Saturday, 26 January 2013

Forgetting that I'm bi

I think I've talked about this before, but I just have the compulsion to talk about it now.

How can people forget? People forget I'm bisexual, like they might forget I don't like pink, or something. It feels ludicrous to me. They don't forget about the gay people, but they always need prompting, a reminder, to add women into the equation about me when talking about men, or other similar situations.

I'm a romantic - a soppy fool if you will, full of marshmallow and loud ballads - and love is a big deal for me. So it gets on my nerves that people stumble when talking about me and love, that they get it wrong, forget, in a way that doesn't apply to my preferences to colours. I don't care if they forget that I don't like pink. But forgetting I'm bi, well, that's a part of me that majorly affects my life, basically runs it.

My passion for love, my enthusiasm for human connection, it's in everything - my interactions with others that wants to be a good person so that they may be happy; my love of story, and how it explores what it means to be people, that leads me to writing my own prose as well as reading copiously, and choosing a career in theatre; throwing myself into the faith and community of Christianity; honing my cooking skills and appreciation of food so it can be shared with others - the human condition fascinates me, and the bare essential of the meaning of life, and the ultimate underpinning of the universe for me boils down to LOVE.

And I fall in love with men and women.

And you forget that the basic principle of my existence involves both??!

Or that's what it feels like. Is it because I know I'm a misunderstood element of a misunderstood minority, that I am projecting forgetfulness onto them, because I expect it? How can I tell if my perception is wrong?

But if I'm right...

You can see my problem. I want to let it go; I want to forgive them on the grounds of human error, or ignorance, as we are all guilty of committing of course, and I wonder if my difficulty to do so is justified or not. Is it righteous indignation? Or is it part of my selfish desire to be understood and remembered? Is it part of my activist attitude that I must pick people up on the mistake in the hopes of spreading the word and decreasing the ignorance? Or is it on par with the pink thing, and I'm just making a mountain out of a mole hill?

I only ask questions because I genuinely don't know. And I pose the issue because I wonder whether other bisexuals meet with forgetfulness, and if it annoys them, and if it does, whether they feel guilty for being annoyed.

Also wondering whether to use the upcoming Valentines Day to make a move on the guy I like. You're probably not surprised to learn that most of my thoughts - outside of working on the costume of The Marriage of Figaro - are taken up with this man, and how I can communicate my interest to him.


I just smiled to myself. I witter on about the drama of the bisexual life, and how socio-politically we operate in society, but I'm glad I can remind myself of what it's all about - one person fancying the pants off another person, and feeling the butterflies when they see them.

Them butterflies. Get every they do. Run the universe ya know.

Anyway, I'm not saying someone's bisexuality should define them, or determine how others treat them. I'm not even saying that others should be aware of my enthusiasm (sight obsession) with love. I just think others should treat bisexuals like whole people, including their bisexuality.

Yep, butterflies.

Sunday, 13 January 2013

Bisexual History

Hello dear readers,

I have a favour to ask. My fabulous church LGBT group, which I have mentioned frequently on here, has asked me if I'm interested in doing next month's session.

It's LGBT History Month in Feb, and the group had trans history last year, lesbian the year before, and gay before that. So this Feb our session will be on bisexual history, yippee!

My favour is for resources. I haven't done a lot of research into bisexuality as such, and certainly not into the history of it, and I want to do this properly. So I thought I'd ask the people who'd know best.

I'd also love any thoughts on how to run the session. Should I make it academic, personal, interactive? What topics should I definitely cover? Please let me know in comments - I feel that it has to be representative of all of us as a community.

Thank you guys! Feel free also to contact me on twitter @iamabisexual, or, and if anyone is based in London and feels like coming along on the 10th of Feb to St James Piccadilly, it would be great to have you!

Cheers gang,

Esme T


Wednesday, 2 January 2013

Bisexual sacrifice: Is it worth it?

Yesterday, after the Christmas break, I moved back into my term time accommodation, and whilst I was unpacking, my dad told me an anecdote from his New Year's Eve. He was talking to a long-time friend of his and my mum's, and unsurprisingly their were catching up on news about each other's offspring.

She asks him if either my brother or I have got partners, and he says no, and she presses him further to ask if there are any potential men in my life, and he answers no again (which shows how little I discuss my love life with my parents) and she says... "Careful, she might pull a Clare Balding on you!"

Now, for those of you who don't know, Clare Balding is a British sports journalist and presenter, and she is a lesbian, part of only a small group of British celebrities who are known to be; and it's this aspect of her to which my parents' friend was referring.

My dad said he stopped talking about the subject after that - what he meant was that he didn't out me to her. And I didn't get angry; I just commented that I found it strange that he saw it as private business - he hasn't even told his siblings, my aunts and uncle. It's not that I want to shout it from the roof tops - I mean jeez, it took me four years to come out to my parents because I didn't want to be immodest and make a big deal - but come on, I'm out and proud, so when it comes up there's no need to skirt around the issue. It doesn't take making a big deal to address my bisexuality when it comes up in conversation.

I don't know whether this a political issue ie should we talk up about our bisexuality specifically to get it talked about? Should we jump at any chance we get to spread the knowledge that we are bisexual, or are there some situations where it seems more appropriate to let it slide for the moment? If we let it slide, are we admitting shame or just a social sensitivity?

I've had mild complaints that I go on about my bisexuality and shove it in people's faces. I don't think I get aggressive about it, and I don't think I talk about it overly much. If I respond to these comments by talking about it less, am I admitting defeat at the hands of biphobia? If I ignore them, am I being selfish and egocentric?

I don't have simple answers to these questions, because I'm unsure. Human sexuality is such a sensitive topic in general, and I think I forget that most people don't like talking about any aspect of it, whereas I'm not like most. I'll disclose that my first time with a man was a booty call, and my first time with a woman was a one night stand - both the disclosure of any facts about first times and the nature of my particular two are often seen as scandalous and improper, but I don't feel they are scandalous nor do I feel any sense of embarrassment about sharing them.

Is it wrong of me to impose on others by broadly discussing my personal sexuality (though I don't share sensitive info about other people, nor do I narrate details of sexual encounters, and I certainly don't talk about ongoing relationships or even recently ended ones) even though I have no problem with it myself?

But then, what is this blog but just that? Am I somehow betraying myself with this blog? And if I am, does this blog do enough good to be worth it?

Ah man, see where a train of thought can lead you. At the heart of my dad's story, I found a root issue in today's bisexual community - is open and honest discussion a valid method of education, or does it perpetuate our reputation as all about the sex/attention seekers?

Me personally, I think it's a good thing; our major enemy that supports and defends biphobia is ignorance, and if we have to sacrifice a little privacy so that generations to come can be bisexual is peace, so be it.

So maybe I have a simple answer after all.