Ask A Bi Dad: How do you manage your bisexual feelings in a relationship?

By Lewis Oakley

June 14, 2024



Photo credit: Pexels/RODNAE Productions

Hey Lewis,

I'm a "mostly" gay guy and was wondering how you handle your on-and-off attraction to men. I read the "about" section on your website, and I saw that your girlfriend knows you're bi. Does that mean she's fine with you hitting on other guys or vice versa? Is it like an open marriage, so there's no worry about cheating? I'm just curious about how you make it work.



Hi John,

Thanks so much for your message. It’s a good question, and I think many bi people don’t have friends to discuss this issue with. Bi people often live with the stigma that one person could never be enough for us and that we’re prone to cheating. We're not encouraged to discuss attractions outside of our partner.

Personally, my relationship is not open. It works like most monosexual relationships. Just like a married straight man might find other women attractive, he chooses not to act on it. This isn’t about being repressed; it’s about finding happiness and confidence in a relationship, which means more than a fleeting moment with a stranger.

Sex and relationships take work, and it's about committing to that work. I guess the only difference from the perspective of a straight person is that while a straight man might see attractive women everywhere, I see both attractive men and women. Many people ask how I could be satisfied if I'm attracted to men, but the truth is, if the sex you're having is amazing, you don't spend much time pondering the sex you aren't having.

I would just say, don’t beat yourself up about having attractions outside of your partner. It’s totally normal whether you’re gay, straight, or bi. Many bi folks, due to the stigma, can feel guilty about their attractions when in a relationship. This is overthinking. We’re human beings, and humans don’t stop experiencing attraction once we're in a relationship. It’s fine to find other people attractive and even daydream about them. The only problem arises when you act on those attractions if that’s not something agreed upon in your relationship.

So, go forth and admire all of the beautiful men and women that the world has to offer.


Lewis Oakley standing confidently and smiling against a brick building.

Bisexual people often have few other bi people to turn to for support or to ask questions. This means we often can’t build on the experience of other bi people and improve things for the next generation. Ask a Bi Dad is aimed at tackling this.

Lewis Oakley is one of the leading bi advocates and writers in the UK, campaigning to improve the public’s perception of bisexuality. Recognised by the Pride Power List 2021 and with various award nominations under his belt, Lewis has been successful in making bisexuality national news.

Lewis knows more than most how lonely being bisexual can feel, particularly in those early years. Now, confident in himself, his relationship, and a dad of two, Lewis recognises how rare and lucky he is. This is why he wants to help where he can by answering the questions of bi people from all around the world.

If you have a question that you would like a perspective on, please email to [email protected]. The briefer the email, the more likely I will be able to respond.

*Lewis is not a licenced therapist, and the advice offered in this column is not intended to replace or substitute for any professional advice. If you have specific concerns or a situation in which you require professional, psychological, or medical help, you should consult with an appropriately trained and qualified specialist.