The P-Word


The Controversial Couch 

Lie back and listen. Then get up and do something

By Suzan Ambrose

The P-Word. I know what you’re thinking; so many different images come to mind, yes? But for today, the P-Word stands for preference

Now, I don’t pass judgment on straights-or gays-for their sexual preferences. Because whether you love the same- sex or the opposite one, no matter how you dice it, it’s a preference.

It’s what gets you going under the covers (…or perhaps over them!)

But what about bisexuals? The less-talked about letter of the LGBT acronym, bisexuals seem to float in some middle category: sometimes they’re bi, maybe all-the-time-sometimes, or maybe just once you kissed a girl, even liked her cherry chap stick, but it was back to men for the long-haul. (Not the UHaul, ladies!).

Bisexuals are certainly misunderstood by the gay community, perhaps more so than by straights, where it’s accepted as chic frequently today. Many gays and lesbians think bi’s are misguided, playing games, confused, bored, or lonely. Which makes them different how from the straight-up gay and lesbian purists?

But I digress.

This article comes on the heels of telling someone who’s known me for years that I identified as bisexual on a recent survey (only one label could be chosen). This individual was flabbergasted, since I am currently in a long-term lesbian relationship (as if that hindered the bisexual component in me), and responded with “Does you wife know?”

Damn, I hope I mentioned it before the vows.

What’s striking is my “confession” of bisexuality seemed to bring up parallels with nonmonogamy.
Is it too much to ask that bisexuality not be equated with a permission slip for
infidelity?

According to Alfred Kinsey, founder of the Institute for Sex Research, many humans do not fall exclusively into hetero or homo classifications, but somewhere in between. Even Freud made the argument that every person has the ability to become bisexual at some point in their lives. (Don’t let the Christianright catch a hold of that one, although this theory may give comfort to Pastor Ted Haggart or Sen. Larry Craig.)

According to Freud, people remain bisexual all their lives in a repression to monosexuality of fantasy and behavior.” Is this a variation of Don’t Ask and I Won’t Tell? And isn’t this just what we observe, when individuals speak honestly, that their fantasies go outside the boundaries of what is considered normal for their preference? (I plead the fifth.)

Somehow, the stereotypes persist for bi people. Bi men are considered confused players, not to be completely trusted by men or women since neither can fulfill his total desires. Bi women: insatiable, sexually liberal, multiple partners. Neither of these perceptions are 100% accurate, and certainly don’t pertain only to bi’s.

Bisexuals blur the lines of preference, and that makes lots of people uncomfortable, including many in the GLBT community! You’d think we would be more tolerant of shoving people into little boxes, not so quick to make nice, neat and clean lines of distinction or separation. And let’s be frank: most of us experienced opposite-sex relationships before we came out as gay or lesbian. Maybe we (gasp!) even enjoyed parts of those relationships. It just wasn’t what we had a preference for waking up everyday with. “Give me some P!” I thought.

And yes, this time I mean the P- word.

reprinted with permission from The Rainbow Times