It’s been a long time…shouldn’t left you…without a dope beat to step to…
So, it’s been a, um, very long time since I’ve posted anything to this. I’d like to give you some big, grand reason why I dropped off. I’d like to be able to tell you that I had to train for mountain climbing or beat some disease or discovered a cure for hangnails or some other impressive feat. Hell, I’d like to be able to tell you that I just got super busy and couldn’t write anymore. I mean, I DID get busy, but that’s not why I left you all hanging. The truth is…I ran out of stuff to say. After talking for so many years about all things bisexual (and a few that were not), I just couldn’t find anything to say that I hadn’t already said. Nothing seemed new anymore. I didn’t have opinions to give (which is a miracle because I have an opinion on damn near everything). I tried to post something every now and then, but the words just didn’t come out the same way they used to come. I figured it was better to just fade away.
Then a few things happened.
First, a show called Faking It came into existence with the worst premise I’ve ever heard of (prior to Jane the Virgin having a premise). A show about two girls pretending to be lesbians sounds like the most offensive pitch I’ve heard this side of the puppy episode (if you don’t know what that is, congratulations on being within Faking It’s actual targeted age demographic), but then they did something interesting: they made one of the girls fall for the other. The show suddenly got compelling and I found myself watching every episode. Then (Spoiler Alert) things took an interesting turn. The man lady who likes ladies, Amy (seriously, Spoiler Alert) has her heart-broken and (one last time, Spoiler Alert) sleeps with her best friend’s boyfriend (well, EX boyfriend, but they show doesn’t really acknowledge that part). Everyone was pissed, myself included. It was another instance of a lesbian sleeping with a dude on television…or was it? Amy had never identified as a lesbian, she never had used a label for herself, and she had mentioned feeling attracted to men before (she just felt more attracted to women). That feels a lot like…me? I mean, I never did ANY of the stuff that Amy did, but the idea of falling for your same-sex friend while also acknowledging an attraction the opposite sex but still feeling a stronger pull to the same one? Yeah, I actually get that. I still think what happened in regards to that on the show was ridiculous, but this little teenager actually made some sense to me in her struggle and journey. Naturally, others didn’t see it that way, and who can blame them? The “lesbian who sleeps with a man” stereotype is gross and tired and not representative of lesbians as a whole. Thing is, it’s not representative of bisexuals, either. In fact, I think it’s one of the reasons we often get this “you’re bi until you’re gay” or “you’re bi until you meet the right guy” or even the “you’re going to leave a man/woman for a woman/man” stereotypes. I also don’t think that’s what’s happening here. Something interesting is going on (well, except for the last two episodes, which were terrible) and I want to document it.
Second, my home state legalized same-sex marriage. That’s exciting because it means bisexual folk can marry the person they want regardless of that person’s sex, but it also meant that I now come from a place where you can marry your same-sex partner and then get fired for doing so. See, there’s no anti-discrimination laws for LGBTQ people where I’m from, so people can flat-out do all sorts of nasty things, like fire you, not let you live in certain places, the works. What’s more, they don’t even have to pretend it was because you’re lousy at typing or you smell like seven different cats (neither of which is true); they can just call you a big ol’ queermo and be done with it. That, my friends, is messed up. It’s not right, it’s not okay. It certainly has the ability to mess up people’s lives in screwed up ways. It is already messing with people’s lives in screwed up ways. It also reminds us that marriage equality, as great as it is, is NOT THE FINISH LINE. Discrimination will exist even when people can marry the people they love. Poverty will still exist. Violence will still exist. Homelessness will still exist. Abuse will still exist. Light needs to be shed on those things and the fight needs to continue. I need to be a part of the solution. I need to be a part of that.
Finally, and most directly impacting my life, I came out to my grandmother! It was super exciting in that I have avoided doing so for years and was taught a long time ago that, unless you’re getting married, no one in your family needs to know your orientation. I now believe that to be nonsense. If you don’t want to tell or you don’t feel comfortable/safe doing so, that’s one thing. But to say that it’s nobody’s business while letting a secret fester is bad for you. It hurts. It hurts even when you don’t tell because it’s unsafe. Being in the closet is, more often than not, a place of pain. I’m not saying coming out can’t lead to more pain; in that case, it’s a damned if you do, damned if you don’t situation. But just assuming I never had to tell my grandmother because she didn’t need to know? That hurt me. I know of others who were in similar situations and it hurt them. So, I finally decided to do it. Thing is, and this is actually embarrassing…I forgot how. It has been so long since I came out to someone in an important way that I actually didn’t know what to do. Thankfully, lots of people were very helpful (and some people very amusingly unhelpful). They talked to me. They supported me. Know who else supported me? My grandmother. I need to pay that forward.
So, here I am, on National Coming Out Day, coming out of the writing closet I’ve been in. I make no promises about how often/much I’ll write, but I feel like I need to be doing this again. After all this time, I finally have something to say. I’m brushing myself off and trying again.