Get the 411: Bisexual+ Health Awareness Month
March is Bisexual+ Health Awareness Month, an annual observation led by the Bisexual Resource Center to raise awareness of the social, economic, and health disparities experienced by bisexual+ communities (an umbrella term that includes all individuals who experience attraction to more than one gender).
Despite making up the largest single population within the LGBTQIA+ community in the US, bisexual+ individuals continue to be underserved within health and wellbeing contexts, underrepresented within research, and under-resourced within advocacy – receiving less than 1% of all LGBTQ funding. Together, invisibility and erasure contribute to staggering disparities for bisexual+ people in mental and physical health, healthcare, and social support compared to lesbian, gay, and straight individuals.
“Connection,” the theme of this year’s Bisexual+ Health Month, can help close the gaps in these disparities.
Connecting bisexual+ people to each other, supportive communities, and health resources that affirm their identities is essential. “When bi+ people are connected,” the Bisexual Resource Center said, “it greatly improves their physical, mental, and social health, particularly for bi+ people living in historically oppressed, marginalized, or isolated communities.”
The COVID-19 pandemic has reaffirmed the value of connection and has challenged us to be creative in how we maintain social and intimate relationships. So, to all folks celebrating Bisexual+ Health Awareness Month, I encourage you to check out these resources where you can find affirmative spaces to connect, communicate, and thrive!
Social Events and Groups
Attend a Bisexual+ Health Month Event
From discussions on thriving with a bi+ identity and disability and virtual self-care groups to trivia game nights, consider attending one of the many in-person or virtual panels, support groups, and social hangouts being held throughout the month to help you meet other bisexual+ people. Check out the complete list of events here.
Find a Bisexual+ Social or Support Group
It can be challenging for bisexual+ people to find ongoing social or support groups that are specifically for bi+ identities. The Bisexual Resource Center has created a list of social and identity support groups to make it easier for you to connect with other bisexual+ people.
Connect with a Bisexual+ Affirmative Therapist
Psychology Today is a database that allows you to indicate your sexual identity, so you can search for a therapist who is affirming and knowledgeable on bisexual+ mental health.
The National Queer and Trans Therapists of Color Network provides a directory to help queer and trans People of Color locate queer and trans People of Color mental health practitioners. When you search the directory, you can select a therapist who identifies as bisexual+.
Tip: Local bisexual resource centers and support groups can also help you find a therapist. Staff are likely to know which therapists work well with the bisexual+ community, and bi+ group members can help provide a sense of the quality of care they’ve received from therapists in your area.
Communicate your General Health Needs with a Bisexual+ Affirmative Provider
Directories like OutCare and the Gay and Lesbian Medical Association (though the name doesn’t have “bisexual” included, which is frustrating, they do have an extensive database) can help you find a health care provider that is an LGBTQIA+ ally. While OutCare is a not bisexual+-specific resource, some providers identify as bisexual+ and list their sexual identity in their profile. The Gay and Lesbian Medical Association allows you to filter their directory to search for providers that specialize in serving folks with a bisexual identity.
Tip: While providers may state they are LGBTQ+ friendly, it’s important to ensure that they have received training specific to bisexual+ health. If you feel comfortable, I recommend calling their office before scheduling an appointment to ask, “does this doctor regularly work with [insert sexual identity label(s) here]?”
Hopefully, these resources will help you build community and connect to supportive care that extends well beyond Bisexual+ Health Awareness Month.