I’m a highly libidinous bisexual female.
I’m also deep and sensitive. I detest small talk (going to hairdressers is a kind of banal hell unless I find a quirky one). I can’t stand people I consider “career tourists,” that go through life on a very surface level, collecting unchallenging days, avoiding growth. Well, okay, some of them are alright, provided they’re not smug about their collection – especially if they’re funny (although to be quite honest, I find the most impressive humor often comes from a place of pain and experience) and friendly. Surface folks can well be my casual friends and acquaintances. But I’m not going to come back for more. That’s not what I crave. I want novelty, insight — from my own life and experiences and from those who are closest to me.
I don’t think all these things are irreconcilable, but you would be surprised.
It’s always shocking for people who have come to know me some other way and don’t know my proclivities to find out that I’m not straight, without even getting into all the other stuff that paints outside the lines, the polyamory and other miscellaneous freaky-deaky kinky shenanigans. I look very girl next door. In personal settings, I volunteer it much more freely. In professional settings, I come off intelligent and analytical — despite its relative acceptability in Cleveland professional culture, I make it a point to never swear at work. People normally think I’m a prude until they get to know me. My strategy is generally never to advertise but to answer questions truthfully and be authentic. “Do you really want to know?” I’ve been known to ask of a questioner. “I’m not sure you’re old enough to hear that story.” Sometimes I say this to people decades older than me.
It’s interesting to see the moment where it sets in that I am not straight, and the other person is struggling to process the disconnect between how they’ve seen me and what I’ve said. I have none of the “tells” they’ve come to culturally associate with bisexual women. I’m warm and well adjusted. I don’t seem desperate for affection or like I have daddy issues (though, to be quite honest, I kind of do, although that’s gotten much better in recent years since I married a man who absolutely groks my dad and has acted as an interpreter as sorts and is very good at pointing out what my dad does that shows his love, dad has always done the best he could, he just didn’t have the right tools for me). I’m not pierced, tatted. My hair isn’t a funny color. I don’t ostentatiously fellate bananas or hot dogs and then giggle coquettishly at the applause (bar bis have done this around me several times).
It’s been interesting being a deep, sensitive, intelligent bisexual woman. It’s been a bit like being undercover. I suppose that’s part of why it took me so long to even understand what was going on with me sexually. There aren’t cultural models for the earnest sensitive bisexual. The best we’ve got PR-wise is the Girls Gone Wild circus. Girl on girl in that context is all a show for boys. It’s all ultimately phallus-centered.
I don’t relate to that at all.
What I relate to is a 6-year on and off relationship with a girl who kept leaving me for boys, who cheated on me (and them) whenever it was convenient, who I loved so much that I nearly destroyed both of us. There was alcohol poisoning. There were altercations with campus police. There was diet pill abuse. Cutting. So many drugs.
It happened. It was my life.
And yet there have been many fun bright spots. Lithe group sex. Pussy and sunshine. Dark throaty laughs from brainy actresses living off daddy’s money. Cleaning the bowl – smudges of brownie mix spooned into your mouth mixing with the aftertaste of her. Sucking in your gut to slip into her dress and go play music.
It doesn’t have to be terrible to be deep. But it was deep for me, and I was always present.
And it was a thirst for depth that originally led me to seeking out monogamy as a young woman, after the back and forth and heartache of a nomadic unattached sexual life. My ex-husband knew of my history but voiced assent, that he would be happy to do this. And then proceeded over the years to push towards opening up our relationship. After 8 years, we did.
His vision, his goals, they were very superficial, ripped from porn. Two girls all to himself. Two mouths on his cock. A harem. And look, the 2-girl blow job can be fun as hell, but the trouble was that during our time together he was never willing to grow by putting himself out there and being vulnerable, never able to really embrace others as full people. In his sexual vision, I was an accessory. Powerless, exploited — and not in a fun way. The lazy kind of objectification that’s yawn inducing and boner wilting. The desperate distracted detached unimaginative unengaged kind. In short, the gross unwanted kind.
So it was particularly ironic, at least to my thinking, that it was my surrender to his desire to exploit me in this unwanted fashion that ultimately gave me so much power.
Because I found polyamory. For the uninitiated, polyamorous communities are largely matriarchal. Bisexual females in particular have a ton of power for deciding and negotiating agreements, chiefly because they are so desired. They have tons of choices. If a bi female within a poly context isn’t saturated it’s because she either doesn’t want to be (i.e, is rejecting or not actively looking), is extremely busy with non-relationship concerns (work, childrearing, personal illness, caregiving, etc), lives in a remote area where there aren’t many other poly people, or has profound problems relating to others interpersonally. Bi females have a ton of power in poly. I have seen some of them use this power in quite restrictive ways, legislating others out of sex entirely, forcing a kind of de facto mono/poly set up. I think this is bad acting, but their above board messages was “this is for my safety!” Requiring their partners to wear gloves for handjobs while meanwhile they’re running around blowing any old guy they want without protection. This matriarchy is not without its downsides, and I have seen and heard some things in my travels.
I could totally do something like this, and I often wonder why I haven’t. The best I can figure is that because I love my partners, I want generally good things for them even if it can be scary or inconveniencing for me. There may be other reasons though. I’m not sure.
However, what I do know is that through embracing polyamory, I found a place where my identity is powerful and desired and nurtured and accepted… after being led there by one who was hoping to exploit me.
What a trip, huh?