I'm super ashamed and embarrassed of being/identifying as bisexual because of all the biphobia I've witnessed. It's really fucking with my mental health and idk what to do. It's to the point where I just want to identify as straight, but I know that giving into biphobia and heteronormativity aren't the answer. I'm just lost. Our sexuality is always trivialized and I can't complain about it without being mocked. How do you guys deal with this?
I feel this. Biphobia is the largest cause of creating what is known as The Silent Majority - Bisexuals being the largest percentage of queer people and yet the most misrepresented.
I deal with it by surrounding myself with people who accept Bisexuals, people who cheerlead Bisexuals, and people who love me for me and for my Bisexuality. Aside from it being a good way to maintaining a positive self-image in regards to your own personal Bisexuality, it’s a good rule to live by in general. I also deal with it by educating and stepping in when I see Biphobia.
Spreading information to those otherwise unaware to Bi stigma helps! That’s why it’s always important, for those who aren’t Bi and care, to be a good Bi ally and educate people on the effects of Biphobia, including studies showing, for example, Bisexuals suffering from more mental health issues like depression and anxiety than their Gay/Lesbian counterparts. When we see biphobia existing in general cishet society (where we’re facing homophobia on top of biphobia) we turn to our safe spaces, our queer spaces, but in our safe spaces as well we’re not as safe as we should be. We desperately need these spaces especially since studies show Bisexuals face more sexual violence than their Gay/Lesbian and Straight peers. So when this support system we should have gets taken away for who we are - that’s Biphobia. And it does real actual harm towards Bisexuals.
“No one is hanging you for being Bi, Biphobia isn’t a thing!” well that’s the interesting part! In addition to dealing with Biphobia, which has its own ugliness as briefly mentioned, Bisexuals also deal with homophobia! (internally and externally, as previously mentioned). So in these moments, when we retreat to our safe spaces to recoup, and we’re forced to behave differently or be not what we truly are, or constantly questioned in regards to the validity of who we are, it does damage! It’s a cycle of violence and further reinforces this notion that, in LGBTQ+ spaces - despite being a very present letter in the acronym, queerness is conditional instead of something inherent. Bisexuality is inherently queer, has its own unique queer experiences, is a marginalized identity through and through, deserves better treatment, and deserves equal support.
This being said, cause these things need to be said, understanding that these concepts are present and being able to live a happy life are possible. What helped me out of my internalized biphobic/homophobic rut was coming to terms with the fact I wanted to be happy. My bisexuality wasn’t going to change, so I knew the only thing to do at that point was to accept it and learn to love it. There are also SO many Bisexual allies out there! The real world isn’t Tumblr discourse 24/7 I promise you and I can’t tell you how many times my gay and lesbian friends stop me whenever I start thinking biphobicly and step in to reinforce I’m queer and worthy. Bisexuality is beautiful. Your bisexuality is beautiful. It may be hard right now but I promise you it does get better.