This is coming out of a lot of places. My own Catholic upbringing. The fact Sally Ride would only publicly announce her 27 year relationship with another woman in her obituary. Tweets I’ve gotten damning me for my support of “perversion”. Comments on my heterosexual life-partner’s newest video about the ethical disconnect between the brilliance of the Ender’s Game series and the intolerance of Orson Scott Card’s anti-gay rights essays.

I am Antonella Inserra, and I’m a bisexual.

I’ve always been attracted to girls and boys. When I was young I would mastermind ways to convince boys to kiss me (some of those ways I’m a bit ashamed of now, but to be fair I was in the four to six year range and was conniving), and 1960’s Batgirl was the first girl that made me feel tingling in places that weren’t polite (damn those redheads! True or fake!)

But let me tell you what being told that “only heterosexual is right!” does to an impressionable young person, what it does to a young person to hear otherwise kind people wonder aloud why those gays would EVER make such a BIG DEAL about something that is only for straight people, anyway. I mean, don’t those gay people want to be “alternative”? If they wanted families and “normal” things, then why would they “choose” to be straight?

Hear me out.

I’m NOT gay (see the declaration above). But I was told a lot in high school BY MY FRIENDS that no, I HAD to be a lesbian; because I flirted with girls in a Christian high school, because my eyes lingered a bit too long, because my attraction to women with obvious.

I’d try to shake them off. I was just a feminist rocking the high code of chivalry towards all, and besides; look at this boy I’m TOTALLY CRUSHING ON. Can’t be a lesbian if I want the cock…right?

And I’d lie in bed at night and try to figure out what the hell was wrong with me. Was it the Media? Was I just identifying too much with male characters and unconsciously desiring women because they were the ultimate reward in the tales I loved the most?

Yes; I had these debates in the safety of my head. I was terrified. I was sure I was falling into a trap. After all, once Catholics can actually get out of their sexual shame long enough to TALK about sex with teenagers, there’s only one proper form of sexuality…right? Girls and boys who hung around LGBT-looking sorts were the confused ones, the pathetic ones. They were to be prayed for and hopefully they would realize they were just “acting out” in rebellion.

And I was confused, because I DID have EPIC crushes on boys while in high school. My best friends were boys. I felt I understood boys better than girls, I shared more INTERESTS with them, and sometimes I was attracted to them!

But…those ladies…

I had a boyfriend the last year of high school; fast forward to college and us breaking up, and the long dry spell of dating began. I truly believe I cut myself off from dating because I was afraid. I knew my attraction to both physical sexes, but was afraid of my own imaginary weakness. Was I only dating a man because my family life would be easier if I could just pass as straight? If I were with a girl, would I have the courage to stand up to my parents and say “so, this is my life and my love”?

I made so many friends in college; but always lurking in my heart was the knowledge I was avoiding the risk of a deeper relationship of these fears I wasn’t ready to face. Only in the last four years I would say have I been brave enough to try.

The majority have been women; wonderful, wonderful, smart, geeky, beautiful women. I also suffered an unholy run around from a man (who failed to mention HE HAD A GIRLFRIEND. WTF????), and am currently dating a marvelous Navy Boy.

And still, the old treachery in my heart whispers I’m only dating him because I’m a coward.

Look. If two heterosexual atheists walk into a courthouse, get a MARRIAGE license and go along their merry way no one blinks twice. But if you’re in a homosexual relationship…the hoops to jump! The legal contingencies you can’t take for granted because the laws differ state by state. Paperwork that changes if you cross state lines, lines that have to be signed to ensure your rights, your partner’s rights, your CHILDREN’S rights are safe from the “states' rights”.

In a way, I’m lucky. If I happen to fall in love with a man (and right now I have and it sucks because he’s underway and I miss him to bits) I can keep my mouth closed and pass as straight. That is a privilege I have as a bisexual.

But if tomorrow, we broke up and the love of my life walked in front of me but was a She—

This isn’t a choice. Believe me. I could CHOOSE to pursue men and only men. I could CHOOSE to be celibate and be single the rest of my life, and shrug it off as “Oh, I never found the one/I was never interested in a relationship/I’m just a confirmed old bachelor and likely to remain so”.

I CANNOT CHOOSE WHO I LOVE. I cannot wake up in the morning and be something I’m not. I have three choices; hide what I am, be something I’m not, or, be what I am. The same applies to my lesbian friends, my gay friends, my bisexual friends, my transgendered friends; questioning, intersex, asexual or allied.

That is the problem. When you talk of your biblical marriage being the one true definition of marriage (and then why isn’t polygamy allowed anymore, or slave concubines?) all I hear is “separate but equal”. The life I build with a man should be seen as no different from the woman with whom I might do the same.

I am standing with my foot on either side of a very deep chasm of hate and intolerance; sometimes it’s ignorant (but “polite”) befuddlement, sometimes it’s violent bigotry. But I can’t ignore the position I’m in anymore—I can only either stand, or fall.

I’ve gotten a few comments about how a defense of gay rights is being intolerant towards religious beliefs. This government of ours is NOT a religious one. The separation of church and state was to protect the state from the church, and vice versa. You have a right to believe what you do (though it pains me), but that does NOT mean you can use your beliefs to oppress others on a state or federal level.

Because, you know. It happened before in this country, this whole using the bible to justify evil. It was called slavery.

Figure out what side of history you want to be on.

P.S. I also want to add that I wrote this as a stand against a lot of hate I read the last two weeks in various comment streams for NChick stuff. This is me letting EVERYONE ELSE OUT THERE who identifies as LGBTQIA and who are Allies AND who "hate the sin love the sinner" while claiming everything's great and equal and what are we complaining about gaaawd we're such drama queen victims in our war against religion that I HAVE been there, I AM there, and I've got YOUR back (except for the haters. You. Haters. To the left.) I am NOT ashamed of how I am and who I love, but I'm mad as hell and I'm not going to take it anymore. If people will continue to make OUR rights their priority, then I WILL say NO.

Just saying.
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From: (Anonymous)

Here is the thing. Some beliefs are wrong. Someday the people who oppose equality will wake up and realize that they are on the wrong side of history.

-The Fucking Nostalgia Chick

Doubt it

From: [identity profile] - Date: 2012-07-30 10:44 pm (UTC) - Expand

From: (Anonymous)

Thank you so much, Nella. I was raised Mormon and was told a lot of the same bullshit. This post means a lot to me, and also further confirms your bad-assery. Agh, you're one of my favorite people.

From: (Anonymous)


I didn't know the bible said slavery was ok. Or did some people interpret it to their liking and said the bible told them it was ok?

Anyway, I never wondered or cared what kind of people you're interested in. I just enjoy you and your friend's reviews. I'd like to think that if I ever met you, that we'd be great friends.

Bible and slavery

From: (Anonymous) - Date: 2012-07-30 06:56 am (UTC) - Expand

Re: Bible and slavery

From: (Anonymous) - Date: 2012-07-30 02:16 pm (UTC) - Expand

Re: Bible and slavery

From: [personal profile] shadowbird712 - Date: 2012-07-30 03:00 pm (UTC) - Expand

Re: statement

From: (Anonymous) - Date: 2012-07-30 04:53 pm (UTC) - Expand

Re: statement

From: (Anonymous) - Date: 2012-08-01 04:19 am (UTC) - Expand
littlethestral: Icon based on the pansexuality flag/colors (pansexual)

From: [personal profile] littlethestral

Thank you, Nella. Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU.

It took me until I was 17 to realize that I was, in fact, attracted to women; I thought I just wanted to fit in. I know that sounds stupid, but it is what it is.

I keep bursting into tears, so I'll just leave it at this-- I thought you were awesome from the first time I 'met' you through the Chick's videos; your sharing your story this way (as well as being so incredibly kind on Twitter) has just made you so much more kick-ass.

Thank you so much.

From: (Anonymous)

Thank you a lot for doing this. It makes me feel a lot more brave in my own struggle. I was raised in a small Kentucky town where being gay was something that people didn't talk about and when they did, it was negative. I'd always been attracted to women in adolescence but never went for them because well it was "evil" and I'd "go to hell". I'm a Christian and I always will be. Nothing will cause me to lose my faith. But what I've come to realize is that my God is bigger then such petty hatred. I'm a woman, I'm in love with another wonderful woman, and I know that God still loves me AND her. Unfortunately, the world doesn't see this and so my partner and I have to stay mostly hidden with our affections in public. It's hard, but some day I hope we will be able to say publicly that we are in love and get married to prove it :)

From: (Anonymous)

<3 you Nella! I've been watching Team NChick videos for a while and I just discovered this blog and yout twitter a few days ago. I just want to say here that I think you're a very strong and brave person to make this stand, being a public figure on the internet (I'm sure there are better ways to phrase that *shrugs*) and you are opening yourself to a lot of hate and criticism. Just know that there are people accept you as Nella no matter what (Lindsay and Elisa come to mind and even some anonymous people you may never meet,like me).

Alex #BiBroFist
sevenskellington: (Default)

From: [personal profile] sevenskellington

<3 Thank you for this, Nella; you are awesome. I hope change will come someday soon.

From: (Anonymous)

Hi there, Nella. I'm a really big fan of your work. I felt alone in the way I feel, until I read this entry. I'm twenty-one, and I'm married to a bisexual man. Even so, I don't know how to broach the subject that I'm also attracted to women. It's always made me feel... I don't know. Strange. I too was raised Catholic, but I never trusted anyone enough to have those sort of talks with. To this day, no one knows, and I don't really know how to speak up. I feel like I'm lying to myself by not speaking up, but it won't change the fact that I'm committed to my husband. Much like you, I've always gotten along easier with guys. Now I think maybe that's because I didn't want to be around girls because I liked them "more than a young Catholic girl should". Your post really made me feel less... well, alone. And I know I shouldn't feel that way, I don't have to deal with the hardships of the homosexual community because I DO like both genders, but I still feel... Blah. I can't describe it. I'm always afraid that someone will notice my favorites are far more full of women than men, or that I can't help but stare at Morena Baccarin whenever she's onscreen. Do you have any advice for someone like me?

From: (Anonymous)

All I can say after reading this blog is... two thumbs up! You eloquently stated the emotions and pain that so many people secretly go through. Kudos to you for writing this.

(no subject)

From: (Anonymous) - Date: 2012-08-03 11:27 pm (UTC) - Expand

From: (Anonymous)

It's just incredible that people in 2012 don't get that not everybody's born the same way.

Sure, to be honest, I don't find it attractive when I see two guys kissing. But I do find it attractive when I see two women kissing. What does that mean? Are the two men kissing doing something wrong? No! It just means I'm not attracted to men doing sexual stuff, only women. That's why I'm heterosexual, being a man myself.

The opposite reaction would mean I'm homosexual and being attracted to both scenarios would mean I'm bisexual. No matter which scenario turns out to be true for someone, you can't do anything about it except lie, which is not a good way to live the rest of your life and totally unnecessary if it wasn't for people being bigoted for no valid reason.

I'm sad to hear that some people caused you some issues. That's why we need more messages like yours at the time being. Don't ever stop fighting for your cause until people who make your rights their priority stop.

From: (Anonymous)

For me, I'm the most shocked when younger people say things like this. I was reading the Chick's comments and at least one of the major opponents was a relatively young woman. I'm not entirely surprised when the older generation thinks these things, because they are as set in their ways as their parents were about racism. I've always thought to myself that with time this will be one more thing in the history books that everyone will be surprised happened. But it is disheartening when younger people are continuing archaic thinking when we're supposed to be in a progressive age.

C'est la vie. It's inevitable, as it should be, and they will be a thing of the past.

Nella, you are very brave, thank you for speaking out!


From: (Anonymous) - Date: 2012-07-30 01:37 pm (UTC) - Expand

From: (Anonymous)


As a longtime fan of yours, I wanted to congratulate you on this brave step. Many feel it might not be, that it's just stating something true and honest. But a lot of times letting folks in on the truth can be a very difficult thing.

You totally rock, and kudos for being open and proud about who you are!

-AJ of the Eclectiqueers

From: (Anonymous)

This is very beautiful and incredibly strong. I am very happy for you. I love everything you do.

I have had much of the same trouble and I still go through spurts of self hatred because I fear what I am. This is very special and a little inspirational to me. Thank you, and I hope you have a wonderful summer.
magus_69: (pic#370607)

From: [personal profile] magus_69

Thank you for coming out. It's immensely brave of you, and you have become even more awesome for it.
nochi_san: blue background, black flying saucer with batman inside (from Zero Punctuation) (think think think)

From: [personal profile] nochi_san

I recently had to make that stand, of this is my life and my love, and I was incredibly lucky in the response I got. I have a similar fear sometimes, that I'm only with her to prove a point (sadly that's the sort of thing I can see my brain doing to me), that I'm fooling myself into loving her, and it's incredibly relieving to hear I'm not the only one. Thank you so, so much for sharing this. (And best of luck to you and your Navy Boy!)

From: (Anonymous)

I will never understand how people can think that all of us choose to be of minority sexualities. Who would choose to go through the mental anguish that I suspect is very very common for us. Not to mention the ever present possibility that someone will harm us for loving someone else.

People might say that it's not a big deal to come out in this day and age, but they're talking out their behind. It's very brave and I commend you.

From: (Anonymous)

Nella, you are ten kinds of awesome just for being you, but posting this just proves how hard you rock. There are lots of us standing up with you, all around the world, so never feel like you're alone. Every time one of us posts or speaks or marches it creates ripples. We may never see the direct knock-on effects, but what you say _will_ affect someone and help begin the change. It's frustrating as anything right now, but I'm sure that the next generation will boggle that these things were ever issues at all. Good on you, and thanks =)

- Your friendly, other-side-of-the-world, geekboy, gay-and-proud transkid

From: (Anonymous)

Just remember Nella, no matter how dumb they are - their money is still green. If they're commenting in those NChick stream threads then they saw ads and that means revenue and that means bills get paid, right?

I know it's awful, but it's also business. Maybe a little bit of thinking "ha, go your money!" will take the sting out of any of their hurtful comments. It's always the things that rile people up that get the most comments and most views, right? And therefor the most ad revenue, no?

Yes - some may accuse me of having missed the point, but as someone well past the coming out stage I like to think you'll one day too look back on this as a "meh" event in your life rather than a major defining moment. A stepping stone - you're certainly not a different person today than you were yesterday. By god, I'm going to treat you how everyone "should" treat you when this sort of thing happens rather than some brave soldier or delicate flower. "That's nice, would you like another beer?"

Really, I think the larger take away for you is to not let the comments bother you so much. You can even start with this one if you like.

From: (Anonymous)

Miss Nella, I just wanted to thank you for your kind words. I spent much of my time in high school pretending I just wasn't interested in dating, and cringing a lot as the word "gay" was thrown at me as an insult. Now that I'm at college, I find I can openly identify as a biromantic asexual, but even still I find people don't understand.

Basically, what I want to say is, thank you for including Asexuals. Most people don't because even amongst the LGBTIQA community we're not viewed as "real". So, from the bottom of both my and my female life partner's hearts, thank you. :')

From: (Anonymous)

Nella dear, you are a BAMF!

I don't know how to properly express the feelings brought upon by reading this post.
Having come from a similar upbringing, social and sexual standpoint (Catholic, geek/nerd, bi girl who gets along better with males), I can relate greatly with the insecurities you have had/are having. And with that being said the word that keeps ringing in my head is "Proud."
Thank you for making this decoration. It is inspiring and refreshing to see this side of things. MY side of things. There is so little today spoken up about those who fall in-between on the "gay" debate that it sometimes feels like there is no one out there who is in the same boat as me. I commend you for using this platform that you have to make this kind of statement and help all of us not feel so alone in our struggle.

I have loved the energy you brought to the Nostalgia Chick's videos from day one and this declaration only furthers my opinion that you are an amazing person who I am proud to have been a fan of for many years. Keep doing what your doing. Speak your mind and keep making us fans proud by being uncompromisingly Nella. <3

From: (Anonymous)

I'd rather not be anon, but I have too...

Bravo, and well said. I face a different set of challenges as a pansexual (being called a slut is a big one) and...Well said. I can't be more concise than that lol.

From: (Anonymous)

You get a big fucking standing ovation from me, Nella. As someone with friends who are gay, straight, bi, and everything in-between, and is still wondering about her own sexual identity at 23, I can't support you enough. Thank you to team N. Chick for using your little place of power and fame on the Net to shout your support for gay rights. I will shout alongside you!

From: (Anonymous)

Love the one you're with.

Nella, first of all a virtual fist bump/hug and imaginary drink behind the Waystation bar, for such a gutsy and honest piece of writing.

The way I've always seen it is..
Are you happy? (probably).
Are you hurting any friends/family/loved ones in what you are doing? (not as far as I can tell).

SO WHERE'S THE PROBLEM?? I've got Gay and Straight friends, I can appreciate a good looking man but not fancy him and my ex-girlfriend was bi. She used to get comments but only from girls.

Keep on being the Nella we small,privileged few have fallen in love with....
Illegitimi non carborundum I say!!

Graham (Mnky) Munn ;)

From: (Anonymous)

Re: Love the one you're with.

Nella, I want to congratulate you for the strength it took to share this with others. However, I must ask the same question which caused you to block me on Twitter - as a supporter of LGBT equality, how can you back Obama when he isn't doing much for those rights? He says gay marriage is a states rights issue; he doesn't care about marriage equality - he just wants to pander for votes. By contrast, Gary Johnson thinks marriage equality is a matter of national importance.

Re: Love the one you're with.

From: (Anonymous) - Date: 2012-07-31 01:39 am (UTC) - Expand

Re: Love the one you're with.

From: (Anonymous) - Date: 2012-07-31 08:44 pm (UTC) - Expand

Re: Love the one you're with.

From: (Anonymous) - Date: 2012-08-01 10:17 pm (UTC) - Expand

Re: Love the one you're with.

From: (Anonymous) - Date: 2012-08-02 02:33 pm (UTC) - Expand

From: (Anonymous)

Ooooh, a great day for fan-fiction ;)

joking aside, I have a hard time grasping how other peoples sexual orientation can be an actual issue in the so-called free world most of us live in

unless the sexual preference is nonconsensual sex or incredibly exhibitionistic how can someone possibly be bothered by it?

From: (Anonymous)

'I have a hard time grasping how other peoples sexual orientation can be an actual issue in the so-called free world most of us live in'

Some people believe that their beliefs give them the right to dictate how others live. What they don't seem to get is that to people who don't share them, they mean diddly squit. The other fear is the whole slippery slope fallacy. Most people do not want to force churches to perform gay marriages, (because, lets face it, if you wanted to get married to your significant other in a church you'd pick one that'd support your union) and yet the fear that somehow some government edict will cause that to happen leads to fear and stupidity. (That's currently happening in the UK)

Anyway, that was maybe a little off topic but I hope it explains stuff.

jps: (Default)

From: [personal profile] jps

We are slowly moving in the right direction. There was no coming out when I was a kid that I can remember. Maybe it happened a lot on the west coast but not in Florida. It never happened publicly. and there was no internet where public thoughts like these were known.

Hell, my childhood didn't even have cable. We were the freaken Amish. :) Okay not that bad, we did have three network channels, which were tightly controlled by the FCC.

There was no debate. There was right and wrong, and you could be born wrong.

Now there is a debate, and people are not so wrong. So keep rocking it Nella. You are one of the hands that are slowly nudging this big thing in a healthier direction. :)

From: (Anonymous)

1) I never saw this one coming
2) All power to you - seriously
3) Nobody should be able to prevent you from benefiting from a loving consenting relationship, no matter what combination of genders

From: (Anonymous)

I just wanted to let you know that this doesn't change anything.

You were awesome before and you will always be awesome.

From: (Anonymous)

This is beautiful! But, verb tense, omg. You could CHOOSE, not you could CHOSE. It wouldn't bug me except you do it three times! Other than that, awesome. As someone whose family thinks she's a lesbian just because she finds women as attractive as men, I know where you're coming from at least in terms of the confusion. Lucky for me, my family is pretty accepting when it comes to sexuality.

Minnesotans remember to Vote No on election day!
creature_sh: (Default)

From: [personal profile] creature_sh

Bravo. This was wonderfully written and contained a lot of bisexuality-sentiments that I don't see very often. I guess that, since so many people don't even seem to understand homosexuality, nobody dares to confront them with the "third variant". I identify as bisexual, myself, and I can and do relate to a lot of the internal conflicts you've shared. In my youth, I have spent so much time fussing and worrying about what the hell I am supposed to be that I was, for a long time, blind to the fact that there is no "supposed-to-be". And today, I sometimes feel like I don't deserve to call myself bisexual, since it does seem to be mostly sexual for me, with my romantic leanings being almost purely heterosexual. But then, it wouldn't feel right to call myself "straight", either. I don't really know what I'm trying to say here, so enough about myself.

Thank you for being courageous and strong enough to be who you are, privately and publicly. We need more people who dare to be.

PS: I just made a dreamwidth account just to comment on this. (and because openID won't freaking work for me why does it not work argh)

From: (Anonymous)

My sincerest thanks

Thank you so much Nella, you are much braver than I, and I can't remember the last time I was so moved and inspired. You're absolutely right about the 3 options, and it is far less painful to just be who you are. I'm asexual and it's something people are VERY quick to dismiss as something that couldn't possibly exist. That or twist it into "more logical" presumptions, like I must be sick or chemically imbalanced or was abused as a child (DESPITE my protests that this never happened). I've got your back too, so let's both stay strong.

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