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“Bi” The Way – 6 Famous Celebrities Speak Up About Being Bisexual

Actress Kristen Stewart sits holding a microphone and smiling at the audience.

Bisexual Visibility Month may have been last September. And even though by now, that’s a whole two months ago, it’s never too late to celebrate not being straight.

Loving who you want to love shouldn’t have to be so hard. And yet, for a label that could be making things simpler (there are many genders. Check. You can be attracted to at least more than one. Check. What’s hard to understand?), even today, bisexuals still face marginalization from both sides of the picket fence.

It’s great that there’s a lot more opportunity nowadays to discuss what is good representation (in media) and what isn’t. But while directors and screenwriters may not always get it right, they should be taking notes from the many outspoken bisexual celebrities in the music and film industry.

Halsey

Copyright (c) 2015 Justin Higuchi

With two Grammys and many artistic accolades under her belt, Halsey has never put down the mantle of being an LGBTQ+ activist.

Halsey isn’t afraid to call out her own record label for perpetuating bisexual or even LGBTQ+ erasure. The artist has openly talked about her struggle for creative control over her own music — even once turning down a huge Katy Perry collab in the name of bisexual representation.

“I’m a young, bisexual woman, and I’ve spent a large part of my life trying to validate myself—to my friends, to my family, to myself—trying to prove that who I love and how I feel is not a phase; it’s not part of some confusion that’s going to change or could be manipulated,”


2018 GLAAD Music Awards

Lauren Jauregui

“Lauren Jauregui” by luisgavilan is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Speaking of the Halsey/Katy Perry collab that didn’t happen, it was eventually Lauren Jauregui who would end up featuring on the song.

The Fifth Harmony member is one of the many bisexual celebrities who spoke out against Trump in the 2016 election. That year, Jauregui penned an impassioned letter to Donald Trump and his supporters that wound up published on Billboard. The singer wrote about her struggles and experiences with not just racism and sexism, but also privilege. On the way, she makes a lot of good points about feminism and its intersectionality with cultural and personal identity.

“I am a bisexual Cuban-American woman and I am so proud of it. I am proud to be part of a community that only projects love and education and the support of one another.”


Billboard, 2016

Kristen Stewart

Kristn Stewart sits on a chair, holding a microphone and smiling at the audience.
“Kristen Stewart” by Gage Skidmore is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

It’s nice to see the Twilight actress really grow into herself. The actress and filmmaker has opened up about the discomforts of celebrity piling on top of struggles with anxiety and panic attacks.

In an interview with Elle UK, she elaborates on how the degree of scrutiny her relationships (with men) always attracted caused her to retreat inwards. On the other hand, embracing her bisexuality helped change how she viewed and felt about being a public personality.

“When I was dating a guy, I was hiding everything that I did because everything personal felt like it was immediately trivialized, so I didn’t like it.

It changed when I started dating a girl. I was like, ‘Actually, to hide this provides the implication that I’m not down with it or I’m ashamed of it, so I had to alter how I approached being in public. It opened my life up, and I’m so much happier.”


Elle UK, 2016

Evan Rachel Wood

Evan Rachel Wood speaks on a panel at comic-con.
“Evan Rachel Wood” by Gage Skidmore is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

This is a name that pops up on every big lists of famous bisexual celebrities. Known for her roles in True Blood and Westworld, Evan Rachel Wood only “officially” came out as bisexual via Twitter in 2012.

“I thought women were beautiful, but because I was born that way I never once stopped to think that was strange or anything to fear.”

HRC North Carolina Gala Dinner, 2017

Growing up a ‘tomboy in Raleigh,’ Wood also opened up about ‘suppressing’ her sexual identity as a teen for fear of the hate speech and homophobia she grew up around. It may come from such personal experiences that she advocates not just for more representation but also for fellow bisexual celebrities and artists to ‘speak up.’

“It’s so confusing, especially when there’s not a lot of information out there.

Erasure is causing people harm and diminishing self-esteem and putting people in harm’s way… I want people to know that it’s okay, [bisexuality] is valid, and their stories matter.”


Motto, 2016

Anna Paquin

Anna Paquin sits in front of a microphone during a press release.
“Anna Paquin” by Gage Skidmore is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

Being in a straight relationship doesn’t make anyone less queer. Anna Paquin is one of many bisexual celebrities married to someone of the opposite gender. However, she had this to say when Larry King caleld her a ‘non-practicing bisexual.’

”Well, I don’t think it’s a past tense thing. Are you still straight if you are with somebody? If you were to break up with them or if they were to die, it doesn’t prevent your sexuality from existing. It doesn’t really work like that.”


Larry King Now, 2014

Nico Tortorella

Nico Tortorella and Bethany Meyers pose for the camera at the 2018 GLAAD Music Awards.
GLAAD Music Awards, 2018

Actor Nico Tortorella and their partner entrepreneur Bethany Meyers are in a polyamorous marriage, and both identify as nonbinary. The star of Younger may have had many labels in his past, from Demisexual to queer to sexually fluid. However in interviews and talks, they have referred to themselves as bisexual.

Today, the bisexual actor and sometimes model is especially active as an LGBTQ+ advocate towards youth.

“And anybody that doesn’t live in that structure needs to find a home of sorts. And I think labels are really important for kids, especially, [who] can’t find their tribe where they are, and need to go find their people, their family. For that reason, I think labels are extremely important.”


The Advocate, 2017

The Bottom Line

What’s behind biphobia may be kind of complicated. And bisexual erasure continues to pervade both literature and film. But one thing is for sure: bisexuals are not “on their way to being gay”, nor are they “not gay enough” — they’re just bisexual.

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