The only person who seemed to understand bisexuality was Sigmund Freud. He theorized that we were all born bisexual and that our sexual orientation was a continuum. Freud believed that later we became either straight or gay because of the relationships around us.
Bis Often Left Out of LGBT Considerations
Yet, despite Freud’s theories, both straights and gays criticize bisexuals rather than being allies of them. To them, it’s not a real sexual term. Straights consider them gay. Gays want bis to make a choice, as if they are indecisive about their orientation. Heterosexuals think they are promiscuous as they must be having more sex with both males and females. Bisexuals can’t win.
The Williams Institute at UCLA School of Law estimates, based on its research, that bisexuals comprise roughly half of the total LGBT population or approximately 4 million Americans. This statistic is slightly more than than the number identifying as gay or lesbian. However, bis are often left out of speeches, news releases, and news reports that allude to LGTs, according to Ellyn Ruthstrom, the former President of Bisexual Resource Center in Boston who says there are few bi political leaders except for Representative Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona and now Oregon Secretary of State Kate Brown, age 54.
With Democratic Governor John Kithaber having stepped down due to an ethics scandal involving his fiancee, Brown became the first openly bisexual governor on February 18. Oregon is no stranger to gay candidates. Tina Kotez, House Speaker, is gay as is Mayor Sam Brown. Married to Dan Little, Brown spent six years as Oregon Secretary of State and another eighteen as Senate Majority Leader in the State Legislature.
Pinning Hopes For BI Community
With Brown in office, the bisexual community is hoping to be included in many civil rights’ campaigns that LGT communities have promoted. Some of Brown’s work during her eighteen years in Oregon’s State Legislature was aimed at boosting LGBT rights.
Of course, some day when minority groups have equal rights, one hopes that a politician’s sexual orientation shouldn’t be mentioned nor should it matter. But for right now, it does.
When Your Child Is Gay: What You Need To Know
For more detailed advice, see book, co-authored with a mother of a gay son and a psychiatrist, Jonathan L. Tobkes, M.D.