I want to go to Burning Man.
I woke up this morning and thought, I want to go to Burning Man. Where else can bi, poly, pan, queer, open-minded, fluid liberals people go to play? And, then I remembered all the reasons I did not plan to go to burning man: desert, dry, dehydration, crowds, heat. So much planning goes into going to Burning Man and having a good, fun time if you plan to do it without exhaustion and without overwhelming your system. So here we are days away from burning man, then my thought was, What the F?... Why is it that we have to go somewhere, out to the middle of the desert, to harsh weather conditions with masses of people, to enjoy the reality of who we are? It is unfortunate that this is where my people are.
But, the truth is our people are everywhere. Mostly invisible. We still live in puritan times. We still live in a Christian society. People in button down shirts and straight hair. Not openly embracing music, culture, the color. in Hiding. We’re systematically trying to embrace it and fight it at the same time.
The only way to make change is to become visible. Visible and aware.
So, in honor of visibility I am self-disclosing. I wasn’t really sure if I should. As therapists, we are taught not to self-disclose, too much. But ultimately, this isn’t about me, it’s about progress. In high school I came out as bisexual. I was told by someone who I thought would understand, that I should not flaunt my sexuality. I didn't know why, but that felt homophobic to me at the time. I didn't understand it, but I knew it meant that I should keep my business to myself. But, it was a slap in the face. Our sexuality, like our color, like our gender, like anything we love and believe to be a part of us, should not be hidden. That which we hide is that which we are ashamed of, and this shaming is not okay. Not then and definitely not now.
Let me also say, for the record, I no longer label myself as bi, but rather prefer the term "fluid". For one, bisexuality as a term is gender-binary, suggesting there are only two genders male and female, which we all know is limiting. So, while the title of ‘bi-sexuality’ doesn’t support the fluidity of genders, but still it’s a step in the right direction. And back then, it was good enough for me.
Pansexuality is a more inclusive term you might hear nowadays. Still, people hear the word, ‘pansexuality’, and are like, “Huh? What is that?” Well, in case you don’t know, Panseuxality is the sexual attraction to a person of any sex or gender. Today, I call myself fluid. Fluid captures the ebb and flow of my ever changing sexuality.
Ahhh, so many, too many labels. Right? That is what most people say. In the end, it becomes too confusing for people and they’d rather just identify you with the partner that you are with, or in which direction you lean. Thus, people get bunched in as heterosexual or homosexual. For many this is limiting. So, it's a good thing to ask. Ask people how they identify, and go with that. It really makes us feel heard.
So, here it is. It’s an interview I did on Bisexuality, on the show, “Queer and Dear," with Dr. Frankie, psychologist and founder of Little Gay Book, a premier LGBT dating service in San Francisco.