My boyfriend and I have been together for three years, and we’re planning to move in with each other in the autumn. Over the summer, though, he’s decided to come out as bisexual. Something he’d never discussed with me until recently. He assures me that nothing about our relationship is going to change, but I’m worried. Now that he’s realised this, isn’t it only natural that he’s going to want to explore it? I’m concerned that I could be harming him by not letting him do that. I’m also scared that in the long term this might make it more likely that he’ll cheat on me. How can we get through this?
My partner has come out as bisexual!
There’s this series on Netflix called Lady Dynamite. It’s a semi-autobiographical look at mental illness as experienced by a female comedian, and it ought to be good. It’s clearly trying to be what Crazy Ex-Girlfriend actually is. I stopped watching it quite early on, though, because I couldn’t get past this thing that happens in the second episode.
The misunderstood 'Hollywood' bisexual:
The lead character is set up on a date with a bisexual man and she has some whole weird internal conflict thing about it. “It may be a little too complicated”, she says. “Too much for me right now.” I wince. Somehow the way she tries so hard to be ‘understanding’ makes it even worse. The message seems to be “it’s good to be tolerant, but it’s entirely normal and reasonable to have these doubts”. She has an excellent date with him and my heart is lifted. Maybe this is going to be a nice little side-plot designed to dispel biphobic notions of who we are and how we behave.
Then he cheats on her with a man (to whom he says: “We have our relationship, and she’s my woman relationship. I’m bisexual!”) and she shakes her head sorrowfully, disappointed to have been shown that she was right all along. Her friends apologise to her for not listening when she tried to explain why she was wary. The producers and scriptwriters give not even the slightest nod to why this might be a problematic storyline.
It's all about your perspective
Look, I can see why it’s concerning to feel like the parameters of your relationship are shifting under your feet. The thing to remember, though, is that they’re not. Your boyfriend has presumably always been bisexual - and he’s with you. The idea that bisexual people are less likely than monosexual people to have long-term monogamous and committed relationships in a healthy way is not only bollocks but also actively biphobic.
“But Abi”, I hear you cry. “You’re bisexual, and you’re not monogamous at all! You write about it here every damn week!”. Yes, well. I’m also both a vegetarian and a gamer, but I’ve never heard anyone try to use that as justification for saying that gamers don’t like bacon. Gamers love bacon.
You and your boyfriend don’t need to “get through this”
You’re already there. If there’s a problem in your relationship it might have more to do with the fact that you seem to doubt whether you can trust him than with who he thinks he might have slept with if he wasn’t with you. That might require some discussion - but I promise there’s nothing about bisexuality itself that makes your relationship inherently riskier.
Got a burning question for Abi? Then send her a fuckin' message! AskAbi@fuck.com
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