[A]sexuality,  Q&A,  Queer[ness]

Q&A not Q&A: “I’ve heard of heteroflexible and gayflexible which means…”

anonymous said:

For the anon looking for a word / term: I’ve heard of heteroflexible and gayflexible which means you’re usually attracted to the other / same gender but sometimes also the same / other gender. I could also imagine biflexible and so on…

(in response to this anon)

heteroflexible and homoflexible (i’ve never heard of gayflexible nor biflexible) are words that i’m familiar with, but they’re also words that i personally don’t care to suggest to people.

for one, the way i’ve seen these words defined and used seems problematic to me. let’s look at their definitions, for example.

Heteroflexibility is a form of a sexual orientation or situational sexual behavior characterized by minimal homosexual activity in an otherwise primarily heterosexual orientation that is considered to distinguish it from bisexuality. (Wikipedia)

[Homoflexiblity] describes someone attracted primarily to members of the same sex (homosexual), but occasionally attracted to members of the opposite sex AND/OR able to derive pleasure from romantic encounters with members of the opposite sex. Homoflexibility is related to, but different from bisexuality in that homoflexible persons most often identify as gay or lesbian, despite occasional relations with members of the opposite sex. (Urban Dictionary)

both definitions juxtapose heteroflexible & homoflexible with bisexuality, distinguishing them from bisexuality based on the biphobic misconception that bi people can’t or don’t experience different levels of attraction towards different genders.

it’s biphobic assumptions like the ones that these definitions are based on that lead people to accuse bi people of being “basically straight” or “basically gay” if they have any sort of preference or natural inclination towards certain genders, thus contributing to bi erasure.

i’m also not a fan of quantifying levels of attraction to specific genders in such a way that creates a line between what “counts” as being bi and what doesn’t…

that said, the issues that i have with these words are likely to apply to other similar words as well and i know that there are lots of people for whom the words heteroflexible and homoflexible are very useful. without a doubt, both words are valid regardless of my personal qualms with them and the other anon might in fact find these words useful, so thanks anon.

YouTuber and Blogger, Vesper is an American expat currently living in Japan.

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