Why The Truth Matters To Lesbians

The most frequent comments/questions my sweetie Dirt and I have received since we began our quest to expose some of the fake “lesbian experts” who are neither Lesbian nor expert and to call attention to the myriad of ways Straightbians wreak havoc upon Lesbian lives are some variation/combination of the following:

“Why do you care?  Why does it matter? Why can’t you just live and let live? Why are you being mean? Who are you to say who is really a Lesbian? Etc.”

This post will attempt to answer these questions (as well as endless variations of the same theme) by explaining why the truth matters to Lesbian lives…and yes, even to those Lesbians who are asking these questions.

At least on the surface, it initially seemed that it would be obvious why the truth matters to Lesbians (or, at least, why it should matter).

Intuitively, it would seem that everyone would want to know the truth about themselves and their partners, as well as about the so-called “lesbian experts” that have taken it upon themselves to define “Lesbian“.

After all, who would consciously say to a potential love interest: “Please lie to me, because I don’t care who you really are and I don’t care that I am going to get hurt!”?  Who would intentionally pay hard-earned cash to buy a book or to attend a lecture by someone who is an active charlatan peddling false facts?  Who would deliberately follow an alleged “Lesbian expert” on social media if it were known that their “hero” is not really a Lesbian (or an expert)?

What we have learned (and are still figuring out) from the backlash is that there is much more going on underneath the surface than was/is immediately apparent to us.

There is so much resistance to hearing the truth that all women cannot just magically become Lesbians and so much resistance to hearing the truth that the much published and publicized alleged “Lesbian experts” are neither Lesbian nor expert that we need to pause to consider the underlying reasons for this brouhaha.

The primary, and most obvious, issue with facing these truths is denial. It might be that a Lesbian has already fallen in love with a Straightbian, perhaps even invested years of her life with said Straightbian. To admit that it all has been a lie is too painful, so it is much easier to knee-jerk into defensiveness and to lash out at Dirt and me.

From the Straightbian‘s perspective, there are also many reasons to either stay in denial herself (if she is trying to convince herself that she “really is” a Lesbian)…or, if she is self-aware enough to realize on some level that she is a Straightbian, to deflect the attention in order to maintain the ruse. For example, perhaps she has been sexually, emotionally, and/or physically abused by male(s) and is therefore resistant to being with a man, and being a faux “Lesbian” is her safety net, rather than dealing with the real issues.  Perhaps she is getting positive reinforcement for being a fake “Lesbian“: money, attention, security, adoration from a lesbian partner, fame, followers, book readers, lecture attendees, interviews, etc.  Perhaps she is having fun “exploring her sexuality” and feeling like she is “edgy” or a bad-ass rebel. Perhaps she wishes to dominate her relationships and finds it easier to dominate Lesbians than men. Whatever the case (and the situation will vary depending on the reasons she is a Straightbian), there is enough gain for her to continue her behavior — and she doesn’t want us pointing her out as a trespasser, a fraud, and a Nightmare on Lesbo Lane.

One thing that both of us initially underestimated was the sheer amount of Straightbians who have invaded Lesbian lives, both in our everyday social circles and in our collective consciousness. We will write more on this topic later, but, for now, I just want to say that I used to wonder why someone would say she is a Lesbian when she is not.

After all, it is not always easy being a Lesbian. We face many hurdles that straight people do not: potential discrimination in jobs or housing; possible rejection from family, friends, and society; legal struggles;  even the possibility of violence; just to name a few. Lesbian don’t have the straight privilege that heterosexuals blithely enjoy.

So, Dirt and I have both frequently wondered in the past why a woman who is straight would choose to say she is a Lesbian.

Well, the potential reasons vary, as mentioned above and in this post, but a major point I want to make today is that it does, in fact, happen ALL THE TIME ~ for various reasons.

And: most importantly, I want to make the point that because, as Lesbians, we do intimately know the potential problems inherent in coming out and therefore we cannot imagine why someone would falsely claim to be a Lesbian, we, as a group, have had a tendency to automatically believe any woman’s claims of being a “Lesbian“.

Lesbians’ own good-hearted, but ultimately naive, suspension of disbelief has had the chilling effect of leaving our metaphorical windows open for intruders to easily enter and to rape, rob, and rapine whatever they want from right under our trusting noses, including the very definition of our existence.

This harsh truth is difficult to face, but it is necessary for us as a community to start facing the truth in order to reclaim our existence and begin to finally define true Lesbian existence for ourselves.

As long as Lesbians believe, promote, and/or support the false myth that any woman can become a Lesbian, we will be at least partially responsible for the devastation wrought upon our own Lesbian community.

The truth matters, because Lesbian lives matter. The truth matters to Dirt and me, and we have the right to speak out about it, because we are LESBIANS and because we care about other Lesbians. We can say who other Lesbians are because of a little thing called gaydar (and common sense once you know what to look for). And: we won’t shut up as long as Lesbian lives are being harmed and until only true LESBIANS define Lesbian.

12 thoughts on “Why The Truth Matters To Lesbians

  1. I only have anecdotal data to back up my view, but I don’t think a straightbian has the same investment in or experience with “coming out”. First of all, a lot of the bisexuals/straightbians ( I won’t get into that distinction) I’ve known are not really out to their families, or if they are the family may be more “tolerant”, hoping the daughter is just going through a phase and will end up in a hetero marriage – which in the majority of cases does happen. The straightbians I’ve known all pass as straight, were feminine since childhood, seldom experienced gender policing. They don’t seem to be able to relate to that feeling of being an outsider, of having been deeply, fundamentally different from childhood.
    I also don’t believe a conventionally-feminine self-proclaimed “lesbian” loses any status with men, especially if she eventually reaffirms all of their offensive ideas (lesbians can be converted, just haven’t found the right man yet, etc). Basically, I’m not sure how much it actually costs a straightbian to call herself a lesbian when she’s in the company of lesbians.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Those are great points — maybe Straightbians, at least on some level, know that their visit to Lesboland will be temporary, so their so-called “coming out” doesn’t bring the same stress and baggage etc. that Lesbians’ real coming out does…

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  2. When I was younger and just coming out/coming to terms with myself I had a very clear preference for dating the straightbian type. I think a lot of this had to do with internalized homophobia and ego. On some level I think I accepted the idea that lesbians were undesirable in the eyes of society, and that the most desirable type of woman was a straight woman. I think I saw it as a sort of “fuck you” to straight men ( to have “their” women … I cringe as I write this now) and to the stereotype that intimacy between women couldn never compare to straight relationships.
    At that point in my life I too was invested in the idea that any woman could “become” a lesbian under the right circumstances. It’s sad and embarrassing to think about now, but it’s not that uncommon a mindset and might help explain why straightbians have been so eagerly welcomed. It’s almost as though we think we should feel grateful that they decided to “join” us…and thus reward them with undue attention, money, fame, interest, credibility.

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    • Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts & experiences, and your comment illustrates so very well many of the reasons that Lesbians do buy into, and even seek out, Straightbians.

      Also: You mention an excellent point that I have always noticed happening in the Lesbian community, but it was somewhat difficult for me to articulate what I was noticing — but you said it perfectly:

      “It’s almost as though we think we should feel grateful that they decided to ‘join’ us…”

      Yes! That is the nagging, vague, difficult-to-pinpoint feeling that I have noticed happening. Thanks for putting it into words!

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  3. So what your saying is you’re appauld by the charade straigtbians imposters put on to try to conform “herd mentality”. Sexuality isn’t something to be made a mockery of.

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    • Thanks for commenting! Yes, it is all very upsetting. What is most upsetting, speaking for myself and Dirt, is the fact that Straightbians have been appropriating and even defining “Lesbian” to and for real Lesbians for decades (at least)…and it could not have happened without Lesbians ourselves buying into the false premise that “any woman can become a Lesbian”.

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  4. MintLeaf,

    Both your comments are interesting and thought-provoking. If I can just pick out a couple of sentences:

    “I also don’t believe a conventionally-feminine self-proclaimed ‘lesbian’ loses any status with men, especially if she eventually reaffirms all of their offensive ideas…”

    YES, I think straight men almost always feel more comfortable with women who ‘present’ as conventionally feminine, whether the latter are straight or pretendbian or genuinely lesbian. Erotic fantasies and ideas of ‘turning’ them aside, I think they are reassured that such women, apart from their ‘quirk’ of fancying other women, remain within the ‘natural order’ of things. (But I’m no expert on straight men’s thought processes.)

    The scenario we sometimes see in TV shows, of butch lesbians ‘buddying up’ with straight men and discussing other women together in identical disparaging and misogynistic terms, is surely an American (male) script-writer’s fantasy, and must rarely if ever occur in real life.

    Gay men, on the other hand, are often more comfortable in the company of butch (or at least, unambiguous) lesbians, in a way (the flip-side of the coin) for exactly the same reasons: we can enjoy a ‘pure’ friendship or acquaintanceship with them, without having to suspect ulterior motives.

    “I think I accepted the idea that lesbians were undesirable in the eyes of society, and that the most desirable type of woman was a straight woman.”

    That rings so many bells on our side of the cloister. There are gay men who are notorious for (and boastful of) ‘seducing’ straight men, not that they take much seduction. There are whole porn channels devoted to the theme. I’ve had (sometimes good) sex with het men too, but we know they’re just tourists in our country. Few indeed become permanent residents or ‘naturalized’.

    I am convinced now that the original propagandists of “any woman can be a lesbian” were/are genuine lesbians, late perhaps in “coming out to themselves”, and OK great if they came to that through involvement in the WLM. I do not doubt the lesbian credentials of for example Sheila Jeffreys or the late Mary Daly.

    Where they were very wrong was to generalize from their own experience to that of all women. We all know how damaging they were to (precariously) ‘established’ lesbian culture, but maybe we should also consider how dismissive and insulting they were to strong feminists who (maybe in their terms trying to square the circle) remained defiantly heterosexual.

    I know that because I am male these are ‘outsider’ comments, but in the 1980s, like many gay men, I was caught in the cross-fire between warring lesbian and pseudo-lesbian factions, and had friends on both sides. We were as neutral as Switzerland, but as vulnerable to invasion as Luxembourg.

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      • I am well familiar with Dirt’s and Sheila’s opinions of each other. Sheila has been with her current partner for quite a long time, though god/dess alone knows how the latter puts up with her, as she is well known for making herself much more disagreeable to women (of any stripe) than to men. Possibly this is part of a separatist non-engagement policy toward men, but she was always as charming as she’s capable of being toward me, while in the same afternoon reducing my friends to tears.

        I value her academic writing, but find it difficult to forgive her bullying of my female friends. Hatred of men (however justifiable) is not a basis for lesbianism; I think she despises women just a little bit less than she does men, and it is women who, day to day, bear the brunt of her anger. Still trying desperately to be neutral, but I feel your troops moving in…

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        • For me, it’s possible to value someone’s writing/work (or at least portions of it), without actually liking that person and/or his/her overall philosophy; and that’s how I feel about people like Sheila Jeffreys. I am willing to acknowledge when they make a good point without buying the whole package.

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