Stereotyping bisexual people has harmful effects

By MELISSA PEREZ
On April 10, 2019

Photo courtesy of Michael Page, Wikipedia

It took a lot of courage to come to terms with my sexuality. Still, the scariest part is saying, “I like both men and women” out loud.  

“Cool, good for you. That’s actually really sexy,” are the kind of gross comments that causes bisexual people to regret having said anything at all. It makes coming out that much harder. You’re missing the point by completely choosing to ignore me to hear something you want to hear.

A lot of people refuse to see past the stereotype of a hot girl with another hot girl for male attention. Stereotyping bisexual people with the heterosexual fantasy of a threeseome does not make them feel accepted, flattered or safe.

It feels incredibly insulting to dismiss my self-acceptance and have my entire sexuality objectified. Stop mistaking bisexuality for the polyamorous or troilism stereotypes, which deserve much more credit than threesomes.

The more I open up to people, the more I am misinterpreted. I have prepared myself for the obvious, which is religious backlash and my family’s homophobia, but I did not expect people my age to objectify me. As a bi person, I am not a pit stop between gay or lesbian, or an indecisive person, and I am especially not your sexual fantasy.

This stereotype completely erases our identity. We are so much more than a threesome or an experiment. Bisexual people come in all different shapes, sizes and genders. We do not all have the same coming out stories or identical relationships.

Some biseuxal people save themselves for marriage while some practice troilism. Bisexual people can be men, ambiguous or trans. Bisexual people have body insecurities or sky-high confidence. They’re just people who like both genders.

We are so much more than girl-on-girl action, or to be confused for gay or lesbian. We are our own community that deserves to be recognized. We’ve had our own movement during the Civil Rights era, which is popularly ignored by schools and the media.

Bisexual people have been around forever, but were not really mainstream until bisexual women were regulars in music videos scantily dressed to grope other women for sex appeal. We’ve come a long way from that, though.

The annual Pride Parade was originally a march the first month after the Stonewall riots, which was led and organized by a bisexual woman, Brenda Howard. She is now remembered as the Mother of Pride.

I could spend the rest of my life with a woman, or the love of my life could be a man. Further, to engage in a threesome should be because it brings pleasure to all participants, not because it’s been deemed a fantasy or stereotype.

I originally thought this would be some big speech, because this is a belittling stereotype. In actuality, it now feels a little less scarier to stand up for bisexuality, I feel more myself. I’m a bisexual woman.

 

mperez11@ramapo.edu

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