The Big Bi Elephant in the Room

Black Man Leather JacketBisexuality is often attacked with a lot of huge misconceptions. Funny thing is, bisexuals are even the black sheep of the LGBTQA community. Part of the reason bisexuality gets such a bad rap and why so many are afraid to identify as such is because it’s associated with many negative connotations:
1. Bisexuals are confused.
2. Bisexuals can’t be faithful
3. Bisexuals are greedy/sluts
4. Bisexuality is a cop-out/phase
5. Everybody is bisexual (biggest lie since the tooth fairy)
6. Bisexuals spread more sexually transmitted diseases
7. Bisexuals are deviants

The list goes on and on. But bisexual BLACK men get the worst end of the deal. They suffer the most, as in the Black community your manhood is often determined by how many women you can bed. Being gay in the black community automatically, unfortunately, puts you on the low end of totem pole. I know, it’s shameful. Also, gay men and women often shun, out and proud bisexuals claiming that it’s just a phase and that many are just afraid to admit they’re gay.  I must admit that I, too, used to turn my nose up at bisexuality.

My reason for doing so was because in my childhood, I witnessed my mother go through the trauma of finding out the man she was in love with and pregnant by, turned out to be down low. I’m not sure to this day if he identifies as bisexual or if he stopped hiding the fact that he liked men too. However, I witnessed and was a part of the devastation he left behind.

During my adult years, I also happened to end up in a relationship with a man who openly dated me and secretly sexed men. He and I got into many knock down-drag out fights about it because I simply wanted him to be honest with me and he couldn’t. He couldn’t even admit it to himself which was why normally after he acted on his lust and had sex with a man, he would come home, lock himself in the bathroom, throw up countless times, and then scrub himself in the shower. I could actually hear the man sobbing in the bathroom, but I couldn’t sympathize with him. Not then. One of the reasons for that was because he reminded me of the man who’d so long ago ruined the family I once had as a child. Another reason was because I was angry.

I had no idea what kind of demons he was dealing with. Many of us are forced into our sexuality at young ages by predators who force sex upon us before we’re old enough or mature enough to handle the consequences of it. Trust me, I know from experience. But I had no idea why he reacted that way after having sex with men and I was, selfishly, angry because he wouldn’t open up and tell me. In the end, he and I broke up.

We celebrate the gays and the lesbians, the trans, the queers, and even the non-binary, but when it comes to the B-word, many shun them, even going as far as to brush their sexuality under the rug.  Since it’s sometimes easier for women to claim  their bisexuality, I’d like to focus on the men, the black bi-sexual men.

They have the hardest time coming out with their sexuality. Quiet as it’s kept, on some fronts, being a gay black man is more acceptable than being a bisexual black man. In the Black community, people don’t be believe a man can be bisexual. He’s either gay, straight, or living on the down-low (the DL). In the Black community, if a Black man has hinted around to being even remotely attracted to men, all hell will break loose. This is why it’s so important that we be open minded and allow bisexual black men to live in their truths.

So my aim this year and many more to come will be to allow bisexual black men to tell their stories in a safe space. This is one of many articles I will post on the subject. After all, shouldn’t we all be allowed to live and love openly, and proud?

Nikki Michelle is an author and writer. Pick up a copy of her latest book Bi-Satisfied.

8 thoughts on “The Big Bi Elephant in the Room

  1. I believe the judgment against Bi men has a lot to do with what is being said through rumors or gossip as being true for all men who sleep with both sexes. I believe if homosexual men truly sought to know a man who identifies as bi-sexual they will learn one of three things;

    1. He’s struggling with his sexual identity.
    2. He’s pan-sexual (not limited in sexual choice with regard to biological sex, gender, or gender identity. It is my understanding it’s quite prevalent in many Latin and European cultures) o
    3. He’s simply bi-sexual. (He may learn that he’s really not bi-sexual.)

    Overall, in my opinion, many homosexual men are judgmental about groups in our community they don’t understand.


  2. Bisexuality is a common in the black man as it is in the black woman. The problem is that black folks will accept a woman liking both genders but the black man can never be accepted primarily because of the super masculine image that has been defining black men since Africa, Slavery, the civil rights era, wars etc… Black men have always been the source of strength and stability in our community. The protector, the guardian, the provider, the leader, the mentor… Truthfully there was a time when black men were only allowed to work predominantly blue collar professions that once again reinforced the definition of masculinity. Men who worked white collar jobs were either seen as Uncle Toms or not a part of the team. Because of this image of the black man we found a demographic of our men forced to deal with their attractions secretly (The DL) . The DL was born out of the black experience as well, as a people we were raised almost universially that “what goes on in our house stays in our house”. Basically we don’t talk about the shameful struggles and happenings to other folks because we had to present an image that we were normal and fine to our community. It’s the same issue here with DL black men. To be a Gay/Bisexual black men for many years was shameful. Families would demonize their relatives with labels “Punk, Faggot, Sissy” I know I had uncles which used these labels all the time. This created the culture of the DL black man… Ironically white men have been DL since the days of Rome… it’s been happening in white society and because of white privileges they were able to circumvent the stigma… they go to the country club, on hunting trips, to the spa after work with the boys… Bathhouses & Bookstores have existed in every city in America it’s nothing new… HELL the YMCA was a big hook up spot in my hometown… I would walk into the steam rooms and/or sauna on many occasion and catch white men in weird situations. Yet we find ourselves demonizing our own communities men for being Bisexual. Bisexuality is not for everyone a denial of their homosexuality. I for one love the fuck out of a beautiful woman however on occasion a nice looking guy may capture my attention as well. I don’t particularly hunt for men, if it happens it happens but I desire and crave women. With the limited number of men I’ve encountered the connection is different however I still like and want the same qualities/ physical characteristics in a woman that I want in a man… For a woman I desire or prefer light to caramel skin complexion, ,fit, beautiful, educated successful, fun, flirty and freaky… that knows God and loves me. In a man the same attributes accept I don’t want them to love me. When I’m in a relationship with a woman I don’t sleep with men AT ALL. I don’t have the desire to do so, I’m focused solely on her. There’s no hook ups I don’t go back and forth between men and women and there’s no deception. If I find a guy I like and if I engage them I’m not secretly sleeping with a woman either it’s to messy and unfair to everyone. Ironically I’ve found that I’m very neutral about my sexuality and there’s no existing struggle.


  3. The issue that I have with Bi-Sexual men is that we all have a choice who we sleep with (Unless you are raped). No matter who we are attracted to, it is a choice to act upon that attraction. As a gay man, I do not have the choice to be attracted to a female so therefore I would NEVER enjoy sexual contact with a female. If you have the choice to be socially accepted and enjoy it and all the benefits of being socially accepted, then why dibble and dabble? I get it. Because you can, just like everyone else can. But also, what is very rampant in the Black Gay community, are guys who have a plan that they will fuck around with other guys until they get older, and then they’ll settle down with a woman and have kids by her. The woman never really knows what’s going on until it’s too late and their kids are now 18 and he divorces her to resort back to his old lifestyle. This mentality is what in turn makes a multitude of bi-sexual dudes only have sex with other dudes and pursue relationships with women. Thus putting us gay dudes in positions where we look stupid chasing after trade who gotta secret girlfriend that ain’t so secret. I personally blame the church and dis functional ass two parent households, but that’s another story. I feel for those who were molested and I am truly sorry for your experience. But if you don’t like something, Why do it? If your ex threw up after having sex with a man, why do it? Why not resist and pray about it, seek counseling, or just be single until you figure things out. Life is about choices and if you have the choice to live your life as a straight man without any questioning, then why don’t you? Why choose to make your life harder when you can actually enjoy it as a straight man? I could choose as a gay man to try and be with women but… I would hate it. So therein lies a lot of our issues with Bi-sexual dudes. I won’t say all, but my experiences have shown me to just stay away from bisexuals. It usually ends in disappointment.


    • This line of thinking conflates DL men (of whatever orientation) and bisexual men. Plus bisexuality doesn’t mean you have the option to be gay or straight. A bisexual is ALWAYS bisexual no matter who you’re currently dating.


    • “Life is about choices and if you have the choice to live your life as a straight man without any questioning, then why don’t you?”

      Because they are not straight men, they are bisexual men. And bisexual people, just like gay and straight people, want to live how they want to live, not how society wants them to live. They want to be able to be honest about who they are. They want to be able to fall in love with whomever they want to fall in love with. They want to be able to have sex with whomever they want to have sex with (yeah, yeah, not against those people’s wills, of course).

      Having to live like a straight man is just as bad for a bisexual man as it is for a gay man. Despite the fact that a bisexual man can enjoy sex with a woman, the fact that so many are forced into a life of hiding is devastating. It’s not for nothing that bisexual people do worse than gay/lesbian people in health, socially, financially etc. They are less often out with the people around them and are often shunned from the LG-world, because of attitudes like yours, so they have no community to fall back on.

      Bisexual privilege is a myth, and one that is incredibly harmful to bisexual people.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. A very good read, but I’m concerned about the wording of this line: “Many of us are forced into our sexuality at young ages by predators who force sex upon us before we’re old enough or mature enough to handle the consequences of it. ” I think I understand what the author was trying to convey – that sexuality isn’t a concept to children until they grow into it naturally or until it’s unfortunately forced upon them by predators – but it also could be construed as saying that non-heterosexual identities come from a place of abuse.


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