all 29 comments

[–]SeasideLimbs 23 insightful - 2 fun23 insightful - 1 fun24 insightful - 2 fun -  (1 child)

I think it's either that, or someone who's hetero/gay who does something with the same/other sex for some other reason than attraction. See: bi-for-attention, gay-for-pay, people who are just experimenting, people who have been traumatized, etc.

[–]PenseePansyBio-Sex or Bust 1 insightful - 1 fun1 insightful - 0 fun2 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

This is pretty much my take, with the caveat that I'd define "flexible" a tad more narrowly: as someone who's sexually-attracted to only one sex, yet can be legit OK about boinkin' the other (i.e., it's inoffensive/agreeable-- the physical sensations are reasonably-pleasant, making another person feel good is genuinely enjoyable, etc.-- despite their maleness/femaleness). They're perfectly comfortable with it, in other words. So, it seems to me, this is meaningfully-distinct from either being bi OR a monosexual who's just experimenting/traumatized/attention-seeking/strictly for-pay: the former are sexually-attracted to both sexes, the latter are-- with respect to the sex they're not oriented towards-- either indifferent or grossed-out, erotically-speaking.

Be that as it may, though, the bi-erasure potential of this concept DOES concern me. Specifically since it might play into the common misperception that "bi = 50/50", rather than attraction to both sexes regardless of degree, so anything else gets you "rounded up" to gay or straight. Will this just exacerbate that tendency? Provide two new options for blotting out the bi-ness of Kinsey 1-2s/4-5s?

I think that, even if "flexibility" is a thing, we've still gotta be careful of this penchant for monosexualizing bi people-- viewing them through that lens; trying to make them fit into that framework. Sure, it's understandable (the majority always assumes that their reality IS reality), but it's also untrue, unfair, and ultimately undoable. So whether it actually exists is one concern; how it's used (as, potentially, the newest tool in the mono-izing toolbox) is another.

[–]haveanicedaytoo💗💜💙 20 insightful - 2 fun20 insightful - 1 fun21 insightful - 2 fun -  (7 children)

I think in our current society, everyone is assumed to be straight unless proven otherwise. This includes people's assumptions about themselves. We've heard plenty of stories of L's and G's who thought they were straight and didn't realize how they feel about the same and opposite sex isn't how "all the other straight people" feel about the same and opposite sex. I've heard so many older generation women talk about "Well, we were always told sex was supposed to be awful and hurt and bleed, and good girls don't like sex, so when we hated sex with our husbands, we thought that was normal, we didn't realize it's because we are lesbians!"

(Oh gosh this is gearing up to be a long one, let me try to reel it back in........)

Anyway, contrast with ancient Greece where supposedly, being bisexual was the norm and everyone was just expected to be bi. (This is something I've heard multiple times, but I have to admit, part of me doesn't really believe it, because I've also seen ancient Greeks try to insult each other by calling each other gay or pedophile. If someone knows more about this, I welcome their input.)

So without writing a whole book chapter, what I'm trying to say is that there are TONS of bisexual people out there who have no idea that they are bisexual. Most of them think they are straight, a few of them think they are L or G. But suddenly they end up in boarding school, the military, prison, or some other same-sex environment and they're gobbling cock and eating puss like it's their last meal. How does this keep happening? How do so many straight people end up with prison wives and husbands like it's no big deal?

It's my opinion that these people are like Kinsey 1's or Kinsey 0.5's or Kinsey 0.00001's and their "heteroflexibility" doesn't come into play until they choose to allow it.

I think a lot of these unknowing bisexuals spend their entire lives believing they are straight and they just assume "all the other straight people" feel the same way they do about the same sex. Like a woman might think "Of course all women find (famous actress) incredibly sexy! They have eyes, don't they?" and they might understand how a gay guy might not find that famous actress sexually appealing because a small minority of vocal gay men go on and on about how they find women's certain body parts disgusting, so there's that element of disgust there, and we understand disgust. But why would a fellow woman be disgusted by another woman's body parts? We all have the same parts. That's how the logic goes. (Do real straight women actually find other women's privates 'disgusting?' I actually don't know the answer to this, but I do know straight men go on and on about how disgusting other men's bodies are, except when they're slobbering over body-builders and athletes... So there's that....)

So my theory is hetero/homoflexible people are just confused bisexuals from the range of Kinsey 0.0001-1 and Kinsey 5-5.9999.

[–]oofreesouloo⚡super lesbian⚡ 18 insightful - 2 fun18 insightful - 1 fun19 insightful - 2 fun -  (3 children)

This is true. My mother is an unknowing bisexual and only recently, after years of my coming out, did she ALMOST admit that PERHAPS she COULD be bisexual 😂😂😂 When I came out, my mom told me it was normal for girls to feel attraction for other girls as she did too! I was so confused because, UNLIKE HER, I'm not bisexual, and ONLY felt attraction towards women 😅 My mom has learnt to repress her same sex attractions and believe it was something 'every girl' feel and has lots of internalized homophobia too and I don't think she will ever admit to herself that she's bi. She tells me I'm obsessed with labels ahahahahahaha. I just say I'm a lesbian lol, but she projects her insecurity into me because she prefers not to think about it and shut it down and not label herself.

[–]yousaythosethingsFind and Replace "gatekeeping" with "having boundaries" 12 insightful - 9 fun12 insightful - 8 fun13 insightful - 9 fun -  (1 child)

Oh man, I would love to hear stories about your mom's unknowing bisexual moments. When I was closeted I said the gayest shit all the time and no one ever seemed to notice and call me out on it. But then when I did come out they suddenly remembered everything and were like "Oh yea that explains everything."

"Why are there no attractive boys in our high school [containing thousands of boys]? Why are the girls so much better looking?"

"Wow, [girl] is so much better looking than her boyfriend." (for literally everyone)

"Why are women so much more attractive than men? It's not fair how hard it is to find an attractive guy."

"I really hate when I'm at the club and a guy tries to dance with me. Ew. I want to only dance with my [female] friends."

"I can't go to prom with a guy. That'd be weird."

"So do you [girls] actually like the guys you're dating, or. . . .?"

[–]reluctant_commenter 6 insightful - 1 fun6 insightful - 0 fun7 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

LOL, I said almost all of those as well.

[–]BiHorror[S] 4 insightful - 1 fun4 insightful - 0 fun5 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

Oof, I can relate to your mom sadly. Only difference is mine almost took it to the point where I thought becoming FTM would've been an better option when it came to dating/being attracted to other women. Didn't help that I wasn't like the most feminine of girls, and of course, around that time i started learning about transgenderism.

[–]BiHorror[S] 5 insightful - 1 fun5 insightful - 0 fun6 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

Good point! I always found when people using ancient greeks always rubbed me in the wrong way. Especially since there was the whole pederasty going on and "allowing" mlm within Sparta outta what was realistically opportunistic reasons (which the reasoning was: if male soldiers loved each other, then they would fight better DURING war/military to keep the other safe. When it came to pederasty... That was enabled pedophilia).

[–]drew0594 3 insightful - 5 fun3 insightful - 4 fun4 insightful - 5 fun -  (0 children)

I've also seen ancient Greeks try to insult each other

How old are you? :D

[–]PenseePansyBio-Sex or Bust 3 insightful - 1 fun3 insightful - 0 fun4 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

Anyway, contrast with ancient Greece where supposedly, being bisexual was the norm and everyone was just expected to be bi. (This is something I've heard multiple times, but I have to admit, part of me doesn't really believe it, because I've also seen ancient Greeks try to insult each other by calling each other gay or pedophile. If someone knows more about this, I welcome their input.)

You might want to check out the book "Bisexuality in the Ancient World" by Eva Cantarella (covers Rome too, but lots on Greece, plus the latter's practices in this area were deliberately emulated by the former to some extent [cuz snob appeal]).

I'm with you on not really believing the "ancient Greeks = TOTES BI!" canard (much as I like the idea of an officially ambisextrous Hellenistic world); seems a serious oversimplification. First, doesn't seem like we're really talking "Greece" here so much as Sparta and (esp.) Athens; second, as you yourself observed re: Sparta, this institution of male-erotic-activity-with-both-sexes had a social meaning that was very culturally-specific, and doesn't necessarily translate into modern terms (such as what we currently define as "bisexuality") at all.

For example, Athenian "bisexuality"'s M/M component was strictly between men and boys: adult dudes who got with each other (particularly as-- horrors!-- EQUALS) were absolutely NOT part of this institution, and in fact despised. Further, it basically played the role of educational system (believe it or not); since "schools" had yet to be invented, well-born Athenian women were kept completely ignorant (as lifelong illiterate shut-ins), and dads (whose lives revolved around politics, intellectual pursuits, and latter-day "call girls") couldn't be bothered with their sons, boys needed SOMEBODY to provide guidance/supervise their development and maturation... so this is how that happened! Seriously! Grown-ass guy plays mentor/benefactor to boy he gets all dewy-eyed & horny over, till puberty really sets in, the "relationship" dissolves, and both go on to take the man-role with other lads. (Grades 1-12 obviously couldn't be introduced soon enough for these people.)

So, WORLDS away from anything that our pink-purple-and-blue flag stands for, basically.

[–]Ladis_Wascheharuum 14 insightful - 3 fun14 insightful - 2 fun15 insightful - 3 fun -  (10 children)

Yes, it's real and valid. (And I know that sentence sounds like a TRA but hear me out.)

Labels are valid when they communicate some useful information about something. When someone says they're heteroflexible I get a good idea of what they mean: They are mostly heterosexual but may occasionally have homosexual urges or behaviors. There's nothing wrong with that, and there's nothing wrong with putting a label to it.

Labels are bad when they are so esoteric that they need to be defined nearly every time they're used, or when they lack a consistent definition altogether and can be anything. All the stargenders are useless because they fall into at least one, and usually both, of those categories.

I also think the "bisexual" label is a bit questionable around the edges, the Kinsey 1s and 5s. Sure you can say that a bisexual is anyone who isn't completely hetero or homosexual, but that covers a lot of ground. Is a man who has only ever had hetero relationships and watches almost only hetero porn, but a couple of times a year looks at a picture of a twink just to get started (but can't actually finish with that so switches back to women) still a bisexual? Does it really communicate anything useful for him to call himself that? Are we applying a "one drop" (of precum) rule here? I'd call him "mostly straight", but with a just a little bit of homosexual attraction.

I want to reinforce this point: Labels aren't inherently bad. It's about getting useful concepts condensed into widely-known words. I don't see a problem with hetero/homoflexible being used for the Kinsey 1s and 5s.

Of course there are also people who would use these labels out of shame and to hide what they really are, but that's a more general problem. Lots of gays and lesbians call themselves "bi" for years because they don't want to admit, often to themselves, that they are gay.

[–]haveanicedaytoo💗💜💙 14 insightful - 3 fun14 insightful - 2 fun15 insightful - 3 fun -  (5 children)

You know what? This is a great point. If people are Kinsey1/Kinsey5 and rarely think about and never plan on doing anything with same/opposite sex, why force them to call themselves bisexual? It's like calling someone who ate a cupcake one time (or someone who looked at a picture of a cupcake one time and though "hmm... I might like to eat that...") a "cupcake enthusiast." Maybe just let the actual cupcake enthusiasts have that label, and let the cupcake-adjacent individuals call themselves cupcake-flexible, right?

It can be like Bisexual is the umbrella term, and hetero/homoflexible fits underneath it.

[–]yousaythosethingsFind and Replace "gatekeeping" with "having boundaries" 9 insightful - 1 fun9 insightful - 0 fun10 insightful - 1 fun -  (2 children)

I think that's exactly how the terms are used. They are just understood as the fringes of bisexuality.

[–]haveanicedaytoo💗💜💙 7 insightful - 1 fun7 insightful - 0 fun8 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

I admit this has been less than a handful of times (can't be more than 3 or 4) and all in the past (the most recent probably 3-4 years ago) where I've seen people go "I'm heteroflexibe hurr hurr" in a jokey-way because they just DO NOT want to call themselves "Bisexual" because to them bisexual has too much baggage (and also I feel like they just didn't feel bisexual enough to fully commit to the "bisexual" label) back then there was a whole thing about celebrities like Raven Symone calling themselves Queer/Pansexual/"I don't want to label myself" basically ANYTHING BUT "bisexual" despite fitting that definition, and it really started making bisexual people feel insulted. But you say hetero/homoflexible people see themselves as under the bi-umbrella nowadays, that makes me happy. For such a long time these types of people made the rest of us feel like they think "bisexual" is a dirty word, they're actively trying to distance themselves from it.

[–][deleted] 3 insightful - 1 fun3 insightful - 0 fun4 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

Gay fringe and straight fringe mark very different social boundaries tho and are very significant to homos.

[–][deleted] 4 insightful - 1 fun4 insightful - 0 fun5 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

Random heterosexuals who slept with same sex didn’t used to call themselves anything because it wasn’t significant to them since they never intended to date same sex.

When it comes to homosexuals this behaviour is a lot more significant and threatening to other homosexuals because our pool is so tiny, and full of tourists, and we have a lot of fear around the issue. I think it is much more important to be true to your attractions within the community, or at least tell your partner you’re bisexual but same sex preferring. “Homoflexible” sounds like a bisexual person being biphobic from my homosexual perspective. I really want more bisexual women to stick around with us, and I feel like all this granular label stuff creates even more distrust from lesbians. Lol. I rolled my eyes when I saw the words because the only place I have ever seen them was in fetish-related communities.

[–]BiHorror[S] 2 insightful - 1 fun2 insightful - 0 fun3 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

Lol, I loved that cupcake example of yours. But yeah, I get it. I was thinking more on it before I commented back to responds and I can see that.

[–]quickbeam 7 insightful - 1 fun7 insightful - 0 fun8 insightful - 1 fun -  (1 child)

This is the way I most frequently see heteroflexible used, often in an effort not to overly appropriate bisexuality.

[–]reluctant_commenter 2 insightful - 1 fun2 insightful - 0 fun3 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

That actually makes a lot of sense, it seems more respectful to me in a way. People trying to not imply something they're not. Also, I have heard many people accuse bisexuals of being too heavily skewed towards one side or another and being "actually straight" for example.

[–]BiHorror[S] 2 insightful - 1 fun2 insightful - 0 fun3 insightful - 1 fun -  (1 child)

That I can see where you're coming from. Honestly I think the way I saw it (how I worded my questions) was gotta annoyance and kinda jealousy surprisingly. Although, as i said, I can see where you're coming from but isn't it kinda weird/fucked to be comparing that to the one drop rule? Especially with the whole historical context.

Anywho, I wouldn't force a label on them. I am actually kinda glad they DO have their own label (its just generally the people who i do see using them are those who are attention seekers. I never actually met someone who used the label genuinely to label themselves). But then I wonder, since they do still have hetero/homo experiences, could be allowed to weigh in some topics of LGB. If there are those who do take the experiences further. Like how someone made a post about asexuals (those who were attracted romantically to the same sex though) weighing in/being actively apart of LGB.

[–]yousaythosethingsFind and Replace "gatekeeping" with "having boundaries" 1 insightful - 2 fun1 insightful - 1 fun2 insightful - 2 fun -  (0 children)

Do you have a link to the thread about asexuals?

Edit: Nvm it was posted today. Derp.

[–]yousaythosethingsFind and Replace "gatekeeping" with "having boundaries" 8 insightful - 1 fun8 insightful - 0 fun9 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

The way I've seen it used is just bisexuals indicating that they strongly lean in one direction. I don't see anyone pretending this is anything but a form of bisexuality. I'll let the bis speak for themselves here but just because you're bisexual doesn't mean you're simultaneously interested in both sexes at a given time or equally interested, and this is one way to indicate that. It makes sense to me that bisexual people want a way to differentiate themselves. Someone of a particular sex with a strong preference for the same sex is not going to have much in common with and will want to disambiguate themselves from someone who only dabbles casually with the same sex.

[–]OPPRESSED_REPTILIANIntersex male | GNC | Don't call me "a gay", "twink" or "queen" 4 insightful - 3 fun4 insightful - 2 fun5 insightful - 3 fun -  (1 child)

I think it's real and a totally understandable label. I think that it's never as simple as "straight, gay/lesbian and bi" and I myself am proof of that. I think people can be straight/gay with an exception, I think it harms bisexual people to assume these people are bi (hence the stereotype of being bi is "just a phase") and they're not hurting anyone with the labels.

[–]BiHorror[S] 1 insightful - 1 fun1 insightful - 0 fun2 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

True, true. It was just as i was telling others, it's just that I never genuinely seen someone actually use the term to describe themselves. Just mostly the attention seekers (like the chicks who would just kiss other chicks for attention from dudes). Which was another thing I noticed, it's always women who use the term (for heteroflexibility) and barely men. I haven't seen women or men use homoflexibility though.

[–][deleted] 3 insightful - 1 fun3 insightful - 0 fun4 insightful - 1 fun -  (1 child)

I kind of wish they would just use “bisexual” if they are flexible enough to actually seek same sex partners, because it seems really confusing and unnecessary to keep breaking the label down into smaller and smaller categories. I think it IS pretty biphobic, tbh. “Mostly straight” and “mostly gay” are BI. I am not bi, but I can’t help but see this as people trying to avoid calling themselves what they are. If their attraction is strong enough to name a thing then bisexual is the thing, the degree of bisexual is personal and something you discuss with people you intend to be with.

Edit: what I am saying is that it is OKAY TO BE BISEXUAL. It’s okay to prefer one sex over the other.

[–]yousaythosethingsFind and Replace "gatekeeping" with "having boundaries" 1 insightful - 1 fun1 insightful - 0 fun2 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

Lol “mostly straight” is what I called myself internally during my long period of denial.

[–]dandeliondynasty 2 insightful - 1 fun2 insightful - 0 fun3 insightful - 1 fun -  (1 child)

I think your definition is correct. I mostly see “I’m flexible/fluid” from hereto-leaning men who aren’t sure (not much experience with men) of orientation & are afraid of losing their straight female dating pool if they ID as bi.

[–]BiHorror[S] 1 insightful - 1 fun1 insightful - 0 fun2 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

Oh? That's surprising, I generally seen it from women. But not outta fear of losing men in the dating pool (obviously there's gonna be those types of dude who find it hot and wanna have those sweet, sweet threesomes) but attention seeking. It sucks that the men feel that way.

[–]ThiccDropkickGay 1 insightful - 1 fun1 insightful - 0 fun2 insightful - 1 fun -  (0 children)

I don't think it can change. I think it's possible for people to be confused or take a long time to accept a certain attraction. But as far as I'm converned it's unchanging.