Don’t Think They Have To Choose!

Male Bisexuality is Real According to Multiple Studies At Four Universities 

The came to this conclusion after reviewing data from eight studies conducted between 2000 and 2019 at Northwestern, the Center for Addiction and Mental Health in Toronto, the University of Essex in the United Kingdom, and Cornell University in Ithaca, New York.

The Study

Six hundred male participants, with an average age of twenty-nine, measured responses to male and female erotic stimuli in these eight studies. Researchers confirmed that male sexual attraction and orientation ranges from straight to bisexual to gay. Out of the 600 who participated, nearly 500 were aroused, according to Bailey, who led the Northwestern findings. “There is no longer reasonable doubt.” (A prior 2005 study, co-led by Bailey, did not find evidence of bisexual arousal in men). The study was published on July 20, 2020, in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

However, this does NOT mean that bisexual men are equally attracted to men and women, but rather that bisexual men were, during the testing, more aroused by men than straight men, more aroused by women than gay men, and equally attracted to both genders to a greater extent than either straight or gay men.

Freud and Kinsey Knew This Before

This new study confirms sex researcher Alfred Kinsey’s 1948 theory that sexuality exists on a continuum. Of course, Sigmund Freud believed that all humans were bisexual, that everyone is sexually attracted to both sexes. In his view, this was true anatomically and therefore also mentally and psychologically. Or as one unprofessional commented on Twitter about the new study: “Duh.”

Society is Prejudiced Against Bisexuals

Bisexuals comprise more than half of the GLB community yet are given a bum rap, in general, by society. Director of the Family Acceptance Project at San Francisco State University, Caitlin Ryan, Ph.D., says “that people who identify as bisexual, especially men, are often viewed with suspicion, and this includes a perception that they won’t commit to being gay. They are often discriminated against and stigmatized.”

One of the thirteen authors of the latest study and President of the American Institute of Bisexuality, John Sylla, who concludes “that bisexually aroused men and women, even if for different reasons, choose to pass as just straight or gay” agrees with Dr. Ryan.

People tend to identify as gay or straight because of a habit of erasing a “middle area.” Dr. Ryan commented that” society doesn’t help navigate the conversation around male bisexuality.”

How Do Parents Respond To Child’s Bisexuality?

So, what does this mean for parents whose kids come out as bisexual? How are they supposed to respond?

  • Don’t tell your child to “get off the fence” and choose. Time will tell if they are bisexual or experimenting. However, your child is really the only one who knows as is therefore the expert.
  • Don’t get your hopes up that your child will identify as straight. It may not happen! Don’t try to push him into that orientation.
  • Continue to discuss sex protection.
  • If your child is quarantined with you at home, you should be able to have more time to discuss bisexuality and its opposite pigeonhole, gender binary or classification of gender into two distinct opposite forms of masculine and feminine to which society assigns its members.

If you are in denial about bisexuality, you may want to consult the following organizations: Bisexual Resource Center, Bi Youth, BiNet USA.

When Your Child is Gay

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.

Wesley Cullen Davidson

Wesley Cullen Davidson is an award-winning freelance writer and journalist specializing in parenting as well as gay and lesbian content. For the past two years, Wesley has concentrated almost exclusively on the lesbian and gay community, specifically on advising straight parents of gay children on how to be better parents and raise happy, well-adjusted adults

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