That’s the choice that both the straight and the gay community often gives us. Pick your team. You’re either one of “us” or one of “them.” But what if you’re attracted to both genders? And the fact is that most people are… bisexual.
Of course you’d never know it from news reports. The media hardly ever mentions bisexuality. And yet numerous studies, beginning with those of the groundbreaking sex researcher, Alfred Kinsey over a half-century ago, have documented that the vast majority of us aren’t either 100% exclusively heterosexual or 100% homosexual. Instead, most of us are or have been romantically and sexually attracted, in varying degrees during the course of our lives, to both genders. Given that reality, why do we continue to divide ourselves into gay and straight as if there were some clear dividing line?
Maybe there is some deep-seated tribalism encoded in our genes that gives us a strong need to identify with and belong to a particular group. Or maybe it’s because many of us have a hard time wrapping our minds around bisexuality. We’re often so fixated on the romantic ideal of a single life partner with whom we’ll be happy forever-after, that we can’t understand how bisexuality would work in practice.
And yet a life of serial monogamy is the reality for many couples, both gay and straight—being involved with one person for a period of time, and then another person. Who says that the people we’re drawn to and involved with during the course of our lifetimes all have to be of one particular gender?
Gauging from the emails I receive from teen readers, increasing numbers of young people are refusing to buy into the entire either-you’re-gay-or-you’re-straight dichotomy. As being gay becomes an ever-increasingly viable option in society, many teens are rejecting the belief that if you have sex or fall in love with somebody of the same sex that means you’re really gay or that if you have sex or fall in love with somebody of the opposite sex that means you’re really straight. They’re refusing to accept the false choice of defining themselves as either gay or straight (or even bisexual). They are daring to live label-free.
Teens are my heroes. They give me so much of my writing inspiration. And they’re the reason I wrote my latest book, Boyfriends with Girlfriends. The story focuses a lot on bisexuality issues. But it focuses even more on being true to who you are before putting yourself into either the gay or straight box. Find out more on my website, www.AlexSanchez.com
Alex Sanchez is the author of Rainbow High, Rainbow Boys, and Boyfriends with Girlfriends among many other GayYA books.