My Partner Doesn’t Deserve A Monosexual

7/28/2018

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My Partner Doesn’t Deserve A Monosexual.

This is something I realised recently and it’s a mantra I repeat to myself when I feel my internalized biphobia setting in.

My partner doesn’t deserve a monsexual (someone attracted to one gender; straight or gay) because being monosexual doesn’t make someone an inherently better partner than someone who is bi.

For a long time, I believed it did. Growing up and coming out, the only representation of bi people I saw was hypersexualised. They (who were always women, and always cis) slept around. They cheated on their partner – who was always monosexual – with someone of another gender. They left their lesbian lover broken hearted and returned to their boyfriends. And in these stories, their partner always settled down with a straight girl or lesbian.

If it was true in ALL the media I  saw myself in, it must be true about me, right?

I saw myself as the cheater. I saw myself as “gay until graduation.” I saw my partners realising that there must be something dirty and unwhole about me, and settling down with another monosexual.

Because as a bi woman, I thought I was half gay and half straight. I believed that because of that, I would never be able to give my partner my whole, full self. I believed that I would always be looking over my shoulder, craving different genders, while my long suffering monosexual partner sighed and wished I could just realise I was gay/straight.

To my knowledge, none of my partners have ever thought this. But deeply ashamed and embarrassed of my inability to be a “complete sexuality,” I believed they must be ashamed of me, too.

When I started dating my current partner, a lovely lesbian who is secure in her attraction to girls and enbies, I worried what other lesbians would think of her. So many lesbians won’t date bi girls because they too have bought into the lie that we bi girls are dirty and insatiable and incomplete. I ruminated on the idea that she would be ostracized from sapphic spaces in the way I often was and grow to resent me for it.

But she didn’t care. She wasn’t dating me to gain social standing with other lesbians. She wasn’t attracted to me because I like girls. She likes me because she think I’m funny, attractive, and ambitious. Who else I’m also into, and how that reflects on her, doesn’t factor into the equation for her.

Maybe some gay women do judge her for her choice in a girlfriend. Maybe they think I’m “less pure” for being bi, or that I’ll cheat on her with a man. Their judgement means nothing.

My internalized biphobia was far worse when I was dating a man. Maybe it was because I was younger, or maybe it was the jokes about threesomes the boys at school would make about me to him. “They wouldn’t tease him if I was straight” I would think to myself. And then, when I caught my eyes following a girl in the street for a little too long; “he deserves someone who wouldn’t do that.”

But it was lies, all of it. All the TV shows that said I was incapable of commitment, the boys at school saying I’d realised I’m a lesbian and would leave my boyfriend, the lesbians side-eying my girlfriend for being with a bi girl, they’re all wrong. I’m wrong, too, when that doubt creeps in and I start believing that my girlfriend deserve more than me; which I think means she deserves a lesbian.

So my partners don’t deserve a monosexual. They deserve someone who is right for them, someone committed (whether in a monogamous or polyamorous arrangement), someone who can fulfill their needs.

They don’t deserve a monosexual because a monosexual isn’t automatically better at those things than a bi person.

Lois Shearing
Lois is a bi activist, who launched the DoBetterBiUs Campaign as well as the Bi Survivor's Network. In their daily life, they work as a content creator and freelance journalist. They are based in London, but their heart belongs to Brighton.