Questions & Answers

If I’m married and monogamous, why does it matter that I’m bisexual?

Relationship status does not change a person’s sexuality.  While it may be more obvious to others that someone is bi if he or she is actively dating men and women, that is most certainly not a requirement of bisexuality.  Bisexuality, like all sexuality, is about much more than what one does with one’s genitals.  Sexuality is an identity and a way of interacting with the world, not a sexual practice.

Bisexuality manifests itself on many levels in an individual, most of which are not affected by marital status or monogamy.  While it is can be difficult to quantify something like identity, there is value in trying.  The Klein Sexual Orientation Grid, for example, seeks to address the broadness of a person’s sexuality by breaking it down into: Sexual Attraction, Sexual Behavior, Sexual Fantasies, Emotional Preference, Social Preference, Lifestyle Preference, and Self Identification.  While a monogamous marriage would strictly limit a person’s current sexual behavior, it would not affect a person’s attractions, fantasies, emotional preferences, social preferences, lifestyle preference, nor would it have to change a person’s self identification.  In this example, out of 7 measures of sexuality, only 1 would necessarily be affected by monogamous marriage.


The answer depends on what "matter" means to the person asking the question.

I'm married, monogamous, and bisexual. Because I married a man, I'm invisible. Everyone I meet is going to assume I'm straight. That limits the awkward questions people can ask me in person.

But it also isolates me from other bisexual people and makes me feel lonely. I don't have an in-person community to go to for support.

So when it comes to my happiness and my feeling of being included somewhere, of having a community, it does matter. Because I'm not actually straight, I feel isolated and left out, even in a crowd of couples. My sexual identity matters when it comes to my emotional health. I need things straight people don't need because they already have them. I need things gay and lesbian people don't need because they already have them. Visibility and community.

Being bisexual, married, and monogamous affects my life, even though I have a wonderful husband and physical security.


I completely agree with Amaryn and am in the same boat. Only very close friends and my family knows of my sexual orientation, which most of my family ignores or doesn't believe in, since I'm married anyways.

I was raised very strict Mormon and tried to come out of the closet while attending BYU, thinking at the time that I was 100% gay, because of my attraction to women vs. men. My mom told me basically that "no I was not," which she still believes, since I'm married. I have had sexual relationships with both men and women since college, but ended up married to my husband because he gets me and we work very well together as a team.

My husband accepts my sexuality, but also feels uncomfortable with me talking about it or expressing it to others. He both likes it that I'm attracted to women, but also sometimes and fears that I might run off with the next hot woman I see. I have "made out" with women during our marriage in certain situations (no not 3-somes), with him there.

Every October 11th, I want to come out more openly, since I think it helps a lot of people in the community who may be struggling in similar situations, but I refrain because I feel it might make my husband uncomfortable if the "world" knows I'm bi.

I'm sort of at an impasse.


Marrying my bisexual fiance next year will neither change his nor my sexuality. We both will stay bisexual just as we are now in our already monogamous relationship. What I don't get is why we as bisexuals have to defend and explain ourselves and what happens with our sexual identity when we are in a relationship?

When we first told our LGBT friends about our relationship and later about our engagement we heard stuff like “Oh, congrats on using your straight fallback option / straight privilege” which was very hurtful for us.

And of course it happens when we meet new people they mistake us for a straight couple but when we get the chance to clear that out we do it but that depends on the situation and the people we interact with.

It could be that it is easier if both partners are bi. But if my partner (straight or queer) would feel uncomfortable with my sexuality and me being open about it I'd have to ask myself if this is really the person I want to spend the rest of my life with.

If being married makes us ignore or hide our sexuality we would sort of force ourselves back into the closet. I think for a proper representation and bi-visibility it is important to be open about it. In my opinion we stayed for too long in the shadows and hidden behind being falsely labeled and it's time to step out into broad daylight and not only during “Bisexual Awareness Week” or on “National Coming Out Day”


Want to respond to this question? Sign up