Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The Battle for Sexuality by Tobie

I hate the fact that many don't understand the real meaning of being bisexual.  Or at least many here in the Philippines intentionally misuse the term for their own purposes.  For those who don't know what I mean, allow me this chance to explain.  Bisexuality is more than just a gay guy who happens to have dated a woman in the past.  Bisexuality is also more than just a gay guy who happens to act masculine.  Bisexuality is definitely more than just a guy who is confused or in denial and is too afraid to embrace the term gay.

But sadly, and I speak about the gay circles in the Philippines, those misconceptions are more often than not believed to be truths.  I have met people who insist that they are bisexual because many years back they actually dated a woman at one point in time.  There have been encounters with groups that call themselves bisexual groups, a definition that they mis-appropriately believe applies to them simply because they avoid all the visible cosmetic, stylistic and audible cues that categorize a person as homosexual.  And sad but true, there have been those whom I have met who are quite frankly gayer than a rainbow unicorn in heels who insist with a straight face that they are bisexual and don't understand why people assume they are gay.

And born from the corruption of the term is the blanket injustice of many claiming bisexuality does not exist.  The term bisexual has been wrongly equated by many to be the clearest sign of a person being homophobic of oneself and afraid of simply embracing the g word.
I am more than just infidelity, damn it.
Even worse, in the Philippines, the closest local term to refer to a bisexual is silahis, which actually translates to "a married guy who sleeps with men."  So rather than just in denial, bisexual is horribly defined as "a specific form of infidelity."   Ugh.

But no matter how many choose to exploit the term bisexual, its true meaning deserves to be understood, accepted and embraced.

I am a bisexual.
And I remain proud to be one.
I have always been one.  And I will al
ways be one.
I am not in a phase.  I am not in denial.
And I am damned sure I am not the only one.

Our three official symbols.
Why do I say I am one?  It isn't because of the fact I don't like wearing cosmetics or women's clothing.  It has nothing to do with the fact that I have no illusions of seeing myself as a woman trapped in a man's body.  It is not because most people would have trouble accepting the fact that I am not straight, even if my manner of moving, the intonations of my speech, or my choice of clothing would support the idea that I am a guy, and a geeky guy at that. It does somewhat stem from the fact I have had girlfriends in the past (including one I already had dreams of getting engaged with at one point in time) but that's just part of the reason.  And it definitely is not because I am afraid of being identified or called gay.  I have come out to my parents and to the world.  I am proud and out in my many blogs, on my facebook account, and in each day of my life.  In fact, I embrace the term "gay" since the term does officially encapsulate anything that is not straight.

What makes me clearly identify myself as bisexual is knowledge that in all the times that I have fallen in love with someone, and by love I mean felt an emotional connection with another person that includes sexual attraction, intellectual stimulation and an emotional bond, it never mattered to me if that person was a man or a woman.  The other person's gender was never a factor.

"Impossible!"  some would declare, "To fall in love with another, regardless if that person had a dick or a pussy?  How is that possible even?"

But that's just how it really is for me.  In my life, I've learned that my reciprocity of another person's passions was lot hindered by a person's sex.  I have found myself completely engaged in women just as much as in men, with only the individual's personality being a key factor if I were to try to decide who do I like more.

I have heard of what most naysayers proclaim:  Surely, there is one I lean more towards.  Surely, if I perfer men more, I should be gay and not bisexual.  Or gay but in denial.    But what does it mean if I prefer women more?  Am I straight but pretending?

Ultimately, however, with my own experiences as evidence, I have come to understand my bisexuality as being able to love another person regardless of the person's sex.   And if given a choice between a man and a woman, my answer would be:  Well I'd choose whoever between the two I did love more.

"But what if you loved them equally?  Absolutely equally in all accounts?  Who would you choose?"

In all honesty, if such an unlikely scenario occurred, my answer would be, "Both."

A few weeks back, I got into an argument while chatting with one of my gay friends.  We were discussing about the strange need of people to define everything when out of the blue, my friend declared, "What I hate the most is the term bisexual.  It doesn't exist.  No one can ever really love a man or a woman.  Everyone who ever claimed to be bisexual is actually simply someone in denial about his being gay."

Had I never had my Jedi training, my friend would have felt me reach through the internet connection, wrap the projected tendrils of force around his neck, then pull him closer to smash his face against the screen. Not exist?  I don't exist!?!  I sarcastically reminded him that he was talking to a non-existent being, and rather than realize he had touched a nerve, the guy simply continued, "Not anymore right?  I mean, you are seeing a guy now.  So you've accepted you're gay."
Maybe you're all bisexuals in denial.
EXCUSE ME?  Get it in your head, boy.  Who I am dating does not define my gender.  Who I sleep with does not define my sexuality.  If that were true, then prisons are homosexual factories, considering how many men end up getting banged in the ass in there.  But clearly, the act is not the same as the identity of a person.  Not every gay guy who gets drunk and ends up messing around with a girl is bisexual.  They're just drunk and horny.  And likely a tad curious.  But bisexual?  Please.
If all it took was an act, then being gay is just an alternate form of rape.
Clearly, that's not the case.
After all these years of harping the need for the world to accept and recognize that homosexual men and women exist, I find it terribly sad that the same group would be so clearly willing to do the same thing that they have long marched and chanted and pushed against: Discrimination.  Being gay has been equated as a disease, as a phase, as a form of insanity... and for years there has been a push to understand it more as either  a choice, or either as a card that life hands you regardless of what you wanted.    Why can't the same thing be seen to apply to being bisexual?  Or even being heterosexual?
Equality for all.
That includes bisexuals, you know.
Has the need to find acceptance been confused with wanting to blanketly call the world gay and just in denial?
And do we bisexuals need to have our own stonewall incident happen before we too are no longer discriminated by our fellow non-straight friends?

I am bisexual.

And I am loyal to my partner.  Just because I find men and women attractive doesn't mean I am unable to keep myself aware of my own decisions.  Infidelity is not the defining trait of one's gender.  So why should bisexuality be confused as such.

Here's hoping within my lifetime a greater and more intelligence acceptance of bisexuality happens.
Like every one else, after all, we only want to be recognized and accepted as equals.

(You can view his post and his blog here.)

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