Way back in the 1980s when I was just another closeted frat boy in college, there was a thing known as fashionable bisexuality, popularized by fey pop stars and novels from Brett Easton Ellis and Michael Chabon. In my experience, what bisexuality boiled down to was this: You would let me blow you, but you wouldn't do anything in return. And then you would go back to your girlfriend and making fag jokes.
Unsurprisingly, with a couple of decades as an out gay man under my belt, I have some lingering issues about bisexuality.
There's an interesting discussion going on over at Shakesville about biphobia -- in this poster's case, biphobia from a lesbian perspective (h/t to Andrew Sullivan). Obviously, my perspective is a lot less lesbian -- but otherwise it's pretty similar. I've been through a lot of guys who told me they were bisexual -- I fell in love with some of them -- but almost all of them ended up in one of two ways: Either they ended up "going back" to women and getting married, or they came out as gay because they only called themselves bisexual so people wouldn't think they were total fags.
I should be very clear before anyone comes to burn down my house -- in a world of billions of people in a vast web sexual attractions and orientations, I don't doubt the existence of actual, living, breathing bisexuals. But like Sarah in Chicago at Shakesville, I can't shake some of the things that put me off about bisexuality. Is someone who is attracted to the same sex but in a hetero-normative, mixed-gender relationship really subject to the same level of discrimination as those of us who are gay, lesbian and transgender? I'm fully aware that my personal experience is a limited sample from which to draw broad conclusions, but with one exception -- a bisexual activist at a GLBT health conference I once attended -- every bisexual identified guy I've had direct interaction with has been romantically involved with women.
I feel bad in a way, because I really do want to be an all-inclusive kind of guy. And, since I'm a small-L libertarian, as far as I'm concerned everyone should be free and happy to bone or be boned by whichever gender they want. But there's a part of me that's always thinking that the bisexuals are getting the joys of homo transgression while reaping the benefits of hetero assimilation.
Is it just me?