Why My Relationship Status Doesn’t Define My Sexuality

Ever since I first came out in 2014, I’ve been flooded with a slew of people trying to define my sexuality based on who I was currently dating. A prior girlfriend and I were told that identifying as bisexual made us “fake lesbians.” My current relationship has led quite a number of people to inform me that my sexual identification was no longer valid, simply because I have a male partner. 

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again — my current partner does not define my sexuality. My sexuality and who I’m dating are two mutually exclusive, but complimentary things. If I said I loved all animals, but got a dog and not a cat, no one would tell me that it meant I wasn’t actually a cat person, because that would be ridiculous! I could have had a cat in the past or be looking to get a cat in the future — or even never get a cat and that doesn’t mean I like them any less.

Animal analogies aside, from my personal experience, bisexual people have the unfortunate luck of being attacked from all sides. We’re either not queer enough or not straight enough for anyone. That lack of recognition can have really damaging effects, especially as a young person. I was fourteen when I first started discovering my sexuality. Part of the reason it took me so long to figure it out is that the internet told me that bisexuality was a phase, that it “wasn’t real” and that I was harming the queer community by “pretending” to be one of them.​
It’s hard enough to come out without feeling like everyone around you is against you and the consequences of such stereotypes about bisexuals — that they just want threesomes, that they’re cheaters, that they’re just not accepting their “true” sexuality — can have super bad repercussions. One of the large reasons my dad isn’t comfortable with my sexuality is based on the caricature of bisexuality he’s seen on TV, the one telling him that I’m just having a “rebellious” college phase and that I’m going around kissing girls just to spite him. I hate to burst his bubble, but dad — I’m kissing girls because they’re super hot, sorry! ​
To put it simply, I like girls. And I like boys! I’m currently madly in love with a boy, but that doesn’t mean that my attraction to girls has vanished. Instead, I’m lucky to be in a relationship where my boyfriend and I can point out cute girls to each other! My sexuality is just one aspect of who I am. Although it’s something I consider important, it is not my only defining characteristic. 

I’m not half straight or half gay — or half anything, really. I’m just your full-fledged friendly neighbourhood bisexual and my dating status doesn’t affect that at all.