I’ve been thinking about writing this essay for a while, but I’ve been putting it off because I feel like a traitor. Since coming out, I’ve struggled with feeling like an outsider in the gay community. Now, I feel totally secure in identifying as a lesbian and when I’m hanging out with a bunch of queer chicks nothing seems amiss. But I can’t help but notice that there are a bunch of things about gay gals that most people don’t know. And, honestly, that’s because we don’t want you to know. They are guarded secrets that we don’t even talk about amongst ourselves. But, lucky for you, I’ve always sucked at keeping secrets. So here goes.
1. Ask any lesbian about online dating sites and she will vehemently deny that she has ever used them. However, I’ve gotten close with a number of gay chicks who’ve later confided in me that they totally met their girlfriend on Craigslist, Match.com or some other online portal of embarrassment. This is a deep, dark secret of many lesbian couples. I almost feel like I’m breaking some code of silence just by writing about it.
If you are looking out for signs, you can tell when a couple is lying about how they met. Often, the two will furtively glance at each other before answering. The most common internet cover-up is, “We met through a mutual friend that neither of us speaks to anymore.” Meeting in a random public location is another favorite.
I’m totally not judging and I wouldn’t encourage you to go around trying to figure out which of your lesbian pals uses the web to find love. Have some sympathy! It’s pretty hard for lesbians to meet other lesbians. There are almost no places where that cute girl you’re ogling is guaranteed to be gay. For girls that look very feminine, everyone assumes they’re straight. The only other option is a gay bar and late-night, drunken hookups are not exactly the first steps down relationship road.
Oh, and for the record, I’ve never, ever used a dating site. And, no, I wouldn’t admit it if I had.
2. Despite the fact that we complain about how society objectifies and sexualizes women, many of us really, really enjoy lesbian porn. My girlfriend (sorry, sweetie) probably watches it more than most men. Sometimes when I’m, er, bored I spend hours looking at nude pictures of women. Of course, it’s always for an art class … or something. I’d never do it just for fun. After all, I’m an empowered feminist.
3. Many of us have this whole sexual superiority thing going on that we don’t want you to know about. Amongst ourselves, some of us will openly and freely admit that we think lesbians have far better sex than any heterosexual couple could ever have. Of course, in mixed company we’d never say such an offensive thing. My girlfriend once told me she thinks gay sex goes “beyond” straight sex because it’s so much more equal. I (privately) agree. After all, I have the same equipment as her so I have a better idea about what to do with it. I hope.
4. The vast majority of lesbians have short fingernails because, otherwise, sex gets a little painful. I’m not sure why we keep this “sign” on the DL. Maybe it’s because there are too many obnoxious stereotypes out there as it is. Short fingernails are like a secret code. In fact, it’s one of the first things I look at if I’m not sure about a woman’s sexuality. Don’t tell anyone, OK?
5. We think some guys are really sexy but your chances of hearing a gay gal say, “That guy is so hot!” are slim to none. We don’t want to give you (or anyone else) the wrong idea. For example, I think Adrian Grenier is ridiculously and unfathomably attractive. My girlfriend feels the same way about Brad Pitt. She hung out with some dude a few days ago and later, she described him as “so hot” at least ten times. Do we want to have sex with these beautiful men? No thanks. Maybe a kiss? Usually not. But, yeah, we can appreciate them (almost) as much as the next lady.
6. I hate Facebook lesbians, girls who kiss each other in bars for attention and the celebrity obsession with girl-on-girl action. But, I’m going to be honest with you. My girlfriend and I know we’re hot. And while I will complain endlessly about the stares, part of me is a little, tiny bit flattered. If you want me to be completely real, I have made out with my girl in front of her guy friends before, knowing they were getting totally turned on. I’m kind of an exhibitionist. And there is some really crazy part of me that likes rubbing in dudes’ faces something they can’t have. Twisted? Totally. But, c’mon, guys have been getting what they want for years. Why can’t I have a little fun?
Whew, if this is even half as informative as it is embarrassing then I’ve accomplished something huge. And, let’s be clear: I am not judging and I’m definitely not admitting anything. I just hope none of the bouncers at my favorite NYC gay bars read it. I don’t want to find new places to frequent.