It’s Not A Phase. You Won’t Grow Out Of It.
Your Feelings Are Real And You’re Not A Freak.
As a teenager I was lucky when I started to realise I liked girls as well as boys. The two friends I told didn’t bat an eye at my crush on the lead singer of 90’s band Republica, or how I always wanted to visit a certain clothes shop to see a certain female sales assistant.
In my late teens/early twenties I was heavily intrenched in the Goth and alternative subculture, so no one there cared about my sexuality, either. On any given Saturday night at the club, you had a chance of coming across a gay or lesbian couple, or even someone transitioning.
Oddly, it’s after I got married and settled down that I started to question my sexuality, and if it was ‘just a phase.’
I’m married to, and have two children with, a man who I love deeply. I also strongly believe in monogamy. Unless something terrible happens (I pray to God it won’t) I don’t see that ever changing. That doesn’t stop me being attracted to women, even though I’ve never dated one and I’ve only had one same-sex experience.
But certain people, even within the LGBTQ+ community, believe bisexuals don’t exist. That they’re either doing it for attention or they’ll pick a side eventually. Some could say I have ‘picked a side,’ but as I mentioned above, being married to a man doesn’t stop me being attracted to women. It only stops me acting on that attraction. I don’t get crushes on real life people – male or female – but I sure as hell still have crushes on actresses, singers and other female celebrities.
If anything were to happen to my marriage (God forbid) I’d be more than open to a relationship with a woman. For me it isn’t about the gender, it’s about their personality, and the things we have in common.
But it took me a long time to learn and accept that. I was constantly exposed to online articles, website posts and people on social media who claimed you couldn’t fancy girls if you’d never dated one. Or that if you were in a heterosexual relationship that was it, your bisexual status was revoked.
But sexuality isn’t something you switch on and off. If it were, don’t you think all those people persecuted for their sexuality would just set themselves to ‘normal’? Being bisexual doesn’t make you indecisive or greedy, either. Monogamy is a choice you make regardless of sexuality. You’re only indecisive or greedy if you cheat on your partner and betray their trust, and that applies to straight, gay or lesbian couples.
The fact of the matter is, some people like both genders. Just like some people are only attracted to the opposite gender, some people the same gender, and some people aren’t attracted to others at all. All these things, and many more, are valid and you should never be made to feel bad, dirty or wrong for who you love.
That’s the main reason I wrote my short story, I WANT YOU TO WANT ME, in which a young woman comes to realise she’s bisexual when she falls in love with her best friend and roommate. One of the aspects I wanted to explore was her conservative parents’ reaction. Spoiler: They ask how it is even possible, and suggest “It’s just a phase. Once you meet the right guy, settle down and start popping out a few kids, you’ll grow out of it.”
Sexuality isn’t some phase, it’s not some fashion or trend you grow out of or get bored of. That’s like saying once someone is married they will stop finding other people attractive. But how many married women have crushes on actors like Tom Hardy? How many married men think Gal Gadot is the hottest woman alive? (I’d argue that’s Eva Green, but whatever). Heck, my mom, who is in her sixties and happily married, still has a crush on Sean Connery!
So, if you’re a bisexual out there reading this, know it’s not a phase. You won’t grow out of it. Your feelings are real and you’re not a freak. It doesn’t matter who you’ve dated/ had experiences with in the past. It doesn’t matter who you’re with now. It doesn’t matter if you like the same gender 90% of the time, but sometimes you like the opposite gender too. If you find both genders sexually attractive, you’re probably bisexual, there’s nothing wrong with that, and there are people out there who will love and support you no matter what.
Clare Dugmore is an author of contemporary-romance, urban-fantasy and paranormal fiction.
Her published works include contemporary-romance novel ALL IT TAKES, LGBT novella I WANT YOU TO WANT ME, and SOLSTICE SPELL, a Nutcracker Prince retelling which is featured in the MAGIC AT MIDNIGHT ANTHOLOGY.
You can find out more about Clare and her stories at www.claredugmore.weebly.com