Bi the Bi

Publish Date: 16/09/2013

Bi the Bi - Peter Davies

A week ago in store, browsing through the magazine section I thought isn’t it silly how there are no Bi magazines on the racks. I could complain I suppose at having to haul around GT, Attitude, and Men’s Health in one big thick anthology. I even had a good nosey through Diva whilst I was there, with the men’s magazines stuffed precariously under my arm. But I guess if there was a market for bisexuality then it’d be catered for right?

Well in truth there actually is and before I bemoan the absence of any Bi glossy magazines I will say I’ve found one so far that touches the subject, Diva. Diva magazine itself proudly maintains its regular serial is for Lesbian and Bisexual women - and why not. Because of this inclusion, it is instantly more attractive and accessible to a consumer/reader because it’s there on the front cover. But I’m a guy and although the articles are sometimes punchy, thought-provoking and interesting it isn’t really aimed at me.

What is the tip of the literal iceberg does unfortunately point to the bigger issue of Bi invisibility. Many unfounded and blatantly clueless societal myths may allege that Bi guys are just closeted gay men and that I should be happy to get the word ’Bisexual’ mentioned in any publication. As a Bisexual person I don’t want to be the apologist for any mainstream commercial entities not daring enough to tackle an aspect of the human existence that’s endured since the beginning of time. Even if it’s a misunderstood identity.

Mainstream magazines it seems often don’t want to be bogged down so much with what’s what of the LGBT world. Bisexuality to them may seem like a muddled and murky underworld of an identity, so putting time, money and effort into something they don’t entirely have faith in seems pointless. But what media (of late) seems to balance upon, is the notion that they give readers what they want. But nobody really asks what they want and the biggest, most numerous and popular magazines don’t (it seems) necessarily follow that notion; they tell the readers what they want and quite likely who they should be. Maybe those readers want to be told how to live, hence why the magazines sell? I for one don’t need or want to be told that I don’t exist and for what it’s worth, neither does anybody else who may be unsure about coming out as Bi.

It’s a shame society can’t always see Bisexuality as valid. With Bi readership often cut squarely out, with only a nod or two in the direction of the ‘B’ in LGBT, it will always remain that little rumour, embellished by myth and stereotyping. If that’s the future of being Bi then maybe there’s a financial solution for having to buy several gay or straight magazines at once; a 50% discount at the checkout?

Interested in sharing your experiences of being bisexual? Email voices@lgf.org.uk