Bisexual Awareness Week
by Shane Foster
Reading time approx: 5 mins
This week sees the celebration of Bisexual Awareness, so I thought it would be a good idea to take the opportunity to talk about one of the largest groups represented in the LGBTQ community.
After all, it’s a little known fact that around 40% of the LGBTQ community is made up of bisexuals!
Bisexual Awareness Week, also known as #BiWeek, is an annual celebration held in September, starting from the 16th through until the 23rd. It is an extension of the celebration known as “Bisexuality Day”, which is held annually on September 23.
This annual celebration promotes cultural acceptance of the bisexual community, as well as the creation of a platform for advocating bisexual rights.
The annual Bisexuality Day is both a recognition and a celebration of the bisexual community, and it also celebrates the history of bisexuality.
But what exactly is ‘bisexuality’?
Well, simply put, it is the attraction (either romantic or sexual) or sexual behaviour towards both males and females, in other words – to more than one gender. It can also be defined as a sexual attraction to anyone, regardless of their sex or gender identity.
Bisexuality is one of the 3 main classifications of sexual orientation, along with heterosexuality and homosexuality. Although, there is no distinction here about having equal attraction to both sexes, it is simply where someone does not have an exclusive sexual preference for one sex over the other.
When it comes to visibility, Bisexual people are often the forgotten part of the LBGTQ community. Most experiences are commonly assumed to be the same as lesbian and gay experiences, and bisexual identities are frequently made invisible or dismissed as something that doesn’t exist, both by people inside and outside of the community.
Added to the above is also the problem of media representation. Depictions of bisexual identities are still extremely rare on screen, and when they do feature, they often fall into the usual pervasive negative stereotypes. In fact, the general public are as likely to have seen negative portrayals of bisexual public figures as they are to have seen something positive.
Therefore, the challenges faced by bisexual people can also have a huge impact on their lives, and frequently means that they feel unable to be themselves, even among their closest friends and family.
This is why it is so important to celebrate Bisexual Awareness Week.
It’s an opportunity to celebrate diverse bisexual identities, raise the voices of bisexual people, and to call for a positive change in behaviours towards bisexual people.