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I won't link to the diary which triggered this one. That would turn this into a rules-violating call-out. But I couldn't leave what I read unchallenged and I actually started this as a comment there. Once I realized that my negative comment was going to be diary length, in courtesy I had to publish it separately. It won't be a stealth attack, though. After I publish this reply to his diary I'm going to notify him I've done so. I do recommend kossaks find that diary, though, because the comment thread is well worth your time.

I found his hectoring attitude about bisexuals quite offensive. Before I write the rest of my comment on his diary (and I intend to discuss the bisexual closet he claims the commenters in his diary wouldn't discuss) I should point out that he hasn't hurt my personal feelings. He couldn't hurt my personal feelings by his attitude toward bisexuals, because I am a Kinsey 6.

He totally, totally does NOT get it. I will try to explain it to him and to the rest of DK, by drawing on my own life experiences. In addition to being gay, I'm black, and 'born that way' in both communities. Let me explain about black subculture within America's white culture first.

You may or may not be aware that even blacks who consciously fought against the bigoted white over-culture still responded to it in many self-hating ways. To whites we were either white or non-white. Among ourselves we had the saying, "If you're white, you're all right. If you're brown, stick around. If you're black, get back." While this purported to be a statement about our treatment in the main culture it also showed itself in the way we treated each other within our community.

As a teenager I used to point out that we had taken white culture's either/or and turned it into a six-tier color bar among ourselves. I can't enumerate the number of times I raged inwardly when some admiring old lady raved over my "good" hair, the genetic result of my minority of Caucasian and Native American genes.

I had to listen with silent disgust as my mother described a congregation of very light-skinned blacks as having naturally loose morals and bad characters. When I indignantly described the incident to one of my white running buddies he snorted and said, "She would say that. --Your beige mother!" Mark B had met her, and knew what he was talking about.

Mother was beige; Grandmother was freckled, and so light-skinned that when Mark first met her he thought she was white. Fortunately, for his sake and mine, Grandmother didn't overhear him say to me "How come you didn't tell me your grandmother was white?" I replied, in a shocked whisper, "She's not! And don't ever let her hear such a thing!" The year was 1960.

Back in the day we had Passing, High Yellow, Brown, Dark Brown, Chocolate and Black. Stoveish was a street euphemism/epithet for "Black" that my mother once used as a teenager, while talking to her equally beige sister about a boy she fancied (Grandmother overheard and chastised them both verbally). Back then, most black professionals were beige. When we young 'colored' people embraced our blackness, we were rescuing the word from our own elders as well as from whites.

When I officially came out in 1958, I heard the same refrain in black gay bars and white gay bars. One was either a stud or a sister and bisexuals didn't exist. But bisexuals then and now had and have the same motivation for concealment that blacks who were Passing for whites had; both groups were, and bisexuals still are damned and despised by both sides.

A gay man ought to realize the greater-than-racial bigotry gay men faced. At the end of the day, a black American rejected or diminished by white prejudice could go home to his own community and family. A gay man is often rejected first by his own flesh and blood. Still, that gay man can find refuge among other gay men and lesbians.

To whom can a bisexual turn? His family categorizes him as gay. Heterosexual males will accept him less willingly than they'll accept gay men, because he is competition, with an inside track to the prize. Lesbians want nothing to do with him. Gay men, when they aren't declaiming his non-existence, treat him the same way most blacks treated very light-skinned blacks.

So lets talk about the bisexual closet, the one with doors to two different rooms. The 3 out of 4 bisexuals who stay in that closet do so because otherwise they'd be committing suicide at a higher rate than gay men and lesbians, and that's largely due to the attitudes and treatment they receive from gay men and lesbians.

2:23 PM PT: I fell asleep exhausted around 6 AM (72, with serious medical issues), intending to get back up after a couple of hours and tend to the diary. Instead I slept till after 11 AM and woke up to find private messages with links which I needed to read, and then respond to the messages.



The comment thread speaks about the need for this dialogue more eloquently than I can write. There are a few comments I need to respond to directly, and I will, but mostly you have all reached out to each other beyond my expectations. After 9 years this place still can profoundly surprise me in a very good way.



The other diarist has communicated with me and stepped up in the comments here. He is a wonderful and (usually) wise kossak, one of this site's treasures. Despite what he said about adjusting to recs of this diary I'm sure he won't really long-term be offended by the dialogue this has caused, and he has told me he believes that perhaps we together have sparked a necessary and (we both hope) positive dialogue.



Several of you have posted comments which indicate you thought I am bisexual; I'm not. I'm Kinsey6 gay, but I've been speaking out about marginalization of Bs by Ls and Gs for a long time. I have no clinical evidence that G and L attitudes have contributed to B suicide rates. What I have is more than 55 years of personal anecdotal evidence, in suicides and attempted suicides known to me professionally, personally or (in two cases) both.



Got this far at 3 PM, Brother came by on good and important family business..



As soon as I post this update I'll catch up on messages and comments. Thank you all. The most important reason for this update is the members of this blog who felt too afraid of both outing and rejection to speak up in either diary. In answer to one of them I wrote, in part:



I am gay, not bi, and I can assure you that a lot of other gay and lesbian and transgender kossaks have reacted as I did, to that diary. They didn't speak up on that diary, but they are glad I did react with an answer. I am hopeful they will, in future, react publicly with push-back against that kind of hostility and hectoring-from-ignorance. The overwhelming majority of the responses have been from bisexual men and women who felt just as you did after reading that post


Originally posted to davidincleveland on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 09:40 PM PDT.

Also republished by Invisible People.

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  •  This is from my heart. If you strongly disagree, (319+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dougymi, JeffW, churchylafemme, oslyn7, jplanner, DeadHead, Kevskos, BYw, Pluto, PeterHug, JoanMar, Ninepatch, Ginny in CO, kishik, Tonedevil, Themistoclea, philipmerrill, antooo, begone, jodylanec, moviemeister76, Jeff Y, WB Reeves, asym, kaliope, FarWestGirl, Gardener in PA, thankgodforairamerica, Denise Oliver Velez, Skyye, ActivistGuy, arabian, Limelite, flowerfarmer, J M F, howabout, Pakalolo, FindingMyVoice, vcmvo2, gerrilea, molunkusmol, isabelle hayes, cskendrick, YaNevaNo, LSmith, a2nite, Cinnamon, mamamorgaine, rchipevans, hopeful, Jollie Ollie Orange, smartdemmg, SoCalSal, waterstreet2013, JaxDem, political mutt, Hillbilly Dem, scyellowdogdem, OHdog, henlesloop, badscience, scamperdo, ArthurPoet, JDWolverton, reginahny, Betty Pinson, Wisdumb, SphericalXS, Naniboujou, concernedamerican, eagleray, TexMex, Tempus Figits, PhilJD, radarlady, petral, smokeymonkey, mamamedusa, wishingwell, cv lurking gf, yellow cosmic seed, Militarytracy, Nowhere Man, zerelda, VeggiElaine, LookingUp, afisher, suspiciousmind, jessical, Rogneid, Raggedy Ann, eeff, geebeebee, onionjim, Scioto, raptavio, third Party please, HedwigKos, renaissance grrrl, triv33, rogereaton, aitchdee, JesseCW, middleagedhousewife, Sarahsaturn, karmsy, quill, seefleur, puzzled, Yoshimi, AaronInSanDiego, snazzzybird, eru, BoiseBlue, Eddie L, tytalus, IndieGuy, Kane in CA, Minnesota Deb, The Gryffin, m00finsan, gizmo59, Susipsych, emeraldmaiden, Marko the Werelynx, sidnora, Friend of the court, Wee Mama, Dallasdoc, jguzman17, Lorikeet, Meteor Blades, marleycat, bsmechanic, Walt starr, royce, anodnhajo, The Marti, Matt Esler, grover, cotterperson, radical simplicity, nomandates, TheFatLadySings, Loonesta, ridemybike, shanikka, gooderservice, Heiuan, Libby Shaw, TheDuckManCometh, wavpeac, FiredUpInCA, theRoaringGirl, Isara, genethefiend, Alice Olson, Smoh, T100R, JayRaye, tommy2tone, unfangus, pvasileff, northerntier, noweasels, AnnieR, Sun Tzu, marina, jarbyus, lynneinfla, wader, JrCrone, countwebb, jomi, shesaid, Horace Boothroyd III, eyesoars, ruleoflaw, high uintas, dotsright, fiercefilms, dradams, ramara, AoT, kfunk937, jack 1966, Nespolo, SouthernLiberalinMD, Whatithink, OleHippieChick, poco, Temmoku, bastrop, gnothis, tommymet, StillAmused, Empower Ink, sebastianguy99, leftykook, Oh Mary Oh, Ahianne, llywrch, Pola Halloween, SuWho, pixxer, Paul Ferguson, burana, MrJayTee, IamGumby, LOrion, Mother Mags, Chitown Kev, pdkesq, Cofcos, indyada, CS in AZ, Brown Thrasher, No one gets out alive, GreyHawk, gulfgal98, Black Knight, hester, novapsyche, Richard Villiers, Chaddiwicker, politically indigo, sydneyluv, mapamp, PinHole, rlb, citizen dan, snacksandpop, ninkasi23, bnasley, poligirl, AdamR510, mofembot, bleeding blue, IM, slowbutsure, kevinpdx, edsbrooklyn, Powered Grace, Simplify, The Free Agent, mookins, LABobsterofAnaheim, la urracca, EdSF, BlueMississippi, knitwithpurpose, science nerd, zukesgirl64, Kitsap River, RageKage, peachcreek, svboston, Joy of Fishes, northsylvania, belinda ridgewood, wyldraven, here4tehbeer, rb608, shortgirl, AdamSelene, Lujane, Clive all hat no horse Rodeo, rubyr, CoyoteMarti, historys mysteries, yawnimawke, Gemina13, Calvino Partigiani, oceanview, davespicer, lunachickie, dionys1, Bill in MD, jeanette0605, Figgie, Chrislove, skohayes, Portlaw, niteskolar, boran2, koosah, cyncynical, Jim Domenico, Neevah, Trix, myrmecia gulosa, Missys Brother, pimutant, tegrat, Onomastic, NYC Sophia, Assaf, Im a frayed knot, WakeUpNeo, dRefractor, boadicea, Bluesee, Alice Venturi, Tortmaster, mrkvica, ChicDemago, RiveroftheWest, ladybug53, caul, outragedinSF, blueoasis, Lonely Texan, nachtwulf, stevenaxelrod, recoveringConservative, Back In Blue, The Truth, Larsstephens, killjoy

    please do as I've done and write your own rebuttal as a diary. Kossaks who are inclined to defend me from any attacks which might show up, please don't be discourteous. Kossaks who get attacked in this thread, please don't respond; I will do that for you because it's my diary.

    Enough fossil fuel remains on Earth to warm it 6 degrees C by 2100 AD if it is all used. A +6 C planet will only sustain half a billion humans. Human population will rise to 9 billion by 2050. Any questions?

    by davidincleveland on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 09:10:17 PM PDT

    •  We are in absolute denial about sexuality. (25+ / 0-)

      We have a dichotomous outlook that is black and white. No continuum of the true colors of human sexuality. Women and men. Gay or straight. But the truth is that we have men with female parts or female chemistry. We have women with male parts or male chemistry. We have people with both male and female parts. We have people who don't identify one way or another or who vary in identification day to day. We have straight straights and Gay gays. We have sorta gays and sorta straights. And these combinations are facts. We make judgements about normal and abnormal. How about if we stopped judging and started accepting truth? God is truth. The only real religious experience is a fact! The truth shall set us free! Acceptance.

      Great diary!

    •  Black AND Bisexual? (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      davidincleveland, LOrion, rubyr

      Good luck!

      "American conservatism is still, after all these years, largely driven by claims that liberals are taking away your hard-earned money and giving it to Those People. " Paul Krugman

      by yippee ki yay on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 11:44:02 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  It takes more than luck... It Takes GUTS! (8+ / 0-)

        Thanks to DavidinCleveland... for a great blog!

        I am sharing this everywhere with the caveat that if you don’t know what a Kinsey 6 is.. Don’t Read It ...until you do.
        ...and on top of that Biracial is a WHOLE NOTHER kettle as Obama so well knows.

        Part or all of the problem is in the American Myth of RWNJ that you must be a Virgin till enter a Monogamous LifeLong Marriage..
        Really cuts bi’s out of the loop of even knowing who they are!
        As I relayed in another comment as sic-fi reader I love ‘other accepting’ cultures.. One series has feminine heroine describe her home worlds culture w an educational system that fed to each ones talents and trained everyone in the physiology and mechanics of sex with BOTH SEXES with experience mentors as teens...and universal infertility till career set and parenting classes passed! by BOTH!  Sounded so sane to me.

        ..and that wasn’t touching on the biracial.  

        Anyway good blog.. be kind everyone and LEARN something today ...that is your Every Day Job.  

        Proud to be part of the 21st Century Democratic Majority Party of the 3M's.. Multiracial, Multigender and MiddleClass

        by LOrion on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 12:40:23 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  PS. Meant to also say ..we appreciate celebrities. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          rubyr

          Who come out Gay, Lesbian, Bi or Trans ... or Why don’t we all just go bact to QUEER and include everybody eg including ‘straight’ crossdressers and even the Asexual... !

          Proud to be part of the 21st Century Democratic Majority Party of the 3M's.. Multiracial, Multigender and MiddleClass

          by LOrion on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 12:42:33 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Unexpectedly hardest thing I ever had to do was.. (24+ / 0-)

      Sit on a panel discussion on Bisexuality back at the Gay and Lesbian Community Center in Dallas back in 1994.  At the time I was the co-facilitator of Bi-Net Dallas, and we'd been meeting at the facility weekly for four years.  The large main meeting hall was packed (150-200 people), many of those in attendance being 'movers and shakers' in the community.  I and my fellow panel members gave a presentation about the issues bisexuals faced both specific to integration in the gay community and otherwise, that 'yes, we do exist' and are not confused, that we just want acceptance and inclusion like everyone else, etc, and took questions from the audience.  To my shock (because I'm kind of a pollyanna, and particularly was back then, and I'd been heavily involved in the community and lots of people knew me), the 'questions' were mostly full of biphobia and bias - the 'I don't want to date someone who can't make up their mind' or will bail out when the going gets tough for an opposite sex partner, or won't be faithful, etc etc.  We handled the questions as gracefully as we could and hoped for the best.

      When the Voice article came out a few weeks later, the front page headline read: 'Bisexuals discuss role - or lack of it - in community'.  The article itself was decently written and generally supportive, but the whole experience had been quite an eye-opener into what, who would think it, monosexual privilege looks like?  We were used to being met with uncomfortable silence when our group marched by in the Pride parade, but it was another thing entirely to face a couple of hundred folks in the activist community and meet the same discomfort and confusion.  I like to think things have gotten a lot better since then (a rising tide of acceptance lifting all boats, as it were), but in many places in the heartland, there's still a strong desire to 'whitewash' the community to make it as palatable as possible to WASPy sensibilities.

      A few weeks after that panel, at a regular meeting of the support group, we had a male-female couple in their early 60s from a rural area east of town come in, and listen very soberly for a long while before speaking.  While we had a very diverse group of people coming to the meetings in those days, including quite a few transgendered, transvestite, and 'alternate lifestyle' (swinger) individuals, all looking for support and community, I will never forget their story.  As it turns out, they were two members of a triad, whose third member had recently passed away from a heart attack, and the nature of their relationship, needless to say, had been concealed for 36 years.  Their partner bought a house next door to them, they raised their children together, and they had quietly built a life together all that time.  When she died, they had literally nowhere to go with their grief, and had taken the heroic step of coming to the epicenter of the gay community in Dallas in order to have someone to talk to about it.  We never saw them again after that night, but I do hope that coming and being able to share their grief with people who could offer them comfort helped them in their mourning.  Sadly, that was/is the level of isolation that many bi/poly folks still face.

      I'm currently a member of a triad (7.5 and 19 years in) and feel really fortunate that I can share my life with those close to me at least; but for anyone who doesn't fit neatly into the 'monogamy involving clearly-defined genders' boxes, there's still a lot of misunderstanding and prejudice out there, and it's not surprising that many bi/poly folks choose the closet.

    •  I agree with you. (25+ / 0-)

      I am just plain bisexual, not a person of color on top of it too, and I can attest that we do get this from all sides. One thing nobody but other bis seems to understand is that I don't fall in love with genders, I fall in love with people. My marriage to Charles Curtis-Stanley would let me pass if I wanted to deny a large part of myself. I did that for too long. I won't do it again.

      Then there's the fantasy aspect of being a bi woman. No, I will not perform with another woman for the straight male gaze, but I've been asked, told, demanded, wheedled, pleaded, insisted it was his right because we were in a relationship. It's a form of straight male ownership. I am nobody's sex toy, porno, or blow-up doll. If I'm not being dismissed angrily by people who I'd think would have my back, I'm having some of my most tender moments put on display for "their rightful owners". There are few straight men with whom I've been in a relationship who haven't tried to manipulate me into a scene with me and another woman; I can think of three. It sucks. My sexuality is not a peepshow. I only see six points on the Kinsey scale, though, with 6 being exclusively gay; by that pictured scale, I'm a 2, more heterosexual than homosexual behavior (I would put " feelings") but considerably more than incidental gay behavior/feelings.

      •  I understand and am not bi. (0+ / 0-)

        My parents taught me that you fall in love with a person, not a body, idea, fantasy, smile, sex, money, whatever.   My mom was very strong and traditional in a lot of ways that were detrimental to me, but she had a strong feminist viewpoint and made sure that neither me nor my brothers looked at women as objects.  As the father of two daughters and as a husband I thank her for that everyday.  

        America, where a rising tide lifts all boats! Unless you don't have a boat...uh...then it lifts all who can swim! Er, uh...um...and if you can't swim? SHAME ON YOU!

        by Back In Blue on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 11:14:54 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Lots of people hate it (0+ / 0-)

      when you don't share their prejudices, including their sexual prejudices.  So many people have sexual activities with their own sex in early puberty that a prominent developmental psychologist, Erik Erickson, considered it a normal stage of development.  The memories of early puberty haunt people who are frightened of their homosexual impulses.

      Warren/Grayson 2016! Yes We Can!

      by BenFranklin99 on Tue Apr 01, 2014 at 12:37:46 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I haven't really thought about that combo. (57+ / 0-)

    It's really isolating, and there seems to be no support system in place.

    I have both bi's and trans in my family -- (as for friends, I am from San Francisco, after all). The fact is, though, almost all are in committed relationships, except the trans. It's always hard for them, and he is a Native American, adopted and raised as a she baby by my cousin many years ago. (That's an odd story I'll share sometime.)

    Anyway, why is bi so socially contentious? Isn't bi a journey on the way to a committed relationship on one side or the other?

    •  I think we can posit the possibility (39+ / 0-)

      that not everyone moves towards a committed relationship, or at least that commitment has different durational potentialities. And commitment is not synonymous with monogamy.

      There is also the inaccuracy being perceived or labeled as having chosen "one side or the other" in the event that someone does have a committed/monogamous relationship.

      Unless you perpetually proclaim the possibility of the other, or actually act out on it, you then pass for gay or straight. It is not comfortable. Particularly if you land, purely by accident, on the hetero-normative side. Then you've taken the easy road and betrayed your brothers/sisters on the difficult road. In general culture is not comfortable with inbetweenness.

      •  I knew no matter what I said (25+ / 0-)

        …it would be flawed -- because the complexities of consciousness are so mysteriously Heisenbergian.

        But I didn't want to allow this Diary to pass down the road without touching it as best I could.

        •  The reality of lived sexual experience (6+ / 0-)

          doesn't fit in well to the tortured ways this culture conceives of sexuality. Even the Reform Version, which thank gods we are embracing and finally dispensing with the Standard (all gays are going to hell) Version.

          Sure once I was young and impulsive, I wore every conceivable pin. Even went to socialist meetings, learned all the old union hymns. Ah, but I've grown older and wiser. And that's why I'm turning you in. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u52Oz-54VYw

          by SouthernLiberalinMD on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 10:26:25 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Monogamy is the difficulty, perhaps (33+ / 0-)

        The social expectation that people land in a committed monogamous relationship is only reinforced by the battle for marriage equality.  We celebrate its successes but don't recognize the problems it exacerbates or fails to address.  

        Perhaps monogamy is the next battle, although it will be a social one instead of a legal one.  Plenty of people feel secure only in a monogamous relationship, and project their own feelings onto others.  But not everybody feels that way.  Coming out in San Francisco in the 1970's, it was a common idea that gay liberation would break down the monogamy norm.  Then the AIDS holocaust began, and that view quickly disappeared.  There are certainly problems with a non-monogamous life, but normalizing it as a socially acceptable choice is not a battle that has been joined in recent decades.

        We have always been at war with al Qaeda.

        by Dallasdoc on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:40:44 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  We have of course discussed this (17+ / 0-)

          a fair amount in our family.

          The LGBT advances of the past few years are made, to some extent, at the expense of those who can't fit into the Ward and Ward or June and June Cleaver model. As poly people, we are pretty much indigestible in the current model of social progress. My family knows that, is mildly irritated by it, but accepts it as a necessary sacrifice.

           If straight culture doesn't get images of LGBT folks who are just like them and want just the same things they do,  there will be more hate crimes, more people losing their kids in custody battles, more people losing their jobs, all the most vicious excesses of homophobia will persist unabated. We're willing to tolerate a certain amount of invisibility and occasional disdain in order to reduce the number of Matthew Shepards.

          However, it's undeniably irritating when LGBT folks (mostly, to be honest, the LG side of LGBT) treat us with snotty disdain or mild alarm, as implicit or explicit threats to progress. People who sleep with more than one person just aren't nice people, and people who establish more than one loving relationship at a time are freaking Martians.

          Sure once I was young and impulsive, I wore every conceivable pin. Even went to socialist meetings, learned all the old union hymns. Ah, but I've grown older and wiser. And that's why I'm turning you in. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u52Oz-54VYw

          by SouthernLiberalinMD on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 10:35:14 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I think that what scares the non-bi LGs... (8+ / 0-)

            ...is that the Fundies would leap on the existence of bi folk as "proof" that it's possible to "change" an inborn sexual orientation -- or at least force people onto the Procrustean bed of 100% heterosexuality.  

            There's also the Dan Savage mindset, where bi males in particular are wrongly mocked as cowards who don't have the guts to come out as gay.  (Because of course, according to this mindset, if you have even One Gay Sex Act in the course of your life, you're gay, gay, gay -- just like if you have one drop of non-white blood, you're not white.)

            It also just occurred to me that many LGs of the Savage mindset may well be thinking that Bs somehow have it easier because they can "pass for straight" and therefore have access to straight privilege.  (Savage himself IIRC was out when he was a teen and throughout his career, especially early on, has had little patience with those LGB persons who, for job, family or other reasons, stay in the closet and "pass for straight".)

            Visit http://theuptake.org/ for Minnesota news as it happens.

            by Phoenix Woman on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 11:53:38 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Well, as somebody who initially thought she (10+ / 0-)

              was a lesbian, I came out as a lesbian first, and dealt with the difficulties of that, even though I identify as bi now. I know what it was like to be a lesbian in FL in the 80s, because I thought I was one and I was living as one. And therefore society treated me as one--though I think I had it pretty damned easy, compared to a lot of people.

              Assuming that the label tells the story is often a mistake. (Not that I think you're doing that!)

              People who have left behind the certainties of "everybody's 100% normative heterosexual all the time, and anybody who isn't is sick/damned/whatever,"  take many wending paths once the authoritarian cultural roadmap is left behind.

              Honestly, I hoped that my life would turn out like a Rita Mae Brown novel, except happier. Nice wide road, with a bumpy difficult bit at the beginning (coming out, getting out of whatever rural or Southern or small-town place and getting to the city, finding a community, sex, relationships, acceptance, some version of happy-ever-after.) But it didn't happen, and that's OK.

              Sure once I was young and impulsive, I wore every conceivable pin. Even went to socialist meetings, learned all the old union hymns. Ah, but I've grown older and wiser. And that's why I'm turning you in. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u52Oz-54VYw

              by SouthernLiberalinMD on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 12:05:42 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •   I'm keenly aware that my life story (5+ / 0-)

              could be used by some bastard to whack the LG part of the population with, and I hate it, so the ultimate result is I talk about all this a lot less.

              I don't want to be an excuse to trot out the "you just haven't found the right opposite-gender person yet!" BS.

              Sure once I was young and impulsive, I wore every conceivable pin. Even went to socialist meetings, learned all the old union hymns. Ah, but I've grown older and wiser. And that's why I'm turning you in. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u52Oz-54VYw

              by SouthernLiberalinMD on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 12:07:05 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  I don't think so. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Pluto

              Rather than refuting your "observations", I refer you to the family life of the current mayor of New York, let alone the family life of Dan Savage.  (Google is your friend, here.)  Commitment, as demonstrated by the aforementioned,  is the requisite to forming a family whether straight, gay or bi, and is demonstrably successful for each member of these families, even as members of these families identify as straight, gay, or bi,  black, white, and whatever.
              Gay, straight bi.  Black, white, green.  You want to form a family with a like minded partner.  Commitment, as demonstrated by the examples of the De Blasio and Savage families, is what matters.
              So, yeah, I don't think so.  

              "American conservatism is still, after all these years, largely driven by claims that liberals are taking away your hard-earned money and giving it to Those People. " Paul Krugman

              by yippee ki yay on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 12:58:13 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  I detest Dan Savage. n/t (0+ / 0-)
      •  A dear friend has a husband who is bi - he is (8+ / 0-)

        still immersed in the complexity of knowing himself. Fortunately my friend is comfortable with all points along the spectrum so at least he is not getting grief from her.



        Is it true? Is it kind? Is it necessary? . . . and respect the dignity of every human being.

        by Wee Mama on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 10:42:47 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Dan Savage (PBUH) maintained for the longest time (6+ / 0-)

        That Bisexuals were inauthentic and insincere, as well as both politically and personally unreliable.

        He has since grudgingly admitted that not every 22 year old gay male is searching for "the One" ... forever ... and as soon as possible.  

        This is important ... because I think that everyone can tell a story of a an attractive, stable, well-earning BiGuy (A Catch) who wound up opting for a heteronomative monosexual relationship with a woman (eeeew!) -- making "him" (and therefore All of Us) into little better than virgin seducing, cradle robbing, betrayers and hypocrites.

        I think Dan has promoted us to "Potential Disappointments"   ... and he's not actually wrong.  Besides, if Dan never did anything other than "It Gets Better" -- I'd have to forgive him any little quirks and bigotries that came along with the package.

        I know that there was long-ago time when I traded on my "straight looking/straight acting" basic affect.

        And when a Kinsey Six  gay lover carried on about his attraction to me as a "real man" (although objectively speaking he was larger, more muscular, a better earner AND had a bigger penis) --  I did not invest a lot of effort in correcting his politics  his misperception.

        At any rate:  he wound up with One man.  I wound up with One woman ...  because as someone recently  put it:  "I like sports cars and like SUVs, but I only have a 1-car garage."

        And let's face it, since the end of  the Health Crisis, the GLBTetc Community has made Marriage Equality the number one political priority on which we can all agree.  And it certainly  does make  GLBTetc people FAR more "just like anyone else" -- which probably DOES do more good for everyone in general,  than another telling of the Alan Turin story.

        SO ... I have to give a big "Amen" to davidincleveland's Testimony: that the GBLTetc. Community discounted, vilified, and snubbed Bisexuals by day, and where other G/Ls might see ... while some fetishized us by night, and in certain ultra-louache venues.

        For the longest time,  I thought a Triad or polyfidelitous group would be my Best Fit ... but my experience over time was that those were a Lottery Win for the very few "Lucky and Strong" -- but even greater Potential Disappointment for me than Bisexual Partner was for Dan Savage's young hot and marriage minded young gay male ideal.

        I'm not unhappy about my choices ... even if I'm NOT as welcome at The Center or the Hellfire encampment as I one might have been.

        And this of course all stands against the background of my twin privileges of being  quite "masculine" as well as unambiguously White.

        I literally cannot understand how churchgoing, community-involved  Gay and Bi people of color navigate the world as THEY find it ...

        One chooses ... one copes, I guess.

        Ultimate ... "the Community" will not cheer or comfort you much once the Meeting, or the March are over and you have to go home to "whoever."

    •  I don't assume that sexual identity (14+ / 0-)

      is a journey that automatically leads to any particular destination. :-)

      Sure once I was young and impulsive, I wore every conceivable pin. Even went to socialist meetings, learned all the old union hymns. Ah, but I've grown older and wiser. And that's why I'm turning you in. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u52Oz-54VYw

      by SouthernLiberalinMD on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 10:24:42 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Bi... by definition... means that you've (4+ / 0-)

      had sex with more than one person (gasp, cue the horror).  And I think that's just the beginning.

      You are seen as having looser morals, being an opportunist and generally being less trustworthy than others.

      I think the general perception is that bisexuality isn't a journey to a committed relationship... and that perception is part of the problem.

      No wonder the "closet" can be a preferred place for bisexuals.

      I want to live in a world where George Zimmerman offered Trayvon Martin a ride home to get him out of the rain that night. -Bishop G. Brewer

      by the dogs sockpuppet on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:21:50 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I agree with your point (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Dave in Northridge

        but I don't understand the last line.  As a gay man, I never questioned being out and felt a political obligation to do so as well.  And it is apparent to my community that there are serious quality of life issues related to being in the closet.  So, why is the closet preferred for bisexuals?  The only reason I can think is the anxiety over relinquishing heterosexual privilege.  Perhaps it is because bisexuals have something to lose (which gay and lesbian people did not) that informs this comment?  

        •  You bring up an interesting point. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          orestes1963

          I don't think it is necessarily a privilege thing, because you tend to find people claiming gay or lesbian when coupled in a same sex relationship... so I don't think there is heterosexual privilege there.

          I think what I mean is that there is no support to being out... (and maybe there would be if more people were out), but bisexuality is eyed skeptically by both groups that the bisexual individual interfaces with... Do you know what I mean?  It's not like bisexuals are generally coupled with each other, so each individual is kind of isolated.  It makes sense to me, even if I'm not explaining very well.

          I want to live in a world where George Zimmerman offered Trayvon Martin a ride home to get him out of the rain that night. -Bishop G. Brewer

          by the dogs sockpuppet on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 11:30:22 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Back in the day (0+ / 0-)

            it was a common view in the gay community that bisexuality represented heterosexual privilege with homosexual pleasure.  I don't disagree that some bisexuals identified as gay or lesbian when in a same sex relationship, but I wouldn't say that was generally the case.  A Pew research study from last year found that most bisexuals ultimately end up in long term opposite sex relationships.  That has been my anecdotal experience as well.  The report also found low rates of being open about their orientation among bisexuals.  

            I don't disagree that bisexuals can face skepticism from the gay and straight communities, but that is not different from the historical experience of G&L folks.  Indeed, homosexuality was considered a mental disorder until 1973.  The strides we have made are the direct result, I would argue, of our willingness to be out, to publicly identify ourselves.  I don't understand why bisexuals refuse to learn from our experience.  In the Times article that started this discussion, one of the bisexual activists cited therein, rationalized the closet because essentially coming out is so difficult.  I find it shocking that an activist would take that view.  The only explanation I can find is that he was weighing the potential loss of heterosexual privilege against the burden of coming out.  

            I would argue that the isolation of which you speak is a direct result of being in the closet.  That seems apparent, no?

            •  That may be part of it, but I think it's also (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              orestes1963

              partly because there is no real benefit to bisexual individuals to coming out.  In other words, you are with an opposite sex partner and it's not like you are really in a bisexual community in that case.  Likewise you are in a same sex partnership and you also don't gain support of a community by coming out (in fact, you end up being looked at skeptically).  The only thing you gain is rejection

              I know anecdotes don't matter, but all of my bisexual friends and acquaintances are in same sex couples except for one... and she is always resentful that people think of her as straight.

              I don't think we can drag anyone out of the closet.  They have to want to come out.  And while I think it is a worthy goal, I also think that we as a society need to make some changes to help make coming out easier for bisexuals.

              I want to live in a world where George Zimmerman offered Trayvon Martin a ride home to get him out of the rain that night. -Bishop G. Brewer

              by the dogs sockpuppet on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 12:38:08 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I agree (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                the dogs sockpuppet

                with all but one of your points.  Of course, no one should be forced out of the closet.  Although we in the gay community stressed the importance of being out, we always respected that how and when one comes out is a personal decision determined by a number of factors.  

                Where I disagree is with the notion that there is "no real benefit" to coming out.  And that is the crux of the issue.  How can one find greater understanding and acceptance if one is not willing to come out?  The benefit of coming out is that acceptance and understanding.  You can't have it both ways.  You can't complain about lack of acceptance when you are not willing to stand up and be counted IMO.  Coming out has its risks to be sure.  But you can't avoid taking those risks and still demand instant acceptance.

                What would you propose society do to make it easier for bisexuals to come out?  Because I don't see how that would happen.  If society doesn't understand bisexuality, how does it miraculously raise its consciousness without the efforts of bisexuals educating them?  Society didn't make it easier for gay and lesbian folks either.  We took that responsibility on ourselves and are reaping the fruits of that endeavor.      

                Thanks for the discussion.

                •  I don't disagree with you. Maybe we as (0+ / 0-)

                  allies can help by being less judgy and more accepting... by asking questions and supporting in the coming out journey without pushing.

                  I don't know what the right answer is.  But I do know that the status quo isn't working. But as long as we think of bisexuals as having "privilege" or that they are weak by staying in the closet, that we're not helping the situation.

                  I, for one, am going to use the conversation you and I have had as a springboard to talk more deeply about these issues with folks in my life and see if I can learn more.

                  I want to live in a world where George Zimmerman offered Trayvon Martin a ride home to get him out of the rain that night. -Bishop G. Brewer

                  by the dogs sockpuppet on Tue Apr 01, 2014 at 12:30:26 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

            •  You had the support of your community. (0+ / 0-)

              Bi's for the most part, still do not.  So, if the straights and LG's don't support you, or even understand you, where do you go?   That doesn't mean your experience should be ignored, it's just a different situation.  The lack of LG support combined with the notable message of mistrust for Bi's certainly makes the many would-be supporters wonder if they should be.

              America, where a rising tide lifts all boats! Unless you don't have a boat...uh...then it lifts all who can swim! Er, uh...um...and if you can't swim? SHAME ON YOU!

              by Back In Blue on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 12:59:08 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  No (0+ / 0-)

                we created that community in the first place.  That is the point.  And I don't know what you mean by support here:  What form did that support take?  Prior to the AIDS crisis, the support we had was in the creation of spaces in which we could be free from the condemnation of society and the political efforts of those willing to be out.  If you are addressing that statement to me personally, I can assure you the only support I had when coming out was my personal conviction that I needed to be honest about who I am and that my sexual orientation did not affect my value as a human being.  I had two gay friends at that time (as a result of their being out as well).  That was all.  

                I would respond to your query with:  you find each other and form that support system.  I don't understand why this is rejected as the best option.  Gay and lesbian Americans faced losing everything by coming out- family, friends, jobs, social standing, etc.  Yet we did it because we understood the importance to our well-being of being honest about who we are.  We have now reached a critical mass in which coming out is almost passe because of the willingness to be out when that was dangerous.  Why do bisexuals not consider that they would have the same success?  

      •  I don't agree with your definition. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        churchylafemme, CS in AZ

        One can be gay or straight without having any sexual experience, and the same goes for being bi.

        Gondwana has always been at war with Laurasia.

        by AaronInSanDiego on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 10:23:57 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  I think it is for this reason (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Pluto, davidincleveland

      A partner normally assumes that they will fulfill ALL of your sexual needs. Many of those partners feel that they cannot, almost by definition, fulfill all needs if you are bi.

      ----------

      I don't know about Chris Martin, but I do know why Saint Peter won't call my name.

      by Bill in MD on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 04:16:44 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I'm sorry to hear this David. This is the second (38+ / 0-)

    such incident of harassment against bisexuals I've heard about this evening, which is strange because, I haven't heard of any before, but apparently they've been going on. This isn't permitted and you should report to to the admins.

    "Seriously, Folks, WTH?" - ("What the Heck? "h/t Joan McCarter, Seriously, Florida. WTF?)

    by HoundDog on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 10:57:52 PM PDT

  •  Hi David. If you send me a link to the incident I (14+ / 0-)

    will look into it for you, if you would like.

    Also, I am friends with DaveofNorthbridge would published a post about two hours ago, entitled "On the Science of BiSexuality" where you may find some moral support.  You can find abou four inches down from your.

    I will leave a comment there for him to come over and say hello, however, I suspect he may be asleep by now.

    Good luck.

    "Seriously, Folks, WTH?" - ("What the Heck? "h/t Joan McCarter, Seriously, Florida. WTF?)

    by HoundDog on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 11:10:12 PM PDT

  •  this is an important issue (18+ / 0-)

    I'm often surprised there isn't more here about it. I've known many bisexuals. The lack of support can lead to horrible outcomes!

  •  I have a good bi friend now, who came out (7+ / 0-)

    when we first met, here in Indiana. I was talking about the work we do here on Marriage Equality, and the fact that there are now five Federal Marriage Equality lawsuits here in Indiana by a large number of couples looking to get married here or to have marriages from other states recognized. I probably mentioned some bi and trans issues, too. So obviously I was not seen as a threat.

    Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

    by Mokurai on Sat Mar 29, 2014 at 11:59:07 PM PDT

  •  I'm sorry (24+ / 0-)

    I can't think of any group that experiences oppression that does not also have its own intra-hierarchy, for lack of a better real word. As a straight woman, I honestly don't get why there is so much pushback against the idea that there are bisexuals. I mean, of course there are. And of course there would be a closet for them because bisexuality isn't really socially accepted as "normal," therefore there would be massive pressure to pretend not to be "abnormal." It's pretty simple to me.

    I actually know a bisexual. He confessed it to me a few years ago, and later to one other person, but I believe that's it. He pretty much lives his life in the closet. I feel terrible for him, that he feels he has to hide himself like that to stay safe. So I definitely know there are bisexuals in the closet.

    Time is of no account with great thoughts, which are as fresh to-day as when they first passed through their authors' minds ages ago. - Samuel Smiles

    by moviemeister76 on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 12:40:06 AM PDT

  •  There's an essay on Slate.com, (28+ / 0-)

    posted just Friday, about "bisexual erasure", written by Nathanial Frank, a bi man (happily engaged to another man, but with serious relationships with women as well in his past).

    He says, "As Zack Ford points out over at ThinkProgress, 'affirming bisexuality is a public health concern,' since bi-identified people face disproportionate mental and physical health challenges, including greater partner violence and harassment." But he goes on to say his own concern in the matter is simpler than that: "I don't want my feelings negated."

    Not too much to ask for--

  •  My wife's friends told her to dump me... (36+ / 0-)

    ...because being Bi, supposedly I wouldn't actually love her and wouldn't be faithful.

    We've been together since 1997 and married (in the not-yet-legalized) sense since '98, and just last year finally managed the trifecta of a legal civil marriage.

    Nearly 15 years of commitment...and still I hear the slurs.

    About all I can figure is that an oppressed people is prone to seeing scapegoats where they don't actually exist.

    "Don't ride in anything with a Capissen 38 engine. They fall right out of the sky." -- Kaywinnit Lee Frye

    by Technowitch on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 03:25:40 AM PDT

    •  Never understood that thinking. (6+ / 0-)

      It doesn't seem limited to just among the oppressed community, you hear the same comments from the cis-hetero population too, yet no one ever claims that a cis-hetero male who's attracted to both blondes and brunettes will be fundamentally incapable of being faithful to his brunette wife.

      •  Until an attractive blonde moves in next door (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Poor in a Rich World

        and starts flirting with that married cis-hetero male. Boy-howdy will you hear the comments then.

        I think it might be more a desire for a closed homogeneous community where they can feel secure that they know the rules others will follow because those are the rules they know themselves.

        Since the open expression of that kind of urge comes across as prejudice and bigotry, it is framed instead as concerns about love, commitment and faithfulness. But underneath the surface, it is simply fear of the other.

        "The problems of incompetent, corrupt, corporatist government are incompetence, corruption and corporatism, not government." Jerome a Paris

        by Orinoco on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 12:12:45 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Why is it difficult (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Dave in Northridge

        to understand that a gay man or lesbian might simply choose to share their life with another gay or lesbian person?  As a gay man, I am disinclined to have a relationship with a bisexual man not because I doubt his honesty, but because his sexual identity is different than mine.  Similarly, I am not inclined to try to have a relationship with a straight man for the same reason.  Doesn't it make sense for bisexuals to seek out other bisexuals for relationships for the same reason?

        •  No. (0+ / 0-)

          Why would it be harder for a bisexual to enter into a committed relationship because they love a person than a non-bi person?  The argument that because you are attracted to bother men and women that you have to be able to have sex with both in order to have a satisfying sexual life is simply wrong.  Some bi's might need to live that way and hopefully, they can find a partner who is open to that if that's what they want.  But that's no reason to assume that as a bi-sexaul person you must have both to be happy.

          America, where a rising tide lifts all boats! Unless you don't have a boat...uh...then it lifts all who can swim! Er, uh...um...and if you can't swim? SHAME ON YOU!

          by Back In Blue on Mon Mar 31, 2014 at 01:11:44 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I neither stated that (0+ / 0-)

            nor implied it.  By sexual identity, I was referring to a sexual desire for both sexes, not sexual activity with both sexes.  I do not share that orientation, so, for me, a bisexual partner is not a good match.  But I would never say never.  

            I think you have projected a lot onto my simple statement.  

    •  the publicly stated assumptions that fidelity is a (3+ / 0-)

      myth and can't be done are mostly promoted by people who haven't done it...

      We are all pupils in the eyes of God.

      by nuclear winter solstice on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 09:47:50 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Of course. We bi's are "not for real." (5+ / 0-)

      The irony is that I've had three rotten experiences in my life myself where women just wanted to essentially fiddle around with me and then drop me, while basically pointing a finger in my direction and shouting UNCLEAN! UNCLEAN! I never meant it that way! It was all in your head! You're the bad one! I never ever ever wanted anybody who wasn't opposite sex!

      It was the lies and the scapegoating that were the real problem there.

      Anybody who's had that done to them never wants to experience it again--and it's been twenty years now since it happened to me, it was basically a flurry in the first ten years after I realized I liked women and I didn't really know how to handle myself yet. I filter those folks out now.

      So it's not like I don't get where some of these lesbians are coming from. But I"ve never done anything of the kind, thank you, and I don't see why bisexuals should have to take the karma for what some insecure, duplicitous individuals do.

      Sure once I was young and impulsive, I wore every conceivable pin. Even went to socialist meetings, learned all the old union hymns. Ah, but I've grown older and wiser. And that's why I'm turning you in. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u52Oz-54VYw

      by SouthernLiberalinMD on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 10:49:11 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Tipped and rec'ed (45+ / 0-)

    and glad you posted this -  I also tipped and rec'ed the other diary since there was some good discussion in comments - as there is here.

    The B and the T in the acronym LBGT needs much more  discussion - we do have diaries regularly here on the T but as Ojibwa pointed out

    From a cross-cultural perspective (18+ / 0-)

    it quickly becomes apparent that the categories used for defining gender and sexuality among English-speaking people do not fit the realities in other cultures. This is an area of much greater complexity than often assumed in the popular media.

    and frankly, it is clear here in the English speaking US the gender spectrum as it is often portrayed tends to obfuscate, and dismiss bi-sexuality.  

    For a number of years even among anthropologists whose research is in the area of human sexuality - the organization they had resisted a name change from "Lesbian and Gay" (SOLGA) to anything else. They are now The Association for Queer Anthropology

    Sigh.

    And thank you for the colorism part of your post as well.

    "If you're in a coalition and you're comfortable, you know it's not a broad enough coalition." Dr. Bernice Johnson Reagon

    by Denise Oliver Velez on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 03:26:44 AM PDT

    •  Doesn't fit the reality in this culture either (3+ / 0-)

      But we lack the terms and the way of thinking to deal with it.

      I think that is changing a little.  Certainly if you spend any time in internet venues that feature the young and not-necessarily-straight, you will see a whole lot of "both", "neither" and "no labels please" going on along the whole spectrum of gender and orientation and identity.  I tend to think that's new; certainly there was nothing like it that I knew about when I was growing up.  If it persists and remains accessible, it might wind up offering the kind of self-definition and support people would need to avoid the closeting issues that trouble the original diarist.  Maybe.

      Personally I have yet to see even these days any narrative that really fits my own experiences -- not when I was a teenager and young adult, and certainly not one that also encompasses my view of myself now, which is quite different than when I was younger.

      •  I don't think the tendency (0+ / 0-)

        towards no labels, etc. is new based upon my experience.  What I do find new is the notion that younger people espousing these views are somehow more enlightened or have a better understanding of human sexuality.  I chalk that up to the increasing prevalence of a solopsistic understanding of human existence.

  •  i'm happy you wrote this (7+ / 0-)

    i read the other diary, too. i didn't pick up on the hectoring in that other diary. i'm happy you shared what it was like for you to read it.

    xoxo

    Shame cannot survive being spoken. It cannot survive empathy. -Dr. Brene Brown

    by thankgodforairamerica on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 04:54:31 AM PDT

  •  It is in human nature to find that someone else (31+ / 0-)

    more locally worthy of exile than themselves.

    It's an ugly survival impulse but it's there whether we like it our not...

    ...we shouldn't ever catch ourselves liking, excusing or admiring it...

    ...but like alcoholism we should accept that exilism is a vice and we should do our utmost to never exile others because we can, because we want to, because we are resigned to do so...

    ...and last but not least we should never exile ourselves because that truly is the path to depression and to self-extinction and if the pattern locks in to extinctions great and small of every good thing in human existence.

    For this is how we kill: abnegation. And this is how we suicide: Self-abnegation.

    Let's not do that. Let's not push others to do that, and pat ourselves on the back for putting people we make miserable out of their misery. Because, no. We're not heroes when we do that; we are bullies. We are abettors of death. And the minor atrocity of shoving someone out of sight scales up to the major horror of shoving them into an oven.

    •  Wow, cskendrick, that's a really principled stand. (6+ / 0-)

      Makes me reconsider my comment above.

      Sure once I was young and impulsive, I wore every conceivable pin. Even went to socialist meetings, learned all the old union hymns. Ah, but I've grown older and wiser. And that's why I'm turning you in. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u52Oz-54VYw

      by SouthernLiberalinMD on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 10:50:24 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Some getting seats in the front of the bus (4+ / 0-)

        at the expense of throwing a few others under it is not progress at all.

        It's the worst possible kind of selling out - selling out the very weakest and most vulnerable and trying to pass for compassionate.

        •  It's just that when those seats are not gotten (0+ / 0-)

          people get beaten to death more often. It's a tough call for me.

          Sure once I was young and impulsive, I wore every conceivable pin. Even went to socialist meetings, learned all the old union hymns. Ah, but I've grown older and wiser. And that's why I'm turning you in. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u52Oz-54VYw

          by SouthernLiberalinMD on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 11:54:06 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Re: India is a rising superpower (3+ / 0-)

            I don't recall the British going quickly, quietly, willingly and the only thing that ran them out was everyone pulling for everyone else.

            Because before that, the British ran things very efficiently by setting the inhabitants of the Subcontinent against one another, and they did so for a very, very long time, capitalizing on the very thing of which I speak:

            Convincing people that crusts were loaves, and loaves were bakeries, and bakeries were palaces, while keeping the lion's share of everything including the crusts of bread to themselves.

            Oh, but at least the 'martial races' got some rights. And they got to kick some ass and take names on behalf of the Raj.

            They got something. And because they got a little of theirs, they helped keep the Raj in power for the better part of two centuries.

            Front of the bus looks pretty good, when you're one of those who gets to put the boot down and high-five with one's former persecutors.

            At least until the long overdue guilt sinks in that one has sold out.

        •  Who's getting seats in the front of the bus? (0+ / 0-)

          I assume you are talking about straight people, but I am not sure.  

    •  This is exactly right.. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      davidincleveland, cskendrick

      It's a sad part of human nature that, when we are discriminated against or otherwise oppressed, sure we rail against our discriminators and oppressors, but it's a common defense mechanism to thrown in a "hey look at that person over there, they are (insert subset of so-called even less desirable individuals) let's all hate on him or her.  Basically you try to identify with your oppressor and find a redirection for their hostility, buffeted by your joining them in acting against the person.  You see this kind of stuff starting in young kids who respond to bullying by trying to redirect the bully to someone who is supposedly more worthy of torment and then build commonalities with the bully by joining in the torment of the new target.  

      The enemy of my enemy is my friend. It's a nasty and horrible side of human nature, and someone we, as a society, need to work to stop.

      •  It's a bit worse than that (4+ / 0-)

        It's "No, eat my friend instead!"

      •  How about we just accept (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        pdkesq

        that the act of differentiation is a human impulse, instead of allocating it to those who are oppressed.  Your statement reflects a comfort with privileging those on top presumably because they don't have the impulse to turn around and oppress another.  I find this reasoning quite flawed.

        •  ... (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          davidincleveland, orestes1963

          I think we have a mix of my post not being sufficiently clear and you reading too much into my post.  I wasn't trying to privilege anyone on the oppressor end of things. If history has shown us anything, those oppressors are far MORE likely to turn around and throw others under the bus to save their own hides.  Not sure why that is, but this is a trait that exists across the broad spectrum of humanity; it's certainly not limited in any way to oppressed groups.

          I apologize if that wasn't sufficiently clear in the original post.   I simply discussed this topic from the view point of those on the receiving end of discrimination and oppression because the failure of those folks to stand up for one another in the face of similar acts of discrimination or oppression was the subject of this diary.  

          •  No need (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            pdkesq

            to apologize.  I was only calling into question the framework you employed- that the oppressed tend to reinforce the power dynamic by seeking out someone else to oppress.  It's a commonly held view.  It's my view that this framework is wrong.  I would agree that the potential or tendency to oppress exists in all of us, regardless of our status in the society.  

  •  I have had several lovers who were bisexual, (24+ / 0-)

    and one in particular (about 20 years ago, though we've remained friends since (btw, my lover's father was black and her mother was Portuguese, she experienced all of the prejudices you spoke about) who explained to me the prejudices she experienced from her female lovers when they discovered that she had a male lover, and in this particular case, that male lover was me. She was in an open relationship with a woman, (actually, they had flown to Chile and married there, so they were married, as far as they were concerned (her lover/wife was obviously from Chile)) and had been living with her for several years, and they both had had several lovers outside of their relationship, and there never was any problem.... until her lover/wife discovered she had a male lover, and since she had not had a male lover in over 5 years, her wife never suspected that she was bi, and my lover, (who was much younger than her wife) never suspected that her being bi would be a problem, well, it was, in fact, apparently, a huge problem .... well, long story short.... it ended their marriage. I am not kidding. I was as shocked as she was. My lover/friend was a very strong fiery woman (and so was her wife, apparently, though I had never met her), even though she was younger, so her response was NOT to be repressed by it, but rather, she got pissed off with her wife about it, and call her out for her prejudice which led to some very heated fights, apparently, which probably had to do with far more than simply her bisexuality, I am sure.

    As a side note, this all led to her explaining to me that the gay male community and the female gay woman community were NOT, generally speaking, close. Thankfully, that seems to have changed over the past 20 years, and hopefully, they will also embrace the bi community.

    Btw, I say "was" because, sadly, she passed away last year.

    Thank you, davidincleveland, for sharing about your life and the hard challenges you have faced and witnessed due to your race and sexuality. I think we all need to go out of our way to understand, embrace, and support communities that have been abused and repressed, because unless we have lived those abuses, we are ignorant of the full measure of what they are, and I say that most acutely, here now today, on DailyKos, because this community has, more than once, enlightened me to my own ignorances on this matter. I stand humbled, often, when reading, and so I do thank you dearly for your sharing... dearly and profoundly, and I say that as a white heterosexual male who would defend with every fiber of my being your right to be who you are.

    * * * DONATE/VOLUNTEER: Marianne Williamson for CA-33 * * * #CampaignFinanceReform is the lynchpin of our democracy. #AIKIDOPROVERBMoveSoonerNotFaster ~

    by ArthurPoet on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 06:33:56 AM PDT

  •  Speaking both bacon and tomato... (9+ / 0-)

    ...in the big sandwich, hear hear!  Though in the web of interlocking oppressions, the bi has always seemed to be one of my smaller spiders, albeit with interesting markings.

    Both bi and trans, as labels, seem to mostly deny others a deep narrative that clicks well with their own.  A nice, sold, existential affirmation of their gendered and preferenced life. And then you have lovely human beings like Michael Bailey, who put rubber hoses on weenies, plop people in front of porn, and declare that bisexuals (and trans women) don't exist, we're all just wankers.  People who make serious academic bank on essentialism and in-house bigotry.

    On the upside, we have Captain Jack!  And any number of thinkers and writers who have described the geography of their desire.  

    ...j'ai découvert que tout le malheur des hommes vient d'une seule chose, qui est de ne savoir pas demeurer en repos dans une chambre.

    by jessical on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 07:13:03 AM PDT

  •  I saw that title. (8+ / 0-)

    I said that doesn't look like something I want to read about.

    When I first saw your post I said the same thing, I decided I should see what was going on.

    I'm glad I open your post !

  •  There have only been a few times in my life (39+ / 0-)

    that someone has asked me whether or not I was homosexual. The people who asked were usually doctors who asked me during a medical appointment.

    Each time they asked, I gave a different answer. I said I was homosexual once, and I said that I was bisexual another time. The next time someone asked, I thought about it for awhile and didn't know what to say. Finally I said, "I guess I'm really nothing much at all."

    Its not fear of answering honestly. I don't know what I am. its been so long since I dared to even try to have a relationship, I'm not certain I am capable of having one.

    Sometimes I am attracted to men, sometimes I am attracted to women. At this point, I'm so isolated from society, so unable to find a relationship, that I don't feel like I really exist. That's the best way I can describe it. That even goes beyond being a homosexual, or bisexual, or any sexual relationship. If things get a little worse, I'll probably cease to exist. If I ever found some sort of LGBT organization, though I would be tempted to join, I would be too frightened too.

    I wish there were someone around to tell me what's going on. I grew up in a deeply religious small town. I was utterly terrified that anyone would find out I was homosexual, so I hid it from everyone. Today I still live in a rather conservative town. I don't own a car, and sometimes I can't afford food. Although LGBTs aren't treated quite as badly as they used to be, I still worry about what might happen if people really knew me. Just getting into town to shop is difficult. If I said something about my nature that offended the people around me, I can't move. Not only that, if someone decided they simply weren't going to talk to me again and wouldn't give me a ride, that would result in me having to spend twenty bucks on a cab to do my grocery shopping. That's twenty bucks I haven't got.

    In a way, I feel like I can't afford to be myself, or even to know myself.

    In a way I guess that's why I chose the martian expatriate name. Partly its just an interest in Science Fiction and Mars but I suppose I was making a different sort of statement. I am alien. I don't belong here. I probably never will. I don't know anyone around me, and I'm afriad that nobody will ever know me.

    Ignorance more frequently begets confidence then knowledge. Charles Darwin

    by martianexpatriate on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 07:51:54 AM PDT

    •  my heart breaks (30+ / 0-)

      reading your comment.

      This community, for all its flaws, does care about it members.  What can we do to help?

      I'm a boring, straight, middle-aged woman, but I do understand feeling isolated from those around you.

      Kosmail me if you just want someone to talk to, though I'm sure there are others around here who could relate to your situation more directly.

      But connect with someone.  It may not improve your living situation, but sharing the burden with a caring person can make it easier to bear.  

      There is no snooze button on a cat who wants breakfast.

      by puzzled on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:10:38 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •   This looks like a good place for me to put this: (20+ / 0-)

      The young'uns on Tumblr have a much wider/broader range of descriptions for this sexuality thing (tumblr.com, probably search for LGBT). They break things down into such categories as: hetero-romantic, pan/multi-sexual, homo-affectionate, etc. The community there tends younger (& IIRC more female-ish), so there's sometimes an absence of history & a lack of awareness of how very quickly societal acceptance has changed, but it might be a good place for you to find online communities & support.

      I know that you who hear my singing make those freedom bells go ringing. And so we keep on while we live, until we have no more to give... Don't you know it's darkest before the dawn. This thought keeps me moving on. Pete Seeger bit.ly/1bwCmhK

      by TiaRachel on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:20:53 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  absence of history & lack of awareness of how very (8+ / 0-)

        quickly societal acceptance has changed is so true!

        Obama is my age and the evolution in what he would mention, espouse, and vote for seem to mirror the change in society. But if you didn't live it and only walked in when the stigma was so much lessened and the rights were on the way, then it's hard to grasp the reality of the whole fight.

        I've written here before about how this plays out in women's rights. Women (and men) under the age of 40 are generally not so familiar with what the image of a twisted coat-hanger means to the old folk, because they never needed to be. Times had already changed for them. (2014-1974=40 just in case they don't teach it that way in common core, but that's another story...)

        It's time to reteach the young.

        We are all pupils in the eyes of God.

        by nuclear winter solstice on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 10:06:14 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Hey bro, it's okay (10+ / 0-)

      I've sort of been through your situation. I've always been somewhat of a 2 or so on the Kinsey scale, just enough for me to constantly question myself and always feel abnormal, just enough for others to raise the occasional question about me, but just enough to where I can easily pass as fitting in as fully 'straight'. It really sucks, seeing as how neither side will really accept you, but for rather obvious reasons I've just stayed 'straight' publicly.

      After doing more and more research about it recently, there's a lot of interesting things that (in my view) contribute to what could make you bisexual or not. Being in a lower position in the social hierarchy could be one (Kinsey noted that 50% of working class males were bisexual), as there is no monetary reason to be a good Puritanical American.

      Another would be the relative levels of hormones in your body - I've personally seen my levels and types of attraction change (in both women and men) as I've become more muscular (i.e. more testoserone) and ate less fatty foods (i.e. less estrogen), and correspondingly I'm now less attracted to traditionally 'masculine' features. Maybe you should think about your own body, personality and attraction through that lens.

      Also, being completely fatigued all of the time turned a group of lab rats who, in nature, were 80-20 straight-gay into rats that were perfectly 50-50 bisexual. Maybe that plays a role in your life. Also, there's some evidence to suggest that the higher sexual drive you have, the more you are likely to be completely straight or completely gay. This would explain why they are also the loudest and most confident in our cultural discourse, rather than what may actually be a "silent majority" of relatively bisexual people.

      So you're really not alone whatsoever. Thankfully, I've finally come to terms with this within myself only a couple months ago (after being embattled personally for a good dozen years or so), so I no longer feel an ounce of guilt or shame when I have SS feelings or when I decide to watch gay online porn (yes, it's personal information. But imagine for a couple thousand times over the course of a decade of feeling absolute shame and guilt over your life, and having no idea of why or what to do about it. Hell, it was a form of psychological self-punishment.).

      Anyways, hope this comment helps you or anyone else who may find themselves caught in a No-mans land of identity politics gone mad in making sexuality define who you are. (Or maybe not, I apologize if I offended anyone with this comment, but..)

    •  martianex (11+ / 0-)

      I am glad that you wrote your comment, painful as it is. It is the way that you do reach out and you do make it more possible that someone will know you.

      If someone could crack open our skulls and read what's inside IMO we all would be considered alien. We all are unique, none of us fit the molds that society has built for us.

      My first husband was male on the outside but with functioning female parts inside. He was raised to be a tough, all American male, a choice foisted on him. He did eventually choose to live his life male, but he was never completely comfortable in either world.

      The marriage was a bust, but I never stopped respecting and loving him. He was a good person trying to live in a Barbie and Ken world. I know that he is happy now, at least last I heard, and he is who he is. Individual. Distinct. Him.

      You are who you are. There is great value in that. ♥ hu

      And daddy won't you take me back to Muhlenberg County Down by the Green River where Paradise lay. Well, I'm sorry my son, but you're too late in asking Mister Peabody's coal train has hauled it away. John Prine

      by high uintas on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 10:08:16 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  It's hard for people to grasp bisexuality (22+ / 0-)

    In a way, I understand. I identify as lesbian, but speaking from a strictly sexual place, I'm probably more bi. I can't fall in love with a man but I can fuck one and enjoy it. There are limits to what I can do with a man that I don't have with women. That's why I identify as a lesbian. I can't have LTRs with men.

    I think that most people project their own sexuality onto others and it's more comforting to have clear black and white rules. I often find myself thinking that bi women are just straight women who like to fuck other women on occasion. I know that's not true, but the only way I can relate is through my own experience.

    So, I don't know. I do think that bisexuals need to be more out so that people are able to better relate to them, but I also understand why that's a non-starter for some.

    Either way, I support them. I don't care how people identify sexually. We're strange creatures, all of us, when it comes to sex, and complicated when it comes to love. I may not understand everyone, but my understanding is not required for me to be supportive. Plenty of people don't understand why, after a long day, I look forward to coming home to another woman and doing X rated things with her. That's fine; they don't have to understand in order to support us.

    P.S. I am not a crackpot.

    by BoiseBlue on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 07:56:07 AM PDT

    •  I'm a lot older than you, (5+ / 0-)

      and though I'm straight, I think you may be overcategorizing yourself pre-emptively. It may be that you haven't yet met a man with whom you could have a LTR. The world is full of many varieties of people, and nuances of those varieties. Since you seem to be at least somewhat receptive to multiple varieties of people, you may also be receptive in ways you haven't yet experienced.

      I say this because I have a friend (who's also quite a bit older than you) who is the widow of a 17-year lesbian relationship. She is currently dating only men. Not to mention the committed-for-decades lesbian who married the male mayor of my city.

      "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

      by sidnora on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:44:32 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Well, I'm also not interested in men that way (6+ / 0-)

        I never have been. I'm not saying that it could never happen, but I don't see it happening for me.

        And yes, that certainly does happen. But my gf and I will marry someday and plan on spending the rest of our lives together. I do sometimes joke that if we don't work out I'll go straight because men can't break my heart.

        Could I be in a relation with a man? Sure. Do I want to be? Nope, I never have, and I was terrible to the men that I was in relationships with in the past.

        I also have an older friend who is casually dating men until she finds the right woman. She still identifies as lesbian, but likes having sex and companionship until that happens. I have done something similar in the past, but I identify as a lesbian because my experiences have taught me that there is a very clear difference between my response to a woman and my (lack of) response to a man.

        I know a few men who occasionally like to hook up with other men but they still identify as straight. I don't think this is a conundrum. Sexuality is pretty fluid; pheromones are not.

        P.S. I am not a crackpot.

        by BoiseBlue on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:54:57 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I can agree with everything you've written here. (5+ / 0-)

          And as a rather sentimental sort, I love that you and your gf will marry someday (and the way things are going lately, you could be able to sooner than we may think!)

          BTW, my widowed friend who is dating men specifically wants to marry one. I suspect that your friend who's dating men is more typical in that regard than my friend is.

          "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."........ "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." (yeah, same guy.)

          by sidnora on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 09:09:03 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  I think the most interesting concept(s)... (16+ / 0-)

    ...in the article discussed here is the entire notion that sexual preference is not really a static matter--as much as some might insist that it is/be, especially among Kinsey's "1's" and "6's"--for a much larger portion of the population than many realize or are willing to acknowledge.

    Democrat? Republican? Straight? Gay? Bi?

    People love labels. And, also more often than many are willing to admit, IMHO, those labels sell the public discussion short.

    (NOTE: I incorrectly used the name, "Masters" [instead of "Kinsey"], the first time I posted this comment.)

    "I always thought if you worked hard enough and tried hard enough, things would work out. I was wrong." --Katharine Graham

    by bobswern on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:25:45 AM PDT

  •  I don't get it either, but I know I don't (5+ / 0-)

    how could I? My Indian doesn't "show" and I'm straight and a monogamist (can't help it, born that way). I think we are all "racist". You probably don't look my family (tribe) and I will notice that you don't. Xenophobia is in our damn DNA, how one copes with that is the difference. I wish you lasting love, I think it's the best thing ever, but that's just my kink.

    Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it. Sam Clemens

    by Wood Gas on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 08:40:14 AM PDT

    •  It frustrates me that everyone does seem to (7+ / 0-)

      have a label.  We are not tuna.   We are human beings which should show compassion to other humans.  Accepting people for their character and nothing else.
      Why is this so difficult to understand?
      Sorry for your pain.  I am white not middleaged.. that train left some time ago but I don't understand  the lack of compassion to a fellow human.   The lack of kindness and the constant judgmental status quo.  Judging is above my pay grade and don't think I would emgage because ususally there is sometimes hypocrisy in those who project hate .  Just love one another is what we are supposed to do and each day people with their predjudices keep making that very hard,

      We the People have to make a difference and the Change.....Just do it ! Be part of helping us build a veteran community online. United Veterans of America

      by Vetwife on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 12:15:35 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I'm sorry if someone here posted something (6+ / 0-)

    hurtful. You absolutely don't deserve that.

    As for people who are bi, from what I can see from my friends and family, they date and when it's right, commit to one person deeply. If it doesn't work out, they fall in love with and commit to another. Some get and stay happily married. Some don't.

    In other words, they are exactly the same as my straight and gay friends and family  

    (And my trans friends and family obviously fall all along the spectrum of orientation and relationship-stabilty as well. )

    I didn't happen to read the diary to which you're referring. I'm not sure I should.

    But dang it, I'm sorry that an experience here was hurtful to you.  People need to think more.

    © grover


    So if you get hit by a bus tonight, would you be satisfied with how you spent today, your last day on earth? Live like tomorrow is never guaranteed, because it's not. -- Me.

    by grover on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 09:15:28 AM PDT

  •  That wasn't my take on the other diary. (11+ / 0-)

    You and the other diarist agree on several issues. Bisexuality is misunderstood by both the heterosexual and gay communities. Both have interpreted bisexuality through the lens of their own experiences. A segment of the gay community has viewed bisexuality with skepticism because many gay people have used the label in their own coming out journey. Bisexuals are largely still not out and haven't shared their own experiences for others to achieve a greater understanding.

    IMO, where you and the other diarist differ are the consequences of coming out or staying in the current bisexual closet. While there is a short-term gain for bisexuals to remain in the closet, the only path to progress is to come out of the closet, even if initially more difficult, build a stronger B community, push for greater representation in the LGBT community and counter misunderstanding with a public voice.  

    What about the climate cliff?

    by wayoutinthestix on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 09:24:14 AM PDT

  •  Woah. So I don't know what caused this (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kfunk937, davidincleveland

    And I don't do pie fights, but I will say that everything you write here jives with what life has taught me.

    Good look, good luck, and holler at your boy.

    When we talk about war, we're really talking about peace.

    by genethefiend on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 09:26:04 AM PDT

  •  Dominance And Power Structures (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    marina, ozsea1, davidincleveland

    I think any group is going to violently reject anyone that thinks they can ignore its pecking order.  A gay man violates the male power  hierarchy, but he still ends up playing by a strict sets of rules among his gay peers. A bisexual is someone that can tell anyone "I'm going to take my ball and go home," and that is not acceptable to any group.

    Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

    by bernardpliers on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 09:40:47 AM PDT

  •  The backstory, explained by the writer all this (10+ / 0-)

    is aimed at, because I'm responsible. I wrote a diary called The Science of Bisexuality based on an article by Benoit Denizet- Lewis from the New York Times, The Scientific Quest to Prove Bisexuality Exists. When I read the article it seemed to me that the bisexual people who were interviewed repeated all the whining about how mean gay men were to them. IF you have followed the comment threads in diaries that do that here, you'll see I do some pushing back against the "mean gay men" meme in those. I did a lot of that in this diary, too. That's problem #1.

    Problem #2 is about the closet. The writer of this diary things the gay closet and the bi closet are different and that gay people are responsible for the bi closet. I don't agree with that. I think that it's the same closet because the effects of that closet are the same.

    As you all know, I'm a VERY careful writer so I'm not planning to apologize for anything I wrote because I did not misstate anything. If you want to keep beating up on me by recommending this, fine

    •  my recommendation of this diary (8+ / 0-)

      is not intended as beating up on you for your diary, which I also recommended.

      Gondwana has always been at war with Laurasia.

      by AaronInSanDiego on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 10:28:03 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I actually didn't read your diary. (6+ / 0-)

      I didn't jump into this for the meta, but because I'm bi, and poly, and it's rare for anybody to talk about us, particularly in a supportive way.

      Like I said elsewhere, I respect you. My participation in this diary shouldn't be taken as a blow in some kind of Great Orange Fight.

      Sure once I was young and impulsive, I wore every conceivable pin. Even went to socialist meetings, learned all the old union hymns. Ah, but I've grown older and wiser. And that's why I'm turning you in. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u52Oz-54VYw

      by SouthernLiberalinMD on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 10:58:28 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Agree. A closet is a closet is a closet. /nt (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dave in Northridge, caul

      "How can we know the dancer from the dance?" (Yeats)

      by Remediator on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 11:08:09 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I do not intend to "beat up on you" Dave (8+ / 0-)

      But I've decided to rec this for the discussion. I hadn't seen your diary, I wasn't online yesterday and missed all this until I saw this one on the rec list this morning. I was curious what it was about, so I thank you for posting a link to your diary, which I read and have just left a comment in a thread there. But I think I missed most of the discussion there so I'm going to paste that comment here too.

      I am not asking you to apologize, either. If I ask anything it would be only to listen to experiences that differ from your own and think about it from another perspective. I was triggered and annoyed when I wrote this, but I'm going to resist the urge to edit it now.

      This was in response in a thread on married men who have sex with men or fantasize about certain sex acts, and someone declaring that such a man is not 'straight' no matter what he thinks about his own identity.

      ...

      People who issue identify labels to others based on certain "defining behaviors" rather than what that individual feels about his (or her) own life and what they feel is most accurate for their identity. This is very common.

      How it often works is like this:

      married man, desiring some kind of sexual experience with men: "I think I might be gay. Possibly bi. I don't know. I love my wife and my family. I want to be with them. I also want a dick in my ass sometimes, and I love to suck cock (or imagining doing so), and I just can't stop thinking about that. What am I? Gay or bisexual? I could be a straight man who happens to enjoy a certain "kink" ok. That doesn't make me gay. I'm still straight. Maybe bi. I don't know."

      wife, and anyone else who finds out he likes to have sex of any kind with men: He's GAY! Run for you life!"

      gay men in the "community" he comes out to as questioning or possibly bisexual: "You're gay. Get over it. Your marriage is a farce and it's over. Oh and you're a coward if you don't "admit" you are gay and stop with the bisexual nonsense."

      Most women he tries to date: "You think you're bisexual? Thanks but no thanks! Ick."

      Men he tries to date: "You think you're bisexual? Thanks but no thanks! Ick."

      Destination: Pick a side! Make a decision! BE one or the other, this "both" shit won't fly with anyone.

      Where they go from here depends on many factors. Lots come out as gay, and reinforce the stereotype that bisexuality was never real. Belonging is so much easier and more comfortable.
      Some go back to being "straight" and either try to keep a lid on their "gay side" or act in in secret and hope they never get caught.

      Some few will have the strength of character and determination to stick with bisexual as an identity label, and "come out" over and over again, and get rejected over and over again, and get judged over and over again, but eventually build a small and closed circle of community.

      We find the most acceptance and have built lasting friendships with people we can be open with in a small bisexual community but mostly from within in the polyamorous community and within the larger "kink" communities, because those folks are much more open minded to people just being themselves, loving who they love, living how they live, and doing what they enjoy with consent and honesty. This is a TINY minority of people.

      The so-called "LGBT community" is not where bisexuals can find acceptance, support, or a sense of belonging. Fuck that, we still have people in that community debating if we exist or not! And granting us their blessings to do so... "Ok, you exist." Gee, thanks!!! I wonder why more bisexuals do not come out and be proud in the gay community? Sigh.

      Yes it should be clear I am speaking from very personal experience as well. I am still happily married to my bisexual husband, 17 years after he came out, first to himself then me then slowly to some select others. We have been through every phase, and I spent more than 10 years very active in bi support groups, spouse and partner support groups, and the "LGBT community" figuring out what I am and what my husband is and what these labels mean, or don't mean. I have a lot to say on this subject -- although I usually do not anymore. These debates eventually got old and we moved on. Now we just live our lives, with those select few who know us, and our personal life is not the business of the world at large.

      Demanding we "come out" in order to "gain acceptance" is a joke. All it means is bringing judgment down on your head from almost all quarters. You do find out who your friends are though. And it's been an extremely interesting life!

    •  Contrary... (5+ / 0-)

      to feeling beat up, think about the dialogue that began from your diary.

      taking a step back from the high emotions felt by many, I see so many positives coming from both diaries.  Really.

      All the suffering of this world arises from a wrong attitude.The world is neither good or bad. It is only the relation to our ego that makes it seem the one or the other - Lama Anagorika Govinda

      by kishik on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 01:10:54 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I'm sorry for this David (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    davidincleveland, oceanview

    I truly am, no one should deny who someone is.

    And daddy won't you take me back to Muhlenberg County Down by the Green River where Paradise lay. Well, I'm sorry my son, but you're too late in asking Mister Peabody's coal train has hauled it away. John Prine

    by high uintas on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 10:09:51 AM PDT

  •  Wow, thanks, David. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Brown Thrasher, davidincleveland

    I don't usually expect any support for this issue.

    As I'm not only a bisexual, but a polyamorous bisexual, I've had no hope of "fitting in" most places for a long, long time, especially in this era of "Marriage is great! (and everything else kinda sucks and we're not going to talk about it anymore)."

    Sure once I was young and impulsive, I wore every conceivable pin. Even went to socialist meetings, learned all the old union hymns. Ah, but I've grown older and wiser. And that's why I'm turning you in. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u52Oz-54VYw

    by SouthernLiberalinMD on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 10:22:23 AM PDT

  •  I'll post a very slightly modified version (14+ / 0-)

    of the comment I just left int he other diary.

    I am a Kinsey 3. I am absolutely, equilaterally bisexual. I appreciate this diary and the issues it raises. I share your concerns in general and respect the voice you have given to this issue. Thank you. And now the largely verbatim comment I left at the other diary because, well, it sums up my feeling on the issue.

    ---

    I am not particularly interested in the political dynamics of this issue. I get the concerned expressed about the closet and how everyone being open would be an enhanced solidarity on the issue of sexual orientation and sexual identity. The truth is I don't give enough of a shit about what other people think of me on any side of any issue to really fight that fight.

    OTOH, I have plenty of experience with gay men being hostile toward my bisexuality for whatever reason, and I have spent some time end energy as a younger person trying to fight that battle and dispel all those stereotypical assumptions and preconceptions. Then I realized that not only did I not owe anyone an explanation but that I had paid my dies in full as part of the gay community for my life since sexual maturity and that anyone who had a an issue with my preferences could go fuck themselves.

    The other diary (meaning this one here ) that is responding to the comments here is valid and worth reading for anyone interested in the issue. I don't see either/or so to me both of these diaries are a service to the community in that they discuss the point at all, let alone delve deeper.

    I would just say to everyone with strong or fixed opinions about the sex lives of others: as a wholly bisexual man in an opposite sex long term (25 year) relationship/marriage that if you have some notions about what does or doesn't make someone else gay/straight/whatever the answer is you are almost certainly wrong. Unless they tell you what they are. Then they are what they say they are and if you don't like it, find something else to do with your time...

    •  I guess the problem has been that for years (3+ / 0-)

      we could "pass" (not like that's any picnic, really) and get the benefits of marriage (such as they are, they never appealed to me, frankly) while still having sex with same-sex partners.

      But we are what we are, dammit; and it's not like we invented these crap cultural formulations.

      I could understand the L and G parts of the LGBT community asking for solidarity from the bisexual part of the community  on the question of legal marriage:  i.e., don't get legally married b/c marriage is a legally segregated institution that excludes your lesbian and gay sisters and brothers. Happily, nowadays that is not nearly so necessary.

      But a general disdain for/distrust of bisexuals, social pressures applied and potshots taken, seems just plain destructive and indicative of the kind of conformism that often arises in embattled groups.

      Sure once I was young and impulsive, I wore every conceivable pin. Even went to socialist meetings, learned all the old union hymns. Ah, but I've grown older and wiser. And that's why I'm turning you in. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u52Oz-54VYw

      by SouthernLiberalinMD on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 11:05:18 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Clearly those are all issues in this "argument" (4+ / 0-)

        But we are what we are, dammit pretty much sums it up for me. After all this time I just do not care enough about what others think of me to fight the battle anymore.

        People who generally disdain and distrust bisexuals are weak inside of their own selves. That is their problem, not mine. And you are right, it is destructive. And they should find more constructive outlets for their own frustrations.

        •  You sound like this has been a long road for you. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          bastrop, davidincleveland

          Sure once I was young and impulsive, I wore every conceivable pin. Even went to socialist meetings, learned all the old union hymns. Ah, but I've grown older and wiser. And that's why I'm turning you in. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u52Oz-54VYw

          by SouthernLiberalinMD on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 11:53:13 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Not particularly. Not compared to others (6+ / 0-)

            who don't have the luxury of a 25 year stable marriage without denial, having literally grown up in the gay community, with a family who is accepting of sexuality, married across racial lines and living as an adult equally in the black community, with a stable income and a lot of friends and a good career and a top notch education.

            I have zero complaints.

            I also recognize that all of this privileges me to be able to say fuck it, I quit the discussion. Because it doesn't impact me the way it does most people. I am very lucky, and I know it.

            OTOH my irritation and frustration is largely for others, and I will always come to bat for the bisexual community, precisely because most people don't have the luxury of not caring what other people think.

            •  Oh, I see. (3+ / 0-)

              Wow. You are lucky!

              Thanks for, well, continuing to be irritated. :-)

              Sure once I was young and impulsive, I wore every conceivable pin. Even went to socialist meetings, learned all the old union hymns. Ah, but I've grown older and wiser. And that's why I'm turning you in. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u52Oz-54VYw

              by SouthernLiberalinMD on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 12:09:45 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Thing is, I started to back away from the (6+ / 0-)

                conversation a number of years ago when I realized so many of the gay people I knew were so bigoted toward bisexuals (as well as being racial bigots, grrrr) and made the observation that everything I had been saying over the years had gone in one ear and out the other. I still like these people a lot, they were my community, and I wan't having any impact so I gave up. I don't have time to police the opinions of others.

                For me it was "Well, you are different. We believe YOU are bisexual, but most other guys, blah blah closet blah, really gay blah, in denial blah…hey, wanna sleep with me my boyfriend is out of town." Hypocrisy. Ignorance. Arrogance. Forgetting from whence they came.

                Fuck that noise.

  •  Considering the statistics (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    davidincleveland, puzzled

    on hetero divorce, sexual assault and spouse abuse, I'd say we're looking at the last demographic with any right to pass judgement on the journeys of 'others' seeking happiness and fulfillment where — and with whom — they find it.

  •  as a biracial man myself (black/white) (7+ / 0-)

    you are spot-on.  Be white or be black, you can't be any hybrid of both or else you aren't being "true" to some part of you.

    As all biracial kids did, I got it from both sides growing up in the 70s and 80s, and I can only imagine the double shot of being bi-racial and bi-sexual, it must be a four to one kind of thing.

    It just boils down to the fact that, unfortunately, Us v. Them is a human trait that spans races, genders, sexuality, states, countries, what have you.

    It is changing, too slowly, but it is changing...maybe by Star Trek times.

  •  The writer whose diary you reference, (4+ / 0-)

    in the opinion of this DKos reader, does get it.  

    On any number of subjects, as it happens.  Current and past.  

    You write:

    The 3 out of 4 bisexuals who stay in that closet do so because otherwise they'd be committing suicide at a higher rate than gay men and lesbians, and that's largely due to the attitudes and treatment they receive from gay men and lesbians.
    I'm sorry, I flatly disagree with that claim.  I have never seen clinical foundation for predictive rates of suicide among bisexuals attributable to mistreatment by gay men or lesbians.  

    I don't expect to, either.  

    "How can we know the dancer from the dance?" (Yeats)

    by Remediator on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 11:15:17 AM PDT

  •  I'm a bisexual woman (4+ / 0-)

    though I definitely lean towards women physically and almost exclusively towards women emotionally - the odds of me one day marrying a man instead of a woman are like 0.00001%, but the possibility does exist.

    The thing that has always struck me, and makes me wonder if there is some misogyny at the heart of biphobia, is that it's always the relationships with women who are dismissed. A bisexual man is "really" gay; a bisexual woman is "really" straight.

    It makes me especially sad when a lesbian expresses biphobia, because she's dismissing her own gender as somehow unworthy or lesser or whatever - she's basically saying that if a woman's sexuality affords her the choice between a man and a woman, she's always going to go for the man. It "makes sense" socially and financially and so forth (it also appears that it's always that sort of coldblooded decision and nothing to do with emotions or intensity of sexual attraction!).

    What I like to ask such lesbians is, would you change your sexual orientation to straight if you could? Yes, being a woman who likes women opens me up to prejudice and discrimination. But guess what? I don't give a flying fuck about my life being easier. I am who I am - I'm also an atheist, another oft-despised minority, and wouldn't change that either - and I will be with who I want to be with, not who will make my life socially easier. That's a woman, for the record. But at the same time, I will not deny that I do feel physically attraction sometimes towards men. Monogamy is not something that's difficult for me though. I don't cheat, but I know lesbians who have. I just don't understand why we can't just all accept each other for who we are...I mean, I do know the typical reasons, but it's just sad.

  •  If there's an imaginable niche, someone will (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    oceanview, blueoasis, greenotron

    fit it. What's there to think about? Straight, Gay, Bi, TS/TG, you name it, someone is into it. Saint, serial killer, genius, idiot. And most of the people were born that way, or their environment amplified traits that had a strong inherited preponderance. After all, as improbable as it seems, 1/3 of the country are Republicans. I avoid people who want to lay their trip on me, e.g. Republicans and serial killers, but outside of that, I don't care and try to mind my own business.

    "You can die for Freedom, you just can't exercise it"

    by shmuelman on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 12:04:35 PM PDT

  •  thank you (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    grover, svboston, davidincleveland

    elipsii: helping the masses express aposiopesis for...

    by bnasley on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 12:08:27 PM PDT

  •  When I was single (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    orestes1963, TiaRachel

    I never quizzed the guys I fucked as to if they were gay or bi or whatever.  I even had a three-month long sexual relationship with a guy who insisted he was straight...hey, whatever floats yer boat man.  I was getting what I wanted and so was he.

    I understood the antipathy many of my fellows felt at closeted bi guys who were "slumming" amongst the gays to get their kicks then going back to their safe "straight" lives, but there were plenty of gay guys doing the same thing from the closet.  

    There is no need to attack those people, they are already attacking themselves.  Hiding in the closet is never a happy life.  So now about that closet...the diarist says:

    So lets talk about the bisexual closet, the one with doors to two different rooms. The 3 out of 4 bisexuals who stay in that closet do so because otherwise they'd be committing suicide at a higher rate than gay men and lesbians, and that's largely due to the attitudes and treatment they receive from gay men and lesbians.
    I reject this utterly.  Yes, coming out is difficult, any gay person can tell you that.  Yes, it is different for bisexuals because they will be getting shit from straight and some gay people but to lay it all at the feet of gays is absurd.  The problem is the patriarchal-hetero culture that is quick to label bi males as gay and push them away, and bi women as fetish objects for straight male pleasure and try to pull them in.  It is all about the hangups of straight men since they set the cultural tone we all struggle with and/or against.
    •  I think your rejection is not quite correct (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      churchylafemme, davidincleveland

      Coming out to the world about your sexuality is a very tough thing even today.

      For someone who is totally gay, in almost every place in this country there is at least some sort of gay or lesbian community (even if it is just a single bar) that you can find to be with others like yourself and to have a sense of community.

      It isn't right and I can only speak for the male gay communities I've seen over a long lifetime, but they are very suspicious and demeaning towards bi-sexual males.

      So yes, I can see where it would suck to be a bi-sexual without any community that really accepts you.   Depending on the strength of your same sex attractiveness, I can understand why a bi-sexual would prefer just to stay in the closet forever and just use gay porn or the occasional "night out" to deal with it and never really coming to terms with it or accepting yourself for who you are.

      I always chuckle when I hear someone proclaiming that being gay is a "life-style choice" since it totally outs them as a bi-sexual individual and the folks that spew this stuff are usually the most anti-gay haters out there.

      It is a shame we all just cannot accept others for who they are rather than what color their skin is, who they pray to (or don't), who they like to sleep with or what gender they identify with.   What the hell does it all matter?   Love each other and if you want to judge someone, judge them on how they treat others.

      Celebrate diversity!   The world would be so boring if we were all the same.

  •  You were born black? (4+ / 0-)

    Wow. I had no idea about the suicide rate. Here it is 2000 something, and we have American christians actively pushing for laws in Africa to kill gays.

    I do support freedom of religion, although with limitations. More powerfully, I support freedom from religion. That conservative religious outlook and pursuit of control is at the very bottom of the sexual idiocy that still affects our society.

    What we call god is merely a living creature with superior technology & understanding. If their fragile egos demand prayer, they lose that superiority.

    by agnostic on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 12:45:48 PM PDT

  •  This diary is a model of how to respond (7+ / 0-)

    Aside from being an great diary in its own right, this diary is a model for how our community should handle disagreement.

    Davidincleveland does not call anyone out specifically, or even focus on what mad him so mad.  He does not denounce those who were of a different view or impugn their motives, intelligence or sincerity.  Rather he simply sets forth a sincere and articulate diary attempting to help others understand his point of view and the ideas which naturally flow from it.

    Disagreement at this site should be productive - an opportunity to further explore ideas and educate ourselves.  It doesn't have to always descend into bitterness, divisiveness and grudges.

    Thanks Davidincleveland for showing us how it's done.

    We may have democracy, or we may have wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both. - Former Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis

    by RageKage on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:01:37 PM PDT

  •  I'm sorry I missed that "OTHER" diary ... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    davidincleveland

    though truth be told, I've probably heard it all before, and wouldn't have liked it any better.

    Just for what it's worth: I was never happy about the tendency of "Community" support groups to put good reliable Kinsey 6's in charge of Bisexual discussion and coming out Meetings.

    But ... the good news ... I observe that the "Elders" of our "Tribe" have started to represent the "T" component of the Base from a Trans point of view, rather than using them as another nowhere-else-to-go constituency with which to gain media access.  (Not that the male and hetero-dominated Erickson Foundation was such a gift and blessing to the Transgendered.)  

  •  People are as people are. n/t (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    davidincleveland, oceanview

    Pope Francis: the Thumb of Christ in the eyes of the Pharisees.

    by commonmass on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:48:32 PM PDT

  •  Sexuality, sexual orienteation is very fluid. (3+ / 0-)

    I'm an out gay man, but it's still fluid. Who can say whom you'll be attracted to?

    Pope Francis: the Thumb of Christ in the eyes of the Pharisees.

    by commonmass on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 02:56:46 PM PDT

  •  thank you for giving bisexuals a positive (4+ / 0-)

    support diary. I'm a straight, white woman who has a few bisexual, ethnically mixed friends. My heart weeps for the struggles they have had to endure not only from their families but within the straight and gay communities. It is my belief that you can't choose who you love or even who you are attracted to. Let's me be honest, I would totally sleep with Angelina Jolie if the opportunity presented itself and i don't know too many women who would pass at her either. But for an individual that finds love (or lust) amongst all types of people, we should encourage that rather than make a person feel ashamed. If that person finds happiness, that is the goal isn't it?

    Earth: Mostly harmless ~ The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (revised entry)

    by yawnimawke on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 03:17:05 PM PDT

  •  we're all being screwed by the 1% (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Pale Jenova

    and let's be open about this- it's not consensual.

    That's where I start drawing lines.

  •  I disagree (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Remediator, wayoutinthestix

    If the gay rights movement has taught us one thing it is that being out is a necessary component of attaining one's rights.  It is for this reason that I find the excuses for bisexuals remaining in the closet problematic.  I also find the willingness of bisexuals (and the diarist) to scapegoat the gay and lesbian community offensive.  Why is it that bisexuals spend more time complaining about their treatment within the gay community than they do about straight counterparts?  I would argue it is because bisexuals fear their loss of heterosexual privilege.  

    The solution to this problem is for bisexuals to come out and to form their own community support systems.  Time and effort is better spent on this endeavor than on blaming gays and lesbians.  

  •  Didn't see the other post,... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    davidincleveland

    ..but I can tell you all about that bisexual closet.  Two doors it does indeed have.  

    I'm not always political, but when I am I vote Democratic. Stay Democratic, my friends. -The Most Interesting Man in the World

    by boran2 on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 05:16:12 PM PDT

  •  When you said "Kinsey scale" I got it mixed up (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    davidincleveland

    with the character "Kenzi" from Lost Girl.

    I guess we know where Bo lands on the Kinsey scale . . .

    And God said, "Let there be light"; and with a Big Bang, there was light. And God said "Ow! Ow My eyes!" and in a flash God separated light from darkness. "Whew! Now that's better. Now where was I. Oh yea . . ."

    by Pale Jenova on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 06:55:43 PM PDT

  •  I participated in the other diary (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    davidincleveland, Back In Blue

    without making any comments about what I thought was the petty tone of the diary. Since I have had runins with the diarist on the same topic before I saw no point in flames, but I can certainly understand your reaction.

    I am a 71 year old gay man who has seen a lot of progress. I don't think that progress will be made by trying to shove everybody into tidy little boxes that serve some specific political agenda of the moment.

  •  Wow. This diary got this straight woman thinking. (3+ / 0-)

    (Missed the other diary, but I thing I've got the gist.)

    For me, my heart has never gone pitter pat for another woman. BUT, at the same time, I don't find the idea of sex with another woman repulsive.

    The way I see it, the human body has "buttons" that respond sexually, and if you're not hung up on who pushes those buttons, you'll get aroused.

    I think the spectrum of human sexuality is a lot larger than the culture can afford to admit.

    For me, I just know that whatever may be acceptable to me sexually, I just don't want to live with another woman as a partner.  And I LOVE women and my female friends. But I need the emotional contrast a straight man provides.

    So in the end, I don't think it's all that much about sex at all. I think it's about which gender we feel most comfortable with living with, day in, day out.

    I am aware that many dismiss the idea of being BI---want to say hey bub or bubette, CHOOSE. This is unfortunate to some extent, but the truth is, if we want a long and committed relationship, that is exactly what we must do.

    If that is not the goal, then experimentation and its ensuing pleasures and disappointments should be up to each and every individual.

    Still, I feel better informed for having read this diary, to know the struggles of those who have crossed cultural lines in all ways, and found pleasure in both genders, only to find themselves a minority few want to talk about.

    "A typical vice of American politics is the avoidance of saying anything real on real issues." Theodore Roosevelt.

    by StellaRay on Sun Mar 30, 2014 at 07:21:39 PM PDT

  •  When I hear people say that bisexuals (12+ / 0-)

    Don't come out of the closet because they just don't want to lose their straight privilege, I think we have a long way to go, but I am glad we are having this discussion.

    I can't speak for bisexual men, being female, but it has been my experience that bisexual women, in the larger society, rather than being seen as a particular orientation, are simply seen as hyper sexual, uncontrollable, troubled and untrustworthy sluts acting out who must be shunned by women and deserve violence from men.

    So telling people they must come out of the closet when they will be in even more danger of not just being emotionally hurt, not that that is a small thing, but also, at risk of violence? You come out of the closet and if there is a rapist in your social group, he believes it is an invitation.

    It is not unethical to lie by omission to an abuser, or to refuse to sexualize oneself in public, as bisexual women are seen as flagrantly provocative.

    I cant imagine a world in which female bisexuals were seen as having sexual integrity and deserving safety and respect.

     I make my choices about what is right and wrong for me to do and talk about myself based first of all on survival, then ethics. Politics, while personal, is a little further down on the list.

    •  Great comment Lonely Texan (5+ / 0-)

      Well said, and you make some very important points.

      The whole idea that bisexual people have to come out is ridiculous, and the fantasy that if only they did, it would lead to acceptance and understanding, is ridiculous. The comments and the discussion here do remind me of what it was like, back when my husband and I used to do that with some people from outside our small, chosen community of friends who know everything. What it leads to is judgment, personal questions, raised eyebrows and whispers, assumptions and expectations and all kinds of bullshit. As a woman who is both bisexual and married to a bisexual man, in an open relationship, please let me explain my life in great detail to everyone I meet and expect them to understand and accept and respect it!!! What can I say except HA HA HA HAHA HAHA HAHA HAHA HAHA HAHA HAHA HAHA HAHA HAHA HAHA HA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      And, no. Not going to happen. Been there, tried that, know better. Some people can sit atop their high horses and declare "what bisexual people need to do is come out" and squawk about het privilege, they are clueless. And forget that there as just as many if not more bisexual people who identify as gay or lesbian and live in the gay community as "openly gay" -- while they sneak into bisexual support groups in the evening to talk about their secret and scary attraction to someone they are "not supposed to feel that way about" -- and how often coming out as bi costs them their entire gay support system and friends.

      I knew a woman who was a teacher, member of GLSEN (That's they Gay, Lesbian and Straight Educator's Network -- note who is not included!) who had been an out lesbian for years. Then she fell in love with a man. Over the next few years she eventually came out to her circle of friends about her relationship with him, and her bisexual identity. She was completely shunned, her lesbian friends were at best distant and at worst called her a traitor. It was all incredibly sad. But her feelings were what they were and she changed her life. It was painful and cost her a lot to be open, but she did it.

      Searching for a new community and friends as a bisexual person is very difficult and indeed, lonely at times. It is no wonder to me at all that many bi people do not choose to be open and out about it. What amazes me is those who do it, and have the patience and stamina to keep doing it. I think a lot of us go out for awhile then realize it's extremely cold out there so we go back in for the most part, but usually in my experience with a somewhat larger closet and some friends in there with you. That makes it more comfortable and safer in every way than trying to be out in the world at large. Gay people as well as straight people who think otherwise really do not get it.

      •  Really? (0+ / 0-)

        I am surprised at the prevalence of this attitude among bisexuals.  To assert that it is a fantasy that being out would lead to greater acceptance is belied by the correlation between increased G&L visibility and our increased acceptance.  

        It's also confounding that you would complain about the loneliness of being bisexual when you reject the very notion of being open about their sexual orientation.  How do you expect to find others if one adopts your view?  You've boxed yourself into a pretty unpleasant corner.  What I don't understand is why one would find such a position a tenable life choice.  

        •  If you cared to understand, try listening more (3+ / 0-)

          and judging less.

          •  What defensive tripe (0+ / 0-)

            but i get the point.  You've got no response, so shut up is the only option.  Sorry, it doesn't float with those of us with a working brain.

            •  I've got no response? Can you even readl? (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Lonely Texan

              I have posted lengthy, detailed comments that fully explain my personal background, personal experiences, and knowledge gained from more than 10 years of active involvement with bisexual groups and people and the so-called "LGBT community" and you have complete failed to hear a single word.

              PLEASE do explain how my friend, who I wrote about just above, an out lesbian for most of her life, who came out as bi and was shunned by her entire lesbian community and 'friends' was benefiting from "het priviledge' while she was identified as a lesbian, and tell me more about how when she came out and lost her entire support system, that helped her feel more accepted. I can't wait for your answer.

            •  Wow. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              CS in AZ

              Are you a bisexual female? If not, then, some privilege may need some checking.

              So, the larger society adapts over time in response to out folks, and that is truly wonderful. But whether or not someone chooses to share private info with people close to them, or the entire world is up to them. The world is not a safe place for many people.

              It isn't a matter of intelligence to know when one is safe or unsafe.

      •  This is a great comment also, CS in AZ (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        CS in AZ

        Thank you. It is sad that people coming out as bi lose their queer community also so often.

        It is funny. Years ago, I just decided it was a non-issue, since so few understood. So just like I don't go around telling everyone i meet about my status as a survivor or my preference for arugula, I don't feel that it is important to front and center my private feelings about love and sex either. It seemed that when I used to do so, it was like wearing a sign in my forehead that said "rapeable".

        Whoever doesn't get that is a big deal, well, they've lost my attention.

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