United States

Hi, I‘m Dougg. I am Bisexual.

I'm a person who loves the outdoors and teaching. I work with middle school students to help them see the larger world around them. Technically, I am an environmental educator, but I see myself more as a liaison to nature. I come from a normal upbringing in Northern Michigan with a mom, dad, and siblings. I don't live there anymore, but I wish I lived in that part of the state again. I enjoy brewing beer because it's a lot like cooking, which I love as well. I have dogs who love to run in the woods, chase squirrels, and have standoffs with deer. As you can see, I'm just an average guy.

What being bisexual means to me

Being bisexual means freedom to me. I hid myself away for a very long time for fear of persecution. It feels good to take ownership of my sexuality and be myself, finally.

Even though I can have romantic feelings for both men and women, it doesn't mean I'm greedy. It just means that I hold no bias to any gender.

What I would like the world to know about bisexuals

That we really do exist. And, that we are not just gays or lesbians who don't want to come "all the way" out of the closet. It is possible to have feelings for more than one gender, and love is love, no matter where you find it.

What was your path to a bisexual identity?

The path to my bisexual identity was a long one. I realized at around the age of 12, that I liked both boys and girls. But, the community I lived in would not have been tolerant of such a person. I kept myself hidden until I went off to college, where I had relationships with both men and women. This lead friends to tell me I was just experimenting. Again, I hid myself away.

I got married, and have been married to a woman for 20 years, however, those feeling were always there. It took a nervous breakdown, after my mother passed away, to let the real me out of the box, and for me come to terms with who I am, both sexually and as a person. I know the road to growth is never ending and I am excited to travel it.

What is the toughest thing about being bisexual?

The stigma. My gay friends say I should just quit hiding and be gay. My lesbian friends tell me it's not fair that I am so greedy. My straight friends all think I want to have sex with them. The lack of understanding of what it is to be bisexual is so frustrating.

What is the best thing about being bisexual?

Being true to my real identity and not being ashamed of who I am.

How have other people in your life reacted to your bisexuality?

Some have said, "Duh, we knew that already," some have been shocked, and some are no longer what I would consider friends. My true friends pretty much said, "Whatever," and "Sexuality is not what makes a friendship."

What advice do you have for someone who thinks they may be bi or who is in the process of coming out as bi?

Talk to other people that are bi. Join a support group. I needed a therapist to help me discover who I truly was. Don't turn away from help. There are more people out there that are understanding of your situation than what you might think. Stay true to yourself, because if you cannot love yourself for who you are, no one else will be able to truly love you.