I have a question about the LGBT community... specifically about bisexuality.

I’m an ally for the community (happy Pride month! :rainbow_flag:) but as a straight person writing a bisexual main character, I want to know something about being bisexual and if what I have in mind is offensive to the community at all or if it depends on the context, situation, and person.

I understand that you can be in both a homosexual and heterosexual relationships, and neither means you being one or the other (like if you’re in a heterosexual relationship, it doesn’t mean you’re straight nor does it define who you are, same as the opposite). Right? But I’m stumped on if there is a specific gender or person that you have in mind for settling down with or seeing a future with?

I’ve heard (and understand) that just because you marry the opposite gender, doesn’t make you less of a bisexual person. You loved that person enough to share a life with them. You still are attracted to the same gender, you’re just not in the position to date anyone else. Right? So my question is if my male MC is bisexual but mostly saw himself in a heterosexual relationship, is that offensive at all?

Nicolas, my MC, starts off in a heterosexual relationship. She dies and after her death, he meets someone (a guy) and eventually gains feelings for him. And while they will share a relationship in the story, there is a part I’m trying to work out in my head where he might see himself in a heterosexual relationship more…? I’m trying to figure out how to end this romantic subplot in my head prior to the entire series ending, and while I want him to end up with his future boyfriend, I don’t know if that’s the route I want to take. :thinking: :woman_shrugging:

There’s also another ending I had in mind where he doesn’t get with anyone in the end and his future boyfriend would end up doing something else or going somewhere.

Anyway, what do y’all think?

Honestly, this might be internalised heterosexuality, parental expectations, societal expectations or, y’know, all of the above, but I definitely see myself marrying a man in the future. In an ideal world, he’d be chill with the idea of opening the relationship and we’d be able to find a girlfriend, but I get that not everyone is polyamorous.

I don’t think so. Maybe I’m wrong, but as far as I know, bisexuality isn’t an evenly split ratio in terms of what gender and sex you fall in love with. Most (maybe all, I’m not sure) have a preference, and that’s okay.

I mean, this could be seen as a number of things. Maybe experimentation. Maybe Nicolas is biromantic, but heterosexual (or the other way around. I guess it depends on how you’re writing it). Maybe he’s pansexual or polysexual. Really, there’s only so much I can say since I don’t really know Nicolas’ feelings about this man, and his reasoning for “see[ing] himself in a heterosexual relationship more.” Or maybe it’s not Nicolas seeing himself in a heterosexual relationship, but, rather… you?

Also, how soon after her death does Nicolas meet this guy. And then develop feelings for him? Because, idk, it kinda feels like it’s Oh no, my girlfriend’s dead. Grief. Let’s experiment with something new instead of dealing with loss healthily. And there’s also the question of whether Nicolas actually has feelings for this man, or if he just thinks he does because the man is helping him with his emotions and Nicolas mistakes that for romantic love?

If you haven’t already, I really recommend checking out BRC for more information. It really helped me with labels, so I definitely think it’s worth a look.

Some things I’d be really careful about is the stigma surrounding men and bisexuality, and bi-erasure, so definitely do more research on that.

Personally, I’d say end it with Nicolas in a relationship with the other man because bisexuality often gets erased, or seen as a ~just a phase~ (and especially with this relationship developing after his girlfriend’s death, it kinda leans more that way). But, it all really depends on Nicolas’ arc and his development, and how you’re writing this.

Hoped this helps? I feel like it didn’t really. Feel free to tag me and ask me some more questions if you need!

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I’m lesbian, but most bisexuals I’ve talked to say that they often lean towards one sex more so than the other. And statistically speaking, most bisexuals end up settling down with the opposite sex. This is not surprising, as there are more opposite-sex attracted people than same-sex attracted people. That, paired with the fact that heterosexuality is just easier (wider social acceptance, easier means of procreation/starting a family, etc), makes it more likely that monogamous bisexuals will end up in a heterosexual arrangment.

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It’s a ok to have a preference!
Look at it this way, lets say…I’m a guy and I like girls, but I’m only into girls with red hair and are funny.
Its the same as saying I’m bisexual i prefer girls. Neither is offensive, its how you, or the character feels

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I’m now married to a man. Before I got married, I think I was open to the idea of a long-term committed relationship with a woman, but if I did actually get married, I always envisioned that it would be with a man or at least someone amab, because I do want to try and have biological children.

However, I also grew up in a highly-religious and conservative family+community, so I think there was a lot of societal pressure that influenced my thoughts around romantic relationships, even if I’m pretty equally sexually attracted to men and women. I had a lot of internalized homophobia that impacted me for a long time, and it’s something I’m still unpacking and learning about.

So I don’t think that depicting something like that would be offensive to me. Even if he has different reasons, I feel like that’s a struggle I relate to. The romantic/sexuality spectrums are fluid and messy, and the bisexual experience is really diverse.

Though people can/do take issue with lots of things. My lead is bi and she only ever has a relationship with her first love, who happens to be a cis male. I’m bi/maybe pan myself and I still fear getting comments about how it “doesn’t count” :joy:

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I don’t see this as offensive at all! Granted, I’m just one bi person, and I’m sure there are a lot of opinions, but I wouldn’t have a problem with it. I would love to have relationships with men and women in the future, I find both attractive, but I think in the end I will likely end up with a male. I don’t think having your bi characters end up in a hetero relationship is a bad thing at all, but as I said, this may differ person to person.

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I’m not bi I’m pan but just wana say… everyone is different like, I’m all about representation cause DUH but I am in fact a problematic gay lol

Right

Nope, shit just happens and you roll with it. If you’re a mono its like you see who you’re seeing if your poly you see a life and an ideal but there’s never a specific person unless the person leans.

LIKE my PERFECT person (This is where I’m problematic so Im a blur this)

My perfect partner is a Transwoman no opp. Its literally everything I want in one person a bad bitch with a big dick like YEEEEESS BABY COME HERE!

Since that’s not something that grows on trees I also see myself with women but oddly enough have married to Cis men. Unlucky lol

Unless you’re poly

If it is then Im offensive. People think I’m straight because they don’t “See” me with women despite the fact I sleep with them. I’ve just only had 1 serious girlfriend.

Is he Demi? cause he could just be into that one guy since sexuality is fluid that wont make him bi. IF this is very hard I say piss everyone off have NO label and let the reader decide while the MC is like “Hey, I like what I like”

Go where your story takes you.

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There is absolutely nothing offensive about a bisexual person being more attracted to one gender or another, or being more romantically attracted to one gender but equally sexually attracted to both, or vice-versa. It’s all a spectrum. I think it’s actually relatively uncommon for a bisexual person to be completely 50/50. Most bisexuals I know, and me myself, have a preference, and that preference may differ in long-term and short-term relationships.

The worst mistake in writing about a particular group is actually thinking that everyone in that group is the same (that all bisexuals are 50/50, for example). Just write what’s right for your character. Though we often try to make our main characters relatable to a large audience (or a specific audience that we’re trying for), no character ever encompasses every type of person. Your book isn’t stating that all bisexuals prefer heterosexuality, it’s stating that Nicholas does. I don’t think any bisexual would be offended by that.

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I am gay but I shared the past years of my life loving and living with a bisexual man, I will reply according to what I learned about bisexuality from him:

No. Until meeting me, my fiancé didn’t know if he would settle with a woman or with a man. He had a long-term relationship with a woman before meeting me, and nothing supposed that he would ended up proposing to a man. He used to tell me that for him either genders were fine by him, didn’t matter if I were a guy or a girl, he just loved me and wanted to be with me.

No it isn’t. I advise you to check Kinsey’s scale (Homo-hetero rating scale) to see that there are three kinds of bisexual people:

  1. Bi people who are equally heterosexual and homosexual (3 on the scale)
  2. Bi people who are predominantly homosexual, but more than incidentally heterosexual (4 on the scale)
  3. Bi people who are predominantly homosexual, only incidentally heterosexual (5 on the scale)

I’m bi AF so… here we go

I personally think I’m more likely to wind up with a woman or someone outside of the gender binary. Bisexuality isn’t 50/50–it varies person to person.

Not offensive. Don’t worry about it

Sexuality of who you’re attracted to, not who you date.

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This is really ironic because I have written a story about a bisexual (he starts out as being gay) male and I am a straight female.
What I ended up doing is kind of basing some of his experiences and things he goes through off a few people in my life who are bi.
I also ended up doing a lot of research because I don’t know any male bisexuals and found quite a few things that all said the same thing of the preference problem you’re facing. A few of them mentioned that they didn’t just really think about leaning to one side more than the other. They just dated who they were attracted to at the time.
I mostly wrote my character from the standpoint of him being a PERSON with a personality and characteristics and feelings. His sexuality came second. That also made it a little “easier” to write.
So far, I’ve had some lgbtq+ readers tell me that I’m doing a good job of portraying what it’s like, so I’m glad. Lol

Also, do you plan on your character really working through his grief? Like I would hope people wouldn’t think that he is using his male interest as a tool to get over his grief.

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No, it’s not offensive! Bisexuality is a spectrum and is very rarely a 50/50 thing. Most bisexual people that I know (myself included) have a HUGE and noticeable preference for a specific gender. Bisexuality simply means being attracted to more than one gender. It doesn’t matter what the ratio or preference is. I prefer women vastly, but I’m very happy with my boyfriend and love him to death. It all depends. You don’t really have to 'justify your mc leaning towards women, even if he’s had a boyfriend.

Maybe he wants biological children. Maybe he prefers women over men. Maybe, it’s just that specific woman that he’s interested in. There’s many possibilities.

This is all very interesting because my soon-to-be released novel deals with hetero, bi (MFF), and lesbian. In my case it’s more difficult because it takes place in 1882 in the Old West. Times were quite different then.

But I never thought I would offend anyone in that community. My fear was that, as a guy, I couldn’t do justice to the FF relationships.

Do you have people in your life who you can ask questions about things you’re confused about? Or you could always ask questions on the forums, or even ask specifically for an lgbtq+ person to read over your book to make sure you’re on track.

Not offensive at all! I’m bisexual…well I think I’m leaning more towards pansexual. Anyways! Yeah, it’s not offensive. I’m female and even though I see myself being in a relationship with another female, I’m attracted to males the most and I see myself marrying one the most. Like what others have already said, bisexuality is a spectrum.

No. And not confused. Call it doubt.

For example, Chapter 1 ends with the hero asking the heroine to marry him and her saying she can’t because there’s someone else. Of course he thinks it’s a man (1882 in the Old West) but he later finds out that it’s a woman. She prefers him, and wants to marry him, but doesn’t want to give up the woman and believes that would be unfair to him which is why she said no. It’s much more complex than that, but some scenes are from her POV where she’s explaining her feelings with being with a woman (her needs).

There’s another character, a lesbian who was a childhood friend of the heroine (and who she first experimented with when young) who wants a child but doesn’t want to adopt. That’s why the story takes place in 1882. I needed it to be before artificial insemination came about. My premise is that the heroine could get her lesbian friend aroused enough that the hero could do it and impregnate her. Would that even work with a true lesbian? Stuff like that.

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Hey! What you said wasn’t offensive at all. I’m bisexual and I’ve been in a relationship with both a girl and a guy. I get a lot of statements in real life like,
“Just pick one gender! You can’t like both!”
or
“People shouldn’t be gay or bi or lesbian, what will that teach children?”
I don’t really pay attention to them though haha. I’m getting a bit sidetracked here lol.

It definitely sounds like you’ve got a dilemma. Lol. I would definitely open any doubts you have up for discussion in a thread you make yourself so that you can get your doubts settled.
But are either the hero or heroine open to a poly relationship? Or do you not want that to be a thing within the story?
Although, the impregnation, will it be consented? If not, you may run into a problem with that with readers.

Oh yes. The lesbian moved back east years before to get away from the dusty Wild West to live where there were good restaurants and such. She’s very wealthy. She came to visit to get pregnant. It’s all consensual. She does admit to the hero that, although she has many friends who are men and is not a man-hater, she got nothing from him doing it.

And yes about the poly relationship. There’s another woman who ends up in a relationship with the hero and heroine after they’re married. That’s another complex relationship.

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Gotcha! Well, I mean, it sounds like you’ve got your research down pretty well. The likelihood that she gets pregnant that way seems viable to me since insemination wasn’t exactly a thing back then (although a story based in the 1800s with some futuristic elements would be pretty cool), so to answer your original question, it sounds ok. It makes sense since there wasn’t really any other way other than adoption.
I’m sure there are cases in today’s time where lesbians do that as well, especially if they don’t want to pick a random man as the father.