Wednesday, May 18, 2011

I'm legit.

This is something I wrote a while ago (maybe 8 months ago?) and I wanted to share it here, too.

I have a bone to pick, so let me say up front that this is a rant.
I'm pretty sure I'm not the only one who feels this way, which is why I feel it's appropriate to share.

I identify as bisexual. I've known since I was in 7th grade, although my first sexual encounter with as woman wasn't until 3 or 4 years after that. It's who I am and how I was made, and I never struggled with it internally. [Side note: I'm aware of "pansexual" as an identity but it is a political choice to make to identify as such, and one that I do not feel is true to me personally.]

What I have struggled with is the ignorance of others, regardless of their sexuality. I don't know what it is that everyone and their mother thinks they're a freaking expert on sexuality, especially bisexuality, but it needs to stop.

The next person who tells me "bisexuals" are: slutty, greedy, indecisive, in denial, attention whores, regular whores, straight girls who want male attention, "straight when it's convenient", "full of shit", "not really bisexual", "making it up", "just drunk", think they can date someone of both genders at the same time, "not real" [yes, I've really heard that], only in it for the sex, only interested in threesomes, or any other ignorant, offensive thing you can think of, is gonna get slapped. And the next queer/gay/lesbian person I hear say that or tell me they have a "no bi rule" or they "don't date bi people" is gonna get slapped twice.

If you're going to be an ignorant asshole, fine. Be an ignorant asshole. But don't tell me who or what I am, or imply that you know me better than I know myself. And don't make assumptions about me based on your stupidity. That's equivalent to me saying, "Oh, you're Black? You must like fried chicken and watermelon. No, you do, you're just in denial." Offensive as hell, right?

"Bisexual" is a legitimate sexual orientation that is separate from polyamory, drunk college sluts, regular sluts, whatever. Sometimes these things overlap, but that's not an innate attribute. (Disclaimer: Not that I have anything against any of those things, they're just not applicable to me personally.)

The straight (male) community treats me like a sex object and/or a freak. (These are broad generalizations and obviously aren't true of everyone.) I've actually been on a date with a woman and had men come up to us, ask if we were on a date, and then offer us $20 to make out. Perfect strangers! Yeah assholes, that's why we're here. We're live porno, just for you!

And the gay community, especially lesbians, won't accept us either. (Again, broad generalizations.) If you want to see proof, just browse Craigslist's "women for women" section. You'll be shocked by how many say "NO MEN NO BI". Obviously, that's an individual's prerogative, and I respect that. But in my mind, it's one thing to say "I prefer butch/femme/andro etc" and it's another thing completely to say "no bisexuals." It's not a matter of taste or preference, it's discrimination. To me, it's equivalent to saying "no one of mixed race" or "no one of x race". Again, I understand that it's an individual's personal right. Fine. It's my personal right to point out that they're being an asshole.

I endure enough shit for not being straight and fitting that norm. And normally, I'm the person who has the attitude that what others think isn't important. They can say and think whatever they want about me (doesn't make it true). But my patience is wearing incredibly thin at having to constantly defend the legitimacy of my orientation. I've endured vandalism, threats against myself and my family, physical violence, ostracism, every horrible name in the book, discrimination, and every form of hate and prejudice you can think of. I've spoken out publicly against Prop 8 and I worked against it. I've been an outspoken advocate for equal rights and respect. I've even encouraged all of my friends not to say "that's so gay" (and most of them don't say it anymore). I've suffered all the same shit as a "real lesbian" for my orientation, and I've been an active part of the queer community regardless of who I'm dating (or not dating).

All I'm saying is, I shouldn't have to defend my legitimacy on top of all of the other crap. I'm fed up with all the "bi hate" and I'd appreciate a little respect. Or at least if you're going to disrespect me, do it for something else. The queer community ESPECIALLY should understand how shitty it is to be mistreated based on sexuality. It's hypocritical to turn around and mistreat anyone and everyone who identifies as bisexual.

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