Friday, January 4, 2008

Worst GLBT Blog?


Okay, there may be worse blogs than this one I ran across today, but I haven't come across them yet. I was searching for forums strictly for gay men (or gay men and lesbians) -- as opposed to GLBT forums -- and came across something called "about.com" which had forums for gays, bi's and the like. I was curious -- "bi-curious?" -- when I saw a link about the "best bisexual blogs." Now what would this be, I wondered. [Let me make it clear that I'm gay, not bisexual; and I find the notion that every gay man who might once upon a time have had relations with the opposite sex is actually bi to be not only stupid but downright homopobic.] Jeez, if what I saw when I clicked the link were the best bi blogs, I really feel sorry for bisexuals. Generally they were about men who had been -- or still were -- married to women but also had sex with men (formerly we used to call these guys "married homosexuals"). I've seen quite a few blogs on this theme, but generally the men identify as gay, being bi only in the technical sense. This one blog -- One Life, Take Two -- concerned the life of a self-described bisexual and "pervert" (whatever that means) whose wife sent him packing. I just can't figure out why the powers-that-be at about.com (whatever that is) thought that this was one of the "top bi blogs" and would help people understand the bi lifestyle better. The blog consists of nothing but photos of sexy, scantily clad females (not a guy in sight) and the only halfway meaty post I could find had the blogger quoting a female friend about what a hot time she had when she went to bed with the guy. I mean, is this pathetic or what? I've heard of testimonials, but this is ridiculous. Is it just me or is a guy pretty much a total loser if he has to post what is probably a made-up story written from the pov of one of his female lovers just to prove how hot he is in bed? I mean, what exactly is "bisexual" about this blog -- it seems more or less straight to me, even with the alleged "bisexual" tag. It isn't well-written, doesn't illuminate the "bi lifestyle" in any manner whatsoever, and doesn't seem in the least "GLBT." So what's up?

Don't moderators, administrators, whatever you call them, even bother to read the blogs they link to?

I mean, this is a joke, right?

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

All I can say is

FUCK YOU MAN!!!!!

Bill Samuels said...

Everyone's a critic!

Jefferson said...

I'm glad you stumbled my way, Bill. Other obligations in the past few months have kept me from posting as many sex stories as I would like, but my Archives are full of tales of all-male sex parties, bisexual orgies, one-on-one male sex, etc., and several about growing up bisexual. Dig deeper if you like!

Best,
Jefferson

Jen said...

If I hadn't seen it for myself, I might not believe it either... But I did and I do.

And, by the way...I am a bisexual woman.

-Jen

Avah said...

I want to know why people always think it isn't real, especially when there are a dozen blogs in Jefferson's wake- all talking about him.

Makes no sense to me.

Janie Blooms said...

Oh, on the contrary, Bill--Jefferson's bisexual male oriented stories are what originally really drew me further into the blog! I admit, there are a lot of posts to go through--but it's totally worth it for big bisexual fun!!

Bill Samuels said...

I'm not especially interested in big bisexual fun but thanks for your comment, and I thank the others for their comments as well.

Years ago I identified as bisexual and actually wrote many articles and sex stories for "OPTIONS: The Bi-Monthly" (I could teach people a thing or two about composing decent, hot erotica), but I came to realize that my main interest was -- and is -- MEN and I'm afraid (as un-pc as it sounds) that the vast majority of young bisexuals who identify as same suffer from a homophobic hang-up -- they just don't want to be known as "fags" or "dykes." Sad in this day and age, really. My past sexual encounters with women do not in any way make me bisexual, and I think this is true for a lot of other "bisexual" men in particular. The notion of bisexuality is nothing new -- although some people act as if it were. There may well be some genuine bisexuals in the world, but most who label themselves as such have a definite preference -- their own sex -- and shouldn't be ashamed of it.

Jefferson said...

You seem to have fixed ideas about bisexuality, Bill, that don't register with the experiences of actual bisexuals. It's not merely "un-pc" to argue that "the vast majority" bisexuals are really "married homosexuals" or self-hating gays. It's dismissive of the realities of other people's sexuality.

That's one reason to write sex--it offers evidence to put the lie to such prejudice.

James said...

I agree with Jefferson. It is very bi-phobic to be so... closet minded. And I certainly know it isn't the case with me.

I have a girlfriend, I go out with girls more than guys, and I prefer them, to be frank. However I am still capable of recognizing the fact that I AM bisexual, and that frankly I don't give a damn what your gender is, as long as I feel attracted to you. And in my experience, there are a lot of people like me, either leaning one way, or the other. However having a preference does NOT preclude the idea of liking both!

Bill Samuels said...

A "bi-phobic" person thinks it's okay for bi's to be fired, beaten up, excoriated etc. and I am hardly in that category and resent anyone childishly saying that I am just because I am questioning of some aspects of bisexuality. I have said that there are probably genuine bisexuals but that many -- not necessarily all -- who label themselves "bi" are really no more "bi" than I am (and often less.) I'm sorry if that bothers you two and others, but that's my educated opinion and experience, being openly gay (and even bi for a time) longer than many "bi's" -- many of whom hide behind silly nicknames and avatars-- have even been alive. I've been through all this before and maybe I KNOW something you don't. (And yes, I recognize that others' experiences may be different from my own but I've had a lot more experience than most people.)

I might believe there are more genuine bi's if we didn't live in a world that is almost TOTALLY homophobic and not a BIT heterophobic -- and if anyone tells me that that doesn't influence the behavior and self-labeling of bi individuals is simply not facing reality. Why do bi's avoid like the plague ANY discussion of internalized homophobia and heterosexual privilege -- they simply snidely invoke the all-purpose "biphobia" --and why do bi advocates stop all discussion in its tracks by making "biphobia" so ludicrously expansive and all-compassing that you're called an anti-bi bigot even if you dare suggest that maybe SOME bi's are in denial of their true sexuality -- come on, now! It takes GUTS to be openly gay -- some people have guts, and some don't.

The simple truth is that I am an Out and Proud Gay Man and make absolutely no apology for it. If a guy prefers dating and sleeping with women -- for whatever reason -- that's certainly his perogative, but we are simply not on the same wavelength.

The gay experience is very diverse, and SOME guys shouldn't have to say their bi simply because they're not stereotypically gay.

All the best!

badlysocialized said...

Hey Bill,

You make some interesting points in your last comment, but I think there are a few holes in your experience, and one or two in your logic as well.

First, "biphobia" doesn't exclusively refer to folks who think it's OK for bi folks to get beat up. I don't think you'd make a comparable argument around the term "racism". Ironically, I didn't consider your post to be biphobic, but I consider your claim that biphobic means what you claim to be biphobic in its failure to acknowledge less overt biphobia. I think that if you can understand internalized homophobia and heterosexual privilege (both very real), you have the tools to understand why saying what you said isn't OK.

As a bisexual man who spent many years in A gay male community (the idea of "the" community is a fallacy), I can promise you that heterophobia exists. It's not the same as homophobia any more than institutionalized anti-POC racism is the same as anti-white racism, but denying its existence is silly. Frankly, I'm a bit of a heterophobe myself, and when I'm amongst friends (98% of whom are GLBT, a clue by itself), I will refer to the monolithic "straight people".

So yes, I hid my bisexuality for a very long time when I was exclusively dating men. I've spoken to other guys who have told me the same thing - their social circle or dating circle is comprised of gay men, they can't out themselves as bisexual. Nor is it limited to men - a bisexual female friend of mine was told (on a first date!), "Do you ACTUALLY like having sex with men? You're the only woman I know who claims to."

I know this isn't your experience, but I think I can explain that - your community is comprised of gay men! When I grew up in the suburbs, most of my experiences with black men were as squeegee washers and panhandlers, and that confirmed what I was taught. Later, moving in different communities, I learned differently. I think that your own experience of who bisexual men are is similarly unrepresentative, and I urge you to consider the possibility.

Once upon a time, I thought bisexual men were all "married homosexuals" - and if you cruise Craigslist, you'll find that view confirmed there. They too are not a representative sample.

My social circle is now made up of queers of all genders, and most of the out bisexual men I know look nothing like those in your experience, or in Craigslist. Come out to Prospect Heights sometime, Bill - it's different out here!

The truth is, there's no shortage of bisexuals out here, and amongst my friends, none of us have a problem referring to ourselves as fags. We took to the streets for FIERCE, and when Bob Kohler died, as I hope you did. Some of us are even "professionally gay", such as my friends at the ACLU LGRP. My problem is when my fag friends decide that maybe I shouldn't come to their party if I'm going to bring a lady (or even a transman) along.

I'm sorry that we're not more visible to your community, but hopefully this will help to change that.

Bill Samuels said...

Thank for your very interesting and well-reasoned, thought-provoking comments, which are appreciated.

First, I've never maintained, like some, that there are absolutely no bisexuals -- nor that bisexuals are inferior human beings (which would be biphobic) -- only that not everyone who says they're bi is bi, anymore than everyone who says they're straight is straight. That shouldn't be so controversial, but apparently it is.

I do make a distinction between those bi's who identify strongly with the gay -- or at least the GLBT community -- and are somehow politically active, and those men who, say, have women for relationships but (out of shame) think men are only for sex (am I really supposed to relate to these guys?).

These men are not just on craigslist but on most gay dating sites, and -- rightly or wrongly --many identify as bi. (I heard from so many at one site that I had to update my profile and say that if you've got a wife or girlfriend we are not a good match -- don't bother me!) These guys seem to outnumber genuine bi's 10 to 1 -- there's no accurate way of gauging -- but that's not my fault. By insisting that anyone who has had even a modicum of opposite sex experience or is married is automotically bi, it's some bisexual advocates who are creating the problem. If they rejected phony bi's outright it might help clarify matters.

I would dare say that most of the bi's I and other gays take issue with aren't bi at all, but even if I say that I'm called "biphobic."
You can't win.

Here's the deal. If you or any other man honestly and sincerely feels that he can fall IN love with either a man OR a woman -- and that those old bugaboos of "internalized homophobia" and "hetero privilege" are honestly not getting in the way, then I guess I would say you're a genuine bi. But how many people who identify as bi can in all good conscience say that? What with the stigma that still exists, the constant fag jokes (you even refer to your gay friends as "fag friends" -- you probably think you don't mean anything by it but sub-consciously ....? )Is a man who screws women but can't get emotional about men, really bi or just a gay guy who has a deep-rooted shame over his homosexual impulses? These are hard questions that many of the bi-identified just don't want to answer.

(I recognize that just because I once identified as bi and no longer do doesn't mean that's the case with everyone, but I can't tell you how many men I've met who tell me the same thing. Bi now, gay later. It DOES happen and it does happen a LOT. And there are lots of gay guys who on occasion sleep with women. My best friend, totally gay, slept with women in the Army and afterward and always laughs at how they would tell him he was the best lay they ever had! Still, he's GAY! I really think it has to do with how you decide to label yourself more than anything else.)

Although I admit that nowadays I am often most comfortable with my gay brothers, I have had over the years and today lots of friends who are straight, lesbian, female, and yes, even bi. I'm hardly a separatist and I attend and meet a lot of people from all aspects of the community at numerous GLBT functions, including bis, transgenders etc. If they're friendly, so am I. I don't just hang out with middle-aged gay guys.

I have known many people, including a very good friend for years (don't recall ever telling him not to sleep with women, in fact we would relate our latest adventures over drinks), who are at least technically bi in that they get involved with/sleep with both men and women -- sex is sex and all that -- but in most cases they basically threw in with the gay side and fell in love with members of their own sex. Maybe they're still bi but the label just isn't important to them.
Even some of my colleagues in the militant Gay Activists Alliance were bi, though they didn't make a big thing of it; they were fighting for people to accept their total homosexuality or gay side and a bi label just wasn't very important. One of them now has a girlfriend and remains committed to gay rights. It wouldn't work for me but if it works for him, who cares?

Some gay men have a moderate attraction to women, or sleep with women as a sort of "flesh is flesh/sex is sex" sort of thing -- as I did -- and it you want to call that genuine bisexuality -- as some bi advocates do -- you're certainly entitled to, but I wouldn't. Maybe it's just semantics. I truly believe that the word "bisexual" often means different things to different people, despite whatever definition is currently fashionable. Some people say if you're gay but have a non-sexual attraction of some kind ( a rapport; you're drawn to the person) to a woman that makes you bi. I think that's a little ridiculous.

(As for heterophobia, I don't agree that it exists in any meaningful or serious way. It's generally just a reaction to heterophobia, the way some African-Americans might make cute remarks about white people -- doesn't make them racist. Just because a gay person may groan when his favorite gay bar is invaded by straights, some of whom are not so gay-friendly, doesn't make that person "heterophobic." To me it's just a non-issue. I could go on but I'll leave that for now.)

I'm glad that you've found some sort of support network in Brooklyn, but -- don't kill me -- just because you've got a few friends from a bi-network living or working nearby doesn't mean there are MASSES of genuine bisexuals in Prospect Park (I only leave Manhattan if some hot guy at the Eagle or Ty's drags me out of the bar and pays for the cab ride)or in the world. There may be. I admit I don't know everything (almost everything but not everything). I don't live in a sheltered world, I live in Manhattan and I go everywhere, and I've met people who identify as bi in the flesh (probably fucked more than one), including much younger guys, but they mostly seem basically gay to me, regardless of how many women they date or screw. I don't tell them not to sleep with women. They can do whatever the hell they want to. And I can be a doubting Thomas if I want to; just can't help it. And the bi's I meet in person and get to know will always carry more weight with me than the ones who are just cute little nicknames and avatars on blogs or message boards. I mean, anyone can see who I am by looking at my blog. But who are you or most of the others who left comments here? If you're literally invisible, that's not my fault.

Summing up, I honestly don't hate bisexuals. I think you're an intelligent, excellent voice for the bisexual community and I do appreciate your comments, which have given me something to ponder. I may not especially relate to bi's in the community sense any more than I do to someone who gets a sex-change, but that doesn't mean I want anyone to suffer. Look at it this way, I'm a middle-aged gay guy dealing with homophobia, constant fag jokes (gay men and lesbians remain perpetual targets, not bi's) on TV and in the movies, anti-Semitism, and age dscrimination to boot. I've got enough on my plate that I just can't lose sleep if your "fag friends" would rather you bring a cute gay guy to their party instead of a woman. Try and see their point of view. I hope you understand and I wish you well.

qwrrty said...

Bill,

It sounds like there's still a lot of resentment in your writing, resentment of bisexuals and of those who have made it possible for people to hide there. It sounds like you've earned the right to that anger, too, so I won't try to talk you out of it. :-)

For myself, coming to grips with my own sexuality in college was a terribly trying affair. My fantasies periodically included (much to my surprise) cocksucking, and I had a devil of a time making sense of it. I was not particularly homophobic (at least, no more so than the next guy) and seriously contemplated whether I was gay and repressing it. I tried to consider myself gay and see if that made any more sense. But it didn't -- my fantasies about women were also too strong, too frequent and too sincere to deny.

In retrospect, "bisexual" should have been the immediate and obvious choice, but it really wasn't. The literature of the day was phrased exclusively in terms of "coming out as gay" or "coming out as lesbian." If bisexuality was mentioned anywhere it was as an afterthought. That shouldn't have been a big deal, either, but it shaped the way I thought about sexual identity, and left me with a very circumscribed vision of what was real and possible, literally for years as I tried to understand what was going on with me.

For many of the reasons you've cited here, I'm not a fan of the word "biphobia." I admit to having used it a lot in my past but don't any more. I would not compare my experience to that of the gay teenager who lives in fear of homophobic violence. But I do think we need to acknowledge that attitudes like "we used to call these guys 'married homosexuals'" and "there may well be some genuine bisexuals in the world" can reasonably be characterized as "anti-bisexual sentiment," and that by dismissing the possibility of a bisexual identity out of hand, it contributes to the very atmosphere that makes it hard for people like me to find an identity that makes sense for them. Whether that is the effect that you want to achieve is up to you.

I won't attempt to present my bisexual credentials here so you can decide if I'm a genuine bi. I don't think I owe you that. Suffice it to say that I think "bisexual" is a legitimate word to describe me and people like me; if you don't agree, well, like they say, everyone's entitled to an opinion.

Bill Samuels said...

I appreciate your thoughtful comments as well as your sensitivity. Perhaps the way I phrase it may seem snide, but that's not my intention. Given all the variables in human nature, sexuality, and experience, I honestly couldn't and wouldn't say with absolute certainty that there are positively no genuine bisexuals in the world, only that there seem to be as many different types of bisexuals as there are types of gays and straights. Would that be considered fair? Given the still-homophobic world we live in, I may doubt at times if everyone who says they're straight or bi really is, but doubting some people is not the same as denying what might indeed be a viable identity for many. I admit there are times when I consider and weigh all the variables along the Kinsey scale -- although to me it's a bit out-of-date and imperfect -- and other times when I think "crap, we're either gay or we're not." I also admit I don't have all the answers. I don't think anybody does.

The sad truth is that guys like you -- as well as straight guys who are for one reason or another considered closet cases -- can never really "prove" their sexuality even if they get married and have kids! But it isn't the gay community that created that situation, but those who hate homosexuality (and by extension bisexuality) and have created an atmosphere in which self-hatred and/or sexual identity confusion can thrive. It's a shame but there it is. I guess the answer is for each of us to simply be comfortable within our own skin, accept ourselves, label ourselves (if we choose to) whatever we want to, and not worry about whatever others might choose to label us.

I am a bit perplexed that you didn't feel you had the bisexual option when you were in college -- unless you are older than me (which I doubt) and were in college in a pre-Stonewall period in the smallest, most isolated town in creation. I was in college -- a few years after Stonewall but still many, many years ago -- and bisexuality was certainly talked about and acknowledged -- if not in the politicized way it is today. After Stonewall, most major magazines had cover stories on The New Bisexuality, as it was called -- believe me, it was a hot topic! My two best friends -- one male, one female -- slept with both men and women (he thought he was basically gay; she basically straight -- I lost touch, they could both be married with kids for all I know!) I myself was very fond of saying "bi is best" (which has mercifully fallen out of favor as it sounds homo or mono-phobic), as well as the ever-popular "flesh is flesh." I recall coming out to friends as bi or gay, but saying I still had an interest in women -- "I don't believe in exclusivity," I would tell them. I was very happy to be bi -- unlike so many bisexuals today, it seems, or is that a misperception? -- but later realized I was essentially gay. My point is simply that the Bi option was readily available even back then. (This was a small town campus by the way.)

I think each generation thinks it's "discovered" certain things -- be it bisexuality or marijuana (not that I'm comparing the two)-- when their parents and even grandparents were already familiar with it.

Finally, gay, straight or bisexual, it's rather difficult for any man not to have heterosexual fantasies, since we're surrounded by heterosexual images and women all the time. I guess in some cases these fantasies are indicative of a truly bisexual nature; in other cases, I guess not. Depends, like most things, on the individual. My sister once asked me if my eye-popping youthful interest in Playboy centerfolds and sexy actresses was all an act. It wasn't. For me, at least, it just didn't turn out to be my main interest and I'm perfectly okay with that.

Whomever's home or bed you wind up in, have a good life and stay cool!