image and your own behavior and you can choose pretty much what you want. You are fine.
posted by jessamyn at 12:06 PM on June 23, 2010 [4 favorites]

RJ Reynolds' advice is fantastic.

But one more thing: men in homosexual relationships (see how I'm not saying gay men? Because bisexual men can be with men!) can totally have children. There's a whole range of reproductive technologies out there that could help you with this, not to mention the tried-and-true Home-at-the-End-of-the-World cobbled together kind of non-nuclear family. So that's not necessarily out for you even if you are.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 12:11 PM on June 23, 2010

It is fairly depressing to think that 99% of them won't be attracted to me

In that case, you're not looking hard enough. Far more than 1% of the population identifies as LGBT, and the percentage of people who actually are is likely even higher. For obvious reasons, assigning an exact percentage is notoriously difficult, although I can assure you it's higher than 1%.

If you're in an urban area, or on certain college campuses, you can kick that number up even further.
posted by schmod at 12:11 PM on June 23, 2010

Sorry I was a little abrupt earlier (I'm watching the never-ending tennis match and it's got me riled up).

They sure are. While I'm sorry you feel conflicted and anxious about this, it really seems like you're in touch with how you feel, you're just worried about other peoples' reactions. This will ease over time once you meet more people who like and love you the way you are, and know a wider variety of people doing things a lot of different ways. You're in charge of your own image and your own behavior and you can choose pretty much what you want. You are fine.

jessamyn's exactly right. You will be okay, and the hoppitamoppita in your head will settle down in time. There are a few gay folks who won't associate with bisexuals, or claim to hate them - whatever. Their loss. If you somehow end up friends with someone like this, it's okay to not be friends with them.
posted by rtha at 12:12 PM on June 23, 2010

I'm getting that you're bisexual but leaning more towards men, and you're clear on that. What you seem to have a problem with is wanting to be straight because there's dsicrimination towards bisexuals and you think it'll be easier to follow a heterosexual path in life. There is discrimination towards bisecexuality, but I don't think it's as extreme as you believe it is. And yes, it probably is easier to be straight than to be heterosexual, in much the same way as it's easier to be right-handed than left-handed — because the world is much more set up to cater to the needs of the majority.

But you're not straight. You're wired the way you are, and trying to fight what you are is actually the hardest option there is. So embrace what you and work with it. Go get yourself some hot ass. And if you do meet up with someone, gay or straight, who spouts hate or ignorance about bisexuality, just don't bother with that person. There are a lot of other people who will accept and support you exactly the way you are.
posted by orange swan at 12:16 PM on June 23, 2010

Yeah, my first experience with raging gay biphobia was on Usenet. I was vaguely miffed, went back to my trusty copy of Bi Any Other Name for a couple weeks, and just quit going to Usenet for my affirmation.

Someone's always got to be the asshole, and you're better off just not even trying to educate them or make them OK with you.
posted by fairytale of los angeles at 12:20 PM on June 23, 2010

Gays hate bisexuals.

Hate? Nahh. They just snark a lot. If you're going to spend a lot of time with gay men, you'd better get your snarkometer adjusted.

There's no "my god it's like a ham thrown from a window ahhhahsjahsj" factor or anything when it comes to women.

Yeah, y'know, don't even repeat this sort of shit even to disagree with it, okay? It's really offensive.

it is fairly depressing to think that 99% of them won't be attracted to me, not to mention beyond that the conflicting desire to have a family and wanting to be with men

The problem isn't that you're bisexual. The problem is that you are confused and insecure and uncomfortable and projecting all of that. This increases the certainty to other people that you will get involved with them briefly and then freak out. No-one likes to be rejected, even if "it's not you it's me."
posted by desuetude at 12:22 PM on June 23, 2010

I have a ton of sympathy for you; bisexual women (me) are generally more accepted than bisexual men and I've always thought that was unfair. I know what you mean about some gay guys being assholes to guys who identify as bisexual; I've seen that happen a few times. If it helps any, from what I've observed it's less about them really thinking you're slutty and indecisive -- those are just rationalizations -- than their being envious that you have an easy out of all the social difficulties being gay entails if you want it; i.e. being with a woman. When the bisexual guy walks off, that's the thing they start ranting about, rather than the things they say to his face; it gives them someone to favorably compare themselves to, to reaffirm to themselves that they are brave for being out and that all the crap they've gone through was necessary. So when they say you need to make up your mind or that you're faking being gay to be edgy or you're faking being straight to be accepted or whatever, it's really about their own insecurities. It's just as awful as homophobia in my mind, but more pitiable when you think about where they're coming from. It always makes me both mad and a little sad; they were put through hell they shouldn't have been, and they don't realize they're pushing it on someone else.

My advice is to keep that in mind and just be openly bisexual. If someone tries to dictate your sexuality to you, tell them they're being ignorant and they should know that's an awful thing to do to someone. Chances are this won't change anyone's mind -- it takes a lot more to get someone to look at themselves and realize they're the sort of person they hate and it doesn't happen easily -- but you won't be left standing there looking like the uncertain queer guy that just lets life push him around. It seems to me from this question you're very clear on what your sexuality is. That's hot. Own it and never for a minute forget that if someone gives you shit about it, they're wrong. Period.

Anyway, as for feeling like you go back and forth about your feelings for women... completely normal. You're not a fraud or a faker or anything else if you end up with a woman, or a man, or whatever. Statistically speaking I'd be surprised if 50/50 bisexuals were the majority; most that I've met tend to express some kind of preference for one of the other, or even different preferences depending on what quality is under consideration. For example, I'm way, way more physically attracted to women, but as far as other qualities go I have no real preference. I have barely any physical attraction for men, but I have some, and I ended up marrying a man that I have more physical attraction for him than I do for most men. If someone tries to tell me that means I'm not bisexual I ask them if they want to have an awkward conversation about what I masturbate about.

And as for the whole family or not thing: it'll work itself out, just find a person you love. You can have a family with a guy if that's who you end up with. Guys do this, and it'll only get easier in the future as laws get reworked -- and I'm confident that's where things are headed, even if it's always one step back for every two steps forward. Plus, keep in mind that dating a woman is no guarantee of a family; you could have fertility problems or she may just not want one, etc. You'll find a way to make it happen, so cross that bridge when you get to it.

And right, one thing that sucks about being 100% gay is that the majority of same-sex people you meet will not be gay. Gay people make due regardless. But guess what? One of the advantages of being bisexual is a bigger dating pool than either gay or straight people, so rather than feeling bad about that, be glad. You don't have any control over who you're attracted to, so you won the lottery in that regard. Woo! Right?
posted by Nattie at 12:22 PM on June 23, 2010 [4 favorites]

I agree with the above answers. I would like to add a few minor embellishments of my own. First of all, no need to feel depressed that 99% of the men you meet won't be attracted to you. There are a tremendous number of people in this world, and to have a successful sex life you really need to find only one partner - although you are free to find more, if you so desire. I have no doubt that you could find a thousand, if you wanted to. In San Francisco there are more men who will be sexually attracted to you than you would even have time to meet. The fact that there will be an even larger number who are not attracted to you really doesn't matter.

As several people have mentioned already, gay men do not usually hate bisexuals. There is some element of suspicion that gay men might feel toward those who identify themselves as bisexual, since there are some men who have been too nervous to come all the way out of the closet, and who therefore think that it would be less shocking to claim to be bisexual than to admit to being gay - but I think that this doesn't happen as much as it used to, now that homosexuality is more socially acceptable than it used to be. In any event, you have every right to your own sexual preferences, whatever they may be, and I am sure that most gay men would agree with me on that.

If you feel attracted toward a particular (adult) person, go for it. Don't worry about what kind of category you would have to belong to in order to feel such attraction. Categorization is not what matters.
posted by grizzled at 12:31 PM on June 23, 2010

I think it seems pretty weird that some people ONLY want to date people of one particular gender. I mean, does anyone only like people with blue eyes? If everyone you ever dated had blue eyes, would you even realise? Would it be a big deal if you met a nice brown eyed person? Does anyone care whether you like blue eyes or brown eyes or both?

I'd just go with "I like this person" or "I like that person" or "That guy has a good looking ass" and not too worry about how gay, bi or straight that makes you.

As for whether gay people will hate you, just try not to string a man along until he gets all serious, then dump him cruelly in favour of a heterosexual relationship with a white wedding, 2.4 children and a picket fence.
posted by emilyw at 12:32 PM on June 23, 2010

Anyway, as for feeling like you go back and forth about your feelings for women... completely normal. You're not a fraud or a faker or anything else if you end up with a woman, or a man, or whatever. ... I ended up marrying a man that I have more physical attraction for him than I do for most men. If someone tries to tell me that means I'm not bisexual I ask them if they want to have an awkward conversation about what I masturbate about.


Most bi folks I've run into (myself included) favor different characteristics in either sex and might even have an overall preference for one sex over the other. However, we're bisexual because we're attracted to both sexes. I have the weirdest dreams about my "ideal human being", we can just use our imaginations there.

I've never run into a gay person who hated bi folks, but I've heard rumors that people like that exist. *shrug*

Give yourself time. Experiment. Follow your heart AND your dick, and you'll find the right person, whatever sex they may be. Good luck!
posted by Lizsterr at 12:44 PM on June 23, 2010 [1 favorite]

Not much to add to the above except that San Francisco kicks ass. I mean, it's not some utopia, it has lame people and cliques like everywhere else. After any move it takes time to find your groove, and if it doesn't work out, there are really awesome gay communities in other places like LA. (I say all that just in case you don't immediately click with SF, you don't feel even more like "arghhh do I belong anywhere??")

But if nothing else, I think it will help with your "but what would my real long-term life look like if I wanted to be with a guy?" question. Lots of gay marriage, 60-year-old gay men in settled partnerships buying retirement homes, etc. It honestly doesn't feel like an "alternative" lifestyle -- some of the most conservative guys I know have husbands. Not that you have to go become a stockbroker and have two kids and a white picket fence or anything, being single and/or a weirdo is great, but if you wanted to see the stereotypical American dream happening with two men,* San Francisco is great.

* The caveat is that housing costs are high here, and like most big cities, it's a bit more attractive to singles and career-oriented folks who put off having kids until they're older, so the "white picket fence" for anyone, straight, gay, bi, whatever looks slightly different than it does in smaller towns.
posted by salvia at 1:00 PM on June 23, 2010

Your 1% number looks a lot less depressing if you realize that it's not that 1% of men you see on the street are into men (I agree with schmod that that number is much larger, like maybe 10% has been the accepted number for years and is still probably not high enough). It's that 1% of people you see on the street are people to whom you are attracted and who are attracted to you, specifically. Unless you have neon green skin, an eye in the center of your forehead, and seven arms, there are just MULTITUDES of people who would find you attractive. It's just a matter of finding them.

An old acquaintance of mine was often asked whether he was gay. He always replied, "I don't know what I am." Don't be afraid of that. Figuring yourself out is one of life's greatest pleasures.
posted by Night_owl at 1:16 PM on June 23, 2010

I come from a country in Asia where most people are vegetarians. Many of them just sort of accept it because vegetables are readily available and usually cheaper. Some of these people actually hate meat and it makes them gag. Others find it inconvenient to eat meat or they're scared about what their parents will think. My parents told me that by eating meat, I was giving up some of my culture.

When I was a kid, my parents forbade me from eating meat and that just made me more curious. Some of my friends have grown up and realized they enjoy meat and eat it everyday. Others tasted it and decided it wasn't for them. A couple have fluctuated between eating meat and being vegetarian. There are cultural movements to make meat-eating more acceptable. Some people in power believe that eating meat is totally unnatural and anybody that eats it is committing a sin. There are political and social incentives for them to argue this way (lots of it is tied to religion... sometimes my country mixes up religion with politics).

It's sort of complicated to explain to people that I'm mostly a pescetarian (but I'll eat meat when I'm traveling or in some special circumstances). Most people don't get it but some do. I'm sure some of them think that pescetarianism is a cop out and I should just eat meat or not eat meat. Some people have told me upfront that I shouldn't eat meat and that I'm a bad person. It still makes my parents uncomfortable and we don't talk about it when certain relatives are over.

That's just how things are— I haven't found many easy answers but maybe you'll have better luck.
posted by anonymuk at 1:27 PM on June 23, 2010 [1 favorite]

"I will say though, that concealing your bisexuality and initiating relationships with women because you want kids and a more traditional lifestyle is an incredibly cruel thing to do to someone (that counts for the wife AND any kids). It would not be "easier" for you. Quite the contrary, in fact."

This ^

It is what happened in my family and caused a whole lot of problems, some that still haven't been resolved 20 years later. It's just not fair to anyone envolved.

However, I understand your frustration. Try to be good to yourself and treating yourself the way you'd treat a good friend who was in the same situation. Be patient with yourself. It's totally okay to be bisexual, as long as you're not lying to yourself or anyone else.
posted by MelanieL at 1:30 PM on June 23, 2010


Grrr, that should read "involved"...
posted by MelanieL at 1:37 PM on June 23, 2010

I don't know where you live now but I'll say that the gay folk I've met who have a problem with bisexuals largely do so because of personal bad experiences. They're operating from a place where they've been burned by pseudo-closet cases using the bi label to avoid committing to their sexuality.

That's not an excuse for treating you shitty, but I mention it because you may be dealing with this more if you're living in a community where people are less free to be openly gay. There's likely more "down-low" folks in such a region and the folks who are living out and open have taken more lumps for it and may be more likely to look down on folks who they think aren't being open.

So, depending on where you are now, odds are you will encounter less of this in SF.

But at its core you're just dealing with shitty people when you encounter this nonsense. Sadly, they've spread EVERYWHERE. Don't let other people's problems keep you from being who you are. They're jerks and you don't want to be with them anyway.
posted by phearlez at 2:44 PM on June 23, 2010

Everyone seems to have this mostly covered but just to pile on...

It just feels like everyone has it so figured out

They so haven't. Don't judge a book by it's seemingly well-adjusted cover.
posted by robself at 3:11 PM on June 23, 2010

Furthermore, whenever I see an attractive guy, it is fairly depressing to think that 99% of them won't be attracted to me...

No matter who you are, 99% of people are probably not going to be attracted to you. That's what makes attraction, and chemistry, and the chase, scary and heartbreaking and tons of fun.

Your post sounds like it was written by a younger person. You're trying to define yourself right now, and that's a tough thing to do. The thing to remember is, you're the only person to whom your own definition should matter. In fact, most people don't care if you're bisexual or gay or straight or asexual or whatever attraction you have.

Relax. Date who you want to date, love who you want to love, and stop trying to label it.
posted by xingcat at 4:44 PM on June 23, 2010

Just because you're not entirely revolted by sex with women doesn't mean you're bi. Deal with the internalized homophobia, accept yourself, and then think about whether or not you ever want to date a woman again without that clouding the issue. You can have that white-picket-fence 2.5 kids life with another guy if you really want to. Find someone you're ridiculously happy with, not someone who happens to fit into the socially-preferred box.
posted by heatherann at 8:28 PM on June 23, 2010 [2 favorites]

Is there a basis for bisexuality?

Definitely. Because... bisexuals exist. Sexuality is a spectrum. I struggled with this for a long time, because I used to think that if there was any possible chance I could be with a woman, I owed it to myself to leave that open as a possibility and not call myself gay. (I wound up realizing I was gay, but everyone's different. I probably like women a little bit, but de facto, I'm 100% gay.)

During my period of sexual confusion, I was seeing a white-haired therapist, and one day I was musing aloud whether I should just call myself bisexual, and he replied, matter-of-factly, "I don't believe bisexuality exists." What the fuck? It was as if he were talking about the tooth fairy. Like he was so steeped in theory that he had no idea what real people were feeling out there in the real world.

Don't worry about categories, don't worry about what other people think, and no, gays do not hate bisexuals. Like other people above have said, some gays envy bisexuals, some like to snark about it, many don't care, and anyway, what other people think of you is none of your business.

Just be who you are. As Mr. Rogers used to say, there's only one person in the whole world just like you.

Speaking of Mr. Rogers, here are the lyrics from his song, "It's You I Like."

It's you I like,
It's not the things you wear,
It's not the way you do your hair--
But it's you I like.
The way you are right now,
The way down deep inside you--
Not the things that hide you,
Not your toys--
They're just beside you.

But it's you I like--
Every part of you,
Your skin, your eyes, your feelings
Whether old or new.
I hope that you'll remember
Even when you're feeling blue
That it's you I like,
It's you yourself,
It's you, it's you I like.

Find someone who likes you for you. And vice versa.
posted by Tin Man at 8:33 PM on June 23, 2010 [1 favorite]

Sexuality, like gender, is a social construct. Its an idea.

Sexual attraction, like sexes, is biological.

Rarely are things as black and white, as we (humans) like them to be.

There is someone for everyone, happiness isn't external or even in other people.

You'll be ok.
posted by fontophilic at 11:44 AM on June 24, 2010

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