Ask Tiggy: Traveling While Bi

Nov 1, 2012 | 2012 Fall - Traveling While Bi, Ask Tiggy Upland

Dear Tiggy,

I’m a 21-year-old female in college studying abroad. I’m unsure if I’m actually bisexual and not knowing makes me really upset.

I’ve noticed that aside from a certain kind of guy, there’s also a certain kind of girl I’m attracted to. Right now, there’s a girl in my abroad program who I’m crushing on pretty hard but my self-consciousness will likely get in the way of me doing anything about it. I don’t know if that “qualifies” me as being bisexual.

On the one hand, I feel oddly guilty, as if because I’ve been an LGBT ally for so long this is just an attention-seeking attempt. On the other, I have no one who I feel comfortable confiding in, especially no one who I think could help me. Coming out also seems like an incredible impossibility—I’m not even close to that step yet.

I guess my main question is: how do I deal with these feelings and when does something that should feel natural become obvious to me?

 – Actually Quite Curious

Dear Curious,

The Ask Tiggy webpage on the BRC website says: “No question too bisexual or not bisexual enough.” Do you know why I put that there? Because for the last 15 years, I’ve met person after person who thinks that they don’t “qualify” as a bisexual. I’m talking about folks who have loved men, women, trans people, and genderqueers; friends with sex partners of all of those genders; bisexual activists; and I don’t even know who else.

There is no qualifying exam to be bisexual. There is no road test. There’s no election. And if there’s a Queen of Bisexuality who arbitrates membership, then goddamn it, it’s me. And I say you’re in, if you want to be.

The fact that you’re making yourself guilty about this shows that you’ve thought yourself into a spiral. (How can something that no one else even knows about you be an attentionseeking attempt?) I suggest that for now you not label your sexuality. Just decide that you won’t let gender be a defining factor in who you relate to romantically or sexually. Be a “No Label” person. I think that’ll take off some of the pressure that you’re putting on yourself.

“No Labelers” are open to adventure, so I’ve got three dares for you. 1) Find out whether the foreign school you’re attending has an LGBT group, and show up to a meeting. 2) Immediately read Getting Bi: Voices of Bisexuals Around the World, a book of true accounts from real bisexuals all over the world. 3) Flirt with that girl in your program. A lot. 


Are you a bi lady in need of some good advice? Write to Tiggy Upland at This advice column is for entertainment purposes only. The columnist reserves the right to edit the letters for any reason. Find more Ask Tiggy on

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