To known of Anna Paquin is to love her. The X-Men and “True Blood” star has been back in the spotlight thanks to her starring role on Amazon Prime’s “Flack,” the story of a PR genius with a personal life messy enough to rival Olivia Pope’s.
Paquin’s own personal life, however, is famously solid. She’s been married to her “True Blood” co-star Stephen Moyer for 10 years. And she’s also an out and proud bisexual.
Some folks, sadly, still feel like this is a contradiction in terms. When Paquin posted some colorful infographics to her Instagram on Monday the 17th to honor the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia, the trolls came calling.
Paquin, however, was prepared. Like the classy, multiple Academy Award-winning actress she is, she posted a follow-up a day later.
Paquin was responding to upset commenters claiming that her bisexuality is some kind of publicity stunt, but her message is one that everyone needs to hear. Bi erasure is an old problem in the queer community, and it keeps rearing its ugly head. Back in the 1970s, figures like Kate Millett were criticized for their bisexuality and made to feel it was some kind of hindrance to their feminist stance. Later on, queer performers like Ani DiFranco caught heat for “double-dipping.” For too long, stigma against bisexuals has forced many performers to stay in the closet. Even now, we still haven’t come as far as we think in terms of curbing biphobic prejudice. A 2018 study showed that even in our own community, bisexuality is misunderstood and stigmatized. And the stigma— perhaps unsurprisingly—lands harder on queer women than queer men.
So when a big star like Paquin speaks up, it says something.
Paquin first came out as bisexual in 2010 and has been vocal about it ever since. In a 2012 interview with the since-shuttered Zooey magazine, she explained that: “It’s not being greedy or numerous other ignorant things I’ve heard at this point. For a bisexual, it’s not about gender. That’s not the deciding factor for who they’re attracted to.”
In 2021, no one should have to worry about being “queer enough,” no matter how their love life might look from the outside.