Today, I was perusing my WordPress Reader feed when I came across a post from someone that is very supportive of the bi-community. She had a post about coming out to her children. Now, before I offer my opinion and comment on this post, I must preface it with the fact that I am now in the midst of another my self-questioning phases where I am contemplating my own sexuality. Yes, yes, yes, I am well aware this has never been good for my own self-image, but it is a completely normal thing for me to do. Make sense? Of course it doesn’t, but do our emotions and feelings ever have anything set in stone? Well, for me, that is certainly not the case.
But I’ve side-tracked, so let me get back the point I’m going to make.
Although I will never voluntarily out myself to my children, I would never lie to them. Granted, I am a master of dressing explanations so that the person I’m speaking with feels better, but I would not lie if someone were to ask me if I’m bisexual. The thing with me, as I have mentioned before, is that I have never been comfortable with my sexuality. I have never been able to “be proud”. And truthfully, although open to it, it is likely, I’ll never have another same-sex relationship or encounter ever again. But the simple truth is this: I have always felt my sexuality is on a need-to-know-basis.
But, this author used a phrase I have never used before (I’m not sure if she coined it, or if it’s a common phrase in the LGBT+ community): Internalized Bi-Phobia. I found this term to be intriguing, because it represents a certain level of hating oneself for being bisexual. And I am no-stranger to self-loathing, self-hatred, poor self image and poor self-esteem. In fact, it wouldn’t be a far stretch for me to be bi-phobic towards myself, based on all of the other self-deprecating emotions I have had before. So, I cam completely capable of internalized bi-phobia.
Of course, the obvious response to this would be to adopt a positive and self-loving approach to life. Um…duh! Yes, of course, I understand the need for that aspect of life and it is something I have been working on and will continue to do so. I have had so many things happen in life that has brought me to right now that I have accepted that there is no simple answer to life’s challenges. But for me, I tend to be the kind of person that makes decisions based on potential consequences and outcomes and I can see how my sexuality could have a negative impact on my children’s lives. For this reason, I maintain my bisexual anonymity. I have also taken into consideration that coming out on a public level could impact my wife in a negative way. So, for me, I find the act of coming out to be self-serving. In no way, am I saying that anyone who comes out is selfish, because I am not. I recognize it can me extremely empowering for people; but for me, on my most basic level, I can see coming out as being a negative.
So, yes, maybe I do have some internalized bi-phobia…