As this is #BiVisibilityWeek, I feel it is important to address the issue plaguing the Bi community.
Thirty-three bisexual activists from around the country gathered for the historic first White House Roundtable on Bisexual Issues last September. Some of the startling research we shared at that meeting included:
Forty-five percent of bisexual women have considered or attempted suicide, followed by bisexual men (35%), lesbians (30%), gay men (25%), and much lower rates for heterosexual women and men.
Bisexual women are twice as likely to have an eating disorder than lesbians.
Bisexual women report higher rates of alcohol use, heavy drinking, and alcohol-related problems than heterosexual and lesbian women.
Bisexual men and women report the highest rates of smoking of all orientations.
(Report from 3/2014, Bisexual Health Awareness Month: Bi the Way, Our Health Matters, Too, Human Rights Campaign)
According to the Bisexual Resource Center (BRC), approximately 40 percent of bisexual people have considered or attempted suicide, compared to just over a quarter of gay men and lesbians HRC’s Health Disparities Among Bisexual People found that “when compared to heterosexual adults, bisexual adults reported double the rate of depression and higher rates of binge drinking.”
Those numbers are even higher for the bisexual people who are also transgender, people of color and/or people with disabilities.
The prevalence of biphobia in LGBTQ and non-LGBTQ spaces alike contributes to these shocking numbers. BRC defines biphobia as “mislabeling bi+ people as lesbian, gay or straight, even when they come out as bi+.”
Studies have found that bisexual-identified people make up approximately half of the total population of the LGBTQ community — but only 28 percent of bisexual people report being out to those closest to them.
(From Bisexual Health Awareness Month: Mental Health in the Bisexual Community By HRC staff March 24, 2017)
With the stigma from both communities. We have to keep affirming our own sexuality. To people who don’t believe that being bi exists. It happened to my friend and I today. And my friend got angry and stormed away. Yes queer people are a marginalized group. But when you have a group of people who are attracted to 2 or more genders, then you have a lot of pushback from queer and hetero people. It’s not really the nicest thing but it is the truth.