Beyond the L and G in LGBTQ+

  • Written by Scarlet Carlton
  • Published in Features

What is Fluid?

Fluid is a dance party celebrating multisexual identities happening June 14 at Flask Lounge on Spring St.

What does Multisexual mean?

Multisexual is an umbrella term for sexualities that includes an attraction to more than one gender; such as bisexual, pansexual, or queer. We think it is incredibly important to create these specific and safe spaces within the Pride celebration, to help foster visibility and inclusion. Donations are being accepted to benefit the Frannie Peabody Center as we feel it’s a major resource for the health and safety of members of our community.

Why is Fluid scheduled during Pride?

Fluid was inspired by many conversations within the queer community of Portland. They all had a common theme — where are our events during Pride? Of course, anyone is welcome to attend the many Pride events, but the lack of multisexual specific events and spaces continues a trend of erasure. The first Pride parade was organized by Brenda Howard, a bisexual woman. However, in much of the literature about Stonewall, and the aforementioned parade, there is no mention of bisexual individuals at all. Many studies have reported that bisexual individuals are up to twice as likely to consider suicide than their lesbian or gay counterparts. Yet when the organizers searched the internet for specific bisexual and multisexual pride events for inspiration, they found hardly any. The organizers hope that through events such as Fluid, they can start a conversation within the community about the importance of visibility.

Further, as a multisexual event, Fluid will serve as a place of inclusion for non-binary individuals. Non-binary is a gender identity that doesn’t conform to the binary of being either male or female. Due to the nature of multisexualities, non-binary individuals are less likely to be subjected to uncomfortable or probing questions (i.e., are you a man or a woman?) while attending a multisexual event.

Recently, I attended an LGBTQ+ event, and my experience was ruined by overhearing several gay and lesbian individuals joking about the idea of a sexuality spectrum. This is far from uncommon, and is the type of attitude that drives multisexual individuals to stay in the closet longer, adapt an uncomfortable sexuality to fit in, and keeps youth from feeling included in a much-needed community. After the battle for marriage equality was won, a culture of “We’re done!” seemed to develop within the community, but there are still many of us lacking fundamental rights. We are still fighting, for trans bathroom rights, for inclusion of people of color, for multisexual visibility, adoption rights, and so much more. 

The organizers are aware that this event doesn’t do enough by itself to help with the erasure of trans and non-binary individuals within Pride. However, we hope to work with members of the trans community next year to create more events. Currently, the only trans-specific event for Pride is the picnic in the park, which we feel is not enough due to the oppression and violence that large part of our community still faces on a regular basis.

Pride belongs to everyone within the LGBTQ+ spectrum. It’s important to remember that we can come together and create spaces where they were lacking, and we don’t need a large organization to do it. Fluid is happening thanks to the generosity of Flask, the hard work of a couple dedicated people, and two great DJs, with next to no budget. We can’t wait until next year, where we hope to do even more with even more members of the community.

"Fluid," dance party | June 14 | 9 pm | Flask Lounge, 117 Spring St., Portland |

Last modified onThursday, 08 June 2017 09:31