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  1. #1
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    We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    By Jon Pressick

    As a regular reader of the forums here on bisexual.com, I can see that many of you certainly experience the same confusion, anxiety and general bewilderment when it comes to meeting other bisexual people. Whether you’re a woman looking to meet a bi woman, or perhaps you’re a man looking for a woman who will be understanding of his bisexuality, or whatever relationship configuration you’re after. Really, when it comes to our complex personal identification, it is no wonder that finding others we can fit with is, at times, so challenging!

    Bisexual people really do find themselves in a very tight spot in the general dating market. Straight and Gay/Lesbian people have it so much easier when it comes to picking up. Society is (obviously) very much geared to hetero folks, and to a lesser extent, gay and lesbian folks. They each have their own bars, some larger centres have a gay/lesbian area of town, and there are a plethora of dating websites aimed at both.

    Unfortunately, for bi folk, we just don’t have the same reach into the public realm as “they” do. Instead , we’re more often than not left wondering… “Is she really interested?” “Will he accept that I’m bi?” “Look at her! Is she straight, is she a dyke? I just don’t know!” This guessing game is really tough on the self-confidence and very limiting when it comes to actually meeting people. And don’t even get me started on the discrimination that can happen once we meet someone and then reveal our bisexuality! But let’s not dwell on that. Instead, through years of hardwork and much, err, elbow grease, I present to you my guide to meeting and dating—bisexual style!

    The Internet

    Certainly the internet is much more straight-focussed with a very healthy dose of gay/lesbian too. In fact, I’d say that our G/L cousins might have the market cornered on hooking up via cyberspace. Whether you’re looking for a quickie in the park or a potential life partner, searching via the web has become a cornerstone for the singles market.

    Fortunately, there are also very specific bi-focused dating sites out there. Be they community sites, such as the one you’re at right now, or sites where the main goal is to introduce bi folks to other bi folks, such as Bi-Bar, Bisexual Playground, and Bi Café. These sites can be wonderful, but they can also have drawbacks. For the shy, for the newly out, for the closeted—connecting with someone over the internet provides the anonymity and distance needed to slowly slip into the bi-dating pool. You’re able to search for your specific preferences and likes in a person, while at the same time being able to filter out those who contact you, but who you might not find attractive.

    However, there are also two distinct concerns when it comes to using dating websites, and this applies to all kinds of dating sites, be they straight, queer, bi, whatever. First, most cost money to join and get all the benefits from. Many offer some level of membership that is free, but if you want all the capabilities, then you’re going to have to pay. Secondly, I don’t think there are any of us who are naïve enough to think that everyone on a dating site is being completely honest about who they are, what they look like, etc. That’s the double-edged sword of these sites. Yes, you can take much solace in your anonymity…but you can also totally reinvent yourself on a site. And then, if you happen to decide to meet someone you’ve met online, well, you might end up terribly disappointed.

    So, as with all things internet-related, be sure to keep your wits about you. You may find yourself a soulmate or a fantastic fuck, but you might also find yourself throwing money away on someone who has been dishonest about him or herself.

    The Bar Scene

    Glorified in movies and on television, meeting people in bars seems the de facto form of social interaction out there. You get yourself all dolled up, grab some mates and hit the bars. Certainly, they do offer much potential for meeting new people, from the social lubrication that alcohol offers (please drink wisely, friends!) to the immediate closeness that dancing can provide, there is a solid reasoning behind the song “I Love the Nightlife.”

    But again, for the most part, the bar scene is for “them.” Bi folks just don’t have bi bars. If there are any in this world, then I’m sure there are no more than a handful. And in some centres, there aren’t even gay bars, making being bi and on the make that much more challenging. So, we’re left with either trying our luck at straight bars and, frankly, risking our lives. Or we can go to a gay bar and hope that we find other bi’s or at least accepting gays and lesbians.

    This is not to say that you’re not going to have luck at either. Really, it’ll depend on what you’re after that particular night. I don’t know about others, but I do know my appetite can change from night to night. So, I go to each type of venue accordingly. What I think is more important to consider here is that you head to a bar that caters to people you relate with, on a basis other than your bisexuality. Maybe you like dance music and want to shake your booty. Well, seek out that environment and see what happens. The key to meeting people is personal comfort and confidence. Forcing yourself to go to a bar you won’t enjoy won’t make it any easier for you to meet someone.

    Support Groups

    For many, their entrance into the wide bisexual world is by first attending a bi-focused support group. This is a wonderful baby step when first exploring your sexuality and can yield so many fantastic results. First, support groups can provide the confidence and reassurance needed when first accepting your bisexuality. And without confidence in yourself ,you’re not likely to get far when it comes to meeting people.

    But support groups can also offer a bit more than personal support. I mean, we’re always wondering how to identify other bi people and how hard that can be out in the general public. Well, if you’re sitting in a room full of other bisexual people and you happen to look over and fancy a cutie…well, isn’t there a pretty good chance that that cutie is bi too?

    Of course, please be sure to use discretion and care if you hope meet others who are attending a support group. It is certainly best to get to know the person first, you really should know where he or she is coming from before you turn on the charm. He or she might not be ready, might not even be self-accepting, so you should use care.

    If you’ve not already checked it out, here is our list of support and advocacy groups from around the world. If you happen to know of others, please do submit them.

    The Bookstore

    This is my personal fave idea and one that offers a host of benefits beyond just meeting someone. These days, most cities and towns offer a quality bookstore that carries titles relating to bisexual subjects, usually in a section devoted to the broad LGBT theme. It might be an indie bookstore (I prefer these) or it might be a chain. Whatever, as long as you feel comfortable browsing that section. One key to meeting people in the bookstore is that you need to know what you’re talking about. So, while you’re browsing the bi-themed titles, make sure you actually buy some on occasion and do read them. Not only are you supporting hard-working bi authors, but you’re also educating yourself. But back to the plan!

    Grab yourself a coffee and start perusing the shelves. The general idea behind bookselling these days is to make the customer comfortable, let them look and read as much as they want. So, there you are, leafing through a title when you spot a hottie in the vicinity. Try, discretely, to scope out what he or she is looking at, what books he or she is reaching for. If you see him or her reach for a book you’ve read, well, here’s your opportunity. The reason book reviews are so popular is that people really respect the ideas and thoughts of others when it comes to reading material. So, more than likely, he or she will be happy to listen to you. And look, you’ve just met someone!

    As a quick addition, you can easily substitute the venue here. Video stores are also outstanding for this technique.

    Okay, okay, this is a pretty simplified look at dating and hooking up in the bisexual world, and unfortunately, these ideas just might not be possible for everyone. However, I hope that if you’ve been a bit shy, a bit nervous about taking the first step in your bisexual journey that you’ll consider some of these to make your fantasies come true!


    (c) Copryight 2005 Jon Pressick

    Jon Pressick is the feature article editor for Bisexual.com. He is also the publisher of TRADE: Queer Things and a past contributor to Xtra!, Gaiety, Broken Pencil, Women’s Post and Quill and Quire.

  2. #2
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    Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    I should have thought of it sooner, the book store is a good place.

    The odds look good that you may engage a well read individual.

    DM

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    Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    Smiles.. wise words Jon, I especially like what you say about bi-support groups..

    how easy to succumb to temptation, misinterpret a vulnerable situation and end up feeling isolated and too raw to access the support you actually need from the group..

    book/video shop idea sounds much more inviting...

    cheers julie


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    Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    I like the book store idea. I have never used it but I will probably start since I love to read any way

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    Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    Thank you for the article, I look forward to reading more....

    Take care...m
    This is who I am...not what I am

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    Thumbs up Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    bookstore ! Ah- hah ! Now 'scuse me while I set up a stakeout near my fave genre section. . . or should I perhaps gather a collection of everything I personally enjoy and set them up on their own shelf ... might save a lot of staking out the wrong locations? * cheers *
    I Fell In A Pile Of You, And Got Love All Over Me[B]/B]

  7. #7
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    Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    we're also in the supermarkets on sunday mornings, shopping alone.. or the laundromats saturdays, doing the weekly shuffle...the strange new, sometimes older, face in the gay or alt bar, trouble is, we blend in so well... we can be your auto mechanic, your greengrocer, your banker. we all know the deal...guess we all have to come up with an easier way to find each other.. tho i'm not sure the pride bracelets are the way to go.. wasnt there some kind of little electronic button that worked as a finding device for singles, several years back?? think i saw it on an episode of the now defunct techtv..[ too bad the rabid gamers of g4 took it over then ate it, it actually had a redeeming value] maybe that would work? trouble is, what would our partners/spouses say when they found it on us or in our posession?? too, who wants to be branded electronically, ala 1984 or logans run?
    "To each monkey, it's own swing.." - old Latino Provberb

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    Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    Nice article! I would add that queer social groups are good for meeting people too. This can include theatre clubs, athletics, bridge, whatever. Fortunately, acceptance of bisexuals is growing in many places so the gays and lesbians that one might meet in these groups may be receptive to dating a bisexual.

  9. #9

    Thumbs up Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    I learned things reading your article. I even enjoyed reading it. But I live in a small town,so the bar and bookstore idea is not available for me. BUT the internet idea is, and I take your advice seriously.

    Thanks
    Robertislooking2
    Sex is good,some better,BUT all in the proper place at the proper time

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    Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    Quote Originally Posted by robertislooking2
    I learned things reading your article. I even enjoyed reading it. But I live in a small town,so the bar and bookstore idea is not available for me. BUT the internet idea is, and I take your advice seriously.

    Thanks
    Robertislooking2

    Hello robert
    just an idea for you here, most bigger towns/cities have a "BARNES & NOBLES" bookstore, were it is big enough that you could probably "blend in" and you could persue other bisexuals with the feeling of some annomity
    I too live in a small town, and i have done this very same thing!

    And thank you jon for this imformative look in how to and where to look
    "No use in saying sorry! its something that i enjoy"
    as said by Ozzy Osbourne




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  11. #11
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    Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    More Datings Tips ? Advice ? Getting prepared for dating, esp if one's been out of the dating scene for a while? And some people like mystery and enigma and the thrill of the chase when dating what does one cultivate if you want to be pursued? Theres much to be said... lets hear more!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails flowchart.gif  
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    Smile This is a well designed site

    This is a well designed site. Easy to navigate. Thanks. Joe

  13. #13
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    Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    An excellent and informative article with some good ideas and suggestions.
    "Injustice anywhere is injustice everywhere..." Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

  14. #14

    Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    A very well written article, and since I have some (bi related) books on my wish list I can test out my skills at the same time.

    But I find that I need to befriend someone for months before I even think about going the extra step and support groups have helped me meet others, tho they aways seem to be 'not available'.


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    Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    These all seem like good ideas but I get around town a lot with my kids and my wife who is Bisexual as well but we have the family thing happening so like single mothers we can never attract others who probaly have the same interests! And we don't go do the bar scene this little shitkicker town and tough guy drunken morons ruin the high there. So what does that leave? The internet to meet new people in a somwhat safe enviroment, but then alas we meet guys showing off what we'd prefer not to see RIGHT NOW but maybe later you know? And women who are cool but so damn far away we never get a decent conversation going! Maybe we don't have the game down on this internet deal but damnit were married so what the hell are we doing? AAAAAHHHH now I'm just confused?

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    Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    I like the bi support group idea and will see if we can interest others in the Veracruz, Mexico area. Thanks, cool article. Anybody out there got suggestions on creating local support groups? Please send ideas to masajistalion@yahoo.com
    Last edited by masajistalion; Jan 3, 2006 at 10:29 PM. Reason: add info

  17. #17

    Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    I like wanderingrichard's idea of a simple, discreet effective buzzer, always listening to stealth signal. Is it in use actually? Or is there some other sort of very discreet reconaissance signal shared ony in the bi community?

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    Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    If all else fails, maybe we should all wear tee shirts with the letters B - I tattooed across the chest.

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    Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    thanks for acknowledging that there are people out there who just don't know quite how to approach being bisexual. props to you

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    Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    This is a big deal for me because I'm married and not looking for a date per se but I would really like to spend time with bi-people from time to time.....to time. It would sure be great if we just looked at each other and smiled now and again.

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    Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    I've had good luck with people who ride bicycles wearing bifocals. My guess is they subconsciously seek symbols to advertise their desires.
    Actually without the Internet I doubt I would ever get to talk with anyone else who is bi. It's opened up a whole new world of social improbability for me.

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    Thumbs up Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    Nice job!

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    Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    Good article. Some interesting ideas. I would defiantly like to hear more on this topic, especially about starting to date as a Bi.

  24. #24

    Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    I was wondoring about dating as a bi-sexual person since its my first time. Thank you for the handy tips I will use it. Everything is so confusing right now since I just found out I was bi -sexual a few months ago so any advice would be apriecialted.

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    Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    Great article and definately provides food for thought.

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    Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    Barnes and Noble is where i go.

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    Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    "Forbes" ranked very interesting, because I like them a series of numbers ranking, this ranking and to investigate how to get it? Who can tell me that their data is how come?
    I'm Los, you likenfl kids jerseys it? nfl very exciting right

  28. #28

    Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    I found this to be very informitive and look forward to further articles.

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    Re: We Know You’re Out there Somewhere!: A Handy Guide to Dating in the Bi World

    As a signal, I have a blue, purple and pink stripped ribbon, about 2 inches long, attached to my set of keys. The keys are openly displayed wherever I am. So if anyone recognizes the colors and their meaning, they will know I am Bi friendly. If I ever see something like that with someone else, my opening line would be: "Hi, I noticed your (keys, or whatever), I have seen those colors on some websites." I believe that would be enough to get a friendly conversation started. Maybe something subtle like this could be a start as a way for the Bi community to recognize each other. Thoughts?

 

 

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