What is Bisexuality?

by Evelyn Hoch, LCSW, MFT

 ::   You’re a 28 yr.old woman who has been happily partnered with a man for 3 years and recently you’ve developed a crush on a woman you work with…

You’ve been lesbian-identified for the past 15 years — ever since you fell in love with your best friend in college. Lately, you’ve been noticing guys more, even having erotic fantasies. You figure: no big deal, lots of lesbians fantasize about men. But you know in your gut this is different…

Since you were a teenager, sometimes you’d get a crush on a boy — sometimes a girl. You’ve always felt pressured to “make up your mind”. Lately you’re wondering “maybe I don’t have to”.

These are just a few of the many faces of bisexuality. I hope the following information about bisexuality helps you clarify your own feelings and/or be more knowledgeable & sensitive regarding bisexuality in general.

What is bisexuality anyway? Bisexuality is the capacity for romantic, physical/ erotic and /or emotional attraction to more than one gender. A bisexual identity inherently challenges dualistic categories of sexual orientation (hetero/straight or queer/gay).

As the famous sex researcher Alfred Kinsey stated, “The world is not divided into sheep and goats”. Try not to assume that everyone is — or should be — straight or gay. If in doubt, assume that bisexuals are present in every group of queer or straight people. We usually are. Honoring bisexual identity is not just political correctness. It’s about demonstrating the same respect for diversity that we demand.

Isn’t bisexuality just a phase and aren’t bisexuals just “confused”? Of course, some people go through a period of bisexuality on their way to transitioning to a gay, lesbian or heterosexual identity. But for many, bisexuality continues as a long-term or lifetime orientation. Actually, researchers have found that bisexual people often go through a transitional phase of homosexuality and heterosexuality in the bi coming-out process.

Aren’t bisexuals just “oversexed” and need to have partners of different genders?

The same variety of sexual activity exists in the bisexual population as in other groups.

And the majority of bisexuals don’t feel the need to be involved with more than one sex/gender to feel satisfied. And bisexual people are as capable as anyone else of making a monogamous commitment.

::  We invite your reply and comments in the space provided below  ::

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Evelyn Hoch, LCSW, MFT, is licensed both as a Licensed Marriage Family Therapist and a Licensed Clinical Social Worker. She believe psychotherapy/ counseling is essentially a journey in self-love, self-knowing and acceptance. Therapy is an opportunity to review both current and past patterns, traumas/injuries in a safe environment. Her therapeutic style is interactive, helping women explore and support the discovery of their more authentic selves, utilizing techniques drawn from various disciplines, such as communication theory, self-psychology, cognitive techniques.

Contact Evelyn Hoch @ 510-547-3759

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