Thursday, January 23, 2014

Bisexuality: "just a layover on the way to gay town"

From "Sex and the City", Season 3, Episode 4:
Carrie: You know, I'm not even sure bi-sexuality exists. I think it's just a layover on the way to gay town.
Miranda: Isn't that right next to Ricky Martinville?
Many people, both straight and gay, agree with Carrie.  In their eyes, "bi" is a label of convenience, not a label of fact. Bisexuals are gays who can't (or won't) admit the truth.  They're in denial - and that's their biggest problem - not their sexuality.

What's so bad about denial?

The argument is that if you're actually gay, not bi, and can't admit it, you can never be genuinely happy. Instead you live a life of permanent dissatisfaction.  Sometimes you're pissed off for reasons you can't explain.  Other times you're depressed and lonely, even when you're surrounded by the people you love.

Speaking of loved ones... they're the innocent victims of denial.  Unhappiness has a way of spreading, like a disease.  You might not kick the dog or yell at the kids because you're in denial, but everyone instinctively knows you're an unhappy person.  That affects the way they interact with you, and the way you interact with them.

Straight spouses bear the burden of denial more than anyone else.  If you can never be happy, how can she?  Can you express authentic love and desire for her, or, do you unintentionally make her feel like last week's leftovers?  Even during the best of times, many straight spouses know something isn't quite right.

Being forever unfulfilled might be sad...or frustrating...or silently hurtful to others...but what people fear most about denial is that it's a temporary stage.  Inevitably, it's assumed, there will come a day when the truth is revealed...

...and when it is...

the shit will hit the fan.

Shit hitting the fan - that, in a nutshell, is why denial is assumed to be bad.

In my previous post, I wrote about a straight wife who believes her husband's bi polar disorder caused him to have gay fantasies.  Her proof is that the gay fantasies disappeared once the bi-polar condition was treated.

That sounds like wishful thinking to me. While I can believe that being depressed might cause normally repressed gay fantasies to surface, I don't believe same sex attractions are actually caused by being bi polar.

I think this woman is in denial.  I think she wants to believe her husband is entirely straight, even though he obviously is not.

Here's the thing though - does it matter?  If she desperately WANTS to believe her husband is straight, why is that a problem?  Other than herself, who is she at risk of hurting?

I also wonder if those of us "in the know" have a moral responsibility to tell others when we think they're in denial.  For example, if a straight wife says, "My husband used to masturbate to gay porn and he even hooked with a guy in the past, but I *KNOW* he only did those things because he was lonely and depressed," are we helping her if we tell her she's delusional?

I'm asking this because it seems pretty obvious to me that straight men, authentically straight men at least, do not watch gay porn and they certainly don't hook-up with other men, ever.  Therefore, if a straight wife refuses to believe such blatant behaviors aren't good enough proof that her husband is turned on by men, is there anything a stranger could say that would convince her otherwise?  I don't think there is.  And really, I wonder if there's any good that could come from trying.

Do you agree?  Should straight spouses be left to their fantasies until harsh reality bites them in the ass?  Or, is their blind loyalty so well-intentioned that when it happens, others need to step in and make them aware of what they're setting themselves up for? 

Please share your thoughts below.