Bisexuality is a sexual orientation that is interested in both men and women. To some people, it may sound like a superpower - double the romantic option means double the chance, right? But in reality, bisexuality can be regarded as a somewhat embarrassing identity. Bisexuals are not straight, so it's hard to think that they are the majority in terms of sexuality. On the other hand, they are often considered to be heterosexual, especially when they have heterosexual partners, which sometimes makes it difficult for them to feel their connection to the LGBT groups.
Most importantly, bisexuals are prone to serious misunderstandings. There are a lot of rumors and stereotypes surrounding bisexuality, some of which even contradict each other. Both heterosexuals and LGBT may hold these stereotypes, which makes it more difficult for bisexuals to integrate into these two groups. Fortunately, in recent years, more and more researchers have become interested in bisexuality, and research has improved our understanding of bisexuality. Here are three examples of how science can combat the misconception of bisexuality:
Myth 1: Bisexuality doesn't exist
I found this rumor particularly ridiculous: how can you tell a group of people that they don't exist? But the idea that everyone is either heterosexual or homosexual is widespread, especially among men. It's frustrating that even in the most tolerant circles of LGBT, you can sometimes hear the saying "there's no such thing as bisexual men at all".
In a recent study published in “archives of sexual behavior”, researchers have completely dismissed this myth. They gathered some heterosexual, gay and bisexual men to show them a number of pornographic movies. The subjects were asked not only to assess their subjective feelings aroused by the fragments, but also to connect physiological devices to measure changes in their penile circumference (that is, sexual excitement).
As expected, when heterosexual men watched movies performed by women, their subjective feelings and sexual excitement were significantly higher than those of men who watched movies performed by men. The opposite was true for gay men. However, the extent to which bisexual men are aroused by male and female images is relatively close. They were also more aroused by bisexual videos - videos starring two males and one female-than the other two groups. Importantly, these differences are reflected in both their own reported arousal and fairly objective data on sexual excitement. Therefore, it is clear from this study that these people are not "pretending" to be bisexual.
Myth 2: Bisexuality is just a stage
This rumor portrays bisexuality as an experimental phase or a state of confusion - usually in college. Afterwards, bisexuals will still determine their "real" identity.
Lisa Diamond has done some very complicated work on this topic, during which she has been observing women's gender identity for a long time. In a paper published in “Developmental Psychology”, Dr. Diamond reported on a group of women she had followed closely for more than a decade. The results clearly show that bisexuality is not a transitional period: only a small number of women who were identified as bisexual in adolescence changed their status to heterosexual or homosexual (only 8%) at the end of the study. However, the orientation of bisexual women is always changing over time. During the ten-year research cycle, their interest in both sexes has been changing.
Myth 3: Bisexuals will not be loyal to their partners
This rumor is probably the most vicious. It comes from the idea that a partner cannot fully satisfy someone who is interested in both sexes. Some people feel that sooner or later they will crave someone who is not of the same sex as their partner. For example, people tend to believe that bisexuals are more likely to cheat on their partners than heterosexual and homosexuals. A part of people are looking for their partner on bisexual dating sites, these platforms offer people more chances to find like-minded partners.
In fact, many bisexuals have a happy one-on-one relationship with their partner. For example, by the end of Dr. Diamond's 10-year study, 89% of bisexual women were in long-term monogamous relationships. In addition, for bisexuals who wish to have multiple sexual partners, studies have shown that they tend to achieve this goal by negotiating with their partners and establishing an open relationship, rather than going around in private behind their partners. I can't find any research to support the idea that bisexuals are less loyal or honest than people with other sexual orientations.
All in all, bisexuality, a small but growing field of research, has a bright future. It not only dispels a lot of rumors and misconceptions surrounding bisexuality, but also provides interesting insights into sexual activity in general. Unlike other sources such as popular culture or media, scientific research believes that bisexuality is a relatively stable and lasting sexual orientation. We recommend people to find bisexual partners on reliable bisexual dating apps or websites. More researches are needed to better understand the similarities, and perhaps uniqueness, of bisexual and unisexual.