Labels

Towards the end of last year I noticed something odd about how people relate to labels, but forgot about it until writing the previous post.

I refer to myself as bisexual. It doesn’t describe the nuances of my relationship, but it does a good job of conveying ‘attracted to boys and girls’. During two different conversations (both with UK public school boys) I made reference to this and both guys responded by asking ‘How can you be, you’re married?”

The implication being that the way we define ourselves is determined solely by our actions. I hadn’t got onto the non-monogamy label, so they saw a basic relationship between ‘sleeps with boy’ and ‘straight’.

This seems so nonsensical that I’d never considered anyone would think that way, but these examples proved me wrong. I asked the second guy if he considered everyone asexual until they’d lost their virginity, but that seemed to confuse him.

Whether we see labels as naming something innate or something we choose to be – surely they contribute to an overarching understanding of ourselves?

Pondering this got me thinking about my kinky life in Singapore (or lack of). I still describe my relationship as non-monogamous, despite six months of apple pie, mom & pops monogamy.

I am not using the term to describe my actions, rather my potential for action – which I guess is what labels come down to for me. The horny teenaged virgin knows exactly who they want to shag when the moment arises.


Remember when I was moving to S’pore, I said something like ‘If there are any perverts here J and I will find them’? Well there are, and in-between writing and posting this, we did.

Needless to say, I had a big smile on my face this weekend. I fear that saying more would be indiscrete 😉

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5 Comments»

  The Goldfish wrote @

Folks really don’t get bisexuality. People like the binary of straight/ gay, so as a rule they assume bisexual women are really straight and bisexual men are really gay (if in doubt, our culture assumes a preference for cock!). Even some gay people seem to struggle with the idea of a genuine equal-opportunities lech.

When people do buy it, they often assume that if you’re bisexual, you have a need to have sex with both men and women – that you really can’t be happily monogamous. Whereas to me, that’s kind of like saying that if you’re capable of fancying blondes *and* brunettes, then so long as you’re monogamous with your blonde lover, you’ll always be craving for brunettes.

I would be interested in how it is for you if it’s not too personal a question? During your apple pie periods, do you miss having sex with women particularly, or do you miss having sex with other people in general? Glad you had a perverted weekend. 🙂

  elle wrote @

Hey, it’s the Goldfish! *waves*

Bisexuality does seem to be a tricksy concept. My mother rather disparagingly refers to it as being greedy, and I knew a gay guy who was dismissive (especially as I was in a long-term hetero relationship). I think (I’m postulating) his issue was that I was claiming gay solidarity without going through the struggle for acceptance that people in same-sex relationships face.

Your point about people assuming you need both men and women to be happy if you’re bi explains the confused reactions of the guys I wrote about. I guess the reasoning goes >> bi people need to sleep with both genders >> bi people therefore do not make lifelong commitments to one gender >> this married girl is not bi (and all men are wise & Platonic, &tc).

Actually, one of the examples I used to try and counter the guys’ mindset was the other side of your blonde/brunette coin. Monogamous straight men might still appreciate a lovely pair of pulchritudes on a passing woman; a monogamous married bi girl simple does the same. No one has to act on their feelings for them to be there.

My non-monogamy muddies those waters somewhat (incidentally, this blog is a happy repository of too-personal-a-questions, ask away).

If the decision to have an open relationship were driven solely by my bisexuality you would expect that I slept only with other women, which isn’t the case. However, being bi certainly made it easier to get buy-in (to use a cycnical marketing term) for an open relationship, as the first ground the Boy and I explored together was MFF threesomes.

These still make up a large part of the extracurricular sex we have and I def miss sleeping with girls if I don’t do so for a while, so I think it’s likely that bisexuality is a motivation for my lifestyle.

It’s not the motivation though. As I mentioned, I also sleep with guys, and would feel the loss of that freedom acutely. And the foursomes I have generally revert to two MF couples – just ‘straight’ people mixing it up for the sheer enjoyment of it. 🙂

  elle wrote @

being bi certainly made it easier to get buy-in

Cynical marketing term AND crap stealth pun – woo!

Also,

if in doubt, our culture assumes a preference for cock

is my hands-down favourite sentence for this week.

  slackpacking wrote @

The quote above is brilliant, I shall retain it for future purposes. Hurray for finding perverts!

Beena

  elle wrote @

Sorta related topic – the one-penis-policy in open relationships.

http://www.thestranger.com/seattle/control-tower/Content?oid=2017933&hp

I think this situation does crop up but the article over-simplifies; as some of the commenters point out, this set-up suits some people.

If you interpret penis literally (rather than the intended reference to any involvement with another man – so objectifying!) it applies to me.

I play with guys but have found it suits me better not to do the whole penis > vagina thing. This is my choice, not the Boys, just like where he sticks his cock is his choice.


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