– Madari Pendas, journalist and Gay Pride activist.
In my experience, it’s true that many people think this way about bisexuals but in my experience also, they are wrong.
I have made up my mind. I know who I want to be and I’m not afraid to show it.
At the age of 13 I always thought I was different compared with other people. I was never the typical girl. I wasn’t into skirts or wearing girlie things. I always stood out from the crowd.
Being bisexual was something you had to hide. If you said you were one, you would have been bullied or have the mic taken out of you. You had to act like you were tough and show that you were not going to be pushed about.
My style was mostly jeans and t-shirts, boyish trainers and caps. I mostly played with action figures rather than Barbie dolls.
At that time I thought it wasn’t normal to be like this. I was scared and didn’t know how I should act around others. I remember once I burst into tears because I didn’t know how to control my emotions.
But that changed when I turned 15. I started noticing I was into girls and as well as boys. I started having crushes on female celebrities like Emma Watson, Cara Delevingne and Kendall Jenner. These celebrities have been role models for me. I just felt they are beautiful with unique traits, for example Cara Delevingne is a model but she is also a lesbian and she has that funny and crazy side to her that I love.
But I also have crushes on male celebrities, like Zac Efron, Orlando Bloom and Karl Westerberg. Karl Westerberg is a drag queen, with the stage name Manila Luzon. He is amazing and inspiring and he made me want to be happy and proud of who I am.
In class, I was getting bullied because other girls were thinking I was weird and not really into what they liked, which was makeup, hair and handbags.
My whole school life I had to put on an act. It felt like I was constantly in a drama lesson, making a performance to try and fit in with the rest of the girls.
I knew I wasn’t going to be accepted. I didn’t even tell my close friends. I kept all my feelings to myself.
I presented myself as the smiley, funny one but that was only a disguise to hide the pain I was really feeling.
Some people in my school thought, if you like girls you are a lesbian in their eyes. This isn’t right but people really thought of you in that way. They never really thought of bisexuals. You were either gay or lesbian or just weird.
I never really told my family about my sexuality. I kept hiding it away. I never really liked the thought of telling my friends and family. The thought of it was scary.
My family is full of strong people and I didn’t know whether they would give a negative vibe about it. I just kept it inside because that is what I thought was safe. I was frustrated and angry with myself for being this way.
When I eventually came out my family weren’t surprised. They had their suspicions already.
Every time they would bring it up I would be, like, “no I’m not like that” and kind of brush it off. I found it awkward.
I knew I had to tell them one day so when I was 16 I decided to confront them and say how I really feel and why I am this way. They just said, “as long as you are happy then we are fine with it.”
Things now are good. I feel like I’ve been accepted for who I am and I am happy that people are starting to understand me for who I am.
I’m mostly expressing myself and being more open about my sexuality and giving advice to friends.
The good thing about being bisexual is you have so many role models you can look up to and you can go to Gay Pride and be proud to say that you are bisexual. Plus I have amazing support from my family and friends.
I want to show the world who I really am and to express myself. I hope when you read this I will be able to inspire the people who are going through the same things I went through and to let you know we are in this together.
Don’t worry about being insecure of who you are. Just express yourself. Stay strong, be proud and keep smiling.
Here is a useful website that can help you if you need advice on your sexuality.