You don’t have to say “I have nothing to declare except my bisexuality!” to be attracted to more than one gender.
A lot of bisexual websites have long lists of famous bisexuals, to demonstrate that some fairly household names have come out as bisexual. Or in some cases that that the website’s authors reckon the person was attracted to more than one gender and therefore should have the identity thrust upon them.
But the websites that maintain exhaustive lists can sometimes go too far, we think. Once the list gets beyond a certain length, a competitive collector streak comes out – how many people can we get on the list? How much evidence do we need to say someone is bi?
It’s fine to say “Lady GaGa / Mika / Megan Fox have said in interviews that they’re bi”, but here at the Bisexual Index we’re unhappy that other bi organisations think it’s okay to suggest someone is bisexual if they haven’t come out, just because they “act bi” or “look bi” (whatever that means!). This kind of second-guessing speculation casts their sexualities as salacious gossip that needs investigating, scandal waiting to hit the news. Bisexuality shouldn’t be an ‘admission’ or a ‘confession’ – there’s nothing shameful about bisexuality!
Also we don’t think that identifying as bisexual is compulsory – we don’t think that individuals need to use that label if they chose not to. We do think that anyone who is attracted to more than one gender should feel nothing is stopping them from using it if they want to, no matter what amounts of attractions they feel, or ratios of partners, or levels of comfort in the LGBT or straight communities.
Despite never having used the word Oscar Wilde is probably the biggest name bandied around for historical bisexuals, along with Alexander the Great, Lord Byron and Sappho. He’s listed in “The Bisexual Option” by Fritz Klein and on the basis of that gets into all the lists of famous bisexuals, such as the “Pocket Essentials: Bisexuality” by Angela Bowie and the amazingly lengthy one at the Bi Writers’ Association, which does sadly also list some people as “possibly”, which we don’t think is a good idea (as explained earlier).
We don’t have a list of famous bisexual celebrities here for this simple reason: as more and more people come out we’d need to expand it, and then it’d tip over into one of those ‘everyone’ lists. Or we’d have to decide who to take out, including when people change their mind or their sexuality changes!Would Oscar Wilde have chosen to identify as bisexual? We don’t know. The only person who can really answer that is Wilde himself, so that’s an unanswerable question. We don’t think deciding how you identify is anyone’s business but yours. If, having read our wide simple definition you want to identify as bi, we’re glad. We’ll support you, just as we’d have supported him.