United States

Hi, I‘m Willow. I am Bisexual.

My life has been a journey, a very long one...tho I'm only now just understanding how much farther I have to go at 59! Sure don't feel it. I fit into many boxes, even as I write that I'm slightly uncomfortable. I am finally at a stage where am thrilled to have choices like pansexual and gender fluid (since I've rarely found acceptance coming out as bisexual). I am only learning about bierasure. So here I am, still growing and changing and learning who I want to be and how to convey that to the world. Never thought I'd be married twice. Always knew I was polyamorous, only learned about that when I started coming out in my early thirties. That's when I left monogomus thinking behind, along with my then husband of 16 yrs. I'm still with my first poly partner, who has remained my primary. He is also bi and prefers that identity. I was legally married to our last partner, whom past away 2 yrs ago. I lived in Florida since 1990. My main area of interest has been psychology with genetics, anthropology, human migration, Middle Ages and westward expansion in America and a burgeoning gender studies bent. I was raised in San Francisco and Memphis by older white adoptive parents, I am white/Filipino. I am breaking away from being a guilt ridden former catholic. I have 5 adult children, my son and adopted twin girls, from that first marriage and my current partner and I share the two youngest girls. all four daughters are also bi. 3 of my partners brothers are bi, one is gay. I searched for my birth family, of my five siblings one is a lesbian. We are out to everyone except his grandparents and my father who are too old to be in a need to know circumstance. Being out has been interesting and at times painful. But wanting to be authentic is a high priority so pressure and guilt are still aimed at us a good bit due to our m/f dynamic. Ugh! "Looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, must be a duck" , yeah they are never right!....I have 7grankids, the only stickers on my car are equality and apple, I love to cook, I want to complete my autobiography and publish it, I sew, I craft and have been told I should have an organizing and decorating show. I am a strong warrior woman with a little bit of girlie girl very deep inside. Practically never wear make up tho sometimes I dye my hair. I'm a dog person, but can't have one at present. My bucket list includes zip line, horseback riding on the beach, hot air balloon, and even though I don't want to look fake, just once....a professional makeup session, just to see how different I would look! I am mostly pagan/humanist and gotta throw a little bit of hippy in there! So I like drum circles, pow wows, womyns festivals, art fests, and Ren fair! I've worked in printing, mental health, customer service, I've been a foster parent, and I create stained glass. I am a black belt in Judo, and used to teach on a military base. I am an enigma

What being bisexual means to me

At the very heart of things for me is my personal definition that I offer when asked. I explain that for me I'm drawn to people that have characteristics that make them lovable to me. The ability to have deep meaningful friendships, to show loyalty, express humor, are epathatic, these are the qualities I like in the people I surround myself with....being bisexual means I choose to have intimate relationships with people whom I already love, thru my "tribe". It means loving the soul of the humans I encounter in this realm. I love the person. I adjust my sexual disires to match the needs of the PERSON I love. Don't we all really? I'm not looking for anything different than most people. I am blessed with the ability to accept love in all inclusivity ....I offer what I expect to be offered--acceptance and unconditional love

What I would like the world to know about bisexuals

We are everywhere. There is no specific type, you might pick us up on your gaydar and your gaydar could be right or so wrong that the spin needle breaks! And though we may decide to actively choose to have interactions only with other persons who are the same or opposite gender as ourselves, in those cases we are BEHAVING, we are choosing to exhibit behaviors expected for the choice (hetro/homo). You can engage in socially accepted norms. You can not change the internal spark that lights up upon meeting certain individuals and cause you to love them and seek a deeper physical interaction with them. You can choose to behave against this or you can choose to be your most authentic self and begin to accept love rather than the acceptability of love that you might have been settling for.

What was your path to a bisexual identity?

First kiss, girl-age 7. I knew I liked boys and girls, but something was wrong liking girls. Secret crushes and dreams til about 12 when sleepovers became awkward. Dating only guys. Marriage, early 17, escaping my alcoholic father. Learning about the LQBTQ community in my 30s and meeting my partner of 25 yrs at this time. We both came out together tho we are 12 yrs different. Him being so young, 22, and in his first real relationship, polyamory was the route we took. Didn't think he would end up the one I couldn't stop loving. With the age, his handicap, our emotional traumas, me already having kids we have really been up against it. We joined a gay church to see if we could find acceptance there-as the Catholics sure didn't want us then. Did poly on our own til more recently. Left mainstream churches of all faiths, and now just looking for more in our tribe as we are more isolated than we'd like to be as we are now empty nesters. Now I'm thinking I need to be more politically/socially involved so I'm needing to check the label box to accomplish this at a time when I want to throw the boxes out all together!

What is the toughest thing about being bisexual?

Not belonging. Hands down. Pretending. Just to get through something necessary. But the hurt. I wasn't counting on being discriminated by the LGBTQ community. I know that is changing. But even at Gay Pride, I have been treated like I were invisible. It doesn't matter if I dress like a dyke or a straight girl. So now I have this anxiety reaching out and get to battle that as I am trying to find my comfort zone....there are a lot of changes, I see my daughters having less of a struggle in many ways...most of the ones we share are the unexpected negative vibes from those we thought would be able to understand.

What is the best thing about being bisexual?

My life is interesting, I make solid and intensely meaningful connections with some of the most unexpected people. It feeds my soul to be my most authentic self! It's taken some work to find myself, but I like the journey!

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

"I love you and accept you and all, but I don't want to hear about it", don't tell _____, you're just greedy, why can't you just make a choice, why don't you just get married, why does it matter at your age, I love you and nothing can change that. Oh wow, can I set you up? You should be friends with___you have a lot in common, and my fav is when someone says they want to come out to me :)

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

Take your time, let others earn your trust. Not everyone will have your best interest at heart. Reach out and research. Know who you are and what you believe. It will help you keep your self esteem especially in the early stages as people may tend to overwhelm you with their own belief systems as well as a multitude of questions. Also, YOU have every right to be happy and don't let anyone else's negativity live in your heart! You have as much right to be alive as anyone else! You are enough!