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I'm asking this here because I respect the thoughtful, intelligent women in QP. Yes, I lurk. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/whistling.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="whistle"><br><br>
I don't call myself queer. I don't really indentify as bi. I'm not 50/50. Maybe 70/30. (Men/women).<br><br>
There is that 30%. And yes I've had sex with women, and yes I've been head over heel in love with a woman who broke my heart. (She had feelings for me, but could not get past the gender issue.)<br><br>
I'm not asking anyone to tell me if I'm queer. What I'm asking, I suppose, is am I copping out by accepting heterosexual priviledge and not rocking the boat? I compartmentalize with friends. Meaning, there are people who know I am attracted to women and people who don't. I'm the same way with a few other issues, too, that have nothing to do with sexuality.<br><br>
I'm married, so it seems pretentious to trot about as if I'm "special." What would be the point in talking about my attraction to women when the issue is sort of moot? Moot in that I'm in a monogamous long term relationship. On the other hand, I do feel like I keep a side of me hidden from people who I don't trust would be 100% okay with it. Mostly I hide it from women friends.<br><br>
My husband knows how I am. We talk about women together, usually at my instigation. Lot's of "Oh, isn't she cute?" stuff around here. Things I wouldn't say in front of many of my friends, although I'd feel ok expressing a similar thought about a guy.<br><br>
Thoughts? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/bag.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Bag">:<br><br>
(Feel free to talk about me in specific or these kinds of issues in general.)
 

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I'm a lurker too, but I really liked your thought-provoking question.<br><br>
I don't think you're copping out at all. You're married and not looking for a woman. Just looking and commenting on an attractive person is okay, and if some of your friends know and some don't, I don't see the harm in that. I have all different "levels" of relationships with my women friends. Some know I'm queer, some don't. I think if it came up in a conversation, you could throw it out there and see how some of them react. What I've found is that most of my friends don't make a big deal about it if I don't.<br><br>
If you feel like you're keeping a part of yourself hidden from people you don't think would approve, maybe their opinion doesn't matter. After all, you are who you are! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
FYI, I am/was married (divorcing) and often felt like a big part of me was being repressed. What I thought was like 75/25 (men/women) has shifted substantially....<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1"> to like 90% women! Bring em on... <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up">
 

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I'm in a similar situation, though I would say the percentage is always changing for me (I go through periods where I get crushes on mostly men, then periods where it's mostly women.)<br><br>
I'm also in a long term marriage -- in my case also to a man. We got together when we were very young and prior to that, my heart had been broken by a woman. My dh and I talk about women and men in a dishy kind of way ("wow, she's hot" "OMG, look at his ass") and he's a little bi, too, so it is fun for both of us <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin"><br><br>
I guess there are people that I'm not totally out to -- if it's never come up. I don't think I have any *real* friends that don't know, though. (I mean, with aquaintances, you're mostly talking about the things you share in common - like knitting or dance, in my case). I would never specifically not tell someone. I am out. I am proud. It's just it doesn't always come up in everyday conversation. (Tho I'll still say "Damn, look at that woman" so maybe most people -- even aquaintances -- could infer.)<br><br>
I do feel more inclined to share my bi status with people because it is not obvious. I absolutely don't feel my sexuality is being repressed in my marriage, since I am free to fantasize and talk about my interests.<br><br>
I don't think you're copping out. We all have compartmentalized friends (tho again, I think those are more aquaintances and less "real friends"). HTH!
 

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It's so hard to say how queer queer is <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
My good friends know that I'm not 100% straight but I'm not exclusively<br>
anything, but I suppose my politics make me queer if that makes any sense.<br><br>
Just like a feminist is a woman who is political about who she is...so a glbtpoly person is queer because they are political.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>lotusdebi</strong></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">THANK YOU!<br>
I think the fact that so many bisexuals don't identify themselves as such when they're in a monogamous relationship really hurts the fight for bisexual inclusion in the Queer community.</div>
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Ok, I have a question...this is NOT meant to be snarky AT ALL. What rights are the bisexual community fighting for? What rights are being denied them that they want? Or is it more of just being recognized?
 

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When I moved to San Francisco, back in 91, and before I admitted to myself that I was any sort of queer, I used to read all the gay newspapers. (should have tipped me of, eh?) That's where I learned that being bisexual was not included or respected by the mainstream gay/lesbian movment. So, as I have developed a clearer understanding (and practice! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/tiphat.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Tiphat">: ) of my sexuality, I've been defensive as hell about it.<br><br>
Sometimes I explain it like this: In San Francisco, I'm close to straight. In most other places, I'm pretty darn queer. ( don't conform to gender roles, look kinda funny, date other women, etc).<br><br>
I am fortunate to be close with (and, at times, part of) a very queer community that has a complex understanding of what is included in "queer."<br><br>
Lots of the sectors of queerdom that dis bisexuals also have been, shall we say, less than inclusive of their tranny siblings as well. I know where my solidarity belongs.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>lotusdebi</strong></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">IME, bisexuals are not accepted as being Queer, and are not accepted as part of the Queer community. We are ostracized from both the Queer and Straight communities, and often end up forming Bisexual groups.</div>
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I totally agree with you lotusdebi.<br>
I've been having a hard time with this lately. I'm bisexual (Not very attracted to most men.. but my dp.. he is not most men <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/mischievous.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="mischief">) and in a monogamous hetero relationship. I never really "came out of the closet" all the way when I was younger. My parents don't know, DP's parents don't know, but some friends etc. know. It's so wierd because all of the sudden I found myself fearing rejection from my parents and other family and no longer finding support from the queer community. It hurts.<br>
I recently found a queer knitting group here in portland that is SO welcoming and awesome though, so I'm feeling really fortunate right now <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love">
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Dechen</strong></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I'm asking this here because I respect the thoughtful, intelligent women in QP. Yes, I lurk. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/whistling.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="whistle"><br><br>
I don't call myself queer. I don't really indentify as bi. I'm not 50/50. Maybe 70/30. (Men/women).<br><br>
There is that 30%. And yes I've had sex with women, and yes I've been head over heel in love with a woman who broke my heart. (She had feelings for me, but could not get past the gender issue.)<br><br>
I'm not asking anyone to tell me if I'm queer. What I'm asking, I suppose, is am I copping out by accepting heterosexual priviledge and not rocking the boat? I compartmentalize with friends. Meaning, there are people who know I am attracted to women and people who don't. I'm the same way with a few other issues, too, that have nothing to do with sexuality.<br><br>
I'm married, so it seems pretentious to trot about as if I'm "special." What would be the point in talking about my attraction to women when the issue is sort of moot? Moot in that I'm in a monogamous long term relationship. On the other hand, I do feel like I keep a side of me hidden from people who I don't trust would be 100% okay with it. Mostly I hide it from women friends.<br><br>
My husband knows how I am. We talk about women together, usually at my instigation. Lot's of "Oh, isn't she cute?" stuff around here. Things I wouldn't say in front of many of my friends, although I'd feel ok expressing a similar thought about a guy.<br><br>
Thoughts? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/bag.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Bag">:<br><br>
(Feel free to talk about me in specific or these kinds of issues in general.)</div>
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OMG, I could have written this post. This is something I really struggle with. I am also a bisexual woman married to a guy. I think I'm probably more like 60/40 the other way (women/men), but the person I happened to fall in love with was a guy. In terms of simple attraction, I am much more attracted to women than men. Initially, even deciding to move in together was a bit of a struggle--I felt like I was "selling out" and abandoning (and being abandoned by) the community that was so supportive and essential to me throughout high school and college. In some ways, I feel I've had to give up something that I do think is a key part of my identity. I also compartmentalize--many people know (dh, of course!, my sister, most of my college and high school friend), but some don't (my parents, my in-laws, my other sister--not that I'm necessarily trying to hide it, but it just seems like a big coming out drama would be a little beside the point since I'm married). The most embarrassing thing is that when I meet someone queer, I often feel compelled to mention ex-girlfriends and things like that in the conversation--as though to say, "Look! I may be married, but I can actually relate to you!" <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/bag.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Bag">: I wish there was a way to be more "out" as married, bisexual woman--but, on the other hand, I also feel like I have no longer have any "street cred", in a sense.<br><br>
Okay, this post has no point. Just glad to have a safe place to vent!
 

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I want to add something. I know that there is some tension around this, and that sometimes lesbians who are exclusively with women feel uncomfortable with those of us who are currently with men identifying as queer. I think that queer is inclusive of me, but as a bi woman with a man, I am not actually in the same category as a "pure" lesbian. And so my relationship to lesbians is not "I am just like you" but, "I am your ally." I thihnk this is an important difference.
 

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I hear you loud and clear!<br><br>
As a bi woman married to a man, I feel very much the same as you. I ID as bi, but unless I come out to people, they wouldn't know. I actually feel much more comfortable with people once they do know, yet I often feel that I make THEM uncomfortable by telling them, because they don't necessarily understand why I even bother.<br><br>
I don't have any bi friends, so I feel sort of like an outsider much of the time. No lesbian friends either, just a couple of gay men who are actually more friends of DH's than mine - he's straight but not homophobic - so I'm just "different" no matter where I am. Lonely sometimes...
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Dechen</strong></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I'm asking this here because I respect the thoughtful, intelligent women in QP. Yes, I lurk. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/whistling.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="whistle"><br><br>
I don't call myself queer. I don't really indentify as bi. I'm not 50/50. Maybe 70/30. (Men/women).<br><br>
There is that 30%. And yes I've had sex with women, and yes I've been head over heel in love with a woman who broke my heart. (She had feelings for me, but could not get past the gender issue.)<br><br>
I'm not asking anyone to tell me if I'm queer. What I'm asking, I suppose, is am I copping out by accepting heterosexual priviledge and not rocking the boat? I compartmentalize with friends. Meaning, there are people who know I am attracted to women and people who don't. I'm the same way with a few other issues, too, that have nothing to do with sexuality.<br><br>
I'm married, so it seems pretentious to trot about as if I'm "special." What would be the point in talking about my attraction to women when the issue is sort of moot? Moot in that I'm in a monogamous long term relationship. On the other hand, I do feel like I keep a side of me hidden from people who I don't trust would be 100% okay with it. Mostly I hide it from women friends.<br><br>
My husband knows how I am. We talk about women together, usually at my instigation. Lot's of "Oh, isn't she cute?" stuff around here. Things I wouldn't say in front of many of my friends, although I'd feel ok expressing a similar thought about a guy.<br><br>
Thoughts? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/bag.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Bag">:<br><br>
(Feel free to talk about me in specific or these kinds of issues in general.)</div>
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It's like you're in my head!!!<br><br>
I'm living a 55/45 (man/woman) kind of life, in a committed relationship (unmarried) with a man. I'm out to all of my friends as bisexual at this point, but I honestly feel that my decision to be in a relationship with a man (and have a child by a man) has ostracized me from the gay community. Identifying as bisexual carries it's own stigmas in and of itself, in the gay and straight communities and adding a child into the mix definitely throws things out of wack. I've lost many so called friends as a result of getting pregnant and deciding to keep my child because that decision didn't jive well with what they found an acceptable 'alternative' lifestyle.<br><br>
So who to tell...basically everyone in my life knows my 'orientation'. I don't see any reason to hide it and I don't identify any less as bisexual because the person I'm choosing to spend my life with is male. Am I still attracted to women? Yes. Will I act on it again? Not so long as I am in a committed relationship. My poor mother, I had to explain to her that being bisexual still meant you could be monogamous. That just because you're attracted to men and women, doesn't mean you have to have sex with them both at the same time!!!
 

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Dechen, good question! You always have thought provoking posts.<br><br>
I wanted to point out that even within a group - even within "100% lesbian never been with a guy and have no interest in men" there is tension among members regarding identity. I am "pure" lesbian (haha Sadie!) and I would even be very comfortable as a lesbian seperatist. But I just happen to look like a blonde sorority chick. I have tried cutting my hair short, dying my hair brown, wearing athletic clothes, and I completely do no consider myself "femme" at all. But I am blonde, thin, and have big boobs so people still visually read me as "girly" (even in men's clothes). Becuase in our socieity thin plus boobs = object for men.<br><br>
Even among "pure" lesbians, you will find this queerness contest as to who is more gay than the next. It can be subtle, as far as little comments, people assuming you have had sex with men, people assuming you will "go back" to men someday. People equate how "gay" you are with looks just like within racial minorities people are judged by their shade of skin color.<br><br>
I think the bi ladies here who have complained absolutely have a legit gripe.... but this isn't something that gays just do to bisexuals. It also happens just as much with "the ranks." Unfortunatley, those physical signs that we are judged on by society - minority groups internalize those and also judge based on the same things. My activist friends of color say there is a lot of in-conflict and judgment of what people are like based on.... SKIN COLOR. That just amazes me. But we all internalize what this world teaches us to some degree <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad">
 

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Great thread!<br><br>
I'm pretty much the same as you, maybe a 60/40 split (60 being male centered). I consider myself to be bisexual, I'm both attracted to and have had sexual relationships with women. I don't consider myself any less "queer" simply because I married a man and had a baby. Had I met the right woman, I'd have married her and would have gotten donor sperm to have a baby. I don't limit myself on who I can or can't be with due to their gender. I married my husband because I really, truly love him as a person.<br><br>
I'm not "in the closet" to any of my friends, although I don't talk about bisexual/gay matters at leingth with my more heterosexual friends. I've never really felt accepted in the gay community, and I've always felt the need to hide or play down my bisexuality in the straight community, but I guess a lot of bisexuals feel that way.
 

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Wow, this is such a great thread!<br><br>
Ive been married to a man for 8 years now and when I show up at gay rights activities I kind of get this <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/confused.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Confused">: look from some people. I have never felt a need to explain myself ("I dated women and men, fell in love with a man, now we're married"). I have been active in Gay-Straight alliances, in tolerance teaching and in gay marriage causes, because these are important causes.<br><br>
I know the feeling of thinking that maybe you should be upfront, and I had a conversation about that in college with a friend of mine who was in the LGBT group - she said "dont preach what you dont practice" I was <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/irked.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="irked">: at the time. But now I feel like, why should I? And I really have a great deal of respect for the gay people I have met who welcomed me in, not knowing I was anything but a straight suburban mom. I dont want to use my sexuality to gain acceptance from anyone. Last summer I did research for one of my professors about grad school admissions policies and including sexuality orientation into diversity policies. I mean, why tell him who I used to sleep with? He hired me because he thought I was a good student.<br><br>
But I do consider myself bisexual, but I dont know if that means anything, really. My husband and I are comfortable with each other in our sexuality and have a great marriage where gender roles and not confined. It works for us: gay, straight, or something else. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"><br><br>
This is my official delurking in Queer Parenting <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wave.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wave">
 

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I could have written many of these posts, except for one small difference - my partner changed genders on me! So, it wasn't like I lived as lesbian or bisexual for a while and then fell in love with a man; I fell in love with a woman and found out s/he was a man. It's a very long story, but in the context of this thread I will say it has caused some interesting issues around 'outness'. I used to be out with everyone everywhere, and because I am in such a liberal city and because I'd been doing it for so long, it was really pretty easy. I would say 'My partner... she..." and it was done.<br><br>
Now, it is so much more complicated, and I don't tell everyone. Anyone who I spend a significant amount of time with I eventually come out to, but every time it feels like such a risk. Every time it is such a big deal for me - I have yet to come out to someone for whom we aren't the first freaky transgendered family they know. Everyone has been great, but it's such hard work. And I just don't bother with everyone, so as a result I have a couple of lives - all my dear friends and family know, aquaintances from play groups or preschools don't. I don't like it, but what am I going to do, say, "By the way, Jackson was conceived via donor insemination because his Daddy is transgendered" over the sandbox? Ironically, my partner works for a queer organization and is presumed to be a gay man until he mentions me. :LOL<br><br>
But, having clearly seen both sides of this coin, I feel my privilege acutely. I have a distinct memory of holding hands in public shortly after my partner started passing as male. We were always publicly affectionate, even as 'lesbians', and were accustomed to deflecting looks and comments. But this time some little old lady smiled at us, like, "Oh, aren't you two lovebirds cute?". We looked at each other, looked around us to figure out who she was smiling at. It was a trip, a complete freakin' trip. Some testosterone and facial hair and suddenly we're socially acceptable? And a note from the doc and his driver's license, passport, social security card all read male. And we can get legally married. We are legally married. We are the same damn people who couldn't marry legally the year before. There are plenty of cases in which marriages like ours have been legally challenged, but we live in a liberal city in a liberal state with liberal courts. And our best friends, Jackson's Aunties who have been together for 16 years cannot marry. Totally flippin' unfair and stupid and wrong.<br><br>
And I don't do enough about it. As the OP put it, I don't rock the boat enough, in part because it's so challenging to be out. I am vocal about my positions on queer rights, and maybe that's a powerful statement coming from someone 'straight', but it feels weird to be viewed as a straight ally instead of the queer woman I am.<br><br>
Enough rambling about me. Thanks for starting this thread.
 

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I think a Queer label is pretty hard to place - I mean, we ALL have the capacity to swing one way or another in love relationships, it's just the degree and the willingness that differs. If you're bi and get married/commit to a monogomous relationship, that doesn't make you any less bi.<br>
I feel like I'm in a "fringe" place myself, here, as I am married to a man, and we both have the same secondary partner (a woman). She would immediately be identified as bi, but one would *assume* that I was straight until being told otherwise, just because I'm married to my DH and have kids. It is always assumed that my girlfriend is just a "good friend", when actually, she's part of the family.
 
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