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Why I Say I'm Bisexual

This essay first appeared on Huffington Post on January 13, 2014.

I say I’m bisexual because I am. Because when I move through the world, I see people and parts and hearts and eyes and hair and I recognize the potential in myself to love all those things.

I say I’m bisexual because queer is in my heart and for my friends and family, but queer can be slippery and unnamable. Queer can slide away around the corner before you pin it down, can turn into something else. Bisexual is in your face, demands attention, refuses to turn into anything else, stands on its own.

I say I’m bisexual because I can. Because I have privilege and safety and loving friends and family and if someone needs to be an example, then make an example of me because I can take it.

I say I’m bisexual so that others don’t have to. So that those who disagree with labels have the safety of knowing they can call themselves (or not) whatever they wish. But also so that they have the comfort of knowing that we are out there. Without us (the loud, the proud, the labeled bisexuals), it would be so easy to pretend we don’t exist. That sexuality is binary (ironic, that).

So I say I’m bisexual so that no one can forget we exist. So that no one can forget we have higher risk for negative health

consequences, domestic violence and poverty. And so that when the counters count, they have to count me!

I say I’m bisexual so that Tom Daley and Maria Bello don’t have to. I say I’m bisexual so that every time someone comes out as having a relationship with someone of the same gender after having relationships with people of a different gender (or vice versa) and the press rush to say that person is “gay,” they remember me and take a step back.

I say I’m bisexual so that I can be googled. So that someone alone, someone far away, someone scared can look on the internet and find me — and see my life and my pride and my fear and my love and my label.

I say I’m bisexual so that I can never deny it. Because denying love is too hard. And once you’ve said it on the Internet, it never goes away. And I never have to hide again. I never can hide again.

I say I’m bisexual so that someday I won’t have to. So that when we get better at recognizing that sexual orientation is just another piece of a person, I can just be another person.

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