Pro-neurodiversity, pro-vaccines, pro-disability rights, anti-cure.

Now Katy doesn't want to live in Smithton anymore.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

A short and belated coming out post

I don't think I ever mentioned this before, but I'm bisexual.  This may seem kind of random, because, well, it is, but I've kind of been keeping quieter about it than I used to and I don't really know why.  Most of my close family and friends already know, but I've hesitated to discuss it here because I'm afraid to experience the minor backlash some other queer autistic writers have received.  Since I'm in a monogamous relationship with a man, I felt kind of comfortable letting people assume I was straight, and I honestly feel really awkward not mentioning it. 

Just to clarify, I realized I was attracted to girls when I was about 12.  I was kind of upset about it at first, because I knew gay people but I didn't really want to be a lesbian.  Just as I was coming to terms with it and ready to mention it to my mother, I realized I was attracted to boys.  I wound up having to tell my mother I thought I was gay but couldn't decide if I was gay or straight because I thought I liked both girls and boys.  I had never heard the term bisexual before, and it took a couple years before I felt comfortable applying it to myself.  In an extremely homophobic school system I tried to keep my orientation quiet until high school, where people just sort of found out but didn't care a whole lot.  My parents, brother, some other relatives, and my friends were all aware, but after college I decided I wasn't going to keep it hidden anymore.  I only mentioned it when it came up in conversation to avoid seeming annoying.  I've never dated a girl before, mostly because I'm so damn awkward, and I've only dated three boys, including my current fiance.  I haven't decided to be straight by dating him, as if a person could decide that, but people have asked.  I don't know where all these stereotypes about bisexuals even come from.  I'm also not secretly a lesbian.  I feel like the stereotypes about bisexuals (the "bisexual" homosexual, the promiscuous person who sleeps with everyone in sight, the girl-who-makes-out-with-chicks-for-attention, the person who needs to just choose, the person who changes their sexual orientation every day, the confused person who thinks bi is cool) are worse than the ones about lesbians.  At least most people agree that lesbians are real.

I've encountered some criticism from certain parts of the gay and lesbian community itself for not being gay enough, or for supposedly being afraid to accept my true identity as a gay person.  I sometimes feel as if I don't belong unless I'm single or dating a girl.  Bisexual erasure is a very real thing.  For that matter, so is trans and asexual erasure, and erasure of other non-conforming gender identities and sexual orientations.  This is why I don't really do the whole gay pride thing.  The ostracism from the GLBT community was more hurtful than what I received from the straight community.

I've mentioned my sexual orientation to a few other bloggers, but I avoided mentioning it here, and only certain people can see the parts of my Facebook page that would indicate I was bi.  I also wasn't sure how my fiance's family would react to it, but eh, if they find out, they'll find out.  If anyone stops reading my blog because of this, I probably wouldn't want them reading my blog anyway.  So I'm coming out of the closet for good instead of standing awkwardly with one foot in and one foot out.  Closets are for clothes, not people.

1 comment:

  1. Excellent post, Kat - you really hit the nail on the head regarding bisexual erasure. And what you said about taking more flak from the LGBTQ* community regarding your sexual orientation than from mainstream society is pretty powerful. Today's LGBTQ* (or should I say, LG) movement has a lot of serious problems with regards to accepting and supporting queer people who are not lesbian and gay as well as trans/genderqueer people.