Femmes we are - looking weird but somehow straight. We can pass [as straight], and it is so hard to explain that we can hate our ability to pass. It has been both our allure and our betrayal, because we are dykes - women who are absolutely crazed for women - and how scary we are to our butches and even to ourselves. What do we do with it all? Struggles within struggles within struggles Nestle, , p. Zergnet Code.
Many have bought into the myth that all lesbians are visibly gender non-conforming. Femmes across the board discussed the complexities of reconciling the expectation of androgyny with femme identity, not only due to perceptions about lesbianism from mainstream culture, but also from within the lesbian community.
Adopting the label femme, a lesbian-specific term, allowed them to navigate those communities and assert their validity and right to exist there. The label helped them to reconcile their performance of femininity with their understandings of feminism. Inspired by their desire to differentiate femme identity from heterosexual femininity, many women described a process of checking in with themselves and their intentions when performing femininity.
The important element was that they were consciously excluding the male gaze when choosing makeup, revealing clothing, or high heels. This is quintessentially what differentiates femmes from feminine heterosexual and bisexual women. Femmes perform femininity exclusively for themselves and for other women-never for male attention or validation.
Modern femmes take and leave parts of femininity according to what feels empowering.
Many modern femmes who strongly identify with radical feminist theories and even feminist critique of compulsory femininity are rewriting the terms and reconstructing femme as a lesbian gender.
Many modern femmes may choose not to shave or not to wear makeup as a means of rejecting these beauty standards.
Jun 27, The relationships between butch lesbians and femme lesbians have a long recorded history, with descriptions of what we would identify as butch/femme unions dating back centuries, images appearing in the early twentieth century, and finally these identities being coined as such in the mid-twentieth century. Feb 15, The beauty of butch-femme is that no matter how gracefully (or clumsily) we age, or how long we're together, we'll never be mistaken for one another. It's simply not in her makeup to put on a dress or lipstick, and men's shirts and boxers make me feel like I'm trapped in a . Butch Femme Dating Site is part of the Infinite Connections dating network, which includes many other general and lesbian dating sites. As a member of Butch Femme Dating Site, your profile will automatically be shown on related lesbian dating sites or to related users in the Infinite Connections network at no additional charge.
The process of self-evaluation viewed through a feminist lens has healed the once contentious relationship between radical feminists and femme lesbians. The terms are no longer mutually exclusive. Butch Lesbian Identity Butch-identified lesbians or butches also have a clearly defined history within the lesbian community in relation to and independent of femme lesbians.
Butch can be defined simply as a masculine lesbian. However, similar to femme identity, the social roles and presentation of butch identity is complex and nuanced, and there is nothing simple about defining the term. Butches are gender non-conforming, meaning they do not present in the ways typically expected of their sex.
For butch lesbians this means rejecting the patriarchal expectation to perform femininity in physical and social presentation. In other words, butches do not conform to gender norms placed upon women. Modern butch women, in rejecting femininity, choose not to wear makeup or to shave their body hair.
Butch identity appeared in language at the same time as femme identity, in the mid twentieth century. Butches played a key role in lesbian communities as protectors.
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They were often tasked with protecting lesbian spaces, such as bars, from male brutality and police raids Levitt et al. Butches were often the target of harassment and arrests. Butch women also struggled to hold down jobs in the s and s, making them dependent at times on femmes for financial support.
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This was in part due to the discrimination butch lesbians faced in the workforce. Despite this recorded history of workplace discrimination against butch lesbians, a common misconception surrounding butch women is that they benefit under patriarchy. It is important to distinguish however, that while butch women may present as masculine, and may even pass as men in certain contexts, they cannot benefit from male privilege as they are not males. They still experience misogyny in the form of female socialization and other sex-related oppressions such as restricted access to reproductive health care and sexual abuse.
This could be due to vulnerability among butch girls who feel different from their peers.
The study speculated that experiences of childhood sexual abuse may inform butch gender identity as girls attempt to distance themselves from their own trauma and potential for future victimization. The study was unable to determine whether these women began to develop butch gender identity before or after instances of childhood sexual abuse Lehavot et al. Acknowledging the sex-based oppression of butch women is important in distinguishing their role in lesbian communities as separate from heterosexual males in same-sex partnerships.
Observing butch experiences through a feminist lens aids in disproving the myth that butch lesbians benefit from patriarchy. Butch women are not men, did not grow up benefiting from male socialization, and therefore possess inherent differences from heterosexual men that are intrinsic to butch identity.
Gender conforming men are meeting social norms, while butch women are deconstructing them. In this way heteronormativity affects butch lesbians as well. As gender non-conformity is so closely linked to lesbianism, the pressure to conform to gender norms for women is interrelated with lesbophobia.
Butch lesbians, unable to avoid attention, are often the face of the lesbian movement and the most likely to receive harassment. Gender non-conforming women experience oppression for daring to reject carefully cultivated societal expectations of femininity imposed on women.
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This oppression is deeply rooted in misogyny when both men and women experience it. Men who choose to perform femininity are oppressed for associating themselves with women as a class. Women who reject femininity are oppressed for challenging expectations placed upon women as a class.
This oppression has historically has been experienced by means of institutionalized police harassment and brutality. Stories such as these were not uncommon in lesbian communities. Because of the violence often faced by butch women, butchness became synonymous with toughness. They were often leaders in the community and earned their role because they could protect themselves and their friends from the hostility of police and homophobic men.
A Guide to Dating Butch Women
Butch women provided much needed protection in an increasingly tempestuous environment for lesbians in the s, and their femme counterparts provided emotional relief and comfort. You ran a bath for me with sweet-smelling bubbles. You always laid out a fresh pair of white BVDs and a t-shirt for me and left me alone to wash off the first layer of shame.
I remember, it was always the same. Femmes needed protection and butches needed attention and care after protecting them. The relationships that developed in this climate were out of necessity and bound by mutual pain and by love. Lesbians were geared for struggle in the s and s. The social roles that developed within the lesbian community for butches and femmes were impacted by personal preference and interests, but they were also largely impacted by the struggles shared by all lesbians.
The s brought broader acceptance of lesbian women and relationships. However, butch lesbians, just like their femme counterparts, would trade oppression at the hands of men for a new kind of oppression at the hands of feminists.
As attitudes changed within feminist communities of the s and femmes were being harshly criticized, butch women were also criticized within some radical feminist discourse for their adoption of masculine qualities in their partnerships with femmes. For those unable to recognize sex, rather than gender presentationas the source of oppression for women, butch women may appear to benefit from patriarchy. History shows, however, that butch lesbians have experienced systematic and institutionalized oppression at the hands of men.
Butch Femme Dating. saporiviafrancigena.com is a lesbian dating site for lesbian and bisexual women. Our aim is to provide simple and completely free dating service for lesbians looking for love and friendship. Try it now and meet lesbian singles and friends. Before meeting my wife six years ago, I had little to no experience with masculine/butch women. I dated femmes, sporty girls, and what I call "in-betweeners" (kinda masculine, kinda feminine), but never a real butch. Although my wife has many feminine qualities, her presentation to the world is definitely masculine-no makeup, fresh fade, men's style clothing, etc. Login to your account. Forget password? No Account Yet? Sign Up Now! saporiviafrancigena.com is a lesbian dating site for butch and femme looking for love and friendship. Login Sign Up. Login to your account. Forget password? No Account Yet? Sign Up Now! It's easy and completely free.
Feminists of the s and s drew assumptions about butch lesbians and their relationships with their femmes that were largely uninformed by an understanding of the culture.
For those unable to recognize sex, rather than gender presentation, as the source of oppression for women, butch women may appear to benefit from patriarchy. However, the new critical approach to understanding gender gave new language and insight for butch women trying to comprehend their own gender non-conformity.
Like any good butch, my girl knows how to smirk, swagger, and otherwise make me feel tingly and helpless and swoon-y. She brings out the protector in me, making me want to hold her and take care of her forever, to journey to the end of the earth or fight off an army of orcs if I had to. Of course I said yes. Also yes. It was her first time making scallops, and they were fucking. We returned to the hotel, where we enjoyed some Riesling and brownies and got very tipsy and just started telling each other how much we loved each other, and all the little and big things that we loved about each other.
We then engaged in a night full of acts so depraved I cannot recount them here. Waking up next to her, seeing her smile, holding her and being heldthere is no happiness that can compare to my life with this woman. I look forward to many more V-days, and many more memories, with my butch, my lady, my lover. You are commenting using your WordPress. You are commenting using your Google account.
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HOW TO APPROACH BUTCH LESBIANS
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