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Grace Chu

Stuff Lesbians Like Part 20: Fitting in

By

Lesbians like to fit in. Once upon a time not too long ago, not fitting in and being dykey were stuff lesbians liked. Now it is all about fitting in.

In the 70s, 80s and even the 90s, when someone would say to a lesbian, “Wow, you don’t look like a lesbian,” it meant that such lesbian was a failure. In fact, the worst thing a person could do was to say, “You don’t look like a lesbian,” to a lesbian in front of other lesbians, because the other lesbians would immediately revoke her lesbian card and cast her out of their entourage for not being dykey enough.

“You have brought shame to us. You are the weakest link. Goodbye!”

“No! No! I swear I am a lesbian. I’ll shave my head and challenge gender norms! I’ll replace the ‘e’ in ‘women’ with a ‘y.’ I’ll spell ‘girl’ with no ‘i’ and five ‘r’s! I’ll be as non-mainstream as you want me to be! Hell, I’ll even pretend I like Ani DiFranco! What do I have to do to prove that I am a lesbian?”

“Too late! You’re not a real lesbian! Begone, poser!”

Nowadays, when a person says to a lesbian, “Wow, you don’t look like a lesbian,” it is seen as a compliment. To be super duper nice, you can say “you don’t look like a lesbian” to a lesbian in front of other lesbians. She will protest, but secretly she will be flattered. Additionally, her social status will rise.

(Nowadays, the only thing a lesbian has to do to prove that she is “lesbian enough” is to be attracted to women. Imagine that.)

This recent development has been a boon to lesbians who have pretty much remained the same even after they discovered that they like women. These are the same ones who would have received suspicious looks back in the day.

“What’s that straight girl doing here? Did she get lost?”

However, this tide reversal has led to an inverted lesbian version of “Revenge of the Nerds.” See, some lesbians who fit in have now gone all Mean Girls on the former cool kids, the lesbians who don’t fit in. Some lesbians who fit in will in fact blame many of society’s ills on lesbians who don’t fit in.

“It’s because of your decision to have bizarre hair that the rest of us don’t have any rights!”

“If you would stop wearing baggy pants and stop swaggering like a man, maybe Sally Kern would stop beating the Bible and invite us over for dinner.”

These unhinged exchanges generally take place on Craigslist. Fitting-in lesbians will get all dykey and curse out non-fitting-in lesbians on Craigslist, because Craigslist provides anonymity and allows fitting-in lesbians the freedom to become non-fitting-in raging dykes.

5 Responses to “Stuff Lesbians Like Part 20: Fitting in”

  1. Sasha Says:

    Oh my god, I wish my friends would read this! I was literally teased for months for not looking gay enough … one of them even told me, “We thought we were lipstick lesbians till you came along.” … as if I look SO straight I make them look butch. Which if you ever saw these girls, you’d know was impossible. They’re all as femme as it gets. Then it became because I didn’t have any tattoos that I must be “bi”! WTF??? I mean really.

    I’m totally with you on this one, great post! As always.

  2. Danna Says:

    you should do a list blog where people can name (if any) their ‘OGT’s. Obvious Gay Traits. Mine would be: i guess i have a semi-funky haircut or maybe my addiction to witty t-shirts . You pick!

  3. jen Says:

    agreed! i think you could easily add a sub-section to this post: “stuff lesbians like part 20b: bisexuals.” as a bisexual woman, i definitely get a lot of crap from lesbians who think i don’t look gay enough (exactly what does that mean? who defined what gay looks like?). in fact, just last night a friend of a friend asked her why she brought her straight friend to a lesbian event, referring directly to me.

    i’m not sure when lesbians decided to be so exclusive as to shun other lesbians and bisexuals, but i think it’s unnecessary and completely flies in the face of what this community is supposed to be about: solidarity. i think once we start mocking those who aren’t like us, within our own community, then we’re being exactly like heterosexuals who mock us for the same reasons.

    my hair and clothes should not be a signifier of my desire for women. i think my desire for women does that all on its own.

  4. Just_Alice Says:

    Soooo, you’re saying that *we’re* judgmental of each other?

    Hmm, sounds like, all-in-all, we’re just like all of ‘the other people’ – the good, the bad, and the ugly.

    I suspect it’s all just human nature – there is something in everyone that wants to ‘fit in’, and another part that wants to be a ‘unique individual’.
    Individual / Group competition – It bothers me somewhat that straight, bi, or gay, butch or femme, hell, female or male, somehow one is considered ‘better’ than the others – Each individual is just that – a Unique Individual – not inferior or superior, not better or worse, just different –
    - THANK [insert deity of choice]!!!!
    The world would be boring as hell, if we were all the same – [imagine french accent] Viva la Difference!

    …curse you Jose Cuervo, for making me uber-philosophical at quarter-till-three in the morning!

    Good night, and be Happy, all you crazy people! ;-)

  5. girl.mg Says:

    lol, your entry is really funny and you’ve made quite a few good points while keeping me entertained!

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