Problematic Information About Bisexual Men on the Internet: Bisexuality & Non-Monogamy

While I was writing the title of this post, I realized I may have made up the word “non-monogamy”. But you know what I mean.

When last I left off, I was lamenting how the existence of male bisexuality was questioned as recently as 2005. Think about it: How upsetting was that for guys thinking they might be bi in 2005? They must have been really confused, being told it wasn’t possible. If research was claiming bi men didn’t exist, what did those guys think they were? I like to imagine they knew deep down that the research was wrong, but that is pretty bold. 

After my disappointment with the later disproved 2005 study, I was still thirsty for knowledge about bi dudes, so I continued on my quest. I found that even reputable sites often provided information that was misleading, politically incorrect, or at least confusing. For example, one site suggested that if your boyfriend comes out to you as bisexual, he may want to renegotiate the relationship and ask to see other men. I mean, TECHNICALLY this is true; he MAY do any number of things. But a straight guy may ask to see other women. I don’t understand why everyone seems to equate bisexuality with non-monogamy. Bisexuals don’t have a divine right to open relationships any more than straight people do- Unless, I’m wrong?? (And if I am wrong, I invite bisexuals to please correct me.)

The worst part was, the site said that if your bisexual boyfriend does ask to see other people, don’t say no right away. Srsly? Dude, if you would say no right away to him seeing other chicks, say no right away to him seeing other guys!  Bisexuality does not equal infidelity/non-monogamy/open relationships- UNLESS I’m wrong! Maybe I’m wrong… and that would just suck for all you monogamous bisexuals, because people seeking monogamous relationships will mistakenly avoid you.

I feel like the agreed upon standard should be: Generally bisexual people seek monogamous relationships, just like gay and straight people generally do. And SOME bisexuals seek open relationships, just like SOME gay and straight people do. And if this is not the case, maybe we need a new word for people who are bisexual and monogamous, just to avoid confusion with those who are bisexual and need to be involved with both genders at the SAME TIME.

I guess I just figured straight guys don’t usually expect to date two girls at once, so a bisexual guy wouldn’t seek to date two people at once either. When you commit to one person, you forgo other traits, be it blonde hair if you pick a brunette, height if you pick a short person, and penis if you pick a woman. I don’t see how bisexuality changes any of these rules.

Yet had I ever researched the topic before, I would have come away with different, confused ideas about what bisexuality meant. I would probably have gotten the impression that it was standard (or at least common) for bisexual people to sleep with one person of each gender at the same time. And I’m grateful I never did research the topic, because I probably would not have started dating Jay if I assumed his orientation meant he would require two people at once. But he’s not like that at all, and I’m glad I got to know him first. He’s actually a huge fan of monogamy- more so than I am. (I’m one of those people who’s afraid of making things ‘exclusive’ or ‘too serious.’ But Jay, on the other hand, was fairly eager to be boyfriend & girlfriend. )

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15 Comments

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15 responses to “Problematic Information About Bisexual Men on the Internet: Bisexuality & Non-Monogamy

  1. Big G

    I too feel that a person who represents themselves as bi wouldn’t be able to be monogamous. nor can they be because they are telling you strait up they are non committal or can’t choose. But I did notice after having a bi girlfriend for a while that I didn’t care about the relationship they shared. often times I felt a women needed a close woman friend. She needed both of us and what I got was all heteral as a result of the time spent with the other woman. So now im completely confused.

    • I see your point; I agree that when some people say they are bi, they mean they can’t commit to/choose one gender. But the problem is that some people say they are bi because they can be attracted to both genders, but ultimately will be able to pick one person- they just don’t know whether it will be a guy or a girl yet. It’s hard for these bisexual people because potential partners assume they will always have to share them with someone of the other gender, even though that’s not true.

      Maybe there needs to be two different words for these different types of bi people?? I dunno…

      • Yes Sydney, the thought which applies to me as well is the attraction of both genders and might be the choice of choosing is at an age where the sex needs aren’t met. I know people in my land who despite being married with a woman cannot ignore male sex partner so call it ‘SODOMY’ so you last query should end up with this word. More can be shared on this choosing of sex gender partner(s), if interested.

  2. My thoughts on this one is that if you want to know about bisexuals, talk to a bisexual; all the stuff you can find on the Internet is all well and good but even I don’t think it represents or even explains bisexuality as well as someone who’s bi could.

    Like me. I read the two comments… and, forgive me, I had to laugh because I see them as being stereotypical; there’s some truth to it but not entirely the truth. I always get this funny look on my face to learn that there are some people who seem to think that being bisexual means we can’t be monogamous, can’t commit, can’t make up our minds to choose a side – and that’s not entirely the truth either.

    It just never fails to amaze and even amuse me that people think that we can’t choose… when, if we’re truly bisexual, we’ve already chosen to be attracted to men and women – it’s not either/or, by the way; that implies that we should either be straight or gay and, sorry, that’s not the way it is.

    What is assumed is that because we choose to be attracted to men and women, we can’t make additional choices, oh, like being monogamous; some of us do learn that just because we can do it, it doesn’t mean we have to; it doesn’t even mean that we will.

    It cracks me up to see that people think bisexuals are so totally out of control and horribly confused; I’m not so that by itself makes this untrue. I say again that if you really want to know and understand bisexuality, ask a bisexual why they are and what it means to them instead of reading stuff on the Internet and then assuming that we’re all the same.

    Because we aren’t. And, just for the sake of information, if I had to choose between a girl and a guy as far as a relationship is concerned, I’ll take the woman every time – it’s really that simple and is, in fact, a choice that many bisexuals make; to choose to be in a relationship with a man is seen by bisexuals to be gay… and we don’t like being confused with gay folks and simply because, um, we’re not gay.

    It’s not all that hard to understand… but one does have to want to understand it.

    Nice blog…

    • I agree, asking a bi person is the best way to get information on the subject of bisexuality (duh, hahaha). The problem is that a lot of people who might want to learn about the topic don’t necessarily know any bi people! Aside from Jay, the guy I’m seeing, I don’t know any bisexual men (or if I do, they haven’t told me about it). I wish I know more bi guys, because I would definitely have a lot to ask them. In fact one of the reasons I started this blog is because I was hoping bi guys would respond to me, and tell me their perspectives- so thanks for sharing all this information! I found it very enlightening.

      Sydney S.

    • Northern Minnesota Bi-Guy

      I disagree with kdaddy that choosing to be with a man makes you gay. While it is true that many (maybe most?) male bisexuals end up partnered to women, I have encountered at least one bi-guy who was partnered to a guy.
      What this really raises is the dilemma of “bisexual invisibility”, which is the problem that when you choose a be in a monogamous relationship, people will assume that you are either straight or gay. It is an issue that I and several of my bisexual friends have struggled with – not feeling seen.

      • Hmm, did I say that? I gotta look because even I know better than that!

      • Northern Minnesota Bi-Guy

        Kdaddy, I hope you don’t think I’m picking on you… I was in a bit of a critical mood last night. The majority of the things you’ve been posting have been spot on, and well thought out.

        It’s quite possible you misspoke/typed…

      • @NMBG, it’s all good; you were in a critical mood and I’ve been suffering from a nasty head cold! Yep, chances are I did misspeak! I’ve had two relationships with gay men but I never thought of them as being gay relationships and that’s probably because even though I was with those guys, I was very much getting all the pussy I could handle. In this, the one gay guy was pretty unhappy with me because I’d come in smelling like pussy; for him, the relationship was solid while for me, eh, not so much; in my mind, we were roommates who’d occasionally have sex and although he knew I was bi and knew I wasn’t gonna give up having sex with women, he still fussed a lot about it.

        Now the other guy was very cool about this – my wife and this guy were great friends and she had no problem with us having sex with each other. Indeed, he told me one night that he had been giving some serious thought about giving pussy a try and, yeah, I encouraged him to give it a shot. He found a girl and convinced her to give him some and he said that while it was a great experience, he still liked dick better.

  3. Pingback: Bisexual Misconceptions | Kdaddy23's Blog

  4. Billy

    Haha. Sorry to dig up a slightly older post, but I figured I’d try to read everything on you blog since the backlog isn’t particularly extensive. 😀 I’ve read a lot of quotes/replies like this on message boards to the question “Would you date a bi guy?”:

    “No. I have to make sure my man is not cheating on me with a woman, and then I have to make sure hes not cheating with a man? Nah.”

    I used to get really upset when reading stuff like this, but they I had an epiphany. For these girls, their starting premise is that their boyfriends are going to cheat on them. Even if they were straight. They have to be, from the start, ‘on the lookout’ that their SOs will cheat on them. For them, a guy will always be tempted to cheat, so a bi bf means twice the chances. But the whole thing is absurd. Why enter into a relationship where that’s the starting premise. For me at least, the starting premise should be trust on both parties.

    So I used to be upset that there are girls that won’t date bi guys because of this issue. But then I realized, these girls were so insecure and so lacking in the idea of trust that I have little interest in dating them let alone committing to them. And then I realized I probably wouldn’t want to date them anyway even if I were just straight.

    • Yeah, I always think its crazy that people assume they will just be constantly worried about cheating. Like its not a possibility they will date someone they just trust. unfortumately tho, a lot of people do cheat (regardless of whether they are men/women/other and gay/straight/bi).

      • As a bi guy, it always cracks me up when people assume that just because we’re bi, we’re gonna cheat on them, like we don’t know how to be monogamous and that some sense of being promiscuous just makes us mindless, slavering, horn dogs. Then again, we’re often guilty of living in our pasts: If someone cheated on us before, then everyone is going to cheat on us so bisexual or not, people are always waiting for that other shoe to drop.

  5. Northern Minnesota Bi-Guy

    Many bisexual people that I’ve known are in monogamous relationships or are capable of being monogamous. Assuming that bisexual men are automatically non-monogamous is pure prejudice.

    That said, in all honesty, I do think that perhaps being non-monogamous may be more common (but certainly not the rule) among bisexuals, just as it is more common among gay men. That said, there are also ways to be non-monogamous without cheating, for example being “monogam-ish” (as coined and explained by Dan Savage), or an “Ethical Slut” (as coined and explained by Dossie Easton and Janet Hardy).

    Dan Savage on Monogamish:
    http://www.queerty.com/watch-dan-savage-explains-the-pros-and-cons-of-a-monogamish-relationship-20130702/

    Wikipedia on Easton & Hardy’s book “The Ethical Slut”:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Ethical_Slut

    (And yes, Syndey, “Non-monogamous” is in fact a word that is widely used in certain circles.)

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