[LMB] Why is Aral bisexual?

Tony Zbaraschuk tonyz at eskimo.com
Wed Dec 9 23:56:37 GMT 2015

On Wed, Dec 09, 2015 at 06:47:07PM -0500, anmar Caver wrote:
> I know -plenty- of bisexual folks who are monogamous.  

Attraction, after all, is not the same thing as commitment.

> Point in fact most
> people I know are serial monogamists.  Polyamory is far less common that
> bisexuality.  

I suspect that one reason for this is that the number of relationships
to maintain goes up exponentially as the number of people involved.
(Two people have one relationship bond; three people have three; four
people have six; in general for N people, there are (N-1)! bonds to
tend.)  Given how much effort it takes to keep _one_ bond going...

> The one issue I have with the dialogue between Cordelia and
> Vordarian in an otherwise brilliant scene is when Cordelia says "was
> bisexual, now he's monogamous" is that assumption that a monogamous person
> is no longer bisexual.   That is just as false as saying someone someone
> who has never had sex can't be heterosexual (or any other orientation).
> One can feel attraction and not act upon it because of the constraints of
> the relationship agreement.

Agreed, but it's still a brilliantly snarky moment... it works better,
though, if you assume that Cordelia is thinking "currently having
relationship(s)" all through -- yes, maybe Aral _was_ having (at least
two) relationships in the past, but now he's only having one.
(As a Betan, she may simply be assuming the omnipresence of 
attractions, "of course everyone is/can be attracted to anyone else;
if you want to reset your targeting mode we have therapy for that")

> > It may happen in fan fic, but is non canonical.
> I am trying to remember if it is SoH or Barrayar where she has the soldier
> who has two households he takes care of, though that isn't open polyamory
> either as they do not know of each other.  I am leaning towards SoH, though
> it could be abother book entirely.

It's in _Barrayar_, if I remember correctly.  More evidence that the
planetary culture(s) are much more complicated than a simple one-
phrase description would allow.

Tony Z

The most important thing in the kitchen is the waste paper basket
and it needs to be centrally located.  -- Donald Knuth

More information about the Lois-Bujold mailing list