I have come to learn something since coming out.

The world is a more beautiful place than I ever could have imagined.

It’s also scary as hell.

And I’m still only hoping that there is a place somewhere for me as a bisexual. Some days I don’t believe that there is. This has nothing to do with me being happy or not. I’m happy right now no matter what the reality of this new world is because I’m finally happy with myself.

A few weeks ago I was on a date with a beautiful woman. I told her I was bisexual. No use wasting time with someone who can’t handle it, that’s what I’ve decided.

Still, every time I tell anyone, I feel like I’m walking across a lonely chunk of eternity while I wait for their response. While I wait to see if they reject the idea of who I am. She acted cool with it.

A couple days later we met up again. Things seemed great and unchanged, and then she interrupted. “Isn’t it okay that I just don’t want a guy that likes a having dick up his ass?”

I willed the universe to turn me to stone in that moment. It was a cold reality to be reminded of. She hadn’t said it nicely, but she hadn’t said it meanly. She said it pensively as if she didn’t mean to say it aloud. “I would have chosen other words for it, and I don’t remember ever telling you anything like that.” I didn’t know what else to say. I didn’t have much to say to her after that.

I had a friend over that I had met a couple weeks earlier. We had taken a photo together when we first met and posted it on Facebook. She so nonchalantly told me, “my mom saw that picture of us and all she said was, ‘is that that gay guy?’” Her tone as she mimicked her mom wasn’t an encouraging one. It’s the reality that I feared ever since I decided to come out. To be nothing but “that gay guy” to so many people. Her mom didn’t care about anything else.

One of my gay friends told me he didn’t believe that I was bisexual. “You just don’t come off as gay to me,” he said. I don’t know why it hurt so much when he said it.

Maybe it was because several gay people (all strangers to me) have demanded since I came out that I share more openly about the gay side of my sexuality. Here’s one email I received:

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Dan Pearce is an American born writer, photographer, and artist. His books include "The All-Important, Well-Fed, Giant White Man" and "The Real Dad Rules." He is best known for his blog (and supporting Facebook page) "Single Dad Laughing," with 2 million followers as of 2018.