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“Honestly, When I’m With One Gender, I Just Start to Miss the Anatomy of the Other.”


My wife and I have a more or less monogamous relationship, but I do flirt a lot. I love to flirt with other men, mostly for the validation. Partly it’s because we live in Chelsea. But also I think it’s the allure of the forbidden. Women my age or younger are generally pretty interested. I’m not a gorgeous man, but I go to the gym and look a lot younger than I am because that’s important to me. And I miss dick.

Somebody I was talking to recently asked me, “If your wife died before you, would you end up with a woman or a man?” I said, “A man.” And he said, “Then you’re really gay.” But that’s not it. It’s just that that’s what I haven’t had, so it’s what I want. I love the idea of having a gay wedding at age 80.

Faith Cheltenham
32, Married to a man.

As a black bisexual female, I live the lovely life of the multiple minority. I grew up in the Christian fundamentalist world in a small town in California. I told my dad first. When I said I was dating a woman, he said, “Oh, so you’re a lesbian.” I said no. Then he kind of wiggled his hand and said, “So you’re kind of like this, huh?” He understood.

I came out to my mom because another family member knew and thought I should tell her so she could get her prayer on. Her response was that I couldn’t be a lesbian because there had been all these boys I liked. I was like, “I know, I’m bisexual.” She just said, “At least that means there’s a chance.” That’s a huge stressor for bisexuals when it comes to relationships—that there’d be a negative association with some of the people you could fall in love with.

I’ve always been a quintessential bisexual. I was butch and I was femme, I went to prom and I played sports. I used to screw up so badly—I’d go to a party at Cal Tech in black jeans and Docs and be like, “Damn it, I wore the lesbian outfit!” And then I’d go to a lesbian club in a hippie skirt and sandals and I’d be like, “Damn it, I wore the straight outfit!”

My friends and I use the phrase “That’s so bi” all the time. If someone says they really want to go rock climbing but they also want to go see an exhibit at the museum, we’ll be like, “That’s so bi.” Or if somebody likes going to the ballet but also wants to be at the Super Bowl, that’s pretty bi.

In college, I fell in love with a great woman, an awesome chick, and at first I thought I was a lesbian. Everyone was like, “Welcome to the lesbian club!” And I was like, “Oh my God, I love you all!” But then I realized I still had an attraction to guys, and while I wasn’t trying to cheat on my girlfriend, I was trying to acknowledge that. It was difficult. When I talked about being attracted to men, people would say things like, “That’s just because you’re butch and you appreciate physical strength.”

My girlfriend eventually said she wasn’t interested in being with someone who might “go straight” eventually. Luckily that wasn’t the only problem—she didn’t like The Matrix, for example, and I’m a sci-fi person, so I was already thinking it was not going to work between us. She’s actually gone on to marry a bisexual woman and apologized to me.

I didn’t really date straight people until I met the man I married. Up until then, it was like that Forrest Gump saying: Life was a whole bunch of vaginas and penises, and I never knew what I was going to get. I dated trans boys, trans girls, gay guys, lesbians. Now my husband and I just had a baby. Life takes turns. I still have Christian-fundamentalist family members who say, “We always knew you’d end up with a guy.”

One question I get asked all the time is if I miss women, and if so, what do I miss. Many bi people just respond by being like, “Why are you asking about my sex life?” I like to tell people: “Thank you for thinking about my pussy.”


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