Most bisexual people will have asked the question, ‘Am I bisexual?’, at some point in their lives.
It’s understandable to feel uncertain because society feeds us a range of faulty messages about what it means to be bisexual: we’re going through a phase; we’re just confused gay or straight people; we must have equal levels of desire for men and women to be a ‘true’ bisexual, and even that we don’t exist!
These messages are false, but they’re powerful, and they can lead bisexual people to doubt themselves. Many bisexuals get caught up in repetitive, negative thinking about whether they really are bisexual, and this can undermine confidence and lead to low self-esteem.
If you’re not sure whether you are bisexual or not, these are the most important things to know:
- No matter what society says; no matter what doubts you have as a result; if you are capable of sexual attraction to more than one gender, then you can identify as bisexual.
- There is no such thing as a ‘true’ bisexual. There are many different ways of being bisexual.
- You do not need to have had sex with members of both sexes to be bisexual. The key factor is attraction. A celibate monk who has never had sex, and a porn star who has had a lot of sex can both be bisexual.
- You do not need to be attracted to both sexes in exactly the same way and to exactly the same extent. You might prefer men, you might prefer women, you might not have a preference, or your preference may change over time – it doesn’t matter, you are still 100% bisexual.
- It is absolutely fine to be bisexual and unable to say whether you prefer one sex or another. Heterosexual and homosexual people are not required to say whether they prefer short or tall partners, or blonds or redheads. Likewise, you are under no obligation to clarify your sexual preferences for others.
Choosing to assertively identify as bisexual is one of the most powerful things you can do to build self-esteem and confidence in your bisexuality. Embracing a bisexual identity boosts your self-esteem and challenges society’s misguided beliefs about bisexuals. It enables you to let go of asking yourself whether you are bisexual or not. It also grounds you in a community of like-minded people who you can reach out to for support and friendship.
Overcoming your uncertainty will bring you confidence and a wonderful sense of freedom. You deserve to experience that.