By Alexander Cheves September 24 2: I cheated on him and lied about it for months. When I finally told him the truth, answering his oft-asked inquiries about my infidelity with a final, fateful yes, we remained locked in a toxic back-and-forth, shouting insults at each other for a month. But late one night, in a parking lot after we had spent an angry hour talking on the phone, I made a decision that I would later consider an act of mercy for both of us: Until about six months ago, when my phone buzzed with a text message from a name I never expected to see on my screen again: I needed to tell him I was sorry, he needed to tell me how much I had hurt him, and we both needed to hug.
He was not a cheater. Bi people are not predisposed to infidelity. I was the cheater. The reality was far from it: He was unbearably monogamous and loyal to a fault. But even if a bisexual person does cheat, it's hardly evidence that bisexuality inclines a person toward infidelity.
At most, it's only evidence that the person cheated and is therefore not presently cut out for monogamous dating. Yes, he truly was attracted to both men and women. But I understand where this misconception comes from. Many gay guys myself included claim to be bisexual as a sort of "baby step" out of the closet.
My ex watched lesbian porn one night and it made me really uncomfortable. The whole time I thought, Oh no.
It was childish, but the feeling is understandable: He was clearly attracted to something I would never be able to offer him, and I feared that unmet desire would cause him to seek satisfaction elsewhere. Although differences can be deal-breakers, a difference in sexual orientation doesn't need to be. I've heard many, many people — gay and straight alike — say they wouldn't date a bisexual person. Although I understand some differences to be deal-breakers vastly oppositional religious beliefs or political leanings come to mind , I can't understand why the difference between gay or straight and bisexal is such a no-go for so many.
From a practical standpoint, it's unrealistic: My ex and I had many differences that made us incompatable, but our different orientations were hardly the reason why we split. In actuality, our orientations slightly overlapped, like Venn diagrams — our relationship existed in the purple area between his bisexual red and my gay blue.
Bisexuals get hurt just as much as the rest of us. I could attempt to rationalize my cheating and say that I did it because I thought that, as a bisexual, he would rebound fast with a girl or hit his larger playing field with a vengeance. But really, those would just be excuses. That hurt had nothing to do with his sexual orientation and nothing to do with his place in the LGBT acronym. He was hurt because he was in love.
In the long run, our relationship changed me for the better — at his expense. He had every right to hate me, as did all of his friends and all of his family, who welcomed me for a two-week stay one summer when we were together. I had been nervous about dating a bi person and was initially filled with jealous insecurity every time I thought about the fact that he was noticing women too.
It took a while to learn that my insecurity was on me, and my nervousness was misplaced — his bisexuality would be no threat to us. So gay men, lesbians, and straight people: Drop the insecurity and the prejudice.
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