For as long as I’ve known that I wasn’t straight, I didn’t think I was allowed to claim a spot in the queer community. Partly because I had come out so late in life, and partly because I was married to a cis (albeit, queer himself) guy. I felt that by identifying as bi (or queer, or pansexual) and not having had sexual or romantic experience with women, I was being dishonest—with myself and with others.
Because on the surface, me and my life can very easily pass as hetero. I’m in a long-term committed relationship with a dude. My sexual history is comprised almost entirely of the opposite sex. I’m super femme. I don’t have an alternative and / or multi-colored hairstyle.
Bi-erasure is very real, & I’ve often felt like I contribute to my own invisibility.
Sometimes I’d get curious about whether living a more out and “queer lifestyle”—whatever that meant—would help assuage my feelings of disconnect. But mostly, I’ve felt strangely separated and disallowed from non-straight circles because my sexual identity didn’t seem to qualify within the explicit confines of queerness.
Which bred self-doubt. Which spurred spiraling inner denial. Which exacerbated my otherness.
–Ev’Yan Whitney, “I Went to Queer Summer Camp and Came Back More Gay” | Sex Love & Liberation
This is so me sometimes. Every year I think about going to Pride things and I don’t because thoughts like this get the best of me. It feels like I’m taking up space that I shouldn’t claim, because my life doesn’t/hasn’t ever/might not ever revolve around queer relationships or queer desire.