Friday, May 26, 2006
Stop me if you've heard this one...
So, Uccellina and I were talking last night at WeHo Stitch n’ Bitch about the state of sexuality in the world today and I realized that I haven’t told one of my favorite stories ever.
In 1992, I started working at AIDS Project Los Angeles. I was still in school at the time and I had been director of the Women’s Center at said campus. In addition I was one of the founders of SQUISH (Strong Queers United In Stopping Heterosexism). I cannot describe how stoned we were when we came up with that name. We had a perfectly lovely Lesbian and Gay Alliance (LAGA)…but we needed something a little more confrontational. After all, it was 1990 and we were at war with our governor.


Anyway, the point is, I thought my credentials as a feminist were fairly secure. I was wrong!!! Oh, how wrong I was. Apparently working with gay men somehow puts one’s prior evidence of feminism into question. How? You ask.


I tell.


It wasn’t the first time that a lesbian had said to me that I should be working with/for women and not gay men, however, it was the best and the only one I remember so clearly. I was at a coffeehouse in West Hollywood, sipping my cappuccino with two older dykes and one 19 year old gay man and I was excited about having received a promotion at APLA. And then she said it.

"You’re such a male-coddling fembot."


She said wha!!!!????


No seriously, a male-coddling fembot. Now at the time I was 21 and not so quick on my feet with a comeback. So I can’t remember my response. Frankly, I was probably all like, "Fuck you." But that’s totally not the point. The point is, I have embraced my male-coddling fembot ways. Hell, I married a gay man and make him dinner. If that’s not male-coddling - well, I guess it’s more Michael-coddling but whatever.


Anyway, this is part of the reason that I don’t particularly identify well as a lesbian. I mean, I say I’m a lesbian and I have slept with a lot more girls than boys (Girls ? – Boys 0) but the label somehow doesn’t fit. I mean if one is constantly being questioned by the so-called community, does one really want to identify with it? Can one? If my lesbian credentials are constantly being called into question, what is the point of fighting to be part of the "community." Because I sleep with girls? Is that enough of a reason? What if I have been abstaining for a number of years due to other issues (see: body image, bulimia, rape, etc.) do I need to identify as something or can I just be Faith? I mean, at least with Judaism, no one asks with disdain if I am really Jewish.


I understand the side of the dogmatics. Women’s sexuality is more fluid than men’s – or at least more acceptably fluid. Men who sleep with men must be highly sexually attracted to a man to brave the male culture with gay sex on your conscience. It’s easy to see where a guy who is "just curious" but mostly sexually attracted to women would consider the risk unacceptable.

Primarily heterosexual women, on the other hand have a culture where to kiss or have sex with another girl, especially during college, (and especially while drinking) can be undertaken for curiosity sake and in some cases has the added benefit of turning on men, the primary focus of desire. Women who identify as lesbians, who have "made a choice" have to defend against this fluidity to protect their own identity.


My advice, as if anyone asked for it?? Give it up. Be who you are, love who you want, have sex with people indiscriminately (as long as it’s safely). Try women if you want. Try men if you want. Stick with one or the other if that appeals to you. Have sex with no one. Have a big group sex scene. Pee on someone. Make a video. Stop judging what other people are doing unless they’re doing it with you and it’s creeping you out.

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4 Comments:

Blogger ladylinoleum said...

Hear,hear!

Blogger Jen said...

Thanks for speaking your mind. I needed that. Actually, I think a lot of people need to hear that.

And SQUISH... how long did that acronym last?

What's a fembot by the way?

Blogger cecily said...

Amen!

Blogger dfadf said...

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