It’s Time to #savethebisexuals

save_the_bisexuals_buttonIn the wake of SCOTUS ruling on same-sex marriage, BiNetUSA has called for greater support for bisexual people. We asked board member and presenter of the  BiCast Lynnette McFazden to give us the info.

Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never harm me. Except they do. This year we have four reported suicides of bisexual or pansexual youth in the US that are directly related to bullying. These are just the ones whose sexual orientation is reported correctly; in the past media has called these kids gay or straight. It is good the media is changing how it deals with bisexuality. But it is terrible we are losing so many.

Bisexual and transgender identified individuals have the highest suicide rates in the LGBT community. 46% for each. Of the four bi and pan youth we have lost this year, half were also transgender.

Alyssa Morgan was 12 years old. Her family was supportive. But the school’s response to bullying was “Toughen Up”. Adam Kizer was a bright loving person who simply couldn’t take it anymore. We will never get to know them or Taylor Alesana and Blake Brockington. We have to do better by them.

In June, BiNet USA published a statement, Happy Marriage Equality, now #savethebisexuals calling for support for the bisexual community. “Now that we’ve won marriage,” it states, “we need immediate and concrete support for bisexual community issues like domestic violence, rape/sexual assault, poor health, poverty and suicidality”.

Like in the UK, in the USA as bisexuals we suffer huge mental health disparities. We face biphobia from the straight and gay communities. We are excluded and erased. We are raped and beaten at a much higher rate the lesbians or gays (see Understanding Issues Facing Bisexual Americans [.pdf] for more on this).

Add to that 15% of transgender people identify as bisexual. A large number of our population are People of Color. And for the most part, we are poor. With these things compounded, it is a wonder any of us survive. But we do. And we need to help insure the rest make it too. And we could use the support of the whole LGBTQIA community.

When you recognize biphobia, confront it. Words do kill. #BiphobiaKills.

Alyssa Morgan, bisexual.Alyssa Morgan

Blake Brockington, pansexual and transgender.Blake_Brockington

Taylor Alesana, pansexual and transgender.Taylor_Alesana

Adam Kizer, bisexual.adam kizer

This piece has been edited to reflect that Taylor Alesana and Blake Brockington identified as pansexual.

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lynnette

My name is Lynnette McFadzen and I live in Portland, Oregon, USA. I am a 57-year-old single woman with three daughters and four grandchildren. I am single and, at the moment, celibate. I am disabled and a widow. I conceived, produce and publish The BiCast (www.bicast.org) directly from my home.

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