To all my bisexuals, September 23 is known as the day the Purple People raise their flags, take off their invisible cloaks and wreak havoc on the world. The day is, essentially, a ‘buzz off’ (for lack of a less professional word)’ to the persecution that bisexuals face both inside the LGBTQ+ community and out. But why do bisexuals need their own day?* How are they not already noticed? Where is Frank Ocean’s album? All questions a curious mind should ask (however, only two I can answer).
Quite frankly, most of the world rejects the idea that bisexuality actually exists. We are looked at as unicorns, and more times than none, erased from the media and life in general based on our current partner’s perceived sex/gender at the time. Bisexuals face a fair amount of bierasure—or the tendency to ignore, remove or falsify evidence of bisexuality—in TV, film and literature. Quickly name three straight/gay TV characters. Now, name three bisexual TV characters. See, that pause you took to think? That’s my point. Unless you watch “Grey’s Anatomy” and say Callie Torres, your chances of saying a character who is explicitly bisexual (especially a bisexual man), are slim. Sure, it’s implied that Piper from “Orange is the New Black” might be bi or Clarke and Lexa from “The 100,” but that’s the problem. The bisexual identity should not result from implication. We are real and Bi Visibility Day is our time to, for the hundredth time since 1999, showcase our existence.
However, while Bi Visibility Day is a great day to parade in the pink, purple and blue that make up our flag, bisexuals deserve longer than one day. This orientation, along with pansexuality and all other polysexualities, all deserve constant recognition. Some monosexuals, those attracted to only one sex/gender (i.e. straight and gay people), love to invalidate our sexuality through biphobic remarks such as “bisexuals are promiscuous,” “bisexuals can’t be trusted in relationships” and the oh-so-classic, “bisexuals are confused.” Misconceptions surrounding bisexuality can’t be combatted with only one day. Hell, I can’t even reference all of them in one column.
Yet, what can be done by those who aren’t bisexual is to continue learning about the sexuality and to learn to accept bisexuals for what they are: simply people attracted to two or more genders. What can be done by everyone, is to carry on the awareness of the ‘bi’ identity further than September 23. Bisexuals, it’s about time we give our invisible cloaks a rest.
*If you ask this question, you are probably one of the people who asks ‘why do black people need their own month?’ and should seek your local library/African American for assistance.