Bisexual members of the LGBT community on Monday are celebrating the 15th Annual International Celebrate Bisexuality Day — also referred to as “Bi Pride Day” or “Bi Visibility Day” — to encourage bisexuals and their allies to be visible and proud of their bi identity.
The annual occasion raises awareness about bisexuality, educates the community about bisexual issues, and encourages bisexual people and their allies to be visible and proud of the bisexual identity.
Bisexuality is one of the three main classifications of sexual orientation along with heterosexuality and homosexuality, and is used in the context of human attraction or sexual feelings toward both men and women.
A bisexual identity does not necessarily equate to equal sexual attraction to both sexes; commonly, people who have a distinct but not exclusive sexual preference for one sex over the other also identify themselves as bisexual.
Often referred to as the “invisible majority,” several studies indicate that self-identified bisexuals make up the largest single population within the LGBT community in the United States. In each study, more women identified as bisexual than lesbian, and fewer men identified as bisexual than gay.
In a 2010 study published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine found that among adults (5,042 respondents), 3.1 percent self-identified as bisexual, compared to 2.5 percent who self-identified as either gay or lesbian.
And despite the overwhelming data that bisexuals exist, other people’s assumptions often render bisexuals invisible. Two women holding hands are read as “lesbian,” two men as “gay,” and a man and a woman as “straight.” In reality, any of these people might be bisexual, perhaps all of them.
Since 1999, “Bi Pride Day” has been held yearly on September 23, and was the brainchild of three United States bisexual rights activists: Wendy Curry of Maine, Michael Page of Florida, and Gigi Raven Wilbur of Texas.
Organizations and individuals have marked the occasion with film festivals, community forums on various issues important to the community, drag shows, art displays, performance events, and other celebrations.
Events celebrating Bi Pride Day are scheduled in many major U.S. cities and elsewhere the world. BiNetUSA has a partial list.