Since I published “Femmes: Facts Versus Fiction” just yesterday, I have received several comments/emails along the lines of:
“But I wear lipstick”
“But my Butch pumps my gas for me”
“But I like kitten heels!”
“Maybe you’re not a Femme yourself”
Just to clarify, I didn’t say/mean that Femmes NEVER wear lipstick/makeup or get dressed up ~ the answer is: we may or may not, depending on the setting/situation and personal preference. I wear lipstick myself sometimes, particularly to work.
Regarding duties, etc., what I actually said/meant was:
The point is: Femmes are NOT “performing gender”. We aren’t play-acting or mimicking straight women. We aren’t primping and preening incessantly. We are more practical than that. While we may choose to “dress up” if the occasion calls for it and if we feel like it, we don’t feel the need to constantly prance around the world like a runway model. We wouldn’t put vanity over safety.
Here’s an example: Years ago, I took a Lesbo cruise to Alaska, and went on a group hike one day. It was over (fairly) rough terrain…in other words, it wasn’t a simple stroll on a neat concrete path. Everyone, including me, wore hiking boots, as allegedly required by the hiking guide…except for one purported “
femme” Straightbian who wore…get ready for it…KITTEN HEELS (and a miniskirt)! Yes, it’s unbelievable, but…there she was. If I’d been the guide, I would have refused to take her, but it was not my call. So, this beautiful but helpless creature tottered dangerously throughout the hike, needing constant assistance. Even her girlfriend looked annoyed. I never saw Ms. Kitten Heels again, but I would bet anything that she MARRIED A MAN and is likely driving a soccer-mom van.
Also: Of course, there’s nothing wrong with dividing duties with your partner in whatever way it works best for both of you. So, there may be some instances where one partner primarily pumps the gas or one partner primarily does the grocery shopping (or whatever).
But what I was trying to say is that many people incorrectly think that Butch/Femme couples divide up the duties based on the perceived “Butchness” or “Femmeness” of the duty itself, and that perception is simply not true. For example, Dirt does most of the cooking, and I do most of the bill-paying. I drive an old truck and Dirt drives a car. I would be willing to bet that most people would not guess those things.
The main point that I was trying to make is that Femmes are NOT helpless, hapless, frilly, little goofballs who are dependent on a Butch or anyone else to help/save/rescue us. Femmes are Lesbians, and we function as Lesbians. We know how to take care of ourselves, and we have been fending off wannabe male suitors successfully ever since…well, forever.
Our relationships with our Butch partners are straightforward and equal. There is no straight-wannabe playacting nor any false dichotomy of “the strong one” and “the weak one”. We are both strong. We are both Lesbians.