Defending the Raven

Bisexual. Married. Man. Open. Read On.

Here We Go Again

If you haven’t heard already, you’ll hear about it in the coming weeks. Dina McGreevy has a new book out. Of course, this will bring up all the articles about spouses who are secretly gay. I’m fine with that. No doubt we live in a society where being gay is not something that is easy to live with. I’m not talking personally… I’m talking societally. If you had a choice in the matter why would you openly live your life in a way that could have you attacked by complete strangers for no other reason than because you are yourself. It is very easy to see why some would choose to try to deny that and suppress it and act in a more “accepted” way. Hell, I did it. I suppressed the bi/gay (I have a hard time with how to write this. I am bi, but clearly there is a gay and straight side to myself.) side of myself for a long time. These stories are important to write about because if you notice most of the people featured are older, in their 40’s and 50’s. Hopefully, having stories like this will save people, both the gay spouse and the straight spouse, who are younger the trauma and grief of going through what many have. Maybe it will allow people to be more accepting and honest with themselves.

That’s all fine and I have no problem with it. However, when I read articles like this one the thing that frustrates me is that there is no mention of the middle ground. There are no articles about being bisexual and couples living with bisexuality as part of their marriage. I suppose the reason is that there are much fewer stories of it. It was frustrating to read in that article that Michael Huffington was lumped into the gay husband crowd when he has clearly stated his bisexuality. He is even a producer on an independent documentary about bisexuality.

But then I calm down and take a step back because I realize I’m not someone who’s standing up shouting “Hey, look at me. I’m married to a woman and am bi, and we’re cool!!” I started to write a magazine article for GQ or Details about it, but I never finished because I realized that I couldn’t have my real name on the byline. And I thought it would defeat the whole point of the article to have it signed Anonymous or with a pen name. And I guess I’m not looking to be the poster boy for it. Get dragged onto Oprah with SR and talk about it with millions of people. And it’s not like there are any bisexual icons (sorry Andy Dick doesn’t count).

I guess this is just me getting defensive about it. But the bigger frustration is that it is only presented in terms of this or that. There is no in between for it. And having had this blog for as long as I have I have met people who struggle with it because with people like Jim McGreevey it has become part of the popular consciousness. I mean when someone writes a book giving women a checklist of things to look at to figure out if there husband is gay you know it’s gone mainstream. I feel for the people out there who see these articles and panic. And run further into suppression because they are afraid. Afraid that it IS a this or that proposition. Of course, many times it is. Many times in exploring yourself you come to another reality. Or in opening up to your spouse they cannot be with you if that is the case. Maybe they can accept and love you, but they cannot make the concessions or live with knowing there is always that “something else.” But these are the bigger questions. These are the things that people struggle with.

Are articles like the one I linked to doing a service or a disservice to the whole issue?

Yes, that’s a question for you, dear reader, to answer so get writing in the comments section.

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April 24, 2007 - Posted by | Uncategorized

2 Comments »

  1. I think articles like this one are always going to be slightly behind the times. They just don’t get written until the subject is enough of a cultural phenomenon to make it noteworthy. Right now, bisexuality and mixed orientation marriages are still fairly new to the cultural consciousness, at least in comparison to garden variety homosexuality. Hell, at this point, there is still much debate as to whether or not bisexuality even exists, with both heterosexuals AND homosexuals claiming that there are no true bisexuals, just a trial period before one chooses his or her true orientation.

    So yes, it would be nice if more mainstream news outlets discussed topics relevant to those of us navigating relationships with bisexual partners, but it certainly doesn’t surprise me that it’s not getting much airtime right now. Maybe when someone of some acclaim or notoriety comes out, with his or her spouse, as a bisexual, and we then have a poster child, things might change. But until then, we have our support groups and our communities and we can continue to educate people one at a time. Isn’t that how most cultural shifts start, anyway? One person at a time?

    Comment by K | April 25, 2007 | Reply

  2. Oh my word I am utopian! How I wish we could all just switch this shit off and just step outside as people – in families, single, whatever and not feel any stigma, any digust, any voyeuristic mistrust, even, (might I go as far as to say) – books about the troubled lives of those in a similar sexual jam as myself, or indeed any further discussion of whether or not “Bi” exists!

    K is right but damn how long are we going to have to wait for this? Raven, as I’ve said in emails to you before I whole heartedly commend this blog and approve of your not wanting to become a poster boy for the bi cause, I certainly couldn’t. Not only because I’m not interested “outing” myself, but because this is one thing that I’m glad doesn’t suffer from a fashion following.

    C’mon, this must’ve all been going on for as long as there have been people with erogenous zones, so why can’t we just get on with it without the boring societal downer. Really, since we all got hooked into being SO anti about it it’s become such a bore.

    Comment by Anonymous | April 25, 2007 | Reply


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