Bisexual women have insisted in the lesbian community for many years that they face powerful biases and discrimination against females. Some bisexual women are emphatic that lesbian discrimination is more vocal and heated than heterosexual society discrimination they face.
A woman who has been doing some introspection on her own sexuality posted on the Lesbian Life forum,”… I wouldn’t have to worry about lesbians calling me a traitor or a fence-sitter and other such garbage, or otherwise rejecting me based on my sexual orientation…” when debating the alternatives of self-labeling her sexuality as lesbian or bisexual.
Confirming that she had experienced the same from the females in the local lesbian community, a female posted,”… Anyway, what I found was: since you’re bi, when things get bad you can step back into the hetero society and mix in.— There’s also a perception that bi females* and* males are promiscuous and want their cake and eat it too…”
But here I get ahead of myself.
From the side of the BISEXUAL WOMAN…
Many bisexual women report that some lesbians just because they don’t identify as lesbians have refused to recognize them as prospective partners. In fact, the Lesbian Life poll on a lesbian bias shows that there is a significant percentage of lesbians who either won’t date or won’t get engaged with a female who identifies as bisexual.
Most bisexual women report being accused of being a fence sitter at least once— someone who will retain or establish a connection with a guy to prevent social, family and friends rejection and discrimination. Frankly, I don’t think it’s necessary to define as bisexual to hide from the hate and discrimination that we can sometimes encounter in society.
Why are we expecting everyone to stand up to the crimes perpetrated against us? It is a strong incentive to move forward that so many of us persevere. But it’s simple to forget in conquering our own fear that not all of us are so powerful, or so capable— not to mention that not every city / town is a safe place to come out. Maybe we need to remember to be soft in each other’s assessments.
There is also a perception of bisexual women being more promiscuous than lesbians or straight women, or being allowed to use them as sex-toys. Really, the label is about a private sexual identity, not a conduct. Considering that lesbians would embrace this stereotyping while fighting against all the stereotypes used against us is a little awkward. The truth is that some individuals are promiscuous, and some of those promiscuous women identify themselves as bisexual women. Some promiscuous women also identify themselves as lesbians.
Further in the thread of the forum, a number of females who identify themselves as bisexual women said that although sexually and mentally attracted to females, they might sometimes feel a sexual stirring for a specific type of male. This unusual sense that none had ever acted on was the reason they used the bisexual woman label rather than the lesbian label.
Frankly, if we all use the labels of sexual orientation with the same meanings, using this definition for bisexuality has me questioning. The definition used by these females is that a lesbian is someone who is only able to communicate with females in sex. And although lesbians have sex with females, it must be recognized that it is more than just sexual activity to be a lesbian. The problem is about an emotional bond— it’s not about dismissing males in the case of lesbians— it’s about the capacity and willingness to bond in loving relationships with females.
I can’t assist but wonder if the misunderstanding might give rise to the impression that some females define themselves as bisexual while becoming comfortable with the discovery that they are lesbian. Maybe this problem is at its heart merely misunderstanding and miscommunication.
Maybe all of these questions are about assumptions and misinformation. Maybe it’s time we opened communication lines instead of accepting individual stereotypes and biases.
Before the next moment…
Until next time…