Valentine’s Day has always been an awkward holiday for me, ever since high school. In fact, as a bisexual teen in a world that loves bi-erasure, especially in cis men, I had given up on the idea of ever having a positive association with Valentine’s Day. Yet, love always finds a way.
A decade later, as I celebrate my fifth V Day with you, I’m grateful that I didn’t give up. Love isn’t easy in a heteronormative world, mostly because there’s no rulebook. Add to that navigating a relationship with a cis-het partner, and you get a not-so-fun mess.
For one, there’s always the ‘you’re just gay-in-denial’ narrative one is bombarded with from both outside and within the queer community, leading to the internalisation of biphobia. I often found myself wondering if I was cheating myself and you because I was possibly living a lie!
Then, there’s the sheer confusion. Often seasoned with anxiety, the confusion is something I can’t emphasise enough on. Educating ourselves as a couple, in what the other person experiences—as unfathomable as they may be to us—and accepting them unconditionally, was a key challenge.
At five years strong, I’ve realised one thing is key. It’s acceptance—of oneself, and of the other. That’s my advice to anyone who’s still confused. Do that. Find someone who does that. And you will never have to give up hope.
As members of the queer community, the pain and scars we have endured from others are unfortunately abundant. But acceptance is something we still, as a community, need to work on, and I hope everyone is a little more accepting and loving. Of oneself, and of others. In the words of F. P. Jones, “Love doesn’t make the world go round. Love is what makes the ride worthwhile.”
All through February, The Cake is celebrating queer love in all its forms. Do you have a love note for someone special this Valentine’s Day? Publish it here!