Bisexuality isn't that difficult of a concept to understand. Simply put, it means attraction to both sexes. As a bisexual woman, I find that gender and sex don't matter to me when it comes to my attraction to someone. However, since coming out as bisexual, I've learned that people will never stop questioning me about the identity that I find suits me.
In 2016, I was in my first long-term relationship with another woman. All of a sudden, everyone was calling me a lesbian. I was no longer a bisexual woman because I was dating another woman. When my mom found out we were dating, even she took it upon herself to shout, "Erika's a lesbian!" (in the middle of Olive Garden, but that's beside the point). At the time, I didn't realize that, in doing this, my friends and family were invalidating my identity, along with my past experiences of having romantic feelings for men. I thought it better to keep quiet, anyway, because I thought that insisting I was attracted to men may cause people to raise eyebrows about my then-current relationship with a woman.
After being in that relationship for fourteen months and "claiming" an identity that wasn't really mine, I spent a year and a half single. I took it upon myself during this time to reclaim my bisexual identity, and I received little to no questioning about it (except for the occasional, "I thought you were gay?"). So long as I was single, I was allowed to be bisexual.
Recently, I've started dating a man, someone I've been friends with for several years, and while not a ton of people in our circle are aware of it yet, I find myself wondering if the same thing is going to happen again. People will assume I'm straight because I'm dating a man; those who know me might ask when I switched sides.
I know that this isn't only the case for me; I've seen it happen to countless others, as well. Bisexual women dating men are all of a sudden straight, bisexual women dating women are all of a sudden lesbians, bisexual men dating men are all of a sudden gay, bisexual men dating women are all of a sudden straight. Those on the outside consider bisexuals getting into relationships as "picking a side," which isn't the case. Of course, there are going to be people who originally identify as bisexual and later learn that they're gay or lesbian. Of course, there are going to be people who originally identify as gay or lesbian and later learn that they're bisexual.
I don't understand why my sexuality, or anyone's for that matter, is a subject that demands questioning. If I say that I am bisexual, that should be enough.
It is clear that the world does not want bisexuality to exist.
But I'm still bisexual, whether I'm dating a man or woman.
I will always be bisexual.