I once had a friend who told me she didn’t believe in me. Not that she didn’t think I could achieve my goals, or reach for the stars. She simply didn’t believe that people like me exist. People who like both their own gender and the opposite. It hurt at the time to think that my feelings had been reduced to the same level as fairies and pixies – non-existent. But that was a long time ago and since then, I’ve learned a lot about what it means to be a bisexual woman in the twenty-first century.

1. You have to work hard to prove you’re not a stereotype

In LGBT culture, there are so many ridiculous stereotypes that don’t exist at all. Primarily for bisexuals, we spend a lot of time hearing that we’re ‘greedy’ or ‘indecisive’ or ‘experimenting’. Many people in the LGBT community experience this type of demeaning, where they’re reduced to being told they’re one way, not another. It’s almost as though people think they know you better than you know yourself, and it’s simply not true. However, I have worked hard to prove to others that I am more than a stereotype – I’m not a cheating, experimental bisexual woman who loves to try out threesomes and be polygamous. I am a bisexual woman who has been in a committed relationship for four years with a man – and that still makes me part of the LGBT community.

2. There can be a lot of aggression in the LGBT community

Being part of the LGBT community is a relatively new thing. For a long time, people were too scared to come out of the closet and be free with their feelings. But a difficulty in itself is coming out the community as bi. Most people are very accepting, but some find it hard to take you seriously if you’re a bi woman dating a man. This is an awful experience, considering it shouldn’t matter either way, and the LGBT community is well known for being a supportive safe place. Transphobia can often be present in the community too, and while we’re all still learning, it can be hard to feel you fit in when not everyone accepts you.

3. Bisexual women are oversexualised

It’s a common fantasy, particularly among men, to be dating a bisexual person who is willing to be part of a threesome, or is sexually adventurous in some way. I’m sure that many people who identify as bisexual are happy to be polygamous, because so are many straight people. I also think it’s likely that a lot of people are sexually adventurous, because often that’s a part of finding yourself at a young age. But I can confirm that we are not all crazily sex-obsessed, or willing to jump into bed with anyone. Dream on, boys – it’s just a fantasy.

4. Labels don’t matter in the long run

If you’ve settled down with someone for the rest of your life, and you’re happy, then what do labels matter? As a bisexual woman, I’m sure there will come a day where I’m married with children (or cats!). This may be with a man or a woman. But at that point, does it matter? So long as your happy, what is the need to constantly remind everyone of who you are? You’re still the same way inside. The difference is, you’re already settled. You don’t have to tell people you’re bisexual anymore to test the waters and make sure it doesn’t make them uncomfortable. You are free to keep that knowledge to yourself.

5. I am more than my sexuality

Yes, I am a bisexual woman, but it’s not the most important – or the most interesting! – thing about me. I’m happy to express this and talk about it, but it isn’t the most vital part of my personality. I am who I am, but I would rather be judged for my personality than my sexuality.

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