Sexual health is one of the most important area to focus on for everyone. Going unchecked can lead to some other serious health issues later down the line and part of sexual health awareness is talking about the more difficult part which is sexual harassment and violence that happens in every community. However, according to a study cited by the Human Rights Campaign, individuals in the LGBTQ+ community experience the same amount or increased rates of sexual violence than heterosexual individuals.
The following stats are from a study conducted by the CDC’s National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey from the Human Rights Campaign site:
As we can see, bisexual individuals seem to be at a higher risk than lesbians, gay men, and heterosexual individuals. This is an increased risk to mental and physical health issues due to sexual violence. However, the question is why bisexual individuals, specifically women, experience higher rates of sexual violence. An article from Bi.Org thinks a study from Dr. Nicole Johnson has three reasons for these higher rates: substance use, hypersexualization, and biphobic harassment. Substance abuse is often used as an excuse as to why it the individual is sexually abused, but there is not excuse for the any kind of abuse towards another human. Hypersexualization and biphobic harassment are issues that can be avoided by accepting bisexuality as a valid sexual orientation and treating it with respect.
An important part of this is to provide a safe and welcoming space to the victims of these crimes. Many individuals are not believed and often are hushed about their abuse which leads to even more health problems. In #20BiTeen, I hope that we can lower these sexual violent rates and provide more safe spaces for all bisexual individuals in the community so we can protect our overall health and well-being.