Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Bisexuality Part 2: My Path To Self Discovery And Acceptance

I will say it again at the opening of this blog. This is my personal journey. It’s a journey and not a hard set understanding of the world. My views I’m sure will change over time. Since accepting my sexuality, my views have already changed. Even accepting my sexuality denotes a change in worldview.
So, first off, I’ve noticed that other women have the hardest time understanding and accepting that I’m bi and are the ones to make me feel the most uncomfortable especially if they verbalize traits of being bisexual without wanting to say that they are. However, there have been a few problems with men I know. One man was okay with his fuck buddy rubbing on me when he thought it was a show for him, but soon changed his mind when he realized she is actually into girls. After that conversation, she now denies even being attracted to other women. I’ve only had my sexuality questioned twice, which is good since that seems to be a big problem in the bi community.
So, since I am just coming to terms with my sexuality and I’m trying to understand it, I tried attending a meeting of a local bi group. I was sorely disappointed. There were only two other people at the meeting. Where are all my bisexuals? I live in a major city with a large LGBTQ presence. We are not well represented in the community nor in mainstream society, we have the highest rates of suicide and being domestic violence victims than the L or the G in LGBT. So, we need to support each other yet there is no real sense of community. We make up 46.5% of LGBT (as reported by the William Institute in 2011). Did you hear me? That’s fucking 46.5%! So, why aren’t we out there supporting each other? However, I will say that I was relieved of finding support and being able to ask questions of real life people and to have bisexual discussions with bisexual people for once!
The next thing I learned was that there isn’t a difference between bi and pan. In my original blog about being bi, I stated that bi and pan were two different things. They are not. Being bi means that you can fall anywhere on the scale between attraction to one gender or another and that you just like what you like. Bisexuality was defined a very long time ago in the Victorian era so it’s not like at that time there was a ton of understanding of how that pertains to gender which can be just as complicated and varied as sexuality. Therefore, the term bisexual was invented to describe these people with sexual attraction to more than one gender.

The term pansexual was first used in the early 1900’s in psychology to describe the belief that everything humans do, all their activities and beliefs revolve around sexual urges and sexual instincts. This specifically pertains to Freud who broke down every psychological problem to the root of sexual desires and instincts. This is why Freud is so famous for saying that sometimes a cigar is just a cigar because to Freud’s mode of therapy, a cigar would be a phallic symbol. I had a difficult time finding out when the term went from being used this way to being used as meaning a person attracted to all genders.
There was a blog that really changed my view on what all of this meant. This was a blog posted in February on wordpress called the Radical Bi written by a transgendered person.
“Apparently the first people to make this binary claim were not at all trans people, but one gay male and one straight female (gay-male-identified) academics. I mean, of course, Eve Kosofski-Sedgwick and Lee Edelman (separately). I could only find a quote of Edelman. Here is what he says in his 1994 book “Homographies”:
[...] the hetero/homo binarism (a binarism more effectively reinforced, than disrupted by the “third term” of bisexuality)
(I guess we’re not worth more than brackets, huh?)
Sedgwick said something, to the same extent, at around the same time.
So, apparently the transgender community didn’t make this up at all, but took this from the proverbial Academe. I don’t mention this to mock the transgender community, but rather to point out standpoints within this debate. To say that the stance on bisexuality as binary has been initiated, it appears, by an academic gay white cisman and an academic straight white ciswoman is to say that these people had a political and academic interest in the elimination of bisexuality from their theory and studies.”

So, is there cissexism/binarism in the bi community? Well, I’d be a liar if I said no. Of course there is because there is in the lesbian community, in the gay community and in the mainstream society at large. There is a lot of Tran phobic people out there and therefore the bi community is not exempt. However, does our very existence create binarism? Does being bisexual exclude transgender? Hell no. It simply means that I fall somewhere in between the heteronomative/homonormative and I could have any variety of taste in between these two. If I’m a bi person that is not sexually attracted to transsexuals does this mean I’m transphobic? Well, are all heterosexuals homophobic because they’re not attracted to the same sex? Are all homosexuals heterophobic because they are not attracted to the opposite sex? Hell no. That doesn’t even make any sense. So stop declaring that bisexuals are all transphobic and create a binary between genders.
As a bi person that has recently come to terms with her sexuality, I have really given deep thought and time of introspection to figure out what that means to me and exactly what I am and am not attracted to. I have yet to have any sexual attraction to any transsexual that I have seen. I guess this doesn’t really mean that I never will. Who could say that about anything? I really do believe never say never. Also, I do know that I could be romantically attracted to a transsexual because I’m a passionate person and love people passionately for who they are. I tend to have very intimate relationships with people and have strong emotions for them when they are close to me. So, I know I could fall in love with a transsexual. Who knows, maybe that’s when I would then become sexually attracted, after I fell for that person. However, I am definitely not transphobic for I do not think of transpeople in any negative way. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with being trans and would proudly stand beside a trans as friend, family, etc and support them fully and publicly without hesitation. As a part of the LGBTQ community I think cohesion and support of each other is the key and the most important thing. We should not be divisive.

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