By: Clay Miller
Telling a person that you’re gay is an exceptionally hard thing to do, but bisexuality is a word that brings a whole new level of confusion and misunderstanding. Despite popular belief, bisexuality and homosexuality are not the same thing. To be homosexual is to be attracted to only the same gender, whereas being bisexual means being attracted to both men and women. However, homosexuality is generally more understood than bisexuality, and the primary cause for this is a general misconception about what bisexuality truly is. To air out some of the stigma, Bree Vieyra has agreed to give me an interview. Bree is a senior at Tustin High School. She loves to play piano, sing, draw, and learn several different languages, including Portuguese, Italian, Latin, Spanish and English. Bree became aware of her bisexuality in the second grade. According to her, all the kids were crushing on one another at her school. Bree noticed that, even though most of the other little girls liked boys, she just did not seem to feel that way. Bree confided in me that she, “felt the same way that everyone else did, but towards a girl named Julie.” Bree confided to me. “I always wanted to be with her, and I found myself writing our names side by side all the time.”
Bree’s first crush was on Julie, but according to her, she did not have a great understanding as to why that was different. Bree found that her interest in boys was practically nonexistent, and it scared her. Discovering sexuality is not easy, but for Bree it was, “one of the most frightening moments” of her life. She had no idea how to handle it, and her brain just could not process it at such a young age. On top of that, a majority of her family to this day won’t bring themselves to say that anyone being gay is okay, much less her. Since then, Bree did not tell many people about it, and for a while she even started to believe that she had no interest in boys at all. Bree found that when she started to enter middle and high school, she liked a few boys here and there, but still generally preferred women.
By the time Bree was in high school, she had dated a couple of girls and a couple of boys. Despite dating people that she loved, people always treated her with hostility when they found out she was bisexual. Some would even go so far as to try and tell Bree that she was “confused” or “just had not met the right guy.” These people seemed to think that her sexuality was a choice, and for most people of the LGBTQ community, this is the #1 source of ridicule and confusion. A lot of people don’t seem to understand that being gay is no more a choice than being straight. Because of all this, Bree tried to keep her sexuality a secret. For those lucky few people Bree trusted with this secret, she was commonly met with reassuring smiles and support. However, some people were far more hostile. One boy even went so far as to say that if Bree did not stop “faking,” she would be “damned to hell.” This was a huge blow to Bree’s self-esteem, and after this, she became even more hesitant to tell anyone.
Despite some people being just generally hateful of her, Bree remained optimistic. Many of the people she talked to simply did not understand what it meant to be bisexual, and practically all of them thought that it was a choice. She would happily explain to anyone who would listen what being bisexual meant, and some heard her. Others would turn deaf to her words and walk away, choosing instead to be ignorant and spiteful. Bree tells me that she is proud of who she is, and unashamed of her sexuality. However, despite her brimming confidence, she has not told anyone in her family about this. “I do not trust anyone in my family enough yet.” She tells me, explaining her choice. “I’m just not willing to right now.”
Even though at home she has to be careful to hide that part of herself, around anyone else, Bree is confident. She will speak of her attraction to different men and women openly and without discomfort. Bree tells me that she has “never felt uncomfortable about it, because it’s who I am.” The only reason Bree has ever felt reserved is because she did not want to be bullied for being herself. It is a shame that people like Bree feel the need to hide who they really are, not because of shame, but because of fear for being themselves. Sexuality is not a choice, and just because someone may be different does not mean that they are wrong.
I asked Bree if she had anything she would like to share with the readers, and without any hesitation, she told me this: “Never be ashamed or convinced you are less than human or worthless. I praise those who are proud and fearless about who they are. Love everyone unconditionally because they did not choose, and they are not less than you.” Bree is no different than anybody else, and neither are any members of the LGBTQ community. She is simply a normal, loving girl that just wants for her and everyone else to be loved and accepted for who they are, and that is exactly what they all deserve.