By Berlin Sylvestre
Stereotypes exist because of observations that somebody, somewhere, made. Yes, some gay men have appeared to dress nicer than their hetero counterparts. Yes, straight women are makeup retailers’ bread and butter. But the thing about stereotypes is that there are always exceptions, yet they’re used as shortcuts around finding out what’s really true about someone. I’ve heard my fair share of notions about lesbians and there are many that some of us — if not most — find laughable. Here are a few.
We fall in love too fast.
You know the joke — What does a lesbian bring on the second date? A U-Haul! I wish that wisecrack would die already. All categories of human beings are capable (and guilty) of jumping into relationships before assessing compatibility. That mess happens to every group. In truth, the some of the Sapphic can be a picky bunch who write off other women for the simplest things, just like anyone else.
We have ‘penis envy.’
Would I love being able to pee standing up? Hell yeah. Do I think weenies are neat? I do! But as a penis-less human, am I bitter about what I have? Pssh — I don’t think trading the 8,000 nerve endings we enjoy down there for the roughly 4,000 nerve endings that guys have would be a good call. Do gay guys get jealous that they don’t have boobs? Maybe some, but they’re probably the exception too.
Fisting is the norm.
It wasn’t until a road trip with a group of straight guys that I was privy to this gem: “Lesbians LOVE fisting! Why don’t you know that, Berlin?” Perhaps I didn’t get the memo. I bet this sentiment comes from “lesbian” porn, which I can assure you is (most of the time) not made for lesbian viewers. There is a vast assortment of toys for two chicks to get their kink on (should they decide to go that route), and few women want to plunder the uncharted territories of their lover’s birth canal.
We just haven’t given dick a fair shake.
Be honest: You knew your sexual orientation before you even knew how to have sex. You know, like I know, that it doesn’t matter how good sex might be with a member of the opposite sex, it just wouldn’t feel right. My favorite response to the myth: “I don’t have to eat dog poop to know I don’t like it.” (Not that I mean to imply that sleeping with men is like that, but know what I mean.)
We all love sports.
The most fervent female sports fans I’ve met are straight girlfriends or wives of male sports fans. That’s not to say that their love of sports was cultivated to fit in with their mates, but I’ve never asked. The only lesbians I’ve met who are ardent fans are current or former athletes, or those who root for their alma mater. It could be that I just don’t hang out with sporty lesbos, but there’s something to be said that there are so many who don’t give a rat’s ass about sports.
We all know our way around a toolbox.
I can’t tell you how many times someone has asked me to assemble her bookcase or look at her broken dishwasher. When I offer that I’m pretty bad at engineering and assembly (even with instructions), I’m met with that puzzled look. “You’re a lesbian, though!” Uh huh, but not an engineer. Some lesbians are good at it, some straight women are awesome at it, some hetero guys suck at it and some lesbians do too. If a gay chick just so happens to be amazingly handy, it’s because she’s got the knack — not because she likes other women.
We all hate bisexual girls.
There are tons of lesbians who’ve been spurned by women who also like men — but lesbians who shun, or even despise, bisexual girls really ought to take a step back and think about the hypocrisy of their discrimination since lesbians can be cheaters, too. There’s a common belief that a woman who also likes men is going to cheat on her girlfriend with a man, but not only are bisexual girls capable of monogamy, there many who were cheated on by lesbian lovers. A woman’s sexual preference doesn’t determine how faithful she will be to you, nor who she likes or dislikes.
Some readers will, much like myself, think of exceptions to these exceptions. “Hey! My girlfriend likes sports!” So maybe she’s par for the archetype course on that point, but probably not all of them. Maybe this piece is rather contrarian, placing Yours Truly in the realm of yet another stereotype about lesbians.