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The Bisexual Stereotype: Fact vs Fiction

Updated on January 28, 2010

stereotypes about them are well known and well represented in film, scientific studies, books and popular culture. These stereotypes misrepresent both male and female bisexuals in many ways and overlook the emotional, mental and social impact that they can have on society as a whole. Being a bisexual myself, I'm surprised by the disdain and prejudice that bisexuals face in both the hetero and homosexual communities. We are villanized, disregarded and mistrusted, seen as renegades by both communities.

    What are these stereotypes and why do they persist? I'm going to go over the larger issues and explain my own views on them.

    The biggest stereotype to plague the community is that of promiscuity.  Bisexuals are perceived to be more sexual due to their attraction to both sexes and are often seen as being heavily involved in the swinger and polygamist subgroups. As a result bisexual women are often approached for sexual favors by couples, men and swingers who assume that they are open to these sort of interactions because of their sexual identification. In reality, most bisexuals simply acknowledge that they are sexually attracted to both sexes. In no way does this mean that they are active with both genders, much less practicing group sex and conducting multiple relationships! Being attracted to both sexes does not mean that they are ever involved with both of them. In reality, this attraction means that the sexual identity of their partner (romantic or sexual) is not as large a factor in their decision to become involved with them.

    Due to their dual attraction this also means that they are seen as being indecisive, incapable of choosing one side of sexuality or the other and therefore being immature. With this comes the idea that they are "hiding" in one community or the other, trying to pretend they are one sexuality when in reality they are the other, depending on the perception of the person that takes this view. Under this also falls the idea that bisexuality is "trendy", just something you call yourself while you flirt with your sexual boundaries and seek attention to feed your ego. Essentially bisexuals make hetero and homosexual people uncomfortable by not conforming to the standards of two very cemented sides in a political and social debate that's gone on for decades. The reality is that the majority of bisexuals are in fact quite certain that they are drawn to both sexes, they are not debating, they are not trying to hide their sexuality. In fact if anything, they are going more and more out of their way to be open about their unique viewpoint

    Along with the prejudices of promiscuity and indecisiveness comes the idea that bisexuals spread sexual diseases between homosexuals and heterosexuals. This perception falls in with the idea that bisexuals by nature are so sexual that they cannot help but have multiple partners and spread disease through their interaction. No one group is more responsible for the spread of STDS! The notion that bisexuals for example, brought AIDS to the straight community is ludicrous! Bisexuals are not being fairly considered in such innuendo, it disregards the fact that bisexuals are not any more sexually active than any other sexuality, it assumes that they are virtually addicted to sex and in their sexual interaction they do not use protection, reducing us to reckless children who do not care for our partners!

    According to some research and much speculation, the notion of bisexuality has also been regarded as invalid, a phase, a misperception and a myth. I think a good point to be made here is that up until about the 1970s psychologists, and religious groups labeled homosexuality a disease that must be treated. It was very rarely taken seriously and terribly misunderstood. Today the bisexual is subjected to this same sort of narrow mindset. We are treated as immoral, oversexed, indecent and untrustworthy subversives caught in the middle while trying to make the point that we are our own sexuality. When we are open about our sexuality, we are treated as deviants incapable of monogamy and raising children in an appropriate environment. When we are closeted, we must face criticism for "hiding" whether we identify as homosexual or heterosexual. 

 The only way in which we are different from anyone else is in our perception that both sexes can be sexually and romantically stimulating, everything else is a matter of personal choice and experience. To see us in any other light is not only unfair but also inaccurate. The average bisexual is as subversive and offensive as your typical housecat, we simply choose to see things in varying shades of grey instead of black and white.


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    • profile image

      eleanna 3 years ago

      Before reading this article I wrote a very similar one. We have many common experiences. I am so happy you include your own life in the article :)

    • BLoOmingRose90 profile image

      BLoOmingRose90 6 years ago

      I love this hub. You took exactly what i've always felt right out of my mouth, LOl . & I also love Agnew37's comment because I can relate as well.

    • Shaina Rodriguez profile image

      Shaina Rodriguez 6 years ago from Wisconsin

      Thank you for finally putting it all into the right words for me!!

    • agnew37 profile image

      agnew37 6 years ago

      Ah, if only more bisexuals were like you! Unfortunately for me, every person I have dated (present relationship aside) has fallen into the the category of "selfish bisexual" or hypersexual, incapable of committing to one person. It refreshing to know that I'm not the only one who doesn't find bisexuality and monogamy mutually exclusive. Thank you for the article.

    • profile image

      nightshade44637 6 years ago

      Glad you liked the article :) It felt like an important topic to me and its good to see that others agree with me.

    • marshasioux profile image

      marshasioux 6 years ago

      I really enjoyed reading this - thank you for taking the time to write it.

    • profile image

      hquinn01 7 years ago

      THANK YOU!!! I am bisexual as well and completely agree with your article. We are more or less cast out from both communities. I always thought I would be more accepted by the homosexual group because they themselves have been through many of the same things but I have been judged just as harshly from my homosexual friends as my straight friends.

    • lauren ;) profile image

      lauren ;) 7 years ago

      this was a great piece, im also bisexual and i am even more judged by it because people think im too young to know for sure. people think its just a trend or that its greedy and your hub really proves them wrong and makes them seem closeminded. thanks for sticking up for the crowd, you really are making a difference :)

    • profile image

      Lemaios 7 years ago from England

      It does annoy me so much. When I was in college I had gay friends, when discussing relationships I mentioned that I'd had relations with both sexes. One of them turned to me and said, "Really? I didn't think you were such an indecisive person!"

      I really dislike these stereotypes, just because of a small minority that are doing it just for the attention of a particular gender, or using ti as an excuse to cheat.

    • profile image

      Stephanie 7 years ago

      Thanks for outlining these issues. I'm bisexual and can relate to a lot of what you are saying here in your blog. I do feel like a "renegade" just because I am attracted to people regardless of sex, gender, race, religion, sexual orientation, class, etc. and love and have loved cross-sex and same-sex. I love the rainbow idea in theory. But I have felt such a backlash from straights and gays at times that I feel like my color (purple) needs to be removed from the rainbow, like they are throwing in the "B" in LGBT just for good measure. I'm going to love who I want to love and blaze my own trail and take my purple bisexual color with me.

    • profile image

      nightshade44637 7 years ago

      I'm glad you got something from the article supagirl and I wish you and your daughter luck as she tries to sort out her sexuality. It's a tricky thing to sort out when others don't understand you and harass you without any knowledge of where you're coming from.

    • profile image

      supagirl 7 years ago

      thank you for the hub, i am not gay, or bisexual but my eldest daughter thinks shes bisexual. she's still young but i trust her to know how she feels. this may be aimed at people who are bisexual but as a single mother it helps me to support my daughter. I know its not a view that is probably shared my all parents but i want my daughter to be able to live her life being herself, without having to hid. two grades at her school spread rumours about her and her best friend, ranging from them being gay,bisexual and that they were dating, which they aren't. thanks again here's hoping attitudes change so she can live her life being everything she can be.

    • profile image

      Sweetheart90 7 years ago

      I am also bisexual and would like to do an interview for you. You can email me at

    • profile image

      Alex 7 years ago

      I wonder if B,E,T meant to leave an email.

      but mail me at rubydraggon at yahoo.

    • profile image

      nightshade44637 7 years ago

      I can do that Bea Emily Tess go ahead and email me at

    • profile image

      Bea, Emily, Tess 7 years ago

      Alright, here goes: I am Bisexual, as well as the fact that i am doing a project on LGBT youth and I need some interviews with some other Bisexuals or Homosexuals really badly. If you are able to, then please E-Mail me! Thanks!