I’m sitting on the edge of the bed. The room is dark, filled with the sound of flesh smacking flesh and throaty “ahhhhhs.” Next to me are huddles of middle aged men, standing, pants-off, half-hard. I’m sitting upright, purse in lap feeling a bit overdressed.
In front of me is a triple set of couples, all in the doggy-style position, fucking in front of a mirror. Guy on girl, guy on guy, guy on girl. The earthy smell of anal sex filters the air.
It’s a swinger party. Or “lifestyle party” if you prefer. But something here is different. This party is Chicago’s first and only all bisexual lifestyle party. Usually, guy on guy sex is sort of not allowed.
I’m here undercover, doing a story for Gapers Block (click for entire story) In the lifestyle, I’ve learned, male bisexuality is taboo. Just like on TV or in small towns or high-schools.
I admire bisexual men. Not only do I find them strong and courageous and cool but I have a thing for them. They’re my “type.” Or, everyone is secretly bi and I just pull it out of the guys I date. Okay, I don’t *really* believe that, but because I’m bi, I tend to assume everyone else is too.
With swingers, female-bisexuality isn’t just encouraged, it’s expected. But why is male bisexuality feared? Is it because we associate homosexuality with taking on a female role? A silent patriarchal ban on men acting like women? In ancient Greece, homosexuality was permissible–only when the man was in the “top” role.
At the party, one woman said what set the bi party apart from the regular parties was that it’s a bit more aggressive. At most parties, women have control and men are less active in initiating. But in this space where men hit on other men, testosterone flourishes. I didn’t feel unsafe, but I did feel this vibe. The guys were there to play, and it felt like a celebration of male sexuality. Is that why we are so scared of their bisexuality? I wondered Is it because we condemn and dismiss male sexuality as a whole?
This woman’s husband was the bottom-half in the guy-on-guy scene. I asked him, why the taboo? “Honestly, I think it is leftover from AIDS and the big scare that caused in the ’80s. I think since then we’ve had this fear of male bisexuality, not female bisexuality.”
As homosexuality is no longer erased, it seems bisexuality would adjacently become acceptable. But I think that homophobia hasn’t gone anywhere, it’s instead pushed inside. Even the squarest, straightest people know it’s not cool to gay-bash. Instead of “you’re a fag” it’s become “well that’s okay for you, I guess, but I’M NOT gay.”
This makes exploring bisexuality kinda impossible. It takes a lot of self-awareness and courage to probe the fact that you might be bisexual and much more to come out (and play.)