United States

Hi, I‘m Tony. I am Pansexual.

I live in the University Heights community of San Diego, California. I have been married nineteen years to a woman who is hetero. I'm a teacher. I teach computer skills in the county detention facility for women. My degree is in electronics. I worked as an engineer for ten years and as a research assistant for about six years while I was enrolled in the geography grad program at San Diego State University. I am serving as Vice President of the First Unitarian Universalist Church of San Diego, a gay-friendly liberal church. I'm multiracial. My mom's family is from Durango, Mexico. My dad's family is English, Irish, German, and Jewish from Alabama.

What being bisexual means to me

I am mostly attracted to women but it is easier for me to be me around gay men and bisexual men and women. I feel invisible to hetero men and women. They don't notice me. It's as if I didn't exist. Ever since I was a teenager, I felt noticed by gay men. I like being looked at as a sexual object. I like the feeling that somebody desires me. I generally don't get that from hetero women or men. Even though most lesbians don't see me as a sexual object, I very much enjoy their company.

I also enjoy the idea of polyamory. I like the idea of having friendships that have a sexual element to them: being nude together, sleeping together, massage, bathing together, trying on clothes together, snuggling, talking sex, etc. So for me, being bisexual means I have multiple relationships with men, women, and transgender people which have a sexual element to them, some mutual attraction.

What I would like the world to know about bisexuals

I would like the world to know that we are as varied as hetero people are, that there is no one way to be bisexual, that there is no bisexual lifestyle, and that we don't allow arbitrary social categories like sex and gender to block us from experiencing intimacy and the joy of human relationship. Bisexuals have different relationships for different purposes. The best person for us sexually may not be the best person for us to live with. Our life-long partner may not be our sexual partner. We may or may not be particularly sexual. If we are sexual beings, we don't block the sexual energy that may be present in ANY of our relationships.

What was your path to a bisexual identity?

I had my first same-sex contact when I was a little boy with another little boy. I also learned that I couldn't go to mom and say, "I touched Jimmy's penis and it felt good". I learned that it was prohibited to talk about same-sex experiences and feelings. In my day, boys would get naked before and after gym class. This was an exciting time for me and a terrifying time because sometimes I would become aroused. I just couldn't believe how beautiful some boys' bodies were. It was hard for me not to stare. I also noticed that I was not the only boy who would sometimes get aroused and that other boys were checking out other boys.

I was also attracted to women. If they were attracted to me, I just was not capable of picking up on their cues. Women were just incredibly frustrating to me. They still are. I DID eventually meet a woman who was attracted to me and I married her right away as I did not feel comfortable identifying as gay. I wanted to at least appear to be hetero to the world.

Today I am identifying as bi or pansexual because I want to be authentic to the people closest to me and I believe that bisexuality is a truly revolutionary idea that has the power to transform the way that we think about sex, gender, relationships, and monogamy.

What is the toughest thing about being bisexual?

All the negative stereotypes. It is especially tough being married to a hetero woman because I don't want anybody to think that she's not enough for me or that I'm "sort of" attracted to her. She is totally HOT to me and I'm totally in love with her. I have to balance my need to be authentic with our need for privacy. I want to talk about being bisexual AND I want to protect the integrity of my private relationship.

What is the best thing about being bisexual?

Bisexual people are SO interesting to me, AND bisexuality as an idea is revolutionary. It goes right to the heart of why people are in relationship. Is it really about their genitals? It isn't for me. I feel myself attracted to feminine qualities whether they are present in a man, a woman, or a transsexual person: communicativeness, emotional intelligence, nurturing, and affection, AND I like the way that men assert their sexual desire. If a man is attracted to me, I know it. With women, I'm not sure.

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

Generally positively. They're concerned about how it affects my relationship. I'm concerned about that too.