The unvisible bisexual male

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    Aug 28, 2011 3:41 PM GMT
    Salon had a good article on bisexuality that I can't seem to hyper link but I've copied and pasted it below.


    [url]http://www.salon.com/life/lgbt/index.html?story=/mwt/feature/2011/08/27/bisexuality&source=newsletter&utm_source=contactology&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Salon_Daily%2520Newsletter%2520%2528Not%2520Premium%2529_7_30_110[/url]


    The big sex news of the week was that bisexual men exist.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/23/health/23bisexual.html?_r=1

    OK, so a new study proving that bisexual men are aroused by both men and women didn't come as "news" to bi men, but most are nonetheless relieved by the results, because it will help to legitimize their identity in others' eyes. (This is especially true since prior research controversially reported that there was no evidence of male bisexuality.) Still, the more than dozen bisexual men that I interviewed about the study say it serves as a reminder of just how far they still have to go toward acceptance and understanding. Despite enormous strides made in the past decade for LGBT rights, male bisexuality remains a challenging idea and a unique taboo, even within sexually progressive circles.

    A large part of that is because, culturally, we tend to think in terms of black-and-white, not shades of gray -- and that's especially true when it comes to the subject of sex. Rarely does a bisexual come out without fielding questions about which sex they like more -- the assumption being that they must lean one way or the other. It's true that many do: As Ryan from Vancouver wrote in an email, he puts an "emphasis on the 'preference' in 'sexual preference.'" He might be attracted to women more often than men, but believes he "could be attracted to pretty much anybody in the right circumstances, sexuality be damned." But there are also many bi men who describe their sexual attraction in much more fluid terms. The 27-year-old says: "To me, I look for and fall in love with the personality and the intelligence, and then the overall style of the person, never giving any thought to if they are 'male or female.'"

    Romantic as it may be, that is a concept not so easily grasped by the general public -- which can make bisexual men feel invisible. Simon, a 26-year-old living in Brooklyn, N.Y., tells me, "Whenever, say, some prominent heterosexually married male public figure has a same-sex affair, literally everyone rolls their eyes at the 'closeted homosexual,'" he says. "I'm not sure I remember ever hearing someone seriously entertain the possibility that the philanderer was bisexual." Bisexuals are more visible than ever, but our cultural default, the shortcut we take to understand a person, is still: gay or straight?

    It's amazing that this is still the case more than 60 decades after the Kinsey scale was introduced. "I think Kinsey's work laid a more realistic foundation for examining human sexuality," Ryan, a freelance writer, says. Even the bisexual label is problematic, because it functions "as a 'catch-all' for everything that isn't 100 percent gay or 100 percent straight," says 25-year-old Cameron of Chicago. "Human sexuality is complicated," he says. "Accepting that is probably one of the more difficult social challenges to overcome."

    It can also present a significant internal challenge. "It's easy to get caught up in the idea that I must be one or the other," says Simon, the 20-something Brooklynite, which leads to self-doubt. If he has a less than inspiring hookup with a woman, suddenly the question becomes: Am I gay? If there aren't fireworks with a man, it's: Maybe I'm straight, after all. After so much interrogation by others, it's only natural to begin to interrogate yourself.

    Even without any genuine questions about their identity, many bisexual men end up choosing a different label, depending on the circumstances. "I am either gay or heterosexual dependent upon the company I keep," says 49-year-old Ed. Some men identify as gay when they're dating a man and straight when they're dating a woman -- it's easier to go along with people's assumptions than it is to detail the subtle nuances of one's attractions.

    The pressure to pick a side doesn't end there. A number of the older men I interviewed reported having found women, most often bisexual women, who were turned on by their identity, but several men in their 20s said that straight women were turned off by it. "I encounter lots of women who totally rule out relationships with men who've slept with men," says Simon. "It seems like straight women attach an 'ick' factor to bisexual men that straight men don't attach to bisexual women."

    That's an area ripe for further research, but it seems likely that the "bi now, gay later" stereotype, and the perceived link between HIV and gay sex, might be factors. It doesn't help any that masculinity is so often equated with both heterosexuality and homophobia. For this reason, some bisexual men who are primarily attracted to women report that they identify as straight on dating sites. One bi man observed that "bisexual women seem to be the 'holy grail' of sexuality," especially in the straight world, but bi guys aren't fetishized to anywhere near the same degree.

    The resistance to bisexuality doesn't just come from the fact that it requires shades-of-gray rather than black-or-white thinking. It also implicitly raises the possibility that we're all much more intricately sexually wired than we like to admit. Male bisexuality poses an even greater threat: The stakes of being "a little bit gay" are so much higher for men than for a women.
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    Aug 28, 2011 6:47 PM GMT
    Prepare for a mental ramble dump post in 3...2...1...

    This article completely captures my life as a bisexual man. Granted, I'm out, but sometimes I'm willing to hide it. The thing is, though, men are more physically attracted, meanwhile women are emotionally attracted. That's why I think bisexual women are considered to be the holy grail- because straight guys like girls and sex, and girls pleasuring other girls and themselves thus become a turn-on for them, meanwhile girls have a tendency to think that bi guys (such as myself) are going to just try to get a little bit of sausage with their cherry pie. It's as much as a stereotype as gay guys being great decorators. However- women are emotionally attached to their significant other, so us bi guys DO have it a little worse than our heterosexual counterparts, yet what I've noticed is that some girls just don't care after they get to know the guy. The Christian girls just think I'm "confused" though. icon_rolleyes.gif In my case- one of my friends liked me even after my neurotic lesbian friend outed me as being gay. Hell- she wanted to move to West Hollywood when she found out that I wanted to move to the West Coast. (guys- I know...)

    Human interaction in general is complex, let alone sexuality. There are times where I've tried to go straight and other times where I tried to go gay. (thank god for college) I don't feel like I'm 100% either (I have had a thing for girls in the past, and well- I'm here for a reason when it comes to guys) end, so I am plowing my own shade of gray inside a black-and-white society. Sexuality in said society is no exception, because people have told me in my face that I'm no longer in middle school, so I can't claim the bisexual label. Biggest what the fuck statement ever, but haters going to hate, I guess.

    That's my two cents. Very good article. Thanks for posting.
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    Aug 28, 2011 7:34 PM GMT
    But we even have half brothers here at RJ whom are bisexual as they have had both sexual relations with both women and men. I myself a Gold Card Gay (the real thing) have never ever had sexual relations with a women, let alone produce any children either. But we do have have half brothers here whom are bisexual but have either seen themselves as straight, then gay never bi. How sad; but they have never been straight or gay.....they be bi. So yes there is such a thing as a bisexual, and bi does not = gay!

    Fly the Bisexual pride flag to support our half brothers the bisexuals.
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    Aug 28, 2011 7:43 PM GMT
    Loved this article. I'm an out bisexual male, but even then, people just assume that I'm fully gay. I never understood why women can be bisexual, but men HAVE to be either gay or straight. *sighs*
  • irishkcguy

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    Aug 28, 2011 7:45 PM GMT
    Maybe I completely misunderstand, but didn't Kinsey's work pretty much reveal that very few people were completely gay or straight and that human sexuality was more of a sliding scale? In other words, I always thought that Kinsey was saying that most people are varying degrees of bisexual.
  • MrNomis

    Posts: 268

    Aug 28, 2011 7:48 PM GMT
    irishkcguy saidMaybe I completely misunderstand, but didn't Kinsey's work pretty much reveal that very few people were completely gay or straight and that human sexuality was more of a sliding scale? In other words, I always thought that Kinsey was saying that most people are varying degrees of bisexual.
    i agree! i don't quite get the fascination with gay, straight, whatever.... we are who we are and like what or who we like because we are human.
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    Aug 28, 2011 7:59 PM GMT
    irishkcguy saidMaybe I completely misunderstand, but didn't Kinsey's work pretty much reveal that very few people were completely gay or straight and that human sexuality was more of a sliding scale? In other words, I always thought that Kinsey was saying that most people are varying degrees of bisexual.


    Yeah, Kinsey had it down pat 60 years ago already. It's just no "God fearing "Christian"" could stand a study that would implicate half of Christian men as being abominations(not that same-sex attracted men are.).
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    Aug 28, 2011 7:59 PM GMT
    If it turns you on and the feeling is mutual, fuck it. icon_biggrin.gif
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    Aug 28, 2011 10:19 PM GMT
    Animus said
    irishkcguy saidMaybe I completely misunderstand, but didn't Kinsey's work pretty much reveal that very few people were completely gay or straight and that human sexuality was more of a sliding scale? In other words, I always thought that Kinsey was saying that most people are varying degrees of bisexual.


    Yeah, Kinsey had it down pat 60 years ago already. It's just no "God fearing "Christian"" could stand a study that would implicate half of Christian men as being abominations(not that same-sex attracted men are.).


    Yes, but there is also a lot of gays who insist that bisexuality doesn't exist. Two things that usually get you flamed in the forums here are admitting you are Republican or admitting you are bisexual.
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    Aug 28, 2011 10:19 PM GMT
    paulflexes saidIf it turns you on and the feeling is mutual, fuck it. icon_biggrin.gif

    If you can't fuck it, kill it and eat it.
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    Aug 28, 2011 10:25 PM GMT
    i like girls 30% and guys 70% but i still consider myself gay....
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    Aug 28, 2011 11:14 PM GMT
    pattison saidBut we even have half brothers here at RJ whom are bisexual as they have had both sexual relations with both women and men. I myself a Gold Card Gay (the real thing) have never ever had sexual relations with a women, let alone produce any children either. But we do have have half brothers here whom are bisexual but have either seen themselves as straight, then gay never bi. How sad; but they have never been straight or gay.....they be bi. So yes there is such a thing as a bisexual, and bi does not = gay!

    Fly the Bisexual pride flag to support our half brothers the bisexuals.


    I think it is cool how when you tap the leg right below the knee with one of the hammers the doctors use your leg jerks!
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    Aug 31, 2011 8:17 AM GMT
    irishkcguy saidMaybe I completely misunderstand, but didn't Kinsey's work pretty much reveal that very few people were completely gay or straight and that human sexuality was more of a sliding scale? In other words, I always thought that Kinsey was saying that most people are varying degrees of bisexual.


    Kinsey's work was heavily discredited as unscientific as it simply didn't follow the scientific method.

    He did not use the modern subtext of sexual orientation (i.e. sexual/emotional attraction).

    He used an extremely flawed survey that were heavily skewed (a big no-no in statistics) and he later admitted in life that he purposefully fudged the numbers to get the results he wanted (a MAJOR no-no in science)

    In other words, the Kinsey Scale is bullshit. It failed to uphold itself in science.

    The theory that "everyone is bi!" is simply not proven to be true.

    I find that only people who think that everyone is bisexual...are bisexuals themselves.

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    Aug 31, 2011 8:21 AM GMT
    hotyeaboy saidi like girls 30% and guys 70% but i still consider myself gay....


    Not to be an asshole, but logically, according to the literal definition of the word, you're bisexual.

    You have every right to call yourself what you feel most comfortable but under the definition of bisexual, you're a bisexual man.
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    Aug 31, 2011 12:37 PM GMT
    Upper_Canadian said
    paulflexes saidIf it turns you on and the feeling is mutual, fuck it. icon_biggrin.gif

    If you can't fuck it, kill it and eat it.
    What if it's already a deadfuck?
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    Aug 31, 2011 2:31 PM GMT
    Daddy, what does "unvisible" mean? icon_rolleyes.gif
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    Aug 31, 2011 2:41 PM GMT
    Scruffypup saidDaddy, what does "unvisible" mean? icon_rolleyes.gif

    Not much of a grammar/spelling nazi but I was bothered by 'unvisible' as well.
    On topic, I enjoyed the read and I also hate the double standard between male/female bisexuals.
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    Aug 31, 2011 3:04 PM GMT

    People are so fucking naive. That any group would spend money attempting to prove bisexuality exists is as wasteful as Rogaine spending money to prove that hair-loss exists. It does. It's not debatable. And the question of how many bisexuals are out there is easily answered: Who cares?