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Bi-erasure is the practice of ignoring, denying, or questioning the legitimacy or relevance of bisexuality. Bi-erasure undermines the sexual identities of bisexual people and their community.
Heterosexual and homosexual people, along with bisexual people who are not open or honest about their sexuality, can all contribute to bi-erasure. Bi-erasure can be fueled by biphobia or be unintentional.
Bi-erasure is short for bisexual erasure. It is also sometimes called bisexual invisibility.
Bi-erasure can occur for many reasons. Some people believe bisexuality is simply a phase people enter when they’re trying to determine whether they’re really straight or gay. Others understand bisexuality, but feel a person’s bisexual status becomes irrelevant once they start dating. Bisexuality effectively becomes erased in these circumstances when the bisexual person loses their sexual identity and becomes part of a heterosexual or homosexual couple.
Bi-erasure can make bisexual people feel misunderstood, depressed, anxious, and socially isolated. It also reduces the number of resources and support systems available to bisexual people within their communities. Bi-erasure can negatively impact the physical and emotional health and financial well being of bisexual people.
Members of society, regardless of their sexuality, can combat bi-erasure by speaking up about bisexuality and advocating for fair treatment and representation of bisexual people.