Bi, Poly, Parent, Anti-christ: Parenting while bi in a straight, straight world.

identity-683963_1280What do you get when you combine two mums, a dad, fourteen children and a conservative society? Why, a super villain of course! Valarie Clark-Neff takes wry look at the pitfalls of parenting while polyamorous and bi…

Dear children,

Please be advised: Your mom is a supervillain, hell-bent on destroying the patriarchy. She sometimes assumes civilian form and tries to blend into mainstream (straight) society, but much of her time is spent as a misandrist miscreant, fighting against biphobia, homophobia, misogyny, and other forms of bigotry.

You see the society you are inheriting is full of power hungry people who believe there is only one right way to have a family – with the man as the head of the household and the woman and children supporting him in his endeavors. The structure of this ideal family in our society is rigid and doesn’t allow for variation. It divides society up into small units, governed by men. Women are still mainly expected to support the family unit but are never supposed to be in charge of it.  Men who “allow” their women to take charge are subject to disgusted profanities, mocked for being weak, and shunned by other men. Children who are not related by blood to the heads of household are usually considered to be half siblings or step children, thereby assigning them a lesser status.

Your mother hates this kind of structure because it creates a hierarchy, splitting up families into half and whole, or step and biological. She holds to the notion that each person who is part of a family is equally deserving of love and support – a dangerous heresy that threatens heteronormative male dominance. The family she has given you is composed of two moms, one dad, and fourteen children. It’s a huge family you are a part of and spans two continents.  You have so many siblings, you’ll never be alone in this world. And they are all wholly yours, blood-related or not.

Your mother chooses to live her life as a proud bisexual, polyamorous woman which sends the established order scrambling to protect themselves from her villainy. She is called all sorts of names that reinforce her supervillain status for daring to be a bisexual deviant.  You see, she is double married and for this she has been labelled a whore, Jezebel, antichrist, devil’s spawn, destroyer of marriage, depraved sinner –  just to mention a few of the more colorful descriptions.

Those are names she strives hard to live up to, after all, she is quite proud of her existence that erodes and subverts the existing patriarchal structures.


Naturally she has special supervillain abilities that help her in her quest to destroy existing social structures. She has the ability to generate poison. She infects people with dangerous revolutionary ideas like Poison Ivy’s specialized eco toxins. It’s a matter of proximity: if anyone gets too close to her, her non-monosexual ideas permeate their skin. Or, it might be their hair follicles that trap the poison. Some would say her anti-patriarchal poison is so powerful, one only has to share the same air with her. It’s hard to be sure.

Your mother can also regenerate as a means of developing resistance to injury. Some suspect that she might be a time lord from Gallifrey. After all, just how does she survive the constant attacks from those in power?  She has no special armour and carries no weapons. So it would seem that her connection to time lords might be more than rumor.  Even after suffering years of mental imprisonment brought on by constant biphobic assault, she managed to break free and rebuild herself.

Like Mystique, she also has the power of metamorphosis and can change forms to infiltrate straight and queer spaces. This makes her especially dangerous because the established order never knows where her loyalties lie. She keeps them off balance and undermines their authority. When she is with her husband, she can sometimes pass for straight, as long as she keeps extra quiet about her intentions. When she is with her wife, she can pass for being gay, until her cover is blown by gay folks who do not appreciate her subversive polyamory that puts them at odds with their straight allies.

Like so many other super villains, she will not apologise for her crimes against those in power.  She has her own moral code and it doesn’t match up with the good guys’ sense of right and wrong. No matter what the outcome of her misadventures though, her loyalty to you, her children, is unbreakable.


Image 1 “untitled” by johnhain. Shared under Public Domain, via pixabay.

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