Friday, 14 December 2012

Being C of E this week: same-sex marriage

This blog post follows the news that the UK will be legalising same-sex marriage with a quadruple lock to protect religious freedom.

I understand that the provision about the Church of England in the newly proposed legislation for same-sex marriage is a legal thing to do with Church of England canon law not being in conflict with common law. It makes sense, legally, when you read about the details.

The major problem for me is the truly idiotic stance of the CofE against same-sex marriage in the first place, never mind this hoo-hah about their own caveat in the law.

The true meaning of marriage is committing yourself to the one person you love and will share your life with, plain and simple. It is a social declaration of this commitment, and a legal contract that binds you to them in the eyes of the law - whilst still an individual, you are half of an intrinsically interconnected whole.

It is complete bollocks that marriage is anything to do with the "complementarity" of the "distinctiveness of men and women" (as the official line of the CofE goes). Bollocks! Just because straight people are the majority, and so the concept of a social contract started with them does not mean the man/woman element is intrinsic to what marriage is in society!

I just don't understand this official view of my church. The people who think this in the CofE must not have much interaction with society and the world around them, because they are simply behind the times - society does not consider marriage to be what the CofE considers it to be.

The Government's response to the consultation has it right - "At its heart, marriage is about two people who love each other making a formal commitment to  each other. We do not believe that this commitment is any different whether it is made by a same-sex couple or an opposite sex couple. We believe that by allowing same-sex couples to get married we are further strengthening the institution of marriage." As a bisexual, I can wholeheartedly standby the assertion that the commitment is not different whether your partner is the same or opposite sex!

We Anglicans are not Catholics, who believe that marriage is "based on “the biological complementarity of male and female and on the possibility of children”", and it is disturbing that we seem to be anywhere near this line of antiquated thinking. It is unreasonable to not realise that Christianity has no grounds on which to be against same-sex marriage, and the church is falling behind society by hanging on the views on marriage that the people of this country have left behind them. And I'm disappointed in me church.

The Archbishop of Wales: "What can the church do to show that this relationship is not simply something between my partner and I but that somehow God is in our midst as well and longs for our wellbeing?"

The official view doesn't make sense, it does not reflect what society and many CofE Christians think, and it breaks my heart. Come on now, my dear Church of England. Open your eyes.

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Quotes from N. Frank: Is Homosexuality a Sin?

"The Bible, both the Old and New Testaments, actually contains two different kinds of sin. One is an act considered morally wrong because it's hurtful or dangerous. This includes obvious violations of the social contract, such as murder and theft, as well as sentiments that are discouraged because they can lead to unfairness or harm: greed, envy, idleness and arrogance. It also includes violations of more minor rules that can seem like mere rituals but which evolved to keep a population safe or healthy from perceived dangers, such as rules about diet and sanitation.
The second kind of sin is a violation against social conventions. This is where the word "moral" comes from, as in "social mores." These refer to practices and beliefs widely shared by your community, but which are not intrinsically beneficial or harmful. These mores exist as a way to bind the community together, often in opposition to another group.
Which kind of sin is homosexuality, according to the Bible? Certainly in an era of tribal rivalries and high infant mortality, procreative sex was encouraged as necessary to population growth, making alternatives potentially harmful to group survival. This, at least, is a popular explanation of how both masturbation and homosexuality became taboo in biblical times and would place them in the moral category of intrinsic harm.
what becomes clear from actually reading the Bible on homosexuality is that the anti-gay taboo is, above all, a badge of team membership -- of a piece with opposition to outsiders and nonbelievers. Leviticus appears to condemn same-sex desire unequivocally, forbidding "lying with a man" as an "abomination." But the word normally translated as "abomination" is more properly understood as simply "taboo" -- something forbidden by custom, largely because it's associated with other groups. Indeed, the literal meaning of "taboo" is "set apart."
The Old Testament taboo against homosexuality appears in a passage that's all about the duty of Jews to honor and obey God, meant to set them apart from pagans. It begins with God telling the Israelites to worship only him and follow only his rules and not those of the whacky Egyptians and Canaanites just because they may pass through their lands. In other words, when in Rome, do notas the Romans do, or you'll mark yourself as a member of the wrong team. The so-called "abomination" really denotes a non-Israelite cultic practice, like the worship of foreign idols. It's an act that the Israelites were forbidden from doing because others did it, not because it was intrinsically bad.
Like the Hebrew scriptures, the New Testament appears to condemn homosexuality in no uncertain terms, most notably in Paul's letter to the Romans, which bemoans men who relinquish their natural function and "burn in their lust" for each other. But it turns out that this desire is not so much the cause of harm but the punishment for a much greater violation: denying God. "Even though they knew God, they did not honor him," writes Paul. "Therefore, God gave them over" to such desires -- along with a long list of others. Like the Jews, Christians threw homosexuality into a bucket of no-nos (along with gossip, insolence and apostasy) to solidify their team membership against nonbelievers and outsiders.
Looked at in proper context, the biblical taboo against same-sex desire was a product of one key fact: that foreigners and apostates practiced it. That fact, above all else, appears to be what made it unacceptable, more than anything intrinsic to same-sex acts, such as their association with depopulation."

Thursday, 29 November 2012

A Flirt speaks

Recently, I've been assistant stage manager on a show at college in London. The show ran a week of performances and then closed. I've been working on it since the beginning of rehearsals, and so have gotten to know the 25-strong mixed cast rather well.

Part of the course I'm on involves regular meetings with tutors to discuss how the allocation is going, and because of this self-evaluation (we are encouraged to record 'learning logs') I have realised just how much I flirt. With pretty much everyone.

And today, as I was contemplating my bisexuality after reading an article on HuffPost Gay Voices ( these two thoughts collided and I hit upon the question - am I A Flirt because I am bisexual?

My first reaction was horror at my own stereotyping and prejudice. One should not make generalisations about a group of people based on the actions of one member. My second was of sadness, that the biphobia in society is so wide-spread that even bisexuals themselves are vulnerable to believing it.

And my third was to reconsider my idea again, and find some merit in it, though not in a way to come to the conclusion that because someone is bisexual, they must be flirtatious (or because someone is flirtatious, they must be bisexual), but in a way that sees a link between the two in me as an individual.

I do think that being bisexual has influenced my flirting practices. It affects who I flirt with - both men and women. But here's the thing - I flirt not just with people in whom I'm interested, but people I'm not so interested in too. I came to a conundrum when I realised that though I have been flirting with many of the cast in the show, I found it hard to actually know which of them I was truly attracted to. Having a wider pool of possible attractions has triggered a larger number of targets for flirting with subconsciously, leading to many working relationships that involve flirting.

I don't think the quantity of people I flirt with affects the quality of the flirting, but I do think it clouds my ability to know how I feel about the individuals I flirt with. I do not know if I prefer the tall man with a temper, the svelte man with a fondness for tickling, the girl who elicits a sigh of longing from me every time I see her, the girl with big brown eyes and a tender smile, the muscular gentleman with a heart-melting Celtic accent, the cute musical girl, or the young charmer with secrets.

I flirt with all of them, and get a mix of responses, and it's fun, because any one of them is potential love interest to me, because I'm bisexual. You see? My bisexuality influences how I interact with people because they're all possible girl/boyfriends to me! How's that for a bit of psychoanalysis?

But of course it is not just my bisexuality that is to blame, far from it. I am self-confident, loud, provocative, obsessed with romance, and fixated on finding love. I flirt because I can, and it's entertaining, and other people enjoy it. So I am A Flirt for many reasons, being bi being one of them. It's neither good or bad. It's got pros and cons.

Overall it just makes me grin as yet again I revel in the fun of being bi.

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Being myself: a bisexual video

Now you have a choice. You can either watch the highlights version, or the 16 minute version, of this video in which I answer research questions about my bisexuality.

It's frank, and personal, and sometimes a little fun; really, it's just me talking at a camera, but I wanted to share it on this blog because this blog is a journal, and that means it's a record of of news and events of a personal nature, implying progress, and updates, and honesty.

I know I haven't been writing particularly frequently recently, but less has been happening on the bisexual front in my life. I'm looking for some white ribbon so I can pin a knot to myself (, my co-founder of my college LGBT+ Society has bowed out of responsibility due to feeling overworked so I'm doing it solo and next week hope to put up posters, I've been having some great conversations in the comments of my other videos about same-sex marriage (, and I am learning to live with the fact that I am seemingly unable to get over my feelings for a a friend of mine even though she has told me she isn't interested.

Here are your choices:



Monday, 24 September 2012

Gay marriage - again

By now you've heard my thoughts on same-sex marriage. As a subject, it's been about in the LGBT community a lot.

Now this video itself has nothing new in it, but I would recommend looking at the comments. It's an interesting discussion, because I put this one up as a response to a well-viewed Youtuber and therefore his nice audience has deigned to spare attention on me.

Feel free to comment on it yourself!

Sunday, 23 September 2012

You shouldn't have to prove that you're bisexual

The only explanation I will give for posting this video is a quote from the comments on it.


Thursday, 20 September 2012

Society update

We have a place! We have a time! We have a plan!

(Unfortunately, I will be an hour late to the first social get-together of the LGBT+ society, because I'm focusing lights on a theatre show, but apart from that...)

I found a perfect place; it's open til ten, it is primarily a cafe so lots of coffee, but also hot meals and alcohol should people want that. Plus it's really near the drama school, so we know everyone can get to the area.

We've just been told we can have a society email account on the school network - win! I've spent my breaks today with my fellow founder making up posters to advertise the event, and my lovely mate who's very visually creative and good with technology is whipping us up something to show on the screens in the foyer on the loop of school announcements.

I've also contacted NUS LGBT Campaign to see if we can get their support.

It's crazy and I'm so excited about it all. I really hope we can make an impact on people's lives and really do something with this entity we're creating. I've got so many ideas, like fancy dress parties, club nights, pub quizzes, talks, events, just stuff stuff stuff!

Anyone got any other tips on what to do, or where to get resources?

Monday, 10 September 2012

How to run an LGBT society

News: I am collaborating with a friend to start my university's first LGBT society.

Question: ANY TIPS?? I feel a little worried I'm going to mess it up, so, dear blogosphere, help an ol' pal out. What can we do to make it not shit?

I've not run an lgbt society before, and it means a lot to me as a wannabe activist to get it right. I want it to be fun, celebrating being different, as well as social and gettingtoknowyou, as well as an opportunity to talk and discuss lgbt topics and issues, and even somewhere to go when there are problems, questions, and difficulties.

It feels like a huge ambition, and I want to make sure it runs smoothly, everyone enjoys themselves, and we can possibly make a difference. We are a smallish college, only about 800 students, 18yr olds to mature students, all on vocational degree/post-grad/MA courses for careers in music and drama. It's a talented, and mixed group from all round the world.

We're starting this Fresher's Week with a stall, and next week with a social get-together for people to find out about us. We're hoping to meet regularly and possibly have events and speakers. Hm, and we might organise club nights, and theatre trips, and other such relevant things...

What are the pitfalls to avoid, what is necessary, and what is likely to mean people like it and it continues? Any help would be much appreciated.


Saturday, 8 September 2012

Guide to the Universe

HuffPost Gay Voices has posted an extract from the book I REALLY REALLY WANT but for years never dared to buy because my parents might find it around the house.

(OOH there's a good marketing idea, versions of The Bisexual's Guide to the Universe with different covers, like Dickens or something.)

Anyway, if you don't know of this book, look it up, it looks amazing (see the extract linked above - it's so true!). I'd forgotten all about it, so now that HPGV have reminded me, I may be about to open a tab and click on Amazon...

Also, follow HuffPost Gay Voices on FB or Twitter, it's great for all LGBT news.

Monday, 3 September 2012

Doctor Who - 'Just a phase' is not just a phrase

"First boy I ever fancied was called Rory...Actually she was called Nina. I was going through a phase. Just flirting to keep you cheerful."

^This is what we've got a problem with. This line.

My thoughts:

Whether Moffat meant to be flippant or not does not stop the line being harmful. The gag of calling Rory 'Nina' for the rest of the episode would have held if written differently without the 'phase' bit. It doesn't do us any good towards debunking the myth that all bisexuality is just a phase if a major show portrays the issue as such, and so casually, for a gag no less.

We're not in a place for it to be used comically yet, with bisexuality being misunderstood with lots of negative stereotypes by a wide portion of both straight and gay populations. We're not there yet, whilst bisexuals still have the highest rate of depression and suicide in LGB.

My dad is a liberal inclusive person who has no problem with non-heteronormative sexualities or genderqueer identities, but even he as a middle class straight white man felt obliged to tell me it was fine if it was just a phase when I came out to him as bisexual. He should not have felt he needed to say that, and it is because the culture still marries the two things together (bisexuality and going through a phase) that my own father made me cry by saying the one thing I was shit scared about my parents saying in response to finding out about my bisexuality, which he never intended to do; he was shocked and upset at my reaction, never having intended to be negative. We are fighting everyday ignorance like this.

I am no longer scared by that response, simply because I know it to be false with no shadow of a doubt - my bisexuality is not a phase. But other young people, like I was before I was completely out, are growing up like I did, surrounded by this misconception that straight and gay people hold that bisexuals are just going through a phase and will end up on a 'side' at some point.

This is generally not the case, and the assumption that it is is damaging for people who are bi and uninformed except for these culturally accepted perceptions. It's not a surprise that lots of bi's get depressed and suicidal if their culture, supported by popular media, tells them that what they are feeling is not possible, or true, and is definitely going to change.

I assume Moffat was just trying to be funny, but he cannot go around using queerness in his writing without being properly informed on the impact of how he is writing it. Ignorance of the baggage behind 'just a phase' does not excuse him from the damage it does by perpetuating the misconception. It may not seem like a big deal to those who do not have to face a society telling them that what they identify as does not actually exist, but 'just a phase' is not just a phrase. It is a hurtful, harmful weapon that should not be tolerated in popular media until we're in a very different place culturally. In today's campaign for understanding and acceptance of bisexuality, it is the equivalent of 'it's unnatural' or 'it's perverted' was in late 20th century campaign for the understanding and acceptance for homosexuality.

Homosexuality was seen as a social problem that encouraged promiscuity, and now that has shifted to bisexuality. Homosexuality was seen as something that could be cured, and now bisexuality is also seen as something transient.

We are at the third stage of our battle for equality - first G, then L, now  B, and once bisexuality is as easily accepted as homosexuality, the T's will come to the fore. But for the moment, it is our turn. And Moffat is supporting the opposing side, even if it is unwittingly.


Further to my thoughts, here are some of my favourite quotes I've found around the web:

"It is a phrase with a shit ton of baggage and someone thinking they can get away with saying it on one of the most widely viewed shows (a family show nonetheless) in the world is rather disgusting."

"reinforcing about every parent's mindset that their gay/bi/pan child is just “going through a phase” isn't good."

"do you think it was added in so that bisexual young people could be reassured that what they’re feeling is legitimate and normal? Nope! It’s added in so that she has that saucy bit of forbidden naughtiness in her past that in no way affects her sexuality now."

"that kind of writing treats bi/pan-sexuality like a joke, like a funny little quip, like "oh look we're so progressive this character had a fling with someone of the same gender, they're so quirky and cool," and it trivialises something that is actually kind of a big deal for a lot of people."

"she says it to rory, to flirt with him. cause girl on girl is only a tool to turn guys on right?"

Friday, 10 August 2012

My mother's attitude to my bisexuality

Catch up on other things I've said about my mother in:

Yesterday was a doozy.

It started when I was looking up churches. I'm flying to Virginia in a few days, and I wanted to research beforehand where I would go to church on the Sunday that I'm out there. Obviously it's a big issue for me when finding a church to know whether they are gay-friendly, and while that was on my mind, it got me thinking, and the thought-path led me to text my dad.

"Just had a worrying thought. Do you know if the family in Virginia are liberal or conservative?"

When he got home, we sat in the living room, and he basically said it was best not to even bring it up, and use ambiguous language (eg when asked if I have a boyfriend) to avoid having to deal with a bad reaction, of which there was a chance.

It normally doesn't bother me when meeting new people and I never hide anything, but family is different, especially when I've never met them before and I'm flying 4000 miles to accept their very generous hospitality. If they do have a problem with LGBT, I'm only there for 12 days and I don't want to cause a family rift, or something equally dramatic, nor have to excuse myself from their home and come back early.

But I fought with him about it, saying that if felt like lying by omission, and not true to myself.

Anyway, besides that situation, the conversation turned into my longed-for confrontation of my dad about my impressions of my mother's attitude (see other blog post). He was shocked at what I thought, and promised me to talk to her. [I also learnt that it is not general knowledge throughout the family, because my dad sees as purely my business, and not somewhere to declare. I suppose I understand that, but isn't it usual that when someone comes out to their parents, relatives are made aware of it? I surprised my parents haven't wanted to discuss it with their siblings, my aunts and uncles.]

So later that day my mother sits me down and says she was also shocked when my father revealed all to her. She had felt she was a great example of an accepting parent, because ultimately she does not care who I choose to be with, as long as they make me happy. We discussed it, and really her silence on the matter and her moments of being odd when girls were mentioned is all down to it being new; she doesn't know a thing about the LGBT world, and so she is only very slowly learning how to be mother to a bisexual.

Well, you can imagine my relief! My mother is perfectly fine with my sexuality, and that is so much of a weight off my shoulders. Great big cheers all round.

It still feels weird to talk to my mother about being bi, but then it feels weird to discuss anything to do with my love life, so I'm not worried about that. The only difference is, when we talk about LGBT things, our relationship roles reverse, because I'm the one in the know, wiser about the whole thing, than she is, when she's had two whole decades as a mother being the one with the upper hand.

I'm sure there's a lot of psychoanalysis that could be done, lots of deep set things about our relationship, but I don't care. I am much happier knowing what my mother thinks, and that it's positive.

Saturday, 4 August 2012

L, G, B, T, C, D...

Last night, I was at dinner in a large group. We had just completed the show at the end of a drama summer camp for kids, a week of biscuits, tantrums and out of tune singing. The director, MD, technician, assistant director, and one of the band were there, as well as a hetero couple I didn't know. I picked up that the director knew them, for the man taught at the same school she did.

Well, a friend of mine had popped in to the theatre to say hi earlier during the dress rehearsal, because he had gone to that school, and been involved in the drama group whilst he was at that age, so the director and MD had been excited to see him as well. He came up in conversation near the end of the meal, and both teachers proclaimed he had to be gay.

I of course told them he wasn't, and they scoffed at me. I reiterated that he's my best friend, and the man laughed it off with a "I taught him for five years, of course he's gay". I retorted that I had been his best friend for 7 years, so I should know. His wife then mumbled something about not being able to tell, so I told them "I'm a part of the LGBT community, so I have a great sense for who's gay or not".

She came out with a classic "LGB what?"

"Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender," I replied.

"Cats, dogs, who knows," she continued.

I could help it. "I'm sorry, but that's quite offensive," I said.

She maintained that it wasn't, then claimed that it was harmless because it was just a joke. I could have got very righteous then, gone off on one at her, but I just said "I'm not going to hold it against you personally, just know that it is offensive." She mumbled something else about how I'd understand the joke when I was older, and as much as I wanted to scream at her for her second count of prejudice, I stayed silent.

Even telling you about it still makes my blood boil. A horribly classic case of a woman stuck in her ways of thinking and not considering that she might have said something wrong, choosing instead to judge that I was arguing with her purely because I am a young person, clearly ignorant of the world.

What do you think? Was I right to take offence at her comment about animals? Was I being over-sensitive and not appreciating off-hand humour?

I know people makes jokes about sensitive subjects all the time; I'm sure I do too on occasion. But I felt that it was not okay to joke about LGBT and bestiality, when it is still a prevalent belief that outside of jokes, there is a link between them in reality. That's what I feel we're fighting against. That's why I write a blog to connect with other LGBT, and I try with this and other things to spread knowledge and understanding of LGBT.

In a world where it's still okay to joke that being LGBT leads to bestiality, people still think that's actually true, and will treat us accordingly, with no regard for who we beyond a label that to them immediately identifies us as disgusting by default. I know it's a tired and over-used analogy, but it is no longer okay to joke about ethnic minorities and black people as though they are linked to bestiality, and nowadays, the majority know that there is no link.

The joke was a symptom of a prejudice, and though maybe not horribly harmful, it still should be pointed out as wrong, to make it clear that we will not tolerate ignorance as an excuse for beliefs about us that are not true.

Saturday, 21 July 2012

A step with my mother

I actually sort of confronted my mum yesterday. If you've read a few of these posts (, and seen the clip I did for Out4Marriage (, you know that my mum has never been at ease with the the idea of queer sexualities, and since I told her about my bisexuality, has not been particularly supportive.

I have a great relationship with my mother, and I have not let this one thing get between us. She just ignores it and I let her; I haven't wanted to confront her, because she's the one with the issue, and I feel as the child that it should not be my job to bring up stuff to deal with. So I've just never really known what my mother feels about it. I get the impression she would rather I was straight, or at least end up marrying a guy. I think she tries to forget about it, and when it gets briefly mentioned in other conversations, she goes very tight lipped about it.

But yesterday, we were talking about weddings, and I said "I'm not set on having a big wedding, but if I end up marring a woman, if she wants a big wedding, I'll give it to her." We were predicting whether my brother or I would have the bigger wedding.

My mother picked up on the 'if I marry a woman' bit, and didn't say anything in particular, but it made me really fed up. After all this back and forth on same-sex marriage, and my frustration at all that, I could not be bothered to let this lie any longer.

So I said "Yeah, a woman. You know this, it's a 50% chance it'll be a woman."
She nodded non-committedly.

We talked briefly about weddings some more, then I asked "Does [my brother] know I'm bisexual? I've never bothered to tell him. Have you?"
She said he picked it up off my Twitter account, so that's one mystery solved.

"I was never worried about him. I was worried about you though," I said.
"I know, I realised because you told Dad first," she replied.
"You made me cry you know," I continued, "before you knew, with things you said."
"Oh no, I'm sorry."
"Yeah, you once said 'but it's not natural, is it?' and I cried a lot at that."
"Oh I'm sorry."

So I got a few things off my chest, but she was not very forthcoming. I still don't know how she feels about it, and what she thinks. I just wish she'd be honest with me; I can't deal with the unknown.

I just don't know where she's at, which means I don't know what to do. She wants to support me unconditionally, which is why I think she doesn't tell me; my guess is she really doesn't like it, but doesn't want to say that to me.

But I don't want that! Even if it causes problems between us, at least out relationship will be honest, rather than this false thing we have going where she pretends everything's fine.

I might talk to my dad about it, on his own. He might have some insight, and luckily, he is fully down with the queers.

Sunday, 15 July 2012

The Promised News

Do let me know if this is too personal, but I promised you news about the girl I wanted to ask out, so I thought I'd give up the goods.

She's on my course at college, and she is incredible. Physical: Pretty in an exotic way, not conventional, sexy as hell with lots of curves (the way I like my women), wavy long light brown hair, Danish accent, graceful with purpose. Person: Everyone loves her, it is nigh on impossible not to get on with her; gay; bubbly, giggly; competent, strong, intelligent, practical; overall indescribably attractive.

I thought she was straight when I met her - the gaydar didn't ping and she didn't come out to many people on the course for a long time. But I knew I was attracted to her. Now, I don't know about you, but the only times I've ever been attracted to women I think are straight generally work out that I'm wrong. But the 'door' (as I refer to it) stayed dutifully closed. Since the first time I fell in love with a woman when I thought she was straight, I am able to stop it happening again. I stop any feelings going being 'being initially attracted'. It's a subconscious mechanism to prevent the pain of unrequited love, a tool in my psychological arsenal that I thank God for.

But even another friend on the course mentioned they thought I fancied her even at that stage, when I first met her in the autumn. On learning of her queerness after Easter, the door swung open. But I was a coward, I flirted a little but always failed to make a move. I complained about this on the last night of the year, to a good friend in the Leavers who happens to be a lesbian, and she urged me on. We devised a line to use were I to pluck up the guts.

Later, we're dancing on the dance floor in the student bar, and I am filled with sudden fearlessness. I tap her on the shoulder, and lean in to shout that I'd like to talk to her. We wend our way through the crowd to a quieter stop near the bar. I put my hands round those delicious hips, and say (in reference to a point of conversation earlier in the day)

"You know it's National Kissing Day? Well, there's no one in the room I want to kiss but you."

So I get a little peck on the lips. "I mean it," I emphasise, and I get a full kiss. So I'm very happy at this point. But she just smiles and heads back onto the dance floor. I follow, puzzled, and when we're back in the throng, she shouts in my ear, "I don't understand why". Fair cop, I think, it was a little indirect. "I've liked you for a while now," I shout back. Bizarrely, the response is another "Why?". "Because you're incredible!" I shout, astonished.

And then that's the last I hear of it. So you know where this is heading. I met her the next day for about an hour after the Pride parade, and it was as if it had never happened. So I text her a few days later, and got a 'flattered, don't feel the same, just friends' reply, so at least it was cleared up.

So that's my latest lesbian drama. Next instalment, the cute young guy who has started coming to church!

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Response: What not to say when you find out someone's queer

This is a response to the post linked below by Holly at 'Bisexual Wombat'.
If you don't read 'Bisexual Wombat', you should.

Dear Holly,

The more I thought about it, the more unsure I grew about whether I agree with you or not. It reminds me of the whole discussion at the moment about the queer culture assimilating hetero-normative behaviour, brought out by the UK government consultation on equal marriage.

Some think that we're in danger of being sucked into majority culture and losing all identity as a minority.

And I agree with not wanting that. I don't think we should go back to the times of keeping ourselves separate, but we do need to maintain our own unique brand as it's own entity, in harmony with everyone else but not absorbed by it. Queer folk need a community and a platform to be queer together, and celebrate being queer. This is where people need to care, to be interested - not ignore sexuality; they would not try and blank being told about any other part of a personality or lifestyle. It's an intrinsic part of our lives - who we fall in love with is different to the majority - and it should not be ignored; if it doesn't matter that we're queer, why should we bother celebrating?

However, I do not want a big fuss made. I know that's not what you mean, but I still blanch a little - it feels weird to disagree with 'I don't want people to care about sexuality'. Whilst I want to be acknowledged as a bisexual, and have people in my life embrace it consciously and enthusiastically; and whilst it is part of my identity - it does not define me. I want people to be comfortable maintaining a view of me that includes my sexuality, but is not dominated by it.

I want people to care, I agree with that. But it makes me wince to say it; I feel like I'm advocating making a hullaballoo and shoving it in people's faces "I'm bi, and I don't care what the f**k you think!" And this is where my dilemma is - I want to agree that it should matter, but I don't want people to care about it in particular, just care because it's part of me, and they care about me.

But, minority sexualities need awareness and consideration, and you're right, they definitely do not need flippancy.


I don't know if I'm making sense, to you or to myself. I agree that it should not be treated as heterosexuality is, without notice or appreciation - it is a minority, and therefore special, and should be duly noted.

But I don't want more than note. But I do want something.

Okay, so overall, I think we're on the same page. You're not advocating anything extreme, just helping the straight people get it right. We have to fight to be accepted and at the same time fight to maintain a status as a definite whole, and that's a bloody tricky line to tread, queer or straight.

I'm glad you made me think about it, because I hadn't before. Thank you.

Esme T xx

Gay Pride 2012, London

Saturday, 7th July, was my first Pride event. And boy, it was London Pride, so a big deal, and WORLD Pride to boot, so even bigger! I was very excited to be involved with an LGBT event this large, and I was not disappointed.

I met up with the reps from St James' and we got ourselves to Baker Street. After losing and finding each other again on the way there, we also found the purple-tshirt clad Christians in the huge line along the street ready to parade. We had the tshirts, and a banner, and leaflets; I got given a rainbow pin, and I bought snacks for the day, and there were free bottles of VitaminWater from the sponsors, and the rain held off for a while.

The bisexual group was behind us, which made me glad, but I didn't speak to anyone except my friends I knew already. Looking back, I'm sad I didn't. I will improve upon my next Pride. I've also been talking to others in the Christian group, and we also need to improve next year with more glitter, pazzazz, and just a but more gay :-P We looked too dour to be in a gay parade, so we must do something about it.

We enjoyed looking all around while we waited to set off. There were lots of fabulous drag queens, and some other men in very revealing, saucy outfits (lovely jubbly) walking past, as well as lots of excited, less glittery people like me. After over an hour's wait, we finally set off, and marched all the way up Baker St. That was quietest part of the route, apart from the Gay Men's Chorus in front of us. Very quickly, I had read all the signs within eye line, my favourite being the Quakers'. One side had the four fundamentals of Quakerism - peace, simplicity, equality and truth. The other side went on to add love, hope, spirit, and cake! Which thought was a great addition.

It was overwhelming, trying to contemplate what I was part of, and it only really hit me when we got to Oxford St, and it was packed with people lining the route. I felt fit to burst when I took a turn carrying the banner; it was moving to shout out to the world "I am proud of who I am!" and to feel the response "We love you for it!" come right back. So much support, and fun, it was an emotional and political festival.

Parading was a very satisfying way of celebrating queers, demonstrating my support and inclusion, and having a laugh.Yeah it rained later, but no one cared!

I was sad not to be able to enjoy the festivities in Trafalgar Sq; a couple of friends showed up at the end of the parade, and we all enjoyed tea and cake in SJP's garden. C and I got into some deep conversation about sexuality and faith and before we knew it, everyone was leaving to attend the service - the World Pride service at Bloomsbury Baptist. It was a moving and affirming experience, which I enjoyed even though the baptist worship style is not really my thing.

It is always wonderful to share an experience with people who believe as you do, have gone through similar experiences, and to know that they are there to befriend you, help you, support you, no matter what, because they believe in you and who you are, and that you love them and support them in return. Pride really is about being proud, together - it's a way of showing each other, and the world, that we love each other, and know ourselves to be good people.

There is so much good about being queer; nothing against straight people, and I know there are a lot of cons in this world, but I am so glad to be queer. It's not a choice, and I was lucky enough to get the golden, glittery ticket with feather trim.

Bisexual and Proud, bitches! :-P I love you all.

Friday, 6 July 2012


Short post just to alert one and all that this blog is branching out.

Like what you read here? Follow me on Twitter @iamabisexual for small snippets and news (stuff that does not merit a whole blog post)

Don't worry though, this blog will still keep going strong! I'm loving it.

Thursday, 5 July 2012

Gay night

Last night I had a really GAY night! It was fabulous.

I'm training in technical theatre, so after the last performance of a show yesterday evening, cast and crew went out. Had drinks with other techies, then L, B and I went to the bar where the actors were at. Got talking to the actress S at the bar, and behold, we find we are one lesbian (L), one bisexual-borderline-lesbian (B), one bisexual (yours truly), and one pansexual (S)! Had know idea S was not straight, but then, I may have been prejudiced by a bad first impression.

Anyway, we had a real networking session, and it felt very pally, and community-y. Poor S was so happy to find other queer girls; I felt wonderful being able to welcome her into the communal element of her sexuality. I also flirted with her a lot, though I had no intentions on her (I'm in that stage of liking someone else that no one has a chance). Fortunately, I don't think she had any intentions on me either; her attention was slightly slanted in B's direction, odd seeing as B was the one in the group who wasn't single.

Thought I'd share my gay night on here. It's the small things that make life, and so it is the small things that make bisexuality. It's not all about the big issues; it's about nights staying up til the early hours and drinking too much in a group of giggling gay gals.

I was glad that a nice night relaxing with friends, colleagues, and new friends (ie the actors) was enhanced by queer fun. It was easy, and simple, and lovely.

Just wish I had the courage to ask out the girl I like.

News on my unrequited love, and World Pride this weekend (YAY) coming soon!

Tuesday, 3 July 2012

Bitch! Dyke! Faghag! Whore!

I had one of the best nights ever at the weekend. I went to see B!D!F!W! at the Arcola Tent, with my friend F.

It was an incredible piece of theatre - I can tell you that as a professional-in-training for the industry. And it was a very affirming night for me as a bisexual. There was go-go dancing to begin with, by some very talented and very gay dancers (m&f), then Penny Arcade bounced onstage and brought with her a huge and wonderful personality and stage presence.

She did stand up, sketches, monologues, invited the audience to dance, strolled around the audience in the dark. It was hilarious, fun, camp, and sometimes very emotionally stirring. She covered difficult topics with either pizazz, comedy, or hard hitting seriousness, and the mix still made a cohesive whole.

It was very much a show for a queer audience, though of course F was not the only straight person in the room, and she really enjoyed it too. But her experience, I suspect, was a lot less deeply moving than mine. I felt like I connected with Penny and the show; I could taste the sense of community, and belonging. I felt so good about myself, and my sexuality, and also a really strong compulsion to uphold the history that queers have. I was downright disappointed in myself when Penny was exclaiming that the younger generations of LGBT are unaware of their history, and trying too hard to fit into the straight world, rather than shaping the straight world to fit us.

I recommend it in entirety. I shall follow Penny with interest.

Sunday, 1 July 2012

Being single and being bi

My heart cries out for it is empty. Being single is as though I do not exist. Man or woman, I need this to go, to leave, to be cured; I need this emptiness to be filled.

That one person. To talk to, to give life a cohesive line. Coming apart at the seams, I have nothing to hold me together. I am but fragments, a jigsaw for someone to put together.

Friends are the right people in context, family are what I need sometimes, I can go to my priest, my tutor, my pen friend, but there are moments...moments when no one is right. Where the problem is not part of my life but all of my life, and there is no one who is part of my whole life.

The calling out of my soul does not seek gender. The right person is the one to ease the emptiness. Why is that so difficult for some people to understand?

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Coming out as bisexual

I know I'm lucky. I've never had to come out to long time friends. Realising at 14, I had no one I was particularly bothered to tell, except a few, and you know what? I don't recall telling them.

I think that's because it was such a non-issue that no conversation was needed. It doesn't matter to them what orientation people are, and they love me so much they did not have to make a big deal of finding out about my bisexuality.Those few people will be in my heart forever.

Everyone else at the time, did not need to know. They weren't my friends, they were just the people I spent time with at break times in the classroom because I didn't want to be lonely.

And then I had a great opportunity. 16, new school. Leave the old behind, enter sixth form completely new. I only had one person at the sixth form who I wanted to hang out with, and he already knew.

So when introduced to new people, being bi was just a fact that came out in the getting-to-know-you stage, just like my love of Disney classics, my anecdote about going to hospital after running into a tree, and my perchance for bursting into song in the street.

I never had to come out to friends. I don't come out any more. Now my family know, there is no one I already know to tell, and it won't be hidden from people I don't know yet, so they won't need coming out to.

I know I'm lucky. Most people go through trauma when coming out, and some people come out to every person they meet.

That wouldn't work for me. I am who I am, bisexuality and Disney love included, and I can't be bothered to become someones friend and then see what their reaction is to it, because if it's bad, I don't want to be their friend anyway. So the whole debacle can be avoided by being totally open and honest from the offset.

I think this sometimes comes across as an aggressive 'I'm bi, I want everyone to know, I don't care what the fuck everyone thinks' rubbing-it-in-people's-faces attitude, but that's not what I'm about. I'm just matter-of-fact about one of the parts of my identity that society seems to want to make into something weird and worthy of more note than a full grown young woman with a tendency to spend her evenings crying at the end of the children's animation.

I don't know about you, but coming out as a Disney lover should be the bigger issue


Saturday, 23 June 2012

A study of Christian LGBT young people

I was recently interviewed as a subject in a university study of LGBT Christian young people. One of the researchers was pointed towards my church as a Christian community that supports LGBT, and on talking to the leader of our LGBT group, she was pointed in my direction as the only one at St James' that fit the 16-30 age bracket.

We talked for over an hour. It was very interesting to tell someone who had no part of my life about it, because having to give her context for some of my answers and anecdotes meant I saw things about them that I had not seen before.

Nothing major; I'm secure in my knowledge of myself as a bisexual and a Christian; but just little things.

I wondered if I'd feel weird talking about my relationships and experiences to a stranger with a Dictaphone, but I realised afterwards that it's exactly the same as writing this blog - I like talking about bisexuality, because it's an aspect of my identity that doesn't get a lot of air time in everyday life.

I get to be very Christian every week at church; very organised and theatre loving at college; very much a woman all the time; a young person when out with mates or surfing Facebook; my outlet for being very bi is this blog, and going to Pride. It's like the fact that I write stories and a bit of fiction - I have a community through Nanowrimo to be just that with.

I wondered if my desire to be interviewed about my bisexuality was a narcissistic thing, blowing my own trumpet. But I think really I just desperately want society to catch up and understand it more. I want to be a non-issue, and at the moment, it's a novelty, an interesting fact about me. Unfortunately it isn't a study that deals with just bisexuality, and it won't really do much about all that. But it made me feel proactive. Like doing the Out4Marriage video.

What others opportunities do we have? I'll take any that come my way.

Thursday, 14 June 2012

Out 4 Marriage

Big discussions at the moment about equal marriage, because of the government's consultation.

Here's my contribution to the Out 4 Marriage campaign.

Lots of love xx

Saturday, 9 June 2012

Gay Pride and why we need it

As is probably quite evident already, by the fact that I write a blog dedicated to it, I take a lot of pride in my bisexuality, and it's a part of my character that I put up there as one of the big parts of my identity, like being a woman, and a member of my family, and a Christian. Big Deal Character Traits. Things I type into 'brief description' boxes.

But recently my BDCTs have come into conflict. More specifically, I have been forced to choose between going to my Nana's 86th birthday (yes, she's a few months younger than the Queen), and taking part in Pride, and also going to church. These all take place on the weekend after my last day of term. Something that has to happen that Saturday, is I have to move out the last of my stuff by 10am, which is pain for my parents. They will then whizz up north to the birthday party (dropping my stuff off at home on the way, I presume) and spend the night before returning the next day.

Automatically, I want, and feel obliged, to go with them. And any other time, I would. I would even be alright with missing church one week (hey, there's got to be at least one decent CofE church in Sunderland that I can go to, right?).

Thing is, it's Pride London weekend. It's World Pride, in fact! Something I've been excited about since moving to London. AND it's the Pride service at church, where we take over - rainbow vestments, rainbow altar cloth, and testimonials from queer members of the church about being queer Christians, as the sermon. How awesome is that? We have a lunch together with the community; we join together with Christians Together At Pride ( and go out to the parade, to quote, "making a powerful statement to the LGBT community that there is support for LGBT Christians and that God loves us with, rather than despite, our sexualities." There are freaking TSHIRTS for pity's sake.

I have been in conflict about it, but my dad has been really sweet. I said during a Skype convo about this that it shouldn't even be an issue, I should automatically be content with going up north. He responded "But obviously going to Pride means enough to you to make it an issue, and therefore, if it means that much, you should go. We'll be going to see your Nana in the summer as well; come then." Thank you God for that man, I love him so much, and I do not deserve him.

I don't know what others will think of this. Essentially, I'm rejecting my frail granny, matriarch of my family, mother to my dear father, in favour of partying it up with the gays, in a street party celebrating...what, exactly?

I can understand straight people might not be sure - especially those who don't have a lot of contact with queer folk, and even those that do but the queer folk they know don't really talk about it/engage with the community - wtf Pride is, and why the gays get a special day (lots, in fact, in individual cities around the UK, and the world), and close the streets of London, for pity's sake. Bastards. And what the hell does LGBT stand for anyway? (I get asked that one a lot).

Makes me chuckle. For one thing, Wikipedia gives a nice summary, if one can be bothered to look - "celebrating LGBT culture. Most pride events occur annually and many take place around June to commemorate the Stonewall riots, a pivotal moment in the modern LGBT rights more accepting cities, the parades take on a festive-like character...floats, dancers, drag queens, and amplified music; but even such celebratory parades usually include political and educational contingents, such as local politicians and marching groups from LGBT institutions of various kinds (that last part includes CTAP)."

Look, we're a minority, we get bullied and abused for who we are. Critics might not be able to understand how joyful it is to have an event devoted to actually celebrating who we are; not a serious demonstration with often demoralising results, or having to go to a specific club separated from the rest of the world, separated from the rest of our lives. We do have our own culture - we were forced to when we were underground, and now we can revel in it publicly, like football fans, patriots, sci-fi fantasy fans, music fans, etc etc, in full view, and inviting the rest of the world to join in, to make it a part of our lives. I can go along with friends who are like me, and meet new people who are also like me.

I also know that many queers don't go in for self-promotion (see earlier reference to those not engaging with the community). That's okay too. Many Christians don't talk about their faith a lot, don't go to church a lot, if ever; football fans enjoy it from the comfort of their sofas without having to chat about it afterwards; sci-fi fans who never go to conventions or talk on forums. Not a worry, I'm one of the latter.

But even though not all queers want or need Pride, there is a want for it, there is a need for it. It's an incredible tool in a world where there are over 70* countries where same-sex relations are prohibited by law, at least 8 of which can lead to the DEATH penalty (sorry for shouty capitals, but it makes me so upset), and even some places where it's legal, there's still a higher age of consent for same-sex relations compared to opposite sex relations. There are only about 5* places IN THE WORLD (sorry again) where same-sex couples can get married, only 10* where they can adopt together.

Throwing massive parties in the streets, beaming pictures of happy, harmless queer people having a good, safe time, around the globe, helps pressure places where queers can't be happy.

It’s all in the title. Pride. In ourselves, each other, in our place in society, in what we contribute, in what makes up special. Other people are special in other ways – singers, models, painters, actors, chess champions, great parents, people passionate about breeding flowers; we’re special because we love in a way the majority don’t, and dammit, there are concerts, catwalks, galleries, awards ceremonies, chess tournaments, Mother’s and Father’s days, garden shows; so we get Pride.

In an unrelated note, I might be going to participate into a professor's research about LGBT individuals’ (age 16-30yrs) understanding of religion, their experiences within the churches and how their religious identity interacts with their sexual identity. I’ll let you know how it goes.

*edit: the figures I have quoted have changed since this post was originally written.

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Bisexual blogger

Mine is just a small, unnoticed blog. But it helps me to articulate things, and it has more than 0 views, so at least someone is reading it. So hopefully it's not a waste of time.

I am not the only bisexual blogger by any means. I wanted in this post to simply put a link to a marvelous post in another blog, for you to read. I think it's very good.


Sunday, 3 June 2012

Jubilee - not just one thing, but everything

Forever more I will be able to say that I was part of the Piccadilly celebrations of the historic Diamond Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II. It's been a lot of fun today. I felt part of the party, I felt proud to be British, happy with my monarch, and seriously joyful to be at St James'.

I soaked up the atmosphere, bought food and fudge from the stalls, helped put up balloons, and chatted with everyone, from church friends to stall owners, and a steward who asked for my number, cheek!

What does this have to do with being a bisexual? Well, it's because this event has affected me across a whole range of the different parts of my life - I love being part of this nation, I'm proud of my faith and my church, enjoying talking to people, and contributing to the event, glad to be living in London for it, missing how we would be celebrating at home watching on TV with mum and dad, flattered but wary of a flirty guy, and spent time hoping I would see the other young woman who I've got my eye on and invited down.
Briton, Christian, St James parishioner, social creature, helper, London dweller, member of my family, young woman, and bisexual.

I am all of these, not just one. And not just one at a time - completely and always everything.

Thursday, 17 May 2012

Writing to my MP in support of same-sex marriage

I just sent an email to the MP in my home town, and the MP in my uni town. Mostly it was repetition of the stuff from the survey (see earlier blog post) but I thought I'd share that additions I made.

"I am a parishioner of a church in Central London where at least 50% of the congregation is queer - we love it! We think Christianity fully embraces and loves the queers, and we all worship on perfectly equal terms. It would be glorious to be able to add queer weddings to our services.

It is not fair to ask me to commit myself to the person I love in different ways dependent on their gender. I fall in love with men and women the same, why can't I commit to them the same? There will be no difference in the ferocity of my love and want of commitment. I cannot believe that if I want to commit myself to the woman I love, I will have no say in my own marriage.

I will be a wife. The gender of my spouse should not determine how I become their wife. It should be the same, irrespective of their gender, just like my love."

Sunday, 13 May 2012

European Union LGBT Survey

I just completed the European LGBT Survey - if you want to take part in this please go to

The European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights is gathering data on our experiences as queers in Europe, and it's indepth, so I'm looking forward to some changes in legislation once the results come out next year.

I thought I'd share with you my answer at the end of the survey, in the box for any other comments. I always take full advantage of these, but alas this was limited to 2000 characters, so I could not be as verbose as I wanted. Still, I got my major gripes across.

"I didn't realise I was bi until 14. I had to research it online rather than ask about it. Friends/family forget about it, assume I'm straight until my relations with other women are mentioned again.

It’s because bisexuality isn’t understood/accepted by general society and the majority of people. Though this is in part because we are a minority of the minority, it’s also society's attitude. I'm proud to be bi, and it’d be nice to be on par with homo/hetero sexualities.

We’re forgotten in conversation about queer issues; when it comes to marriage, people forget that making two different but equal partnerships for mixed-sex and same-sex couples is still not equal for us - we have to take different routes depending on to whom we want to commit.

I think that the majority in the UK are accepting of homosexuality or at least not militant in their opposition, and I feel lucky to live here; but I want to be able to choose either a civil or a religious marriage regardless of the sex of my chosen life partner. It’s not true equality unless we have equal choice. I don't want to be forgotten or lumped in with gays or straights depending on context.

I’m so glad that homosexuality is openly talked of and accepted. It’s time bisexuality gets the same status, in media particularly. Otherwise it won’t be understood, and that leads to difficulties for us - we encounter stereotypes, misconceptions and myths.

I may be a rare sexuality, but that doesn’t mean I shouldn’t be understood/accepted like any other minority. Don’t forget me! I’m not gay, or straight, or both, I’m bi, just get that already.

The other thing is I'm Christian. It’s sad that a lot of people can’t believe a Christian can queer, or any religious person for that matter. It’s wrong for the majority of people to think that there’s one religious view on LGBT. Spread the word, God loves the gays! At least some of us believe so, Christian, Jew, Muslim etc. Girl on my arm, cross round my neck; I live content that it’s all good"

Saturday, 10 March 2012

Being a bisexual Christian

I realised today I never went through any anxiety about my bisexuality and my Christianity. It never occurred to me. I knew there are people who are Christian who don't think same-sex relationships are right, and I always knew I thought they are wrong.

Is this good or bad? It seems a funny question, but let me explain. If I had had problems, having to deal with the possibility that my faith and my identity were at odds, I would have come out the other side with the same conviction, but with a much stronger knowledge and understanding of why.

I feel almost ignorant of why I feel my religion and my sexual preference are in support of each other, like I would find it difficult to ariculate and explain to someone were they to ask.

I do get the occasional twinge of something distantly-related to doubt. When I worry about not being a true disciple of Jesus, and getting things wrong, it's sort of there in the hazy list of issues I have coming at the Gospels. But in an almost objective, scholarly way, rather than psychological or emotional.

Is it because of my generation? The fact that secular prejudices are fast on their way out, and it's such a non-issue in many places in The West? Or is it because I was introduced to my faith not through family or church, but by education? An objective starting point that did, slowly over time, became true faith, but maybe coloured that faith?