Sometimes men love women. Sometimes men love men. And then there are bisexuals. Though some just say they’re kidding themselves.
So sang Phoebe on Friends years ago. Well, I thought it was funny. I was reminded of it last week when I read about a new study in The New York Times. A team of psychologists from Chicago and Toronto recruited 101 self-described straight, gay and bisexual men and exposed them to different types of erotic movies in order to monitor genital arousal. The conclusion?
The psychologists found that men who identified themselves as bisexual were in fact exclusively aroused by either one sex or the other, usually by other men.
I’ve always suspected that the number of male bisexuals was over-reported, much like the number of people who claim to have been at the first Mardi Gras march, or those who say they finished the last Harry Potter book. You have to be careful where you mention this, though. Despite embracing an identity predicated on open-mindedness, bisexuals can be really touchy.
I’ve been in more than one argument with a professed bisexual who expressed outrage that I should question his orientation. One went so far as to produce an ex-girlfriend as living proof of how comfortable he was around a vagina. While I was tempted to ask for a demonstration, I tried to reassure him I wasn’t dubious about his own preferences, I just didn’t believe male bisexuality was as prevalent as some would have us believe. He told me I should get out more. She just glared at me.
Okay, I admit I don’t really understand bisexuals and I doubt I could go out with one. Apart from competing with the entire non-lesbian population for my man’s affections, I’d be contending with all sorts of issues.
Does he like me because I’m a bit, you know, girly? Will he blurt out Oh Sharon! during sex? Will I have to join him in some sort of pansexual romp? I wouldn’t even know where to start.
Then again, I guess I probably shouldn’t be too worried. The odds are in my favour. When was the last time you heard of a bisexual leaving his boyfriend for a woman?