Thursday, March 29, 2007

The water's great!

I was at the bi meeting last night and we were - as we often do - talking about how we identify ourselves to the rest of the world. A very wise woman pointed out that identity is sovereign. What that means to me is I don't really need to explain myself to anyone else, or even respond to whatever they think it means. However, it's been in the category of Things That Are None Of Anyone's Business But I Feel I Must Respond When Asked, like why Zirpu and I don't have kids.

I think that one good thing came about because of the mean girls, and that is I'm always welcoming people to join me. I have taken it on as my charge to welcome new members to the group by name, and if there is a movement to go out afterwards (which there often is) that everyone knows she is welcome to join us. I never want someone to feel like she doesn't belong in "my group," whatever it may be.

One of the things I feel, and I've heard others say they feel, about being bi is that none of us are an "either-or." We inhabit that grey area, like interfaith families and multiracial folks. Being ourselves raises questions, especially because we break taboos around sexuality and its expression, not to mention that the stereotypes of bisexuals are exclusively negative because we live in a sex-negative culture and the stereotypes about us are all about sexual appetite. While I personally haven't had any experience with this, some people I know have felt excluded by lesbians when they came out as bi, and one person was actually excluded from a group because she isn't a lesbian. I did have a gay man tell me what he thought my "Kinsey score" was, so that he could justify his statement that I wasn't as queer as he but more so than someone else (can you find the ironical [to me] statement in this link?). As if that score were static!

I see my bisexuality as being like water, having properties of its own but taking the shape of whatever vessel it's in. The water itself doesn't change when I hold it in a different vessel. Likewise, the water can be holding the vessel in which I'm floating.

I was thinking last night that the way I feel about being bisexual is that everyone's welcome in my boat. I don't care how gay or straight you are or aren't, I don't care if you are sure, straight, gay/lesbian, bi, questioning, have a crush, kissed a girl, kissed a boy, I want you to come along with me, be a travelling companion, friend, acquaintance, or just be someone waving as I float by. Because I don't feel today about my sexuality exactly the same way I felt yesterday, I don't expect that you will. We're all only making it up as we go along, and as I've said before, the only thing I know for sure is that as soon as I think I know something, something changes everything.

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