Dating While Bisexual
By Ari Levine
I came out to most of my friends at 23, and to my parents at 24, but I knew I wasn’t straight long before that.
I didn’t stay in the closet for the reasons you usually hear, though. What kept me in the closet was biphobia.
Dating a Bisexual Person and They Didn’t Know
I dated men exclusively from age 17 through 23 and not once did I tell them that I was bisexual, not even the guy I dated for nearly three years.
Nearly every single one of them, at some point in our relationship, casually dropped a biphobic comment, either directed at my hypothetical queerness (“I wouldn’t date you if you were bi”) or at others who were out as bi (“greedy”, “cheaters”, “just pick one”, you all know the stereotypes I’m talking about). And I liked them!
I said nothing because I thought it didn’t matter. After all, I was in a hetero relationship, so no one needed to know that I was bi.
I challenged a couple of them as I got older and more certain of my queerness. I asked,” Do you think I would cheat on you with another man?”
They said, “of course not!”
They trusted me! So why did they think that, if I were bi, I would cheat on them with a woman? You guessed it! Biphobia again.
Bisexual Erasure on Both Sides
On the other side of this biphobia, there’s the erasure of bisexuality. When someone dates homosexually, they’re assumed
While we’re here, let’s talk about the idea that attraction to non-binary or trans people falls outside the bi umbrella. Bisexuality is defined by the community as “attraction to the same or different genders,” so miss me with that binary bullshit.
If pansexual or queer fits your personal sexuality better, great! Everyone is entitled to their own labels and I’m so glad there’s one you like!
But acting like bisexuals are only attracted to cismen and ciswomen is biphobic, transphobic, and you’re purposefully missing the point if you’re still insisting on it.
My decision to come out was largely based on falling for a particular woman, but, even if it hadn’t worked out with my wife, I wouldn’t have gone back in the closet. Embracing my queerness is one of the most freeing things I’ve ever done.
I’m a bisexual woman. I’m married to a woman. It doesn’t make me less bisexual and it doesn’t mean I’m a cheater or that I’m greedy. It means that I’m bisexual. That’s it.