Bisexual erasure and biphobia are most definitely still things that exist
BY DANIELLE MUSTARDE
Here’s the thing, people. As a bisexual woman in a same-sex relationship, my bisexuality is more often than not lost in the binary static.
At every LGBTQI event I attend, (bearing in mind, I probably attend more than your average queer-o) if it comes up in conversation, it is always assumed that I identify as a lesbian. Like, always.
Now, don’t get me wrong – I geddit.
One, I work for DIVA, a publication almost synonymous with the word lesbian, though, as Charlotte Dingle wrote in her piece You’ve Come A Long Way DIVA in the magazine’s 250th issue, “The term ‘lesbian and bisexual’ made its way further into DIVA after the noughties,” and today, it is firmly a part of the furniture of everything that we do.
Simply speaking, I’m never offended when people (both outside and inside the community) refer to me as a lesbian or gay – in fact, I’ve used “gay” as shorthand myself – but I do make a point of correcting them. Not to be contrary but to make a point.
Though it may seem a harmless on the one hand, on the other, the more that bisexual identities are lost through innocent assumption, the harder it is for society to accept bisexuality as the legitmate and very usual sexual identity that it is.
SHOCKING FACT: Many people in same-sex relationships are bisexual.
In fact, some would say those of us who identify as bi, pan or fluid are in the majority – and yet, in many ways, we remain paradoxically invisible in comparison to our L and G friends.
This invisibility becomes numerically evident when it comes to campaigns and funding for LGBTQI causes as bisexual-focused organisations receive little of the funding raised for LGBTQI causes (only 0.3% of funds go towards bisexual projects, according to the Movement Advancement Project).
This may seem trivial to some but, when you consider the fact that, according to a number of reports, bisexual people are more likely than their heterosexual, gay or lesbian counterparts to experience mental health issues, recognising such statistics becomes that little more crucial.
As such, it’s also très important that bisexual people are included and also platformed when it comes to recognising days like IDAHOBIT – that’s International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia, Interphobia and Transphobia, to you and me.
This IDAHOBIT-inspired exploration got me thinking – how do other bisexual women experience and deal with bisexual erasure and it’s cruel older sibling, biphobia?
I, a millenial who just missed the “YouTuber boat”, took to that very platform to find out…
Rose & Rosie: Dealing with biphobia and homophobia
Rose and Rosie chat dealing with bi-erasure, biphobia and homophobia and talk about the times they’ve been subjected to all three…
Responding to bisexual erasure and biphobic comments
Melanie Murphy reacts and responds to biphobia and bi erasure in her comments.
BBC Three: Things not to say to a bisexual person
A group of bisexuals have some stuff they want to get off their chests.
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