From the first time I ever sucked a dick, I knew I was different… and in violation of the rules that said I wasn’t supposed to be sucking on dicks or being fucked like a girl. Back then, I didn’t know ‘what’ I was… all I knew was that I could have sex with a girl or a boy and it was fucking magnificent and more so when you tacked on having to sneak around to have sex because the rules said that young people like me weren’t mature enough to have sex and, thus, should have zero knowledge of it.
It was many years after I started on the path that I found the word that, even in part, explained my sexual behavior: Bisexual. By the time I learned this word, I was able to dissect the definition and figure out that while I didn’t actually find guys attractive in the way I find women attractive, I was attracted to the sex I could have with men; um, ‘attracted’ is putting it nicely, by the way. Still, I figured out – and without the help of anyone else – that the shoe did fit even if it wasn’t an exact fit.
Knowing that the word ‘bisexual’ existed didn’t change what I was doing sexually; it just made me more aware of my ‘status’ and the early concern of being confused with being gay and while there was plenty of angst against gays back then, the gay guys who were outwardly feminine were always catching a bad break and I wasn’t of a mind to have to fight all the time because someone felt that I was gay or thought that I should be gay just because I like dick.
I was aware of the struggles gay men had dealing with those who opposed their sexuality; I was aware of the violence gay men were subjected to, read of the murders of gay men by those who were homophobic, and it made sense to keep my sexuality under the radar, the thought here that it was bad enough that there were people where I lived that would hurt or kill me for being Black and there was no telling what they’d do if they thought I was gay.
In those early days, the labels were important to know and understand; you were either straight, gay, or you were like me. You got the feel for these label simply for the purpose of identification because it’s hard to deal with a thing if you don’t know what it is… and I’d already learned that human love to hurt or kill that which they don’t understand. Yet, despite the danger, I ran across a lot of guys who were either gay or just like me and it taught me that just knowing that there were other bisexuals provided some ‘comfort’ because, like a lot of guys I talked to, it was a confirmation that you weren’t really alone in this, that there are other guys who like pussy and dick and for those of you who never had to go through this, you may not understand the significance of knowing this.
It’s like staking a claim, marking your place in a world consumed by sex; it’s saying (if only to yourself), “This is what I am.” The word ‘bisexual’ is what it is; it defines a specific set of behaviors… but it’s not totally binding like being straight or gay is – there’s a lot of wiggle room there but I learned that the label is just a bookmark of sorts – again, marking your place. Is it necessary? Many would say that it isn’t but I’m not the only one who’d beg to differ on this one because it’s about identification and even if you’re applying the label to yourself so you can understand yourself.
So I’m going on in life, happily bisexual and all that, and then I learn that it’s being said that bisexuals don’t exist; indeed, it harkened back to a few intense arguments I had with gay men on the matter, arguments that even back then I believed were, well, stupid; how the hell are you gonna tell me that I’m really gay when I know – and even if you don’t – that I like pussy and dick? Huh? How are you gonna tell me what I’m doing when I’m the one doing it?
I know the word bisexual was coined back in the 19th century and it stands to reason that the word was invented because the behavior was being displayed at that point in our history and if it was being displayed then, it stood to reason that it had been going on for quite some time before someone was able to create the label to identify the behavior. Not exactly heterosexual; not exactly homosexual; it’s both… and neither. I know that like masturbation and homosexuality, it was considered a mental disorder and stayed on the official list until 1974 (or thereabout); I remember learning this and laughing at the thought of my behavior being chalked up to a disorder – even though there were times when I thought I was crazy for being bisexual.
So for me to sit and read here in the 21st century that bisexuals don’t exist makes me kinda sad at the sheer ignorance of some human beings… and I’m not talking about the straight ones. When I read about how many people not only reject labels of any kind and particular sexually related ones, it makes me wonder just what the hell is wrong with people that such labels are so bothersome. When you’re having sex – and no matter how you’re doing it – does the labeling really make a difference? Nope, not when you’re doing it because one of the important things I learned is that sex is sex and, yeah, you can always strip away the various labels when you’re working on having an orgasm or two… or more.
The label is simply about identification; it enables us to understand what it is we’re doing in order to get to the point of orgasm. If you only have sex with people of the opposite sex, you’re straight; if you only have sex with people of the same sex, you’re gay and, biphobia and all the label-haters notwithstanding, if you have sex either way, you’re bisexual and, you’re damned right – you do exist and I don’t particularly give a flying fuck what other people have to say about this… except to point out just how horribly and terribly short-sighted they are about this.
It’s not about gender identity – but it is about sexual identity and this makes sense to me and the only place it doesn’t are those folks who consider themselves without gender – I just have a very hard time trying to understand this. While fixing myself a mug of Hawaiian coffee, I kinda laughed to myself to think that there are people out there who eschew labels and it made me wonder if they do this because they don’t know what sexual behaviors they are embracing – that doesn’t make a lot of sense; could it be that they’re in some form of denial? Possibly and that’s because people don’t like being called something they don’t think they are… even though they tend to quack like a duck at times. Could it be that they avoid labels because they don’t want to be associated with all the negativity surrounding some labels? This, too, is possible, because I know that I still don’t care for people insinuating that I’m gay when I’m not… because my labeling says I’m not gay.
I have seen where something that used to be simple has become overly complicated – we’ve taken the simplicity out of our sexual behaviors. It’s troubling enough to know that there are people who don’t believe that the shoe will fit – but it’s even more troubling to know that there are people who don’t believe that the shoe exists at all… and this is just crazy. Yes, I know that we create and establish our own worldview, which includes that view of ourselves – we cannot survive without this. Still, I can’t imagine how anyone can think or believe that bisexuals don’t exist anymore than I can figure out how a guy can like to have some form of sex with men and women and state adamantly that he’s not bisexual.
And while I can kinda understand this at the personal level – this is about self-perception, after all – when I see the rest of the world behaving in this manner, man, it just makes me shake my head and wonder if all of the naysayers really understand what the hell is going on – and has been going on for as long as people have been having sex. Why is it so difficult? Larry Archer, in his response to my “Biphobia” blog asked, “Can’t we all just get along?”
Apparently not. I wear my bisexuality label with a great deal of personal pride because (1) the shoe does fit and (2) I do, in fact, exist. Nope, it doesn’t mean that everyone else who is bisexual has to embrace the label that best fits their sexual behaviors and, yep, I completely understand that applying this label to one’s self for all to see might not be in their best interests as far as dealing with others are concerned. But this is the thing I don’t get: Even if no one else knows this about you, you know this about you – how could you not know?
If you behave like a bisexual… but say that you aren’t… does it mean that you don’t really exist? Are you just proving the naysayers’ point in this? And if you think that was a stupid question, yep, it was and simply because it’s not possible unless, of course, you’re dead. It just saddens me to see that the world isn’t as sophisticated and grown-up as it thinks it is; it obviously irks me that there are people who just refuse to believe the evidence of not only their actions but the actions of others in this; it makes me sadder to read or hear that there are still gay people who keep pushing the non-existence issue… and there’s no reason for it that makes sense and, worse, they cannot prove that bisexuals don’t exist. That there are straight people who don’t like bisexuality or homosexuality makes a lot more sense than this nonsensical position that bisexuals don’t exist or that the label means nothing.
That we, as a species, can be so narrow-minded in the much-evolved 21st century just fucking amazes the hell out of me. That we can continue to be so naive about that which should be obvious – and that we can be so divisive about it – just makes me really sad because when you look at all of this from a simple point of view, none of it makes sense – it makes us not get along when we’d be better off trying to get along when it comes to these things.
I’m done ranting… I think. This was on my mind because despite how silly I think it is, I am trying to understand it, to make sense of the labels and how they affect people because, at some point, it’s going to affect me… it’s going to affect everyone. If you, dear readers, agree fine; if you don’t, that’s okay, too… but someone has to speak out about this and, well, y’all should know me by now…