Bisexuality pp 145-163 | Cite as

9 Romantic and Sexual Relationship Experiences Among Bisexual Individuals

  • Brian A. FeinsteinEmail author
  • Christina Dyar


Romantic and sexual relationships can provide people with support and satisfaction, contributing to improved well-being. However, bisexual individuals face unique dating and relationship challenges, which can have negative effects on their well-being. The goal of this chapter is to review the empirical literature on bisexual individuals’ experiences in romantic and sexual relationships, including the unique challenges associated with different types of relationships (e.g., same-sex and different-sex) and the specific challenges within relationships, such as facing rejection from potential partners, having their sexual identity become invisible in the context of monogamous relationships, and increased exposure to intimate partner violence. Most of this chapter focuses on self-identified bisexual individuals, but we briefly describe some of the relationship challenges facing people who report bisexual attractions and/or sexual behaviors but do not self-identify as bisexual. Finally, we discuss sexual health concerns among bisexual individuals, including increased risk for sexually transmitted infections and teen pregnancy, which are partially due to engagement in sexual risk behavior and exposure to victimization. Despite increased empirical attention to bisexual individuals, there is still a need for additional research to better understand their unique romantic and sexual relationship experiences.


Bisexuality Bisexual relationships IPV Binegativity Bisexual sexual health 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Northwestern UniversityFeinberg School of MedicineChicagoUSA
  2. 2.Institute for Sexual and Gender Minority Health and WellbeingNorthwestern UniversityChicagoUSA
  3. 3.University of CincinnatiCincinnatiUSA

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