I just wanted to tell you: you're the most amazing person I've ever met and I love you so much.
My girlfriend and I have only been together for eight months, but in that short time, she's inspired me to be the best I can be. She's encouraged me to tell my story and stand up for other bi people. She's cheered me on to keep going, congratulated me on my successes and has been there to make me smile when I get abuse on Twitter.
She puts up with me being up until 3 am messaging with a bi guy from America on his coming out process. She understands when I'm not available because I'm writing an article to a sharp deadline. And she doesn't get mad when people message me inappropriate sexual comments on Facebook.
It shouldn't be a big deal to find a woman who's cool with dating a bi guy; but as a reformed serial dater, let me tell you they are rare to come by. She's never asked me which one I prefer, never been insecure about me going gay clubbing, or listened to those who told her "it's just a phase".
But by far one of the biggest things I have to thank her for is being cool with what I'm doing right now. It's one thing to date a bi man, it's quite another to date a bi activist who discusses his attraction to men and women in the media every week.
When you're in a relationship, it can be hard to discuss your bisexuality, and even harder to discuss it on an international platform. If I were a gay activist I dare to say life would be easier. Yes, I'd be discussing sexuality and love but ultimately I wouldn't have to discuss my attraction outside of my boyfriend. I could use him as an example, bi people can't do that. I can't just talk about my attraction to women.
As a bi activist, I have to discuss how attractive I find men and women that aren't my girlfriend. I've discussed past sexual encounters and I've discussed the difference between dating men and women.
My girlfriend has read and seen everything I've ever done as an activist. Rather than be insecure when I discuss the kind of men I find attractive, she replies— "this is awesome babe, so proud of you".
A lot of bi people who settle down do give up the fight. They're living their lives and have more to do than fight for bi visibility. Plus, something that rarely gets talked about is how uncomfortable it can make your partner if you're constantly talking about your attraction to others. Perhaps that's why we don't see a huge number of married bi people talking about their sexuality?
Dating me isn't easy, not because I'm high maintenance but because society has some really messed up views when it comes to bisexuality. People have asked my girlfriend "are you the one dating the gay guy"? Told her, "Honey, he's gay, there's no such thing as bi" and even one person who said "he's bisexual, you're going to catch HIV" but none of that put her off, she sees me for the person I am, not what society says my sexuality is. Not only does she accept my sexuality, she celebrates it and that makes me love her even more.
I've dated people in the past who've told me to stop saying I'm bi, people that have stood by whilst their friends have ridiculed bisexuality to my face. I've even dated people who've tried to convince me I was gay and not bi. At the time I thought it was just something I'd have to learn to put up with, now I know it's not!
My girlfriend is my rock, when I'm having a pity party because I'm being hated on Twitter for talking about bisexuality, she reminds me to grow up, and reminds me that I'm doing this for the young bi men that are lacking in role models, and changing opinions of those that have negative views of bisexuality.
So thank you Laura, thank you for always supporting me and helping me to do what I can to support the other bi guys that aren't having a great time.
Update 3/28/2020: Congrats to Lewis and Laura on their recent engagement!
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