I don’t care who you love, as long as you love – Edward Croft
October 11th was National Coming Out Day. I wanted to write something about that, but as I started to research things, well, welcome to the rabbit hole. Funny, the same thing happened when I started researching shamanism. That is a whole different story.
National Coming Out day was founded in 1988 by Robert Eichberg, a psychologist from New Mexico and founder of the personal growth workshop. It was chosen because it was the anniversary of the 1987 National March on Washington for Lesbian and Gay Rights. Hard to believe that this struggle has been going on for 27 years and we still are arguing about whether Gays should marry. Hell, we have had Gay marriage in Massachusetts for ten years and really folks, has it made any difference in your life? I know it hasn’t in mine. All the old arguments about gays standing on the street corner recruiting your kids have fallen by the wayside. I just don’t see it happening. Hell, unless I go to P-Town, (Provincetown for those not from Massachusetts), I don’t even see same sex couples walking hand in hand. So gays have had no greater visibility than they have had in the past, but they can get married. So what is up with all the hoopla?
I just don’t get the whole anti-gay thing. People know that I have supported the LGBT community. I have spoken in favor of Gay marriage. I have had friends who were part of the community over the years. I don’t recall a one asking me to sign up. They were some of the greatest people I have had the honor to call friend. Take Ron K., Ron and I were in the Air Force together. Ron was a hoot. He would come into the dining hall and announce, “Bow to your queen honeys!”. We even came up with a song for him, Ronald the Red Eyed Airman. He had a laugh that was so contagious. It would start with a woot woot, then a staccato ha-ha-ha-ha on a descending scale. Hard to describe, but funny. One of my fondest memories of Ron was how he got me to laugh when I was severely depressed. I was engaged to a lady and had found out that she was seeing a number of other guys on the base. Worse, she cheated on me with the guy I sent in my place to Korea, while I was back at the base making arrangements for our wedding. I was in the kitchen cutting up omelet fixings and Ron came up to me and offered his condolences. I barely acknowledged him as I felt the tears welling up. Then Ron turned to me and said, “Well now that you aren’t giving it up to her, how about giving it up to me.” Well, I started chasing him around with a French Knife in my hand. All the while he was woot woot, ha-ha-ha-ing. I finally got it. I stopped chasing and just shook my head. He came up to me and gave me a hug. He told me I was a good man and didn’t deserve what happened. He went on to say that he knew that I would find someone. We remained close up until the day I left. Ronald the Red-eyed Airman.
I could go on about my connections to people from the LGBT community, but that isn’t what this is about. This is about a society that makes it so that we have to have such a day as a National Coming Out Day. What does that say about us as a people that we are more concerned about who we love than that we love? Oh right, the Bible. Pick and choose Christians picking a line out of the whole of the Bible to affirm their right to hate. They, of course, skip the line that says that polyester/cotton blend shirt is an abomination and they need to be stoned. They skip the line that says that because of the shrimp cocktail they ate, they should be stoned. Wife wearing pants, stone her. Bacon double-cheesburger, stoned. Child talking back, stoned. They forget that Jesus brought a new covenant. Jesus had but one commandment, Love! They forget the line, judge not lest ye be judged. They forget the line that says let he who is without sin cast the first stone. Sorry, Bible thumpers, I choose love. If I am wrong, then God will admonish me when my time comes to pass, but I think that as long as I have loved all of his creations, he might just be a might lenient. Think about it, after all, Gays are his creation too. Science has shown that Gays are in nature too. Animals have shown gay behaviour. Yet, those Bible thumpers ignore the science. They ignore God’s creations that don’t fit with their vision of what the world should be. One commandment, Love.
Okay, so the LGBT community has a National Day devoted to coming out. Pause, break, for those who aren’t familiar with the term, LGBT, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgendered. Further clarification, transgendered does not reference transvestites. One is a psychological disorder called Gender Dysphoria in the DSM-IV. Transvestites are ones who dress as the opposite sex for sexual kicks. Transgendered people have a whole lot to deal with. I could write a blog on Gender Dysphoria alone. Let’s just leave it for the moment, just saying that instead of belittling and mocking those in the process of transition, we should be admiring their courage. Let’s get back to this LGBT National Day. Well, it is great that they have a day set aside in which those who fall under that umbrella can “come out” to their friends and loved ones. Of course, there is the Pride Days in various communities where they can come out also. I am still bothered by the fact that they have to come out at all. Why can’t they just be?
It is nice that there is this image of the four factions coming together for the common good, but even that is a farce. As I dug deeper, I found that within the community there is also hatred and bigotry. That is probably why bisexuals felt they need to have their own day called BiVisibility Day celebrated in September. As I found, there are many gays who bash bisexuals. They claim that they are really gays who just haven’t accepted who the are. Bisexuals are often dismissed by the Gay community. Yet, once again, science tells us otherwise. Of course the other issue is labels. Man, the more I dug, the more labels it seemed there had to be. Take this list added for bisexuals:
Alternating bisexuals: may have a relationship with a man, and then after that relationship ends, may choose a female partner for a subsequent relationship, and many go back to a male partner next.
Circumstantial bisexuals: primarily heterosexual, but will choose same sex partners only in situations where they have no access to other-sex partners, such as when in jail, in the military, or in a gender-segregated school.
Concurrent relationship bisexuals: have primary relationship with one gender only but have other casual or secondary relationships with people of another gender at the same time.
Conditional bisexuals: either straight or gay/lesbian, but will switch to a relationship with another gender for financial or career gain or for a specific purpose, such as young straight males who become gay prostitutes or lesbians who get married to men in order to gain acceptance from family members or to have children.
Emotional bisexuals: have intimate emotional relationships with both men and women, but only have sexual relationships with one gender.
Integrated bisexuals: have more than one primary relationship at the same time, one with a man and one with a woman.
Exploratory bisexuals: either straight or gay/lesbian, but have sex with another gender just to satisfy curiosity or “see what it’s like.”
Hedonistic bisexuals: primarily straight or gay/lesbian but will sometimes have sex with another gender primarily for fun or purely sexual satisfaction.
Recreational bisexuals: primarily heterosexual but engage in gay or lesbian sex only when under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol.
Isolated bisexuals: 100% straight or gay/lesbian now but has had at one or more sexual experience with another gender in the past.
Latent bisexuals: completely straight or gay lesbian in behavior but have strong desire for sex with another gender, but have never acted on it.
straight women who have sex with other women only because a male partner insists on it to titillate him.
Transitional bisexuals: temporarily identify as bisexual while in the process of moving from being straight to being gay or lesbian, or going from being gay or lesbian to being heterosexual.
Don’t people realize that the more labels that are created, the more separated people become? Dang, no wonder gay marriage is only now gaining traction across the country.
Science tells us that our sexual desires fall on a lineal scale. Yes, there are those that are strictly heterosexual, just as there are those who are strictly homosexual. However, most of the population falls somewhere in all that grey area in between. There are studies that show that hetero women may actually change their desires and become lesbians later in life. It is referred to as the fluidity of sexuality. There is a psychiatrist and medical school teacher, named James Hicks, M.D. who is doing a study and developed a test to measure our sexual position. You can read more at http://flexuality.wordpress.com/take-the-test/
It is kind of an interesting test, but you do have to be honest, especially with yourself when you take it. It is a work in progress, so bear with it.
The point is that according to a lot of different studies, there are actually more bisexuals than either hetero or gays, yet, rather than welcome bisexuals to increase their numbers and power, the LGBT community often sidelines them.. Of course, the bisexuals don’t help their cause because they feel the need to keep hidden. Many bisexuals adapt to social mores and marry in hetero marriages and just try to disregard their other desires. Many find outlets in “glory holes”, bath houses, adult bookstores and such. Not a healthy way to live, medically or psychologically. Just imagine if one September, all the bisexuals decided to “come out”?
I could go on and on as I find this all quite fascinating. I have always been fascinated with human sexuality. I have always thought about one day returning to college and getting a psychology degree and specializing in human sexuality. We are such a Puritanical society. We love sex, yet hide it. How much is driven under ground, which I might add, makes it less safe and promotes the spread of disease.
Oh, one more point before I go. Our sexuality isn’t the only thing that is on a lineal scale, so is our gender. We often think of sex as just man and woman. Gay or straight. Gender is a totally different brain. Think of it in three aspects. There is physical, how our body is configured. Even there you will find grey areas as many times there are what used to be called hermaphrodites. Those born with both genitalia. Often times doctors, with or without the parents knowledge, would make physical changes to a baby at birth to “decide” their sex. Sometimes the doctors guess wrong. There was a recent famous case where a doctor had made the wrong choice and the person was raised one sex but later had to suffer through the process that transgendered folk have to endure to make things right. He wanted to kill the doctor who put him in that position. There is our sexual attraction, whether it be same sex, opposite sex, or either. There is also gender, which is more how we perceive ourselves as masculine or feminine. This is where Gender Dysphoria comes in. Like with hermaphrodites, transgendered people may have had a birth defect in which they were born with the brain of one sex, but the body of another. They come to hate themselves and the world around them. While girls might be able to be tomboys, boys wanting to wear dresses can get them beaten. Think of the movie a few years back, Boys Don’t Cry. Things may have changed, but when I first studied Gender Dysphoria, a person suffering had to be in a psychologist care for at least six months before being approved to begin transition. They would have to endure all the hate the world had to throw at them. They would have to endure hormone treatments. They would end up having to live as their new gender for a year before being approved for sexual reassignment surgery. Of course, that was driven out of this country by the religious right. Many transgendered people would have to go into the porn industry to raise the funds to go to Thailand to have the surgery done as clinics in the US stopped doing the procedures, all because of ignorance and hate. Insurance does not cover these operations. So every cent had to be raised on their own. That is why I admire their courage.
The LGBT community tries to put on a united front, but in the end, they fall flat. Sad, because science shows they have the numbers. Of course, for most bisexuals, they aren’t about to come out. So the numbers are all ready diminished. Add to that the alienation by the Gay community and it further depletes the numbers. Sad.
In the end, I repeat what I have always said, I don’t care who you love, only that you love. Maybe one day the Gay community will stop acting like the hetero community and embrace bisexuals and increase their numbers.
If you are questioning, or want resources to look to, please feel free to contact me. I set up an account in case people wanted to talk offline. I realize there are many in the closet and have no idea what resources are out there. I may not have all the answers, but I might be able to help. firstname.lastname@example.org. No one should be alone.
My heart to your heart, one heart, one spirit.