evan rachel wood

As our definitions of sexuality change, it’s become easier to understand that sexuality is spectrum, a part of all of us that can express itself in many different ways. But as many of us come to understand that, one group is often left behind in our discussions is bisexuals — people who are attracted to both men and women.

Many people seem to think of bisexuality as a middle ground where indecisive people languish until they eventually choose a “team.” But, as publicly bisexual actress Evan Rachel Wood recently pointed out, true bisexuals do exist and deserve just as much recognition and respect as their heterosexual and homosexual counterparts.

“Bisexual people are the largest single group within the LGBT community, yet we are hardly recognized,” she wrote via Twitter, just ahead of Bisexual Awareness Week on September 20. “Remember, bisexuality doesn’t mean halfway between gay or straight. It is its own identity.”

She went on to cite a Human Rights Campaign article that found that bisexual people “face heightened risk for health issues including cancer, STDs and depression.”

“I have battled with myself most of my life because I wasn’t gay or straight enough. I used to think I would never be happy,” Wood wrote. “I had to go through the same panic and shame and depression a lot of people in the LGBT community go through, but when I came out [in 2011] a new found shame took over. Bi-shame. Feeling like people are judging you all over again but for different reasons.”

She continued, “A weight was lifted but not completely. I still feel like we have to constantly prove ourselves & our worthiness within the community.”

Not that she’s going to let that get her down:

Right on, girl. To learn more about bisexuality, check out the Human Rights Campaign’s extensive subsite on the LGBT group, and remember, sexuality is a very personal and important part of life for most people and should be treated as such. Better to accept everyone at their word on the matter, then put them through the ringer over something that’s really none of our business!