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10 Things NOT to Say to a Lesbian


There’s nothing I haven’t heard, mostly from dudes, when I reveal that I have a girlfriend, not a boyfriend. In fact, some of the dumbest comments always repeat themselves so, luckily I found this article to educate. If you see me, or another lesbian at a bar or what-have-you, here are 10 things NOT to say/ask her. #1 and #9 are the most annoying/ignorant. Enjoy :) @Casey965


List from AlterNet.org by @annapulley

1. Who’s the “man” in this relationship?

Neither. Both. Only when it comes to killing the spiders. In most cases, the relationship in question involves two women: that’s what makes them lesbians. Even in butch/femme pairings, it’s insulting to assume that a queer relationship is imitating a straight one, especially under the rigid and outdated gender roles that the “man” question usually implies.

Possible comeback: “I don’t know. Who’s the man in yours?”

2. So if you like girls, are you attracted to yourself?

This question dates back to the Victorian era, when Freud postulated that homosexuality may have roots in narcissism, and his so-called castration complex. Same-sex attraction does not equal self-sex attraction (not that that’s a thing).

3. How do you have sex?

Well, first we make an offering to the Goddess. Then we walk counter-clockwise in a circle around a bowl of flax seeds while reciting lines from the Indigo Girls canon. Somewhere around the seventh rotation, our lady parts fuse together in spiritual and ecstatic union. Afterward, we drink rooibos tea and discuss prison reform.

Lesbian sex has been confounding people since the dawn of cucumbers. We’re not sure why, but frankly, we’re tired of explaining to you how sexual acts might occur without the aid of a sex toy. But, okay, queer women engage in all manners of sexual acts just as straight couples do.

4. How do you know you’re a lesbian if you’ve never had sex with a man?

How do you know you’re straight if you’ve never been with a man/woman?

5. Wanna have a threesome?

There is a pervasive cultural assumption about queer women, particularly bisexual ones, that when we aren’t busily destroying the sanctity of nuclear families, we are champing at the bit to have a threeway with a dude. Threesome-as-holy-grail has led to a barrage of awkward online propositions and drunken come-ons. It’s grown tiresome. Please acquire a new hobby, such as furniture restoration or windsurfing. Unless the woman in question explicitly states that this is her desire, don’t make any assumptions, and especially don’t do that thing with your tongue.

6. Really? But you’re so pretty.

This is an insult disguised as a compliment that implies lesbians are hideous bridge trolls who are only gay because no man wants to see them naked. It also erases the possibility that lesbians can be feminine, which is ridiculous. Lots of lesbians are feminine—we even have a word for it: femme. And though we might wear makeup/skirts/have long hair, etc., we still probably don’t want to sleep with you, especially not after you say that.

Possible comeback: “Portia di Rossi.” Though really, we don’t even think this justifies an answer. Just look at them blank-faced and back slowly away.

7. So since you married a man, you’re not bi anymore, right?

Being in a heterosexual relationship doesn’t negate your sexual identity nor all your former romantic partners throughout history. If you still lust after ladies, then you are bi, regardless of whether you ever act on it again. We wish sincerely that we would stop policing each other’s sexuality, which is not an either/or proposition. Besides, bisexuality is not something you have to prove. If it was, you could always sleep with the girlfriend of anyone who asks you whether you’re bi “anymore.”

8. What do you have against male parts?

Nothing at all. We’re big fans. Seriously, it’s not personal. Questions like this are right up there with the tired stereotypes about lesbians as man-haters with nothing more than a severe case of penis envy. Simply not true.

8a. Do you miss male parts?

Nope. We have several, thanks. One of them glows in the dark!

9. You just haven’t met the right man yet.

Misinformed relatives hoping we will still incubate some grandchildren (and who for some reason equate lesbianism with infertility) often says this. It’s highly insulting and intrusive and presumptuous, and implies that queer women become so due to bad experiences with men. This is not to say that queer women have never been hurt by men and that bad experiences don’t inform people’s opinions, but it’s very unlikely that Jill’s going to join the lez-squad because Jack wouldn’t stop talking about Fantasy Football.

Besides, we know lots of single straight ladies who haven’t met their No. 1 Perfect Soul Mate Forever. We know approximately zero of those ladies who have spontaneously become gay because they were tired of waiting around.

10. I wish I were a lesbian. Things would be so much easier.

Right, except for the  hate crimes, bullying, higher suicide rates, workplace harassment,  discrimination, assault, depression, stigma, familial/religious persecution, having to come out every time you meet a new person, threats of being disowned by loved ones, and having to field the above questions over and over again until you die.

Except for all that, it’s great. Ellen has a talk show, you know, so we can’t complain.