Many believe Harry Styles’ new lyrics are him coming out as bisexual. Meanwhile, Kendall Jenner has “come out” as straight
Both Harry Styles and his ex-girlfriend Kendall Jenner has made headlines this week for what they have (and haven’t) said about their sexuality. Recently, there’s been a great deal of theorizing about the pair: Jenner’s stemming from her being “a tomboy who collects vintage cars, [and] prefers sneaks and jeans and a hoodie” and “rolls with a squad of mostly guys”, and Styles for being an outspoken advocate for LGBTQ+ rights who refuses to be categorized. Yesterday, however, saw Jenner “come out as straight”, after she addressed rumours about her being gay in April’s Vogue.
“I think it’s because I’m not like all my other sisters, who are like ‘Here’s me and my boyfriend!’” she said about the speculation.
“So it was a thing for a minute because no one ever saw me with a guy. I would always go that extra mile to be low-key with guys, sneaking around all the time.”
The model continued, “I don’t think I have a bisexual or gay bone in my body, but I don’t know! Who knows? I’m all down for experience – not against it whatsoever –but I’ve never been there before… I’m not gay. I have literally nothing to hide. I would never hide something like that.”
She also mentioned that she possessed something of a “male energy” but quickly clarified that she wasn’t transgender, likely preempting it wouldn’t take long for that conclusion to be quickly jumped to by the tabloids.
Styles have similarly set tongues wagging. His song Medicine has been dubbed a “bisexual anthem”, after a clip of a live performance circulated online, featuring Harry singing the lyrics: The boys and the girls are here / I mess around with him / And I’m OK with it.
If it’s something Styles has never felt the need to explain, why do we?
There’s been a bit of debate about whether he’s saying “I mess around with him”, “around with them” or “around a bit” but, whatever the lyrics are, people are understandably thrilled by the nod.
For years there has been lots of media speculation over his sexuality, which Styles has been characteristically casual about. When asked about it, in 2013, he simply told British GQ, “Bisexual? Me? I don’t think so.” Last year, however, he took an even more laissez-faire approach, telling The Sun that he has “never felt the need” to use a label. “I don’t feel like it’s something I’ve ever felt like I have to explain about myself,” he said.
The press could take a leaf out of Styles’ book. While it’s pretty much guaranteed he’ll be pushed into some sort of front-page announcement like Jenner’s regarding the song (or at the very least, a clarification of the lyrics and detailed explanation as to whether they are in reference to his own preferences), I do wince at the fact that these declarations are something we still expect from celebrities. If it’s something Styles has never felt the need to explain, why do we?
Like Styles, musician Janelle Monáe has consistently refused to categorize her sexuality, while not shying away from visuals in her music videos that keep many people questioning. And it’s neither a case of her being “in” or “out” of the closet – rather, her not feeling it necessary to define. In many cases, perceived “silence” isn’t an omission but rather an admission that they’re perhaps not as keen on categorization as others are. And that is absolutely fine.