I didn’t come out as bisexual. It didn’t feel like something big when I realized I was bi. It was just a shrug, a word for it all. I had always been bi. Nothing ever changed, no switch in me flipped. I was the same as I had always been– only now, I had a word for what I had always been.
I saw the term bi erasure for the first time on Tumblr, a safe haven on the Internet. Apparently, people didn’t think bisexual people were real. Being attracted to more than one gender was too foreign a concept. Bisexuality was a myth. I laughed at the stupidity of some. I was finally in the likes of the unicorn.
Six months later, when I heard someone say, “Oh, I support the gay and lesbian people, but I think bisexuals are just confused.”, it somehow wasn’t that funny anymore.
More Likely To Cheat
“Doesn’t that make you more likely to cheat? You like more than one gender, you have more options.”
I opened my mouth, but words failed me. A second later, I shut it again.
It was hard to explain, back then, to a person, that your likeliness to cheat does not depend on your sexuality. It depends on character, on your values and principles. A heterosexual man is attracted to women other than his wife. Does that make him more likely to cheat? Or does that depend on his loyalty and commitment to her?
It’s easy to say that bisexuality is a phase. At least I thought so when my friend said it.
But it’s a little more difficult for me to believe it.
I remember being unable to take my eyes off girls when I was six, I remember having a crush on my best friend, Rita, at seven and not realising it. I also remember feeling fluttery when the boy I had liked for months talked to me for the first time, and I remember staring at him as he sat across class doing Math.
And I remember it not changing, having to use a label to define it when I grew older.
I was sure that it wouldn’t change with time, and I was glad of it.
Attracted To Everyone
When I told the boy who sat next to me that I was bisexual, his eyes widened dramatically.
“So, you’re attracted to everyone?” he said, and I frowned as he continued, “Like, everyone in this class?”
I couldn’t not laugh at that.
“I still have standards, you know,” I said, with a chuckle.
It’s easy for people to believe that a heterosexual woman is not attracted to every man in the world. In the same way, I am not attracted to every object that moves. It’s not that hard to grasp, really.
Bi Erasure: A Myth
The worst of it all came when someone told me bisexual erasure is fake. We’re making it up to gain more attention – more than we already do. Once again, our struggles were invalidated. People couldn’t even accept the fact that we had to fight to be ourselves, to love, to be happy.
I am proud to be bisexual, but it hurts me that others aren’t. With so many bisexual people not getting a chance to even accept themselves, pride is far. But pride will come one day with collective efforts, love and acceptance. And so will happiness.