This is a really strange post for me to write. I don't have the dramatic sob story that typically comes with posts and personal stories that involve sexuality. My family wasn't a concern as I have an uncle that had come out as gay while I was growing up and it didn't really seem to be an issue, or a surprise, for anyone in the family. So I didn't have a fear of being "rejected" or disowned. Which is a very real and serious fear that many people face when it comes to their families accepting them for who they are in regards to sexuality. My emotional and physical safety, in regards to my family, was never at risk. I'm lucky in that way while many others are not.
That's not really what this is about though...
My struggle is, and always has been, with myself versus society. More specifically, my struggle is with the labels that society places on things and which ones of those labels are actually taken seriously. I was constantly confronted with situations where I saw how the world treats people that don't fit into any socially valid boxes. What if I fit into more than one box? Does that mean I don't get one? As hard as you tell yourself that boxes are limitations that you're better off without, that doesn't make it any less lonely to feel completely invalid as a person.
Who the fuck even AM I?
When it comes to my personal sexuality, I've always felt that the term "bisexual" always fit best. I'm attracted to physical features of both presenting genders. When it comes to choosing a partner for companionship, I'm often looking to personality traits I find attractive or compatible. I'm currently in a relationship with a big, manly, bearded, biologically-born man. I have been for a long time now. However, before that - I wasn't narrowed to either men or women. Unfortunately, the fact that I'm in a committed relationship with a man often leads people to assume or insist that I'm heterosexual. That I was just somehow confused before. Or that I'm not sure what I want if that's how I feel about it. That isn't the case.
Bisexuals aren't ALL poly-amorous by default.
Sure, there's is bound to be a lot of people who practice polyamory that are bisexual. However, the very tired stereotypical assumption that ALL bisexual people are sexually promiscuous or somehow NEED to be in a physical relationship with BOTH genders simultaneously - is far from reality.
The fact of the matter is, being bisexual means that I don't select partners based on gender. It doesn't mean that I am some sort of sex crazed maniac. It just means that, when single, I'm willing to date both men and women. The fact that I am in a committed relationship with a man right now, doesn't magically make me heterosexual. If something were to happen to my relationship (knock on fucking wood that it doesn't), and I were to find myself seeking new companionship - I would still be open to either a man or a woman. Who I am with at any one moment in my life does not define who I find attractive.
Being told that a part of who I am, that I struggled hard to figure out, isn't valid because of the relationship that I'm in, isn't a good feeling. Just because I'm bisexual, doesn't mean that I have to be in some sort of ambiguous state of non-committal polyamory. That isn't how it works. Being bisexual just means that I am a human that is attracted to both men and women. Which should only really be relevant when I'm actively searching for a partner in the first place. However, society seems to think that the validity of a human somehow relates to things like their sexual preferences. No matter how hard I try, that fact makes me pretty sad to think about.
Why is "Sexuality" even relevant in daily life?
Identity politics and tribal mentalities are the only reason I can really see that would make any one person's sexual preferences a matter of public discussion. Personally, Unless you're someone I might engage in some sort of sexual discourse with - the issue of who I find sexually attractive isn't really relevant to our interactions.
Since I'm currently happily involved in monogamy, it stands to reason that it SHOULDN'T matter if people assume I'm "straight". I honestly have no idea why the idea of being mislabeled is an issue at all, but it is. It's even an issue for me. I was irritated when I was told I was a "lesbian" when with woman and "straight" because I'm with a man. Wouldn't the fact that I've been with both and have no gender-related regrets?
My mind is a fucking cesspool of self-doubt...
I'm in a constant state of mental confusion.
Am I "proud" of my sexuality?
What does having "pride" in that even mean?
Does it even matter that I like women, if I'm not with one?
Who the fuck cares about this shit anyway?
These are the sort of things that are constantly running through my brain, in one way or another. I'd love to say that it's something that goes away with time, but it really isn't. The only thing that changes is the importance I place in these questions and doubts.
I don't really have a neat & tidy way to wrap this up.
So I guess I'll just say this:
You are as valid as you allow yourself to be. One person, or even several people, do not have the power to erase you from existence with words alone. You can choose to quietly ignore them, or proudly declare yourself. You have the power, just like I do.
Let's choose to be our own people, fuck who we want, not fuck who we don't, and stop caring about things that don't matter.