A look into the experiences of bisexual women who happened to fall in love with men.
Graphics by Chris Ritter
Reblogging this again because it’s so important.
This is relevant
this article was so wonderful to read
“I have avoided telling my queer friends that I am in a relationship with a man. It’s like coming out all over again and I’ve experienced resistance against it. It feels like you are mistrusted, that people think you have actively chosen to take the route of most privilege without considering the ways in which you are now held at the margins by the community you most identify with. […] Even with friends, I’ve faced microaggressions in the form of jokes: ‘How does straightness feel?’”
Omg. Omg. Yes, yes, yes. Queer women being treated as if they are straight or, even worse, internalizing the belief that they have become straight because they’ve chosen a monogamous relationship with a man. Bisexual women opting out of queer community because they feel like they don’t belong, won’t be welcomed, are intruding with their “straight privilege”, etc. It’s so common and it breaks my heart every time I see it.
Being a queer woman in a relationship with a man is very different from being a straight woman in a relationship with a man. Queer people in “opposite sex” relationships need support from other queers. I need support from other queers who are in “opposite sex” relationships. And every time I watch someone re-closet herself because she’s been told her marriage makes her straight, I feel a little bit more lonely and desperate.
It’s actually one of the most surprising and sad things I’ve noticed about moving to the Midwest. I was worried that I would have to be more closeted here because it’s so much more conservative than most other places I’ve lived. And I have. But what I’ve found myself being more closeted about is not my queerness but specifically my bisexuality.
A lot of people here can tell I’m queer by looking at me. Much moreso than I’m used to — probably because my soft!butch-tomboy-Doc-Marten’s-and-no-makeup presentation is less acceptable for straight women here in the Bible Belt than it was in sporty Boulder, CO. Most strangers I interact with just assume my partner is a “she.”
…And, in a surprising and lovely turn of events, many of those strangers have been kindly older lesbians. And friendly young gay boys. The tightknit LG community here has been super welcoming. I’ve been invited to concerts, organic gardening weekends, karaoke. I’ve been supported through my breakup (“she shouldn’t have done that to you!”), introduced to friends and partners, told funny stories about how heteros do the darndest things, and repeatedly encouraged that “things are changing here; it’s getting better!”
And I’m so afraid to pop their bubble, their assumption that I’m the new gay girl in town. Because if I lose that support system, it’s not like I can turn to the “straight community” instead. I’m a fuckin’ queer.
It’s awkward enough interrupting supportive comments about my breakup to correct peoples’ pronouns. (“Oh, well actually, it’s ‘they’. ‘They.’ Yeah. Not ‘she.’ No, like, plural…except for one person. My ex is transgender, so they use a gender neutral-. But yeah, they’re still a jerk. Thanks.”) Forget explaining that the “friend” who’s staying with me is also a lover — and that they also go by ‘they’ even though they’re not transgender. Fuck it. We’ve just been playing the, “He’s my gay best friend. He came out to help me move. Yeah, he’s a sweetheart,” card.
Me and my bisexual anxiety. I’ve spent my whole life feeling invisible and struggling to be as out and queer as possible. Now, suddenly, I find myself being read as queer without having to fight for it — and instead I’m getting erased in the other direction. There’s gotta be a reaction gif for this.