Bisexuality FAQ

I’m bisexual. People have opinions about it. People also have questions – a lot of questions, some of them pretty idiotic, some perfectly valid. Here are the questions I get most often about my sexual identity…

Which do you prefer, cock or pussy?

Well, first of all, that’s a super rude question. Other than queer folks, trans folks, and maybe some disabled folks, I don’t know anyone who routinely gets asked personal questions about their sex lives and genitals by total strangers. It’s grossly inappropriate. If you really want to know which I “prefer,” you should get to know me better and be more tactful about the way you ask.

Secondly, the whole premise of this question is really kind of stupid. I don’t choose lovers based on what genitalia they have. Yeah, that’s something I think about as we’re getting to know each other (“This person has a penis; guess I better start thinking about birth control!” or “This person has a vagina; I wonder if she would like to do some strap-on play when we get to that point!”), but it’s not an initial consideration. I don’t think to myself, “Okay, I’m attracted to this woman and also to this man, but I can’t make up my mind… Whose genitals do I prefer?” I fall in love with and become attracted to people as individuals.

Who gives better head/is better at sex, guys or girls?

I’ve put this question here because its answer is sort of a continuation of the last answer. Guess what? People are individuals; they can’t be generalized by their genders.

Personally, my current male partner is the best I’ve ever had, but that doesn’t mean that men overall are better at sex. Some men are good at sex, some are bad, some are in between; same deal with women. A good partner (communicative, enthusiastic, generous, adventurous) is going to be a good partner regardless of their gender or genitals; same deal with a bad partner (selfish, boring, uncommunicative).

Are you really a lesbian?

Nope. I’ve been attracted to men.

Are you really straight?

Nope. I’ve been attracted to women.

If the only women you’re attracted to are butch/androgynous ones, why don’t you just date men? Isn’t it basically the same thing?

Uh, no. See above re: people being individuals and not being reducible to their genders or genitals.

Imagine this: you’re in a very happy relationship with a woman who happens to dye her hair red. I say to you, “If you like redheads so much, why don’t you just date a natural redhead instead?” You explain to me that you like your girlfriend, not just her hair color – and you love her as an individual, not for her particular traits.

Well, exactly. I become attracted to butch women not because I’m specifically seeking out masculinity but because those are just the kinds of people I can be attracted to, so I sometimes find myself drawn to an individual person within that group. For her totality as a person. Not just for her butchness.

So do you cheat on your partners?/Are you capable of being monogamous?

I’m currently in a “monogamish” relationship (our arrangement is that we are allowed to flirt with and kiss other people, but no more than that). I don’t think of myself as being naturally monogamous and I would to explore consensual non-monogamy more in my future relationships.

However, this has absolutely nothing to do with my sexual orientation. Monogamousness and sexual orientation are separate – many straight people are not naturally monogamous, just as many queer people want to share their love and sex with only one person at a time. The two have nothing to do with each other, though non-monogamy is likelier to be openly acknowledged and accepted in queer communities than in straight ones, because queer people are already transgressing conventional social standards just by being queer so they are (usually) more okay with pushing the envelope in their relationships.

Just because I can be happy with both men and women doesn’t mean that I need to be with both men and women at one time. I’ve met countless bisexuals in my life and I’ve only ever met one who felt that she needed to be having sex with both men and women in order to be satisfied – and again, that has more to do with her proclivity toward non-monogamy than it has to do with her sexual orientation.

Why do you sometimes describe yourself as “queer”? Isn’t that an offensive term?

It has been used as an offensive term for a long time, and some people still find it offensive, yes. However, similar to “dyke” and “fag,” it has been reclaimed by many folks as a positive descriptor. Generally, if you use the word “queer” within an LGBT space, no one will bat an eye.

When I use the word, I am using it as an umbrella term to mean basically anything that isn’t straight – so it may include people who are gay, lesbian, bisexual, pansexual, questioning, heteroflexible, and label-free. Some people also put trans and genderqueer people into the category of “queer,” though I see gender identity as being a separate struggle from sexual orientation so I define them separately.

When describing my sexual orientation, I usually use the word “bisexual” in straight spaces, because almost everyone knows what it means, but I usually use the word “queer” in LGBT spaces because it’s more inclusive of all my attractions – and also because there is sometimes some biphobia in gay and lesbian spaces, so it’s sometimes best to avoid identifying myself as bi if I want to be taken seriously. (It’s a sad truth!)

Why do you call yourself “bisexual” instead of “pansexual”? Isn’t “bisexual” a cissexist term?

Yes, some people believe that the term “bisexual” is cissexist because it only acknowledges a binary of gender – i.e. two genders, male and female. I understand, appreciate, and accept that criticism.

However, in my case, “bisexual” is apt because 99.9% of my attractions are to people who fall into one of two specific gender categories – men (cis or trans) and butch/androgynous women. My attractions still fall into a binary, even though it’s not the conventional gender binary, so the term “bisexual” fits me.

The term “pansexual” suggests that I can be attracted to any type of person, regardless of their gender presentation, which isn’t true for me.

How did you know you were bisexual?

I had suspected it since I was about 11, because I found women’s bodies just as intriguing as men’s bodies in movies and porn clips (um, I was a precocious child).

When I was 15, a girl in one of my classes began to flirt with me – or at least, I perceived it as flirting – and I found myself feeling receptive to that, rather than repulsed by it. Nothing came from that, but later that year, I developed a huge crush on another girl who ended up becoming my first girlfriend.

When you eventually settle down, do you think it’ll be with a man or a woman?

Again, this has to do much more with a person’s individual characteristics than it does with their gender. There are certain traits that I would require in a partner if we were going to have a decades-long relationship, and gender wouldn’t be a factor for me as long as the person had those traits.

I don’t plan on having biological children, and same-sex marriage is legal where I live, so neither of those things will factor into it either.

Why do you have to put a label on yourself? Why can’t you just like who you like?

Some people can do that. Me, I need organization and definitions in order to feel secure. I like having a neat, crisp little word to be able to throw out there when someone asks me about my sexual orientation. It suits my needs. I respect people who can reject all labels, but it’s not for me.

Are you down for a threesome?

Um. Not really. I would have to be attracted to both of the people involved and they would have to both be attracted to me, or I wouldn’t have fun – and that’s unlikely.

Plus, please, for the love of all things sexy and holy, don’t assume that bisexuality automatically equals promiscuity or being cool with anything. Some bi folks are like that but not all.

Sometimes I see a girl who I think is pretty… Does that mean I’m bi too?

Probably not. Do you find yourself wanting to make out with her? Have sex with her? Hold her hand? Go on cute dates together? Refer to her as your girlfriend? If none of those ideas stir up any feelings in you, you’re probably not bi. It’s one thing to appreciate someone’s aesthetics, but it’s quite another thing to actually want some kind of relationship with them.

Does your boyfriend think it’s hot that you’re bi?

If he did, I don’t know if I’d still be with him. Fetishizing someone’s sexual orientation is pretty gross.

He understands and accepts that my bisexuality is a part of who I am. He’s not interested in threesomes or watching me with another woman, so he doesn’t find it sexually exciting; it’s just a fact about me.

Ask Girly Juice: Implements of Kink!

Anonymous asked: Do you have any recommendations for whips/cuffs/other kinky stuff?

I know you sent me this question a while ago, dear anon, and I’ve been mulling it over. After seeing Tristan Taormino’s new film about kink for couples (review coming soon!), I feel newly inspired to answer this question.

The first place you should look is Tantus’ sensation section. While known more for their dildos than their sensation-play toys, Tantus recently came out with a line of paddles that deserve your attention.

I have the Wham Bam and it is divine. It flops around a little bit, but not too much, and it delivers a hell of a thwack. If you want something smaller and more concentrated, I’d recommend the Pelt. Best of all, each Tantus paddle is made out of 100% body-safe silicone, so it can be boiled to sterilize, meaning you can share it between multiple partners without fear or risk.

If you want something less intense (and less pricey), this bamboo paddle looks pretty good, though I think it is more for beginners than the Tantus ones.

I only have one pair of nipple clamps, these Spartacus ones, and they are very painful. I am too much of a wimp to even fully affix them to my nipples, in fact. But if you have tougher nipples than mine and/or are experienced with clamps, you might enjoy ‘em.

Lelo makes a beautiful Sensua flogger with a substantial, grippy handle and a suede business end. It’s small, so it’s probably best for beginner masochists (or for tucking into your purse in case you suddenly crave a good whipping while out in public somewhere!). If you want a whip that’s longer and more functional, Pipedream makes one that doubles as a glass dildo. Amazing.

For cuffs, I generally recommend leather ones because I find they’re the most comfortable (and the sexiest!). Here are some nice ones by Allure. Also check out anything and everything by Aslan Leather – some of their products are even vegan (faux leather)!

If you want to restrain someone without spending a lot, it’s hard to go wrong with bondage tape.

A Wartenburg wheel is a cool way to ease into pain play if it’s something you haven’t tried much before. My friend used one of these things on my arm today and I just thought it felt prickly and strange, but I know lots of folks are into ’em. They have a kind of a medical fetish vibe.

Finally, if you’re looking for a ball gag, I gotta recommend Tantus again. Many ball gags are made of rubber, the smell and taste of which I find disgusting; I can only imagine this effect would be compounded if I was being gagged by a big rubber ball. For that reason, I think silicone ball gags are the way to go. Tantus has a non-representational gag in a few different colors, or you can get a gag shaped like the head of a penis.

This isn’t advanced kinkster stuff, for the most part, but I think it’s a pretty good starter kit for anyone who wants to explore BDSM! (Don’t get the Fifty Shades collection, please, for heaven’s sake.)

Got a question you want me to answer on my blog? Get in touch!

Ask Girly Juice: Help! My Partner Hates That I Watch Porn!

Anonymous asked: I have a problem… I watch porn from time to time and I enjoy it, but it makes my girlfriend really uncomfortable. She says it makes her feel like she’s not good enough. What can I do?

This is a really common problem, and I think it stems mostly from the cultural narrative that tells women we’re only valuable for our appearance and our sexuality. A woman who’s internalized that line of thinking is obviously going to believe that she’s essentially useless if porn is in the picture – because porn provides something sexy to look at, which our culture tells us is a woman’s purpose.

But as you know, women are almost always worth so much more than that to their partners. No one really wants to be in a relationship with a video or a picture. You can’t cuddle with on-screen porn stars, or exchange sentiments of love. Hell, you can’t even feel a porn star’s touch. It’s a completely different and separate experience from actually being with someone; the two fulfill different and separate sets of needs.

A common suggestion for people whose partners are distrustful of porn is that the two of you should watch porn together. I can see many ways this could backfire, though. Some women genuinely find porn distressing to watch, which is an issue best solved with a therapist and not a porn marathon.

She may be in need of validation, and that’s perfectly okay. Make sure you’re telling her often enough just how great she is – how sexy you think she is, how much you enjoy the sex you have with her, how beautiful her body is, and so on. Work to counteract her insecurities.

Ask her if there’s anything you can do to make her feel more loved, appreciated, and attractive. (Aside from “stop watching porn.”)

Take a long, hard look at your porn habits and make sure you’re using it healthily. Neglecting your partner for porn isn’t cool, but I’m sure you know that already. There is a line at which healthy porn consumption turns into unhealthy addiction, but most people don’t get to that point.

Finally – and I know this might be hard to contemplate – it may be that the two of you are just not compatible in this way. No one is obligated to settle for someone whose needs, desires, and dealbreakers conflict with their own. She may be able to find a partner who genuinely doesn’t watch porn, and you certainly will be able to find a partner who doesn’t mind that you watch porn or even thinks of it as a good thing. If this issue is important enough to both of you, it might be worth examining the overall worth of your relationship.

Sorry. I know that sucks. Unfortunately, though, some people are just chronically insecure and believe that the only solution is for other people to stop doing whatever triggers those feelings in them – when the real solution is for them to work on their own insecurity, something these folks are often unwilling to do.

I wish you the best of luck in this sticky situation!

Bonus reading:

“My Boyfriend is Always Watching Porn and It Makes Me Uncomfortable!”

Dan Savage on insecure girlfriends of porn-watching boyfriends (and again)

Ask Girly Juice: Vibrator Recommendations

Anonymous asked: I’m writing to ask you to offer a suggestion that would have these attributes: cordless (preferably rechargeable), mostly clitoral, body-safe, variety of sensations and intensities, and design-conscious without breaking the bank. Thank you.

Okay, I think I can do that!

Lelo has a few that might work. The Mia 2 and Siri are both rechargeable, have a variety of modes and settings, and are not too pricey, particularly if you can find them on sale.

Vibratex makes the Mini Magic Wand, a rechargeable, multi-mode vibe that I haven’t tried but that gets pretty good reviews. I also know that masturbation guru Betty Dodson swears by the Mystic Wand, another massager-style vibe that has several different patterns and settings.

The We-Vibe Salsa and Tango might be on the upper end of your price range, but they are some of the best rechargeable clit vibes out there. Super rumbly, small, discreet, quiet, waterproof, and they have a few different modes.

If you want something that can also be inserted, the Fun Factory Little Paul is a good option (though, again, it might be at the top end of what you’re willing to spend if you’re on a budget). Fun Factory is known for its deep vibrations and adorable-looking toys.

Hope that helps!

Ask Girly Juice: Small Dildos

Anonymous asked: I’m really really tight down there. Do you have any recommendations for a small dildo I could start with, to work up to bigger ones?

Yeah, girl!

I think you’ll find that Tantus, in particular, has a lot of smaller options. As a tiny-vagina’ed girl myself, that’s one of the reasons I love Tantus so much!

I was recently sent a Tantus Charmer and it is pretty damn small at 1 ¼”, but feels amazing. The little ridges are very stimulating. As a bonus, I’m sure it would work well as an anal toy too (as would most small dildos, really).

I think Tantus’ smallest dildo is the small Silk, which is only ¾” wide. Baby dildo! You could also try the Acute (1 ¼”), Eaze (1″), or Compact (1″). And if you’re feeling adventurous and want some mega-texture in a tiny package, the Splish (1″) ought to fit the bill.

As for non-Tantus dildos, Doc Johnson has the Slender and Slim, and Don Wands makes some skinny glass dildos like the Bubble Thriller and Nubby Buddy. And of course, there’s always the gorgeous Njoy Fun Wand.

Oh, and make sure your initial penetration attempts are as pain-free as possible by getting your hands on a good lube! Best of luck to you, little one. ♥