“I Am Straight But My Husband Is Bi. Why Do People Treat Me So Badly?” Ask Me Anything

Jamie Arpin-Ricci
4 min readMar 18, 2022
(Banner art by Jamie Arpin-Ricci)

In this week’s “Ask Me Anything” column, I am answering a question that several readers have asked in different ways but with the same general theme. So the question and the “asker” below are a composite. In truth, over the years this is a very common question I receive and one that is generally asked with great care and trepidation:

Dear Jamie,

I am a straight, cisgender woman and I am married to a bisexual man. I fully embrace and celebrate his bisexual identity and spend time learning more about bisexuality and the broader LGBTQ+ community in order to be a support. We love each other and are very happily married!

Yet, when people talk to us about his bisexuality, there are often questions asked, comments made, and assumptions thrown around that are quite hurtful, especially from other LGBTQ+ folks. For example, some will say his bisexuality isn’t real but just a step on the way to being gay. Or when they find out he is married to me, they make comments or looks that suggest they question the legitimacy of our relationship. Some have even accused me of robbing him of the chance to be intimate with a man, despite our mutual commitment to monogamy.

In the end, I am left feeling like I am merely his “beard”, that I could never truly fulfill his desires, and that am naive to think he will be faithful. I fully love and trust my husband, but these thoughts prey on my own insecurities about our relationship, how attractive I am, or even that people think I am meekly accepting mistreatment.

Is this common? How do I pushback against it without overstepping, given my own privilege?

Please help. Sincerely,
“Alice”

Hey Alice,

First of all, I am really sorry that you have experienced this at all, but especially from a community of people who should be more aware of how false ideas, assumptions, and judgments about sexuality and relationships can be harmful. It is wrong that you experience this and it is legitimate for you to want it to stop.

Sadly, it is quite common. If you have read my other articles around bisexuality, bi-erasure, etc. you will see that bisexual folks are often the…

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Jamie Arpin-Ricci

Jamie Arpin-Ricci is a bisexual author & activist with more than 25 years experience living at the intersection of faith, sexuality, and justice.