From the idea that pansexual people are into cookware to the assumption that bisexual people are always up for a threesome, there are a lot of myths about non-monosexual people. Non-monosexuality is the romantic or sexual attraction to more than one people of more than one gender. Bisexuality and pansexuality are the most common non-monosexual identities and are distinct identities, though there is overlap. Bisexual people are attracted to people of two or more genders, while pansexual people are attracted to people regardless of gender.
The myths around bisexual and pansexual people are often based on harmful stereotypes. Today, let’s debunk some of the myths about bisexuality and pansexuality:
1. Bisexuality isn’t real
Are you tired of hearing that bisexuality is ‘just a phrase’? Lots of people still think bisexuality is a “road stop” on the way to being “fully gay” – this is bisexual erasure, the tendency to ignore or explain away the evidence that people can be attracted to more than one gender. While sexuality is fluid and the labels someone uses to describe their sexuality might change over their life, it doesn’t mean that people are lying about their bisexuality. Bisexuality isn’t ‘half’ of anything – it’s a full identity, and bisexual and pansexuality are no less valid than any other sexual or romantic identity is.
2. Bisexual and pansexual people are more likely to cheat on their partners
Just because bisexual and pansexual people have the potential to be attracted to people of all genders, it doesn’t mean that they actually are. It is a mistake to think that bisexual and pansexual people are attracted to everyone, or that they’ll have twice as many partners as monosexual people. There is still an idea that bisexuals ‘can’t make up their mind’, but bisexual and pansexual people do not need to be in relationships with people of multiple genders to be fulfilled. Some non-monosexual people do choose to be in polyamorous relationships, but lots of bisexual and pansexual folks want monogamous relationships. Additionally, studies have shown that non-monosexual people are not more likely to get STIs than monosexual people.
3. Bisexual people are equally attracted to men and women
The idea that to be bisexual you must be equally attracted to men and women can stop people from using the label or taking up space in the LGBTQIA+ community because they worry that they’re not ‘bisexual enough’. In reality, some bisexual people might be more attracted mostly to women and non-binary people, while others might largely date men but also be into some genderfluid people. The myth that bisexual people must be attracted 50/50 to men and women not only erases non-binary people but also ignores all the many ways bisexual people experience attraction.
4. You can only be bisexual or pansexual if you’ve been in relationships with men and women
Equally, there persists the idea that your pansexuality or bisexuality isn’t ‘valid’ unless you’ve dated and had sex with men and women. Many people know that they’re bisexual before they’ve ever been in a relationship, and you don’t have to have sexual or romantic experiences with people of more than one gender to identify as bisexual. People don’t need to ‘prove’ their bisexuality or pansexuality to anyone. Your identity is valid even if you’ve only dated people of a different gender to yours – or even if you’ve never dated or had sex with anyone.
5. You can only be bisexual or pansexual if you’re dating someone of a different gender to yours
Another way cisheteronormative society dismisses non-monosexual people is by defining them by the relationship that they’re currently in. Especially if a bisexual or pansexual people are dating someone of a different gender, people tend to assume that they’re now ‘straight’ and erase their bisexuality or pansexuality. People don’t stop being bisexual or pansexual once they’re in relationship, and your identity isn’t defined by the person you’re dating.
6. Bisexual and pansexual people are more sexually adventurous
Because Bisexual and pansexual folks are often fetishized and hypersexualised in pop culture, there’s a myth that all bisexual and pansexual people are always having sex with lots of different partners. However, bisexual and pansexual people are not necessarily kinky or more sexually adventurous. Just because someone is bisexual, it doesn’t mean that they want Tinder messages from cishet couples asking them to have a threesome with them - which is something that bisexual woman. A pansexual person might be the one getting the handcuffs out or interested in trying wax play, but that doesn’t have anything to do with their pansexuality.
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