Back in the early 2000s, my comic book geekery and my growing frustration over some of the attitudes I experienced towards bisexuals in the LGBT community resulted in YA story called “The Amazing Fence Riders.” (Lol, that title.) It was about a group of college-aged bisexual friends who had the misfortune of dealing with the stereotypes that came with bisexuality and other forms of biphobia and bi-erasure, as told by the main character, Molly, who happened to be a raging Spider-Man fan, hence the “Amazing” part of the title. I wrote the entire thing longhand—something I can’t even imagine doing anymore without my hand falling off.
Here’s a bit from the beginning:
“There is no such thing as a bisexual.”
With those eight words, spoken to form one of the most ignorant sentences ever uttered, Mark Brabender sparked what will forever be known as The Fence Rider Revolt… and also came perilously close to losing a few teeth when Trent McLaren lunged at him. Fortunately, Tyler Hughes was able to subdue him before things turned even uglier. And by subdue, I mean that Trent, who was at least half a foot taller and thirty pounds heavier (all muscle, mind you), stopped himself before he bowled over his own boyfriend.
But before I go on, let me back up. It was the weekly meeting of our campus’ LGBT organization, Qmunity. The Ls and the Gs made up most of the group, with about thirty members in all. There were only five Bs and one T. Our small but outspoken bisexual contingent was used to attacks on our sexuality—so much for unity, huh? The fact that Alexandra and Renny were both dating guys served as supposed proof that the fight for equality didn’t concern us because we could “choose” the straight path if we wanted.
There’s a lot going on in the story: the group meets with resistance when they try to include the Bi Pride flag in the local Pride parade and also when members in opposite-sex relationships want to march with their partners (because it doesn’t look “gay” enough), and relationship stuff, including Molly’s own tentative beginnings with a lesbian who is hesitant to commit because she can’t get over the B word.
A lot of personal experiences went into this story. I don’t think I really ever planned to do anything with it; it was more about having an outlet for my frustrations. And although biphobia and bi-erasure still pop up from time to time, I’m glad that things are generally better nowadays, at least as far as I can tell.