By Lexi Helbig
Bisexuality was the topic of a question-and-answer session held Friday, Sept. 22 by the Alliance, Thiel College’s student lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) organization.
Bisexuality was defined as the attraction to people who share gender identity and do not share gender identity. Alliance President Kira Snyder explained how bisexual people are sometimes not recognized by the LGBTQ+ community because if one is dating someone of their opposite gender identity people think that they are straight and not bisexual. People even think this if the person identifies as bisexual, she said.
Snyder answered selected questions that had been submitted in advance to a box at a table near Thiel’s cafeteria.
One question asked for an explanation of the differences between pansexuality and demi-sexuality. She defined pansexuality as attraction to people regardless of gender identity. and demi-sexuality as having no sexual attraction without an emotional connection.
One audience question was about how to disclose sexuality, known as “coming out,” to loved ones. Snyder said that nobody must come out if it makes them uncomfortable. She encouraged waiting until the person feels safe and comfortable before coming out.
Another question concerned whether a person who has been told someone else’s sexual orientation can tell other people. Snyder said that unless one has explicit permission to tell, then they shouldn’t tell because they should keep the trust of their friend.
Snyder said LGBTQ persons are the same as straight persons: They feel attraction for other people in both psychological and physical ways. And they wonder who to ask out, the same as anyone else, she said. Students were advised that they can ask out anyone they are attracted to and would like to get to know better.
Snyder told the audience of about a dozen people that the Alliance is a group of Thiel students who meet every Sunday. They hold events to raise awareness about LGBT students and try to break the stigma around the LGBTQ+ community, she said.