ISO (in Search Of):
The Art of Dating, Relationships & Sex for the Discerning Lesbian
Any Lesbian who is currently single knows that it’s often a great deal less romantic to be unattached than the media would have us believe. Many of us would love to hang out with the kinds of women we see on the L-Word, yet in the Lesbian Community, this is often not an option. Sophisticated, feminine lesbians are simply not the norm, overall. Most of the actresses who play those roles are in fact, heterosexual. I have frequently been chagrined by this. In all of Hollywood, they could not find a cast of feminine, sophisticated lesbians to play those roles? In this case, it seems that art does not imitate life. It warrants consideration.
Are lesbians primarily less feminine than straight women? I suspect the answer to that is a resounding “Yes.” Are masculine lesbians a product of brainwashing — that in romance there must be two opposite roles-one feminine, one masculine? Most Likely. . .
At the risk of being politically incorrect, [*a concept i reject] I must say that I find it disturbing that so many Lesbians feel it necessary to mimic men. A Lesbian, by definition, doesn’t want to be with a man and is a woman who loves women, in the romantic sense. In a very real way, then, masculinity in gay women is a contradiction. It is patently unnecessary to become manly in order to be with another woman. The need to be “manly” then, can sometimes be about gender-confusion, and not about being lesbian. This stance may be offensive to some, but indeed, I could say that I am offended by how easily some lesbians dismiss the beauty and power in themselves by diluting it with masculinity.
So often I hear lesbians complaining about being stereotyped by the world at large. My suggestion is that if you don’t wish to be a stereotype, don’t act like one.
In the novels I write, I portray women as feminine or at least a lipstick lesbian, but rarely as dykes or otherwise manly females (which is, intrinsically, an oxymoron). I have been accused of catering to straight men or merely “selling out” by doing this, and yet, I find this assessment myopic, contradictory and just plain silly. I love women, because they are women. I love the feminine form. I am attracted to the quintessential qualities that make women FEMALE. If I wanted to be with a man, I would be straight. So this whole outrage based on my supposed treason against Sapphic love, strikes me as absurd.
Why do you suppose that most straight women who experiment with lesbianism, pursue gay women who are manly? It’s a comfort zone, that’s why. They are not straying too terribly far from being with a man.
The most attractive women, to me, are the ones who are androgynous. I use that term loosely, and colloquially, because the actual definition is way more severe and limiting than the context in which I use it. Androgyny, by its original definition, means ambiguous in gender. Genderless, almost. Like the “Pat” character on Saturday Night Live. You can’t tell if the person is male or female. The way I mean it is more like a woman who blends, in a harmonious fashion, the traits of both male and female, to create a balanced person. This means the woman looks like a woman, but can hammer a nail, ride a motorcycle, or be assertive, all without losing her essential womanliness.
A great fictional character that exemplifies this would be Xena, the Warrior Princess from television. She was strong, capable, assertive, loving, loyal, always looked fabulous and feminine. Even when she was cutting someone’s throat. . .
I desperately want another term to describe strong, feminine lesbians.
HOMOgenized Female. . .hmmm.
It occurred to me that epicene meant having the characteristics of both genders, blended. So how about Femepicene? (fem-ep-uh-seen).
So women who are Femepicene are those most likely to get my attention. I can’t speak for every other gay woman.