A Conversation for Bisexuality

Questions about bisexuality

Post 1


Hi, I am heterosexual but I have some questions about bisexuality and found your article very helpful.

However, my questions are of a more specific nature and I would be grateful if anyone could give me some insight.

Before I start, if I ask anything that is crass I apologise as it is purely from ignorance and is not meant to offend in any way.

Basically the background to my questions is that after my parents split up 10 years ago my father told me he was bisexual and that was the reason for the breakup - bit of a shock but no problem really, as far as I was concerned he was still the same, a great dad. However, since telling me, my dad then clammed up and does not refer to it. He has had relationships with women since and from what I can gather they have ended when he has been honest about his sexuality which is a shame but I can also understand why the women involved have been concerned.

The only other time the subject arises is every 12 months or so when my dad will be down because he is worried after having a random encounter with a man and will not have used protection. So far, all has been well, but I am losing sympathy with this routine as I cannot see why the rules are any different than for straight people - i.e. use protection.

Your article really helped me in my wish to understand bisexuality but it refers to bisexual "relationships" and I wondered if there is a another side to bisexuality which is more to do with the experience rather than wanting to have a relationship and in respect of which the "risk" element is a factor. In a way, I suppose it is maybe just plain and simple promiscuity, and I can understand why it may not be helpful to refer to it as bisexuality already suffers from a bad press from some areas.

However, my dad's encounters are not particularly frequent and almost seems to be precipitated by feeling very low or depressed, so does this sort of behaviour signify that my dad may be suffering from repression (he is not openly bi) and also some kind of guilt due to the mores of his upbringing (catholic)?

I would welcome any views which could help me understand a little better and maybe would enable me to help my dad.

On a connected note, the whole thing with my dad's revelation has had an effect on my own sex life in that my boyfriend likes anal sex. I am not so keen but I think part of this is due to being a little tense about it all as I cannot help the nagging thought that it may be a warning sign that he too might one day tell me he is bisexual. This is the bit that I know sounds really crass but I can't help it. If this really is me being very stupid (and sounding very ignorant, I am sure) please could someone confirm that for me.

Thank you.

Questions about bisexuality

Post 2

Fragilis - h2g2 Cured My Tabular Obsession

Lots of questions! smiley - smiley

Understand that a person who's effectively in the closet may want to avoid a full-blown relationship with someone of the same sex. Even a very closeted relationship has the tendency to let itself be known over time, and good relationships are notoriously difficult to end early. So if coming out is unthinkable, one tends to consider one's thoughts as purely sexual and avoid considering any longterm romantic implications.

If there's no relationship on the horizon, what does one do with their sexual desires? You can try to repress them, either by trying not to think about it or by indulging in an outlet like pornography. Some people find they can do this indefinitely, but not all. For others, repression by its nature tends to build up like water behind a dam. Taboos are in themselves very powerful sexual attractors. Your father may be going through endless cycles of repression and temporary release.

Casual sex in some gay venues involves as little talking as possible, in part so closeted participants will stay that way. But with no talking, how do you stop to request a condom? And if you don't use a condom while having sex with a stranger, wouldn't you feel dirty about it afterwards? Unfortunately, casual gay sex tends to reinforce one's preconceptions that one's impulses are non-romantic by their nature.

And then there's the depression factor. If your father became suicidally depressed for any reason, he would certainly have less fear of risk-taking. Unprotected sex might fulfill his self-image as a bad person or one down on his luck. And with low self-esteem, it would be harder than ever to stand up for himself and insist on using a condom.

Knowing he's about to break down and have sex may itself cause some level of depression for him, as this means his hard efforts at repression have failed. And the act itself might be depressing in its own way. He might subconsciously be seeking to make a real emotional connection with another man, but he will most likely not have done so.

Being Catholic complicates this all even further. If gay sex is a sin requiring penance, any acts of penance (or guilt from failing to seek penance) could cause feelings of personal shame. One may feel better after seeking penance, but one's confidence that any real healing has occurred will decrease after each new breach in the wall of repression. The problem with this ongoing cycle is that it is dangerous to his safety, and it's also dangerous to his self-esteem and emotional health.

There is a support group for queer Catholics who wish to raise awareness within the church that expecting sexual abstinence from gay and bisexual people is unrealistic, unnecessary, and ultimately unhealthy. They may provide an alternative way to view the issue. I'm afraid I couldn't find one based in the UK, but this US alternative at least has information and an email address that can be accessed online.


And then back to you, eh? It's understandable if concerns about your father have spilled over and caused an issue in your own relationship. Tense is exactly what you don't want to be where anal sex is concerned! If it helps at all, I can assure you that a liking for anal sex has no bearing on sexual orientation. There are gay men who don't like it, I've found. And I can vouch for a good number of straight men who do. If your boyfriend dislikes looking at naked men, you'll be just fine.

You can show support for your father and attempt to help him understand himself. But ultimately, you can't change his self-image or his behavior. He alone is responsible for that. All you can do is process your own feelings and do your best at making peace with the situation.

Best of luck to you! smiley - cool

Questions about bisexuality

Post 3


Thank you so much for taking the time to reply to my questions and to provide such frank information.

It has really helped me to see things from my Dad's perspective and be a little more understanding of some of the issues he faces and restrictions he may be bound by.

I will check out the website link you have provided. I hope that having some understanding of the issue will help me to be of some support to my Dad, and you have certainly helped me with your answers to my questions about bisexuality in general and about my personal concerns in respect of it.

Many thanks smiley - ok

Questions about bisexuality

Post 4

Who no's ? ........... Not me!!

i fear i may be bi. i have strong feelings when i think about men. but im married is this wrong?

Questions about bisexuality

Post 5


Thats not a wrong thing at all. At the end of the day just be comftable with who you are. If you like men as much as women then good for you. Means you can be happy with either so dont worry.

As for The poor lass who is worried over her dad being bisexual. I have found that now adays people are mostly bisexual ( Down in brighton especially) So if your dad is then there is no reason to be concerned for him, it just means he hasnt found the right person yet, it really is that simple. We all have to try a few differant people before we find someone worth being with who accepts you for who you are. It also could be an emotional sheild that he uses to try and not have a long term relationship like before and then get hurt. May not be done conciously but subconciously. All is a possibility.

Also on a final note. If your other half wants anal and your not comftable with it, then simple tell him and leave it there untill you are ready (unless you dont like that idea at all) Some people just dont find it a turn on or attractive at all so just because your other half likes it doesnt mean that you have to. DONT be forced into it by feeling guilty or that it might be because of the situation with your dad!

You seem like a wise girl so just make sure that anything you do your happy with and also maybe take a firmer hand with your father on making sure he uses protection etc to stop his worrying fits.

Falxsmiley - ale

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