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Lesbians Are Not Mimicking Heterosexuals, Nor Do We Want To. (Duh!)

When hetsplaining Lesbian, one frequent mistake that heterosexual people make is assuming that Lesbian relationships are mimicry of straight relationships, along with the incorrect assumption that Lesbians seek to emulate straight people.

One particularly odious and completely ridiculous trope is that Butch Lesbians have “eschewed femininity” and that they are “trying to be men“, and that Femme Lesbians are playing the “straight woman” in our relationships.

No. Just NO.

It’s way past time for all of the straight people who think/say such things to remove their head from their own egocentric asses.

It is even more bizarre and distressing when such utter nonsense emerges from alleged “feminist allies“.

 Let’s take a look at just a couple of the multiple lesbophobic comments from these faux “feminist allies” about Dirt, and I hope that these examples will expose what these faux “feminist allies” REALLY think about Lesbians and our relationships ~ underneath their FAKE, chipper “But I totally support Lesbians!” rhetoric: 

IMG_1193

Please recall that Harpy is the very same individual who came up with this gem to explain our Lesbian relationship: 

Harpy

Let’s examine exactly what these self-proclaimed “feminist allies” TRULY think/feel about Lesbians underneath their bullshit “support“:

  • They are condescending, rude, hateful, and/or vicious toward us.
  • They clearly don’t understand Lesbians nor our relationships.
  • They don’t TRY to understand Lesbians nor our relationships.
  • They see Lesbians as simplistic heterosexual mimickers/wannabes.
  • They see Lesbian relationships as imitations of straight relationships.
  • They see Butch Lesbians as intentionally/willfully “non-conforming to gender norms”.
  • They think Butch Lesbians are imitating men and that they want to be men.
  • They think Femme Lesbians are imitating straight women/relationships.
  • They think Femme Lesbians are stupid, shallow, vacuous, vain, and dependent. (Which is quite an interesting perception, since they think we are imitating THEM. Think about it.).
  • They think that heterosexual relationships are higher status than Lesbian relationships. (For instance, in other tweets, they talked about our relationship with “marriage” and “wife” in quotation marks!).
  • They think that Dirt’s parents would/should be upset with the fact she is Butch, which shows their own underlying shocking lesbophobia.
  • They think that we are Lesbians because we are damaged in some way (“Would be intriguing to hear about her parents”).
  • They think Lesbians are simply play-acting; that our entire lives are a flimsy choice to mysteriously try to emulate heterosexuality….which doesn’t even make any sense, but apparently logic is optional for these cretins.
  • They see Lesbians only through their own narrow heterocentric lens…which is to say: they don’t really see US at all, nor do they care to.

I could go on and on, but I think that is the general summation of the falsehoods that these false allies TRULY believe about us when you scratch underneath the shiny surface of their “help“.

Once again for the slow learners: Lesbians are NOT “mimicking straight relationships” nor are we “trying to be men” (nor any other obnoxious variation of these lies). WE ARE LESBIANS. Lesbian lives/relationships are IN NO WAY related to these outlandish claims. 

These same individuals will tweet all day about how men are allegedly trying to coerce Lesbians into sleeping with them etc. etc. etc. ~ and some complete fools therefore mistakenly think that means they support Lesbians:

Rya

My message to these hetsplaining hypocritical harpies (and their ilk) and their fawning fan-boy is:

Fuck off.  

Attention Lesbians: These people are not allies to Lesbians, and they are not our friends. Furthermore, Lesbians don’t want, nor need, their “help“. These people are not only NOT helping Lesbians, but they are a HUGE part of the problem themselves by continuing to believe and to spew hateful lies and ignorant misconceptions about Lesbians.

With every hateful and/or ignorant tweet, these people are showing their true lesbophobic colors.

So: Keep it up, harpies & sycophants, because I WANT Lesbians to see the truth, and these folks are proving what Dirt and I are saying with every venomous word.  

The Sadly Predictable Stages of Hetsplaining

Note: Please also see Dirt’s post on the same topic: Lesbians: SEEING the Forest because we are Not Trees

Dirt and I have been attacked on Twitter by hetsplaining straight “feminists so many times now, I have discerned a predictable pattern of behavior which delineates the stages of hetsplaining:

Butt in to a conversation uninvited;

Attack viciously; twist everything being said beyond all recognition; falsely claim we are misogynists, racists, etc.; even sometimes stooping low enough to insult us personally by attacking our appearance, our relationship, etc.;

Rage all out of proportion to the situation; using all emotion with no logic whatsoever;

Block us so we can’t see what they are saying;

Incite others to attack;

Enlist others to continue the drama;

Subtweet about us, knowing we cannot see what is being said to defend ourselves (which is quite cowardly).

(Rinse and repeat ad nauseum with each new wave of straight “feminists” who pick up the gauntlet).

You can remember this sadly predictable pattern of hetsplaining by using the acronym BARBIES. The most recent brouhaha involved a Barbie harpy (see below).

And for just ONE example of how these hetsplaining harpies treat Lesbians who don’t kowtow to their straight-privileged BS, here’s just one of many insulting tweets Dirt and I have been subjected to for simply stating our opinion:

Harpy

And people wonder why I say that Lesbians are on our own…but, seriously, with “feminist allies” like this, who needs enemies?

Lesbians and Emotional Cheating: A “Dear Lesbian” Question

I recently received a “Dear Lesbian” request via my Contact Form to write on the topic of emotional cheating and Lesbian couples. This link to an article entitled “Emotional Cheating And Lesbian Couples: Why It’s An Issue” was included as an overview of the topic.

This is an excellent question, and I appreciate that the reader took the time to ask me to write about it.

First, let’s define “emotional cheating”. Although there are many ways to define it and the definition is certainly open to interpretation (as it is certainly subjective to the people involved), I would define “emotional cheating” as when a friendship between one member of a couple and an outside person crosses an invisible but tangible boundary and veers sharply into the area of inappropriateness.

Some examples of one member of a couple veering into inappropriateness with an outside person include, but are not limited to:

  • Flirting (Note: I don’t mean simply being friendly/fun and having a good time…I mean actually flirting in a way that is romantic/sexual, as if you are single and available);
  • Fantasizing about kissing/contact/sex or fantasizing a relationship with the outside person;
  • Being secretive by not telling your partner about your contact with the outside person (for instance: meeting for lunch secretly; sending private text messages without your partner’s knowledge; etc.);
  • Telling the outside person intimate details of your relationship with your partner that you know damn well your partner would be embarrassed/upset about (for instance: complaining about your sex life, or lack thereof, with the subtext of “I’m  on a bit of fishing expedition here to see if you will bite”);
  • Telling the outside person significant things that you should be telling your partner (for instance: telling the outside person that you are unhappy in your relationship; or telling the outside person something significant that you haven’t told your partner like you lost your job 3 weeks ago; etc.).

Please note that I am not saying that you shouldn’t have an outside friend who you can confide in.

What I am saying is: When your behavior/thoughts veer into untrustworthiness, nefariousness, secrecy, affair-fantasies, flirtatiousness, and/or evasiveness, you have crossed the line into unsafe territory. (Get it?) 

I think we all know the difference between being close to and confiding in a trusted platonic friend versus the slippery slope of emotional infidelity.

The article which was sent to me as an overview of the topic states that emotional cheating “happens all too often in lesbian relationships“.

I have no doubt that it does happen all too often in Lesbian relationships. However, I believe that it happens all too often in ALL kinds of relationships, not just Lesbian relationships. I truly don’t believe Lesbians are uniquely at-risk for emotional cheating, although I admit that the nuances can sometimes be trickier for Lesbians than it is for heterosexuals.  (Probably the same is true of gay men too, but I cannot speak for them).

First of all, the situation is trickier for Lesbians because…well…we’re all Lesbians.

With heterosexual couples, it would not typically be kosher for a husband of one couple to call the wife of another couple and invite her out to lunch without the other spouses present. It’s a clear boundary that is typically not crossed.

But when everybody in both couples are Lesbians, how would anyone know when things are awry?

So let’s say Lesbian Couple A (let’s call them Xena and Gabrielle) meets Lesbian Couple B (let’s call them Idgie and Ruth) and they all hit it off. Next thing you know, these 2 couples are drinking beer and eating chicken wings every Saturday night at The Watering Hole on Main Street, USA. All is a-okay, so far.

But then let’s say one day Xena calls Ruth and invites her for lunch without their partners.

Hmmmm. As a Lesbian, I must say this would strike me as amiss.

But would it strike me amiss if Xena had called Idgie and asked her to go to the gym or to go play tennis?

No, it wouldn’t.

Why?

It is difficult to explain, because it is at least partly Lesbian intuition, rather than concrete evidence, that is guiding that gut-level feeling that something is “off”.

Additionally, this topic is difficult to explain to heterosexuals because heterosexuals basically seem to think that any 2 random women could suddenly start making out and POOF!, they are suddenly in a “Lesbian relationship“. (Nope, it’s not a “Lesbian relationship” unless actual Lesbians are in the relationship).

My point is, heterosexuals don’t seem to understand that Lesbians aren’t attracted to just any female….instead, we, like everybody else, have our own tastes/preferences for partners. Lesbians aren’t simply interchangeable with each other like one-size-fits-all Legos; we’re not all going to be attracted to the same people. Like straight people, Lesbians tend to have a general “type” of person we are attracted to.

So, when 2 Lesbian couples meet, if they have a significant amount of things in common with each other, it’s often (not always, of course, but often) likely that the other couple will be similar to the original couple in their basic “types” (examples: Butch/Femme, softball dykes, golf dykes, Lipstick Lesbians…etc.).

This is most certainly NOT to say that this means that there will automatically be attraction with someone who falls within our general “type” though. Just like how all straight females are NOT attracted to all straight males, Lesbians are NOT attracted to all other Lesbians…not even all of those who are our general “type”.

My point being that if, in our hypothetical example, Gabrielle is Xena’s “type”, then it’s likely that Ruth would be Xena’s general “type” too. And if Xena is Gabrielle’s “type”, then it’s likely that Idgie would be Gabrielle’s general “type” too.

So crossover friendships between two Lesbians who find the other person in the friendship to be their “type” are potentially fraught with difficulty.

Does this mean, to use another example, that a Butch cannot be platonic friends with a Femme (or vice versa)?

No, it doesn’t mean that at all. I truly believe that mature adults can indeed be platonic friends and leave it at that. But it does mean that the Butch and the Femme involved in the friendship and their partners need to be fully informed and fully aware at all times. No sneaking, no secret messages, no flirtation, no coyness, no lying…basically, no bullshit at all.

Let’s give another hypothetical example. Let’s say Dirt and I met another Butch/Femme couple and started hanging out with them every weekend. (This scenario is highly unlikely, due to the rarity of Butch/Femme making it very unlikely that we would meet a local couple, plus the fact that Dirt and I are both extreme introverts, so we aren’t ever going to see ANYBODY all the time…but hey, it’s just a pretend example anyway, so let’s just go with it).

In our hypothetical example, it would be considered highly irregular for the Femme of the couple to start emailing/texting Dirt privately and/or for them to meet for lunch or coffee without me and the Butch in the other couple present. It would be a major warning sign…not just because of the secrecy involved, although that would be a big tip-off, but also because they would be each other’s “type” so it would be atypical to cross over like that.

Similarly, if the Butch suddenly started calling me privately to talk about personal things behind the backs of Dirt and her Femme partner, it would be a big warning sign.

Does that mean that they could never call/text or see us separately? No, of course not! There are plenty of reasons such contact might happen (for example, contact might be made with one partner instead of the other due to simple convenience, like if one person is more reachable than the other; getting advice about a birthday present or surprise party;  needing specific advice on a topic that one partner knows more about; etc.).

It does mean, however, that if the situation continued to occur all the time (beyond casual contact), escalated, and/or showed any of the warning signs above, it would be certainly be a problem.

Bottom line: If you feel yourself starting to keep things from your partner and start turning toward someone else instead of your partner, it’s time to stop and seriously consider what exactly is going on before proceeding any further.  Deep down, under layers of rationalizations and denial, you know if you are romantically/sexually attracted to someone. And if you are attracted to someone, you need to admit it to yourself. You owe it to yourself and to your partner to be the kind of person who does the right thing. Be that person.

IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER: This blog is NOT intended to be professional advice, nor to substitute for the advice of a licensed professional. The reader should consult with an appropriate professional regarding all mental health needs.

Do Femmes Wear Lipstick?

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”

etc.

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:

Fact

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.

Femme: Facts Versus Fiction

I have written before about being a Femme Lesbian, here and here.  But there is so much misinformation about us, the topic deserves much more attention.

This handy-dandy little guide is intended to be a start to separating the facts about being a Femme from the numerous fictional assumptions about us.

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Fiction: “Femme is an ‘identity’ that can be adopted by anyone who chooses it (Straightbians, males, any mid-range dyke who wears lipstick occasionally….whoever); Femmes are attracted to and partner with anyone (other Femmes, random dykes, men….whoever).”

Fact: Femmes are Lesbians who are oriented to and partner with Butch Lesbians. Femme is not an “identity” that can be simply chosen by anyone; you either are a Femme, or you are not. (Ditto re: Lesbian).

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Fiction: “Femme is a ‘performance of gender’; a cartoonish mockery of every femme fatale in every second rate movie since the beginning of time.”

femmefatale

Femme Fatale: Pixabay/darksouls1: CC0 Public Domain

Fact: Femmes are simply being ourselves…we were born this way. We are not “performing” gender (nor anything else, for that matter). We are not actresses in the play of life, and it’s offensive when people assume who we are is an act.

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Fiction: “Femmes and Butches are mimicking heterosexuality.”

Fact: We are not mimicking anything. We are being ourselves…who we are born as. Again, who we are is not an “act” or a “performance”. We aren’t heterosexual, we aren’t mimicking heterosexuality, and we don’t want to mimic heterosexuality.  There is nothing straight about us; Butches and Femmes are 100 percent Lesbian. Thank goodness.

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Fiction: “Femmes are fluffy-headed sexy helpless dependent little minxes who wouldn’t be seen in public without full makeup & dress/heels/etc.; Femmes depend on their Butch to take care of them.”

Fact: Real femmes are strong, outspoken, independent, and equal in our relationships our Butch partners. We are capable of “cleaning up nicely” if an occasion calls for it; but we dress practically on an everyday basis, and we dress appropriately for an activity.  We don’t wear stilettos to Walmart. We don’t wear kitten heels to hike the Alaskan wilderness. Unless there is some sort of physical limitation that would preclude us from doing so, Femmes can, and do, pump our own gas, carry our own groceries, open our own jars, pay our own bills, and competently handle the dude at the 7-Eleven who asks for a date.

Heads-Up: If you ever see an alleged “Femme” mincing around in high heels, donning makeup constantly, giggling helplessly, afraid to break a nail, while her Dyke partner does everything for her in a “manly”, swaggering sort of way, rest assured that you are witnessing a Dyke/Straightbian partnership…NOT a Butch/Femme one.

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Fiction: “Femmes are really straight women who have ‘chosen to be a Lesbian’.”

Fact: There is no such thing as “choosing to be a Lesbian”. You either are one, or you are not. Same thing with being Femme. Femmes are Lesbians who are born Femme Lesbians. Period. There’s nothing straight about us. Don’t confuse Femmes with Straightbians.

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This post is not meant to be a comprehensive list of all of the fictional assumptions about Femmes, but rather, it’s just a basic starting point to address a few of the main incorrect beliefs.

Please also refer to Hekate’s blog, Genuine Femme, which addresses similar topics.

If you can think of more blatant falsehoods, or if you ever have any questions about Femmes, Butches, Butch/Femme relationships, or Lesbians in general, as always, please feel free to comment on any post or email me at sayebennett@gmail.com. More on this topic later…

“How Very Dare You?” (How Hets Respond To Lesbians)

Amidst all of the general nonsense Dirt and I deal with on a daily basis, a recent recurrent theme I have noticed in many argumentative comments and tweets to us is:

HOW DARE WE?

How dare we speak about/as Lesbians?

How dare we say that any woman cannot magically “become a Lesbian”?

How dare we say that words like “Lesbian”, “Butch”, “Femme” etc. have actual meaning and should be used correctly?

How dare we imply that we are “experts” of any sort?

How dare we say that many are falsely calling themselves “Lesbian”?

How dare we challenge the currently in-vogue idea that everything is all about “identity”: the idea that if you simply “identify as” ________(fill in the blank: Lesbian; Butch; Femme; Hippopotamus; Whatever) you ARE ___________?

The list goes on and on and on, but I think you get the basic idea, which boils down to “How very dare you?”

I recently replied that there are about 3,468,576,823,845 STRAIGHT blogs, books, articles, TV shows, magazines, etc.; yet NOBODY ever comments such things to them: Who are YOU to talk about being straight? What would YOU know? What gives YOU the right to talk about straight people/relationships? How would YOU know about being straight? Who are YOU to say who is straight? Etc.

Nope, that never happens, and I will tell you why. Because nobody questions “straight”. First of all, straights are the HUGE majority. Secondly, straight is pretty…well…straightforward: Nobody has hijacked “straight” like “Lesbian” has been hijacked repeatedly. Nobody is falsely speaking for all straight people, implying that they are all perverts and weirdos or that it’s all “just a choice” or any other such idiocy.

Even when a Lesbian comes out later in life, she didn’t hijack straight out of privilege; in fact, it’s the opposite: she felt she had to pretend to be straight in order to please family, society, or church. She got hijacked BY straight.

Think about it: For a straight person to even question our right to speak out as/regarding Lesbians smacks of privilege.

Let me be clear: While straight people are always very welcome to read our blogs and to comment, and while we still sincerely hope that some straight people will be capable of seeing the light, Dirt and I are not writing for straight people. We hope that some straight people will understand, but we don’t actually expect them to.

Instead, we are writing to Lesbians. And we are writing as Lesbians.

We not only have the right to do so, we have the duty. 

Attention: straights and Straightbians: We DO dare.  And all your arguing, snarkiness, denial, rudeness, subtweeting, and straight privilege in the universe won’t stop us.

In summary: Suck it up, buttercup(s), because we’re not going away.

Buttercup

Image: Pixabay: CC0 Public Domain

Butches, Stripping, and Straightbians…Oh My

For a couple of days now, I have been in a series of heated debates regarding the question of whether Butches would ever be strippers. (Answer: Not just no, but HELL NO).

In response to my statement that the probability of a Butch stripping would be approximately a snowball’s chance in Hell, I received this flippant tweet, presumably to “prove” that Butches do strip:

img_0182

Problem is: The woman depicted here is most certainly NOT Butch, and most likely, she’s not even ANY sort of Lesbian either. This tweeter, along with a plethora of others, incorrectly assume that if any woman cuts her hair short and dons a suit (or any other so-called “male attire”) and simply makes the claim she is Butch, she is magically (POOF!) suddenly Butch.

But it doesn’t work that way. Not even close. Butches are born, not made.  Butch is NOT a performance, a costume, a political stance, or an act, and it is majorly offensive when people appropriate and misrepresent Lesbian lives.

A true Butch would NEVER strip. She would literally die first, and that is NOT an exaggeration.

What gives me the right to make such a broad claim, you ask? Because I am a Femme Lesbian. Because I am married to a Butch, and have known other Butches. Because I have been in the Lesbian community for many, many years now, and have seen so many dykes & Straightbians call themselves Butch when they clearly weren’t. Because I happen to have a lot more knowledge about this topic that most people.

(Yes, I said it, I mean it, and I don’t care if you mistakenly think that is arrogant, because, yes, I do, in fact, know more about this topic than most people).

Anyway, I won’t bore you with giving you a play-by-play of every argumentative hetsplaining tweet or every Straightbian arguing with Lesbians about OUR OWN LIVES. It would take a dissertation to just explain the last couple of days.

But let’s examine one striking example of the sort of ignorance and attitude real Lesbians have to put up with:

Image 2

Let’s examine this snippet. Seemingly out-of-the-blue, a relatively new “feminist” account with 14 followers at the time and a handful of tweets crawls out of some hole to randomly bust my chops?

Hmmmm…it seems likely that this is a familiar troll in a new disguise, but regardless of this person’s true identity, automatically jumping to a racial connotation when race was not even mentioned is an incredibly transparent attempt to derail the actual point (“Butches don’t strip…period.”) by implying I am somehow inexplicably being racist by talking about a Lesbian issue.

Obviously, that idiotic crap doesn’t work with me. “Stick to the topic or shut up” is my motto.

(And, no, there are not any Butches of any race stripping for a living, now or ever).

Moving on to the next ridiculous assertion from our wannabe know-it-all:

Image 4

Okay, so calling me a racist didn’t work, so what does this buffoon do now? Hmmm…Oh, I know, let’s bring RAPE into it! THAT always derails the discussion!

This “rape culture” statement is completely off-topic and makes absolutely no sense whatsoever, so, again, this is an obvious attempt to discredit what we are saying by twisting what we are actually saying to try to make it mean something completely unrecognizable.

This is actually a very common Straightbianfeministploy:

If you have no argument and/or simply don’t understand the topic, it’s time to bring up any of the following to try to derail the conversation:

  • Rape or Rape Culture
  • The Patriarchy
  • The “Trans Cult”
  • Racism
  • Sexism
  • Any other “ism”
  • Discrimination
  • Violence Against Women
  • MRAs
  • Men in dresses “forcing”/”coercing” Lesbians to have sex with them (Not happening)

Well, those tactics may work with some people, but they are certainly not going to work with me or Dirt.

Again, the topic at hand was simple: Butch Lesbians and stripping. This topic has nothing to do with racism, rape, etc.

Back to the point: Do Butches strip?

And the final answer is: Butch Lesbians would never strip, regardless of race, age, audience, era, or circumstance.

The end.