Simon’s Coming Out Story
Publish Date: 04/10/2011
‘Aren’t you gay though Simon?’ is the one line that never seems to go away. When I first knew and was open about my bisexuality I was surprised to find that even now not many people understand what being bisexual actually is.
For this reason I found it difficult at first, I suppose the opinion is that bisexuals don’t have it so bad, that at least they have support and don’t really get homophobia.
Let me make this clear that this is not the case at all. I’ve found that I’m often treated as an outsider for the simple reason people don’t understand.
To give an example a gay friend said to me a couple of years ago: ‘That’s what they all say, they all say they're bisexual and then give it a year and they come out as gay, it’s stupid and pathetic why don’t you just admit it to yourself, you haven’t anything to be afraid of.’
I feel that this is the general viewpoint from gay people and I hear the term ‘greedy’ a lot.
If I could I would remove that word from existence as it's one of the most discouraging words I can hear. It’s exhausting because you hear it all the time, even though mainly it’s meant in jest which makes it worse.
How can I control who I have feelings for? What sex they are is irrelevant. And the term greedy implies I have several partners on the go, sorry but no.
In my personal opinion I think it’s as hard, and I dare say it can be more difficult coming out as bisexual than gay.
If you look at it this way, that as a bisexual I get prejudice from both sides, you get the usual homophobic abuse from straight people, but I guess what can really annoy me is the comments I sometimes get from the gay community.
To get comments from people who have suffered prejudice, bullying and abuse just for being who they are is the real shocking fact, surely we’re in similar boats?
As far as relationships go I’ve had relationships with both sexes. The most successful of which was bisexual also, I count the success more to understanding and trust than the person’s sexuality.
Gay people tend not to make a big deal out of you being bisexual in a relationship. I can only account for a handful of times where me being bisexual being an issue for gay people in a relationship.
However, the fact I said earlier is that I feel gay people see bisexual people as just being closet gay could be the reason for this. They don’t feel any threat from the opposite sex.
My straight relationships have had their ups and downs but mostly I feel I’m shunned by straight women. Put simply they don’t seem to understand bisexuality and fear it because they don’t understand.
I’ve asked friends why they think that is and they’ve said that they feel they have enough competition with fellow women, and to have competition with guys as well is too much when they can just go and find a straight man.
I’m sorry but personally that to me seems ridiculous, if I like someone I like them for who they are not (what’s between their legs). I look for the same qualities in both sexes which at times can become difficult as both men and women are different.
Looking to other bisexual men that I know, I know that people respond in different ways. In my opinion you can get the bisexual men who are mostly ‘straight orientated’, which I deem to mean that they often go for women and rarely men. It may be a case that they find that it's easier and often don’t even admit to their straight partners that they are bisexual because it is easier.
On the flip side you get bisexual men that seem to have a lot of male relationships and hardly any female relationships. Again this could be deemed an easier option as you can be seen to be accepted by the gay community and feel welcome if you’re seen as gay.
Of course this is all my personal speculation and I feel that mostly bisexual people have relationships with people who they feel accepted or comfortable with. For me I know deep down who I am and It’s a part of me. I wouldn’t say I’m proud of it, neither would I say I’m ashamed, it just is.
I can only account for the male side of bisexuality but I’ve heard it’s pretty much the same for female bisexuals.
As I embark on another new relationship I find that she is bisexual as well. Something that is hardly surprising. Bisexuals generally understand and trust each other which can’t in my opinion (at the moment) be said for other kinds of relationships bisexual people have.”
www.lgf.org.uk will be featuring different coming out stories on the run up to International Coming Out Day.
On Tuesday October 11th – International Coming Out Day - The LGF are offering 24 hour online and phoneline support, to help raise awareness of issues around coming out . You can also pop-in to see us for face-to face support between 8am and 10pm at The LGF’s Community Resource Centre. For more info visit: http://www.lgf.org.uk/news-articles/lgf-celebrate-international-coming-out-day/