My Sexuality Is Not Your Porn

My Sexuality Is Not Your Porn

Sorry (not sorry)
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To men who think my sexuality is an opportunity to exert dominance over me,

Take five steps back, take a nap, and have a drink of water. I was not built for you.

When my palm is pressed in the hand of another woman, it is not an art exhibit for staring. My relationship is not meant to be photographed-especially with flash. You may ruin the artwork.

I'm not sure if your intention is to use your misogyny and blatant disregard for my sexual orientation to somehow make me interested in men, but it's not working. In fact, it makes me want to cut out your tongue.

My lips on the lips of my partner is not a billboard for the Democratic party or an open invitation for your opinion. I am not a Tinder profile begging for a man to complete my ultimate fantasy. I do not need your approval or your policing. You are not meant to complete me. I am complete. So please keep walking.

Being an openly gay woman, it is not uncommon for me to be heckled on street corners while I hold my partner's hand. Oftentimes, the catcalling consists of the blatant "LESBIANS!" screamed as we walk by. How profound. Man-can-identify-homosexual-relationship? (read in caveman voice)

However, sometimes the commentary takes the shape of inappropriate gazes, mouth licking, and sexual comments. It is almost as if I can see last night's porno replaying in the head of the oppressor. It is in those moments that I feel discomfort in my sexuality- the open expression of my love. Of course, political-activist-feminist-superhero me immediately reminds myself that this behavior is an example of misogyny and the grotesque double standard of homosexual relationships. The shame and discomfort quickly vanishes but the memory does not. The street corner becomes the spot that we discuss in conversation "remember when the guy who looked like kevin federline told us he was into lesbians?"

Queer people deal with a lot of garbage. Perhaps garbage is too light of a word. Fiery garbage. Better? Literal garbage on fire. Burning us. Oppressing us. We face discrimination, hate crimes, and injustice everyday. However, I've come to realize that there is something just as evil and far less discussed: the male gaze. The ludicrous idea that men have the right to comment on or question my sexual orientation.

I am not your school science project. You cannot change my chemistry with your hyper-masculinity. I am not built to be fixed, altered, or cut open. Is it too much to ask to simply exist?

Newsflash: Questions like "do you scissor?", "who is the man in the relationship?" and "can I join?" are not only extremely sexist, but also discriminatory. Would you prefer I inject myself into your heterosexual romance? Question your identity or ask who fits into gender roles within the relationship? I didn't think so.

I don't refer to myself as a lesbian. Instead, I choose to identify as a gay woman. I know that these two things are synonymous, but the word lesbian seems to incite an over-sexualization and pornographic stereotype that I do not wish to associate with. I know I should just own the word and care less. Welcome to my life of cognitive dissonance. (If any other gay gals have ever felt this, let me know.)

So men, next time you see me on the street, be afraid. If you want to stare, remember that I'm Medusa as hell. Turn to stone, misogynist. If my hand is in the hand of another woman, remember that curled fingers also make fists. Remember that my tongue is sharp and love is not my weakness. My sexuality is not your pornography. I am not a crack meant to be paved by your over-compensation. If you're going to say anything, let oppression not roll off your tongue.

In fact, it would be better if you just let me walk.

Cover Image Credit: WND

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I'm The Girl Who'd Rather Raise A Family Than A Feminist Protest Sign

You raise your protest picket signs and I’ll raise my white picket fence.
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Social Media feeds are constantly filled with quotes on women's rights, protests with mobs of women, and an array of cleverly worded picket signs.

Good for them, standing up for their beliefs and opinions. Will I be joining my tight-knit family of the same gender?

Nope, no thank you.

Don't get me wrong, I am not going to be oblivious to my history and the advancements that women have fought to achieve. I am aware that the strides made by many women before me have provided us with voting rights, a voice, equality, and equal pay in the workforce.

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For that, I am deeply thankful. But at this day in age, I know more female managers in the workforce than male. I know more women in business than men. I know more female students in STEM programs than male students. So what’s with all the hype? We are girl bosses, we can run the world, we don’t need to fight the system anymore.

Please stop.

Because it is insulting to the rest of us girls who are okay with being homemakers, wives, or stay-at-home moms. It's dividing our sisterhood, and it needs to stop.

All these protests and strong statements make us feel like now we HAVE to obtain a power position in our career. It's our rightful duty to our sisters. And if we do not, we are a disappointment to the gender and it makes us look weak.

Weak to the point where I feel ashamed to say to a friend “I want to be a stay at home mom someday.” Then have them look at me like I must have been brain-washed by a man because that can be the only explanation. I'm tired of feeling belittled for being a traditionalist.

Why?

Because why should I feel bad for wanting to create a comfortable home for my future family, cooking for my husband, being a soccer mom, keeping my house tidy? Because honestly, I cannot wait.

I will have no problem taking my future husband’s last name, and following his lead.

The Bible appoints men to be the head of a family, and for wives to submit to their husbands. (This can be interpreted in so many ways, so don't get your panties in a bunch at the word “submit”). God specifically made women to be gentle and caring, and we should not be afraid to embrace that. God created men to be leaders with the strength to carry the weight of a family.

However, in no way does this mean that the roles cannot be flipped. If you want to take on the responsibility, by all means, you go girl. But for me personally? I'm sensitive, I cry during horror movies, I'm afraid of basements and dark rooms. I, in no way, am strong enough to take on the tasks that men have been appointed to. And I'm okay with that.

So please, let me look forward to baking cookies for bake sales and driving a mom car.

And I'll support you in your endeavors and climb to the top of the corporate ladder. It doesn't matter what side you are on as long as we support each other, because we all need some girl power.

Cover Image Credit: Unsplash

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Dear America, We Can Step Forward As A Country If We Stop Believing That Only One Belief Is Valid

It's time to promote unity and emphasize our commonalities because only through unity can we step forward as a country.

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Dear America,

2018 was a year of political strife and conflict. The left and the right fought constantly. Republicans and Democrats blamed each other for the tiniest mistakes, and there were only a small number of successful bipartisan deals. Politicians and citizens alike seemed more concerned with sticking to party platforms, even ones they truly didn't believe in, rather than compromising with the other side to improve our society.Yet all this name-calling and hatred — what does it do in the end? What does it accomplish?

We've only seen an increased polarization of American politics and an expanded hostility towards "the other side." We don't consider the well-being of each and every person in America and the bettering of our society, or the building of a stronger world for our children and grandchildren.

We spend so much time insulting each other's political beliefs that we forget probably the most important fact that links us all together: We are all human. We all share the same basic needs, the same struggles, the same moments of happiness and sadness.

And yet we are willing to put our similarities aside and only focus on our differences. We are willing to thrust ourselves into the deep anger and loathing that comes in attacking those different from us. We are willing to parry insults behind the safety of a phone screen and forget all about what makes us alike. And we are willing to gloss over the fact that we have more similarities than differences.

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Yes, political beliefs make a person. Political beliefs define the values, ideas and thoughts of a person. But sometimes, we have to reach over those beliefs, as hard as that may be, and focus on the bigger picture at hand. What will insulting someone because of those beliefs do? It definitely won't change their views or make them see things from your point of view.

It's sad and frustrating that this endless fighting doesn't even occur between two countries or two governments or two nation-states. Instead, we see arguments and strife between two family members, two neighbors or even two strangers, all living in the same community and under the same government, all sharing more similarities than differences.

We need to stop focusing so much on singular ideas. We need to stop believing in the close-minded idea that only one thought is the best thought. And instead of wasting energy trying to change other's opinions, we need to use that energy and time to promote unity and emphasize our commonalities.

These past few years have truly divided America. Let's make 2019 a year of unity, because only through unity can we step forward as a country.

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