Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The Totality of Femme

I roll out of bed leaving a warm dream filled Butch behind, its early, a good hour before my baby needs to arise. She can shower, dress sip a cup of coffee and be off in 30 minutes. Me? I need to get up now if I have any hope putting myself together before work. I go through my morning routine of showing, shaving, plucking, putting on make-up and dressing along with having the coffee ready before my Butch awakes. Many moons ago with my then routine of a quick shower and towel dried hair I could have slept in with my Butch, but those would have and were blue moons because there was no Butch. I let the lesbian feminism I so wanted to be a part of convince me Butch women were products of patriarchy, the enemy, along with my salon styled hair, my pretty clothes, my make up, my heelz, in being Femme. I gave it all up in favour of "sisterhood" and "solidarity", believing I was part of something that would change the world. Instead, it only changed me.

My plain look didnt stop the men with leering gazes from asking me what book I was reading or how I'm liking the change in weather, all in some vain hope that the book or warm sun was going to be their vile accomplice in getting me into bed. My plain look didnt add any numbers to my weekly paycheck. My plain look didnt get the federal government to pass an equal right amendment. My plain look didnt stop men from abusing and raping women and children. My plain look didnt change me from being a woman therefore "not management" material. My plain look didnt even grant me the lesbian visibility it promised. What my plain look did do is alienate me from me and me from the Butch women I desired with my whole being. For a while at least, but just for a while.

Today as I kiss my Butch and leave the house I leave behind as I take her with me the Femme I swore long ago I would NEVER again remove. But while I do not take her off, neither is she recognized, anywhere I go. Even when I out myself to people;  "oh are you married"? " no I'm a lesbian", she remains unseen. Unseen because the totality of Femme is invisible even in the flesh. Example: I go to a function through work where I meet people that I do not work with. I mix, I mingle where upon at some point in the evening a man ask me "what does your husband do"? I politely reply "My girlfriend works in so and so. I'm a Femme lesbian" The man seems slightly taken aback and more than slightly interested. Before I can say another word a female co-worker of mine comes up and the man quickly says "oh is this your girlfriend"? Then I do what I always do, I open my purse, pull out my pocket book to the picture I have of my Butch and I and say "no this is my girlfriend"! The man says nothing more and walks away seemingly in confusion and disgust.

Even when declaring Femme lesbian I remain invisible, all that is visible is "lesbian". If I strictly say "Femme", people go blank, when I add lesbian they immediately go to girl on girl porn. This is what I mean about the totality of Femme. Younger Femmes, self hating Femmes are so quick these days to separate themselves from Butches. But Butch is a major component in MY totality of Femme. Because if she doesnt come into view then I remain invisible, the lesbian I am remains invisible. I'm not interested in being the star in the fantasies of straight men! That little "lesbian" bubble they all carry around in their brains to please their pricks quickly goes POP when they see my Butch. The "lesbian" thrill loses its appeal, then the lesbian we both are becomes invisible.

This is a typical day for me as a Femme, explaining, ignoring, half explaining, half ignoring all to no avail, all to remain unseen in my entirety. Most days I do not think about it, some days I think too much about it and other days I feel a weariness. I feel a burden and the weight of that burden which seems to bury me with yet another layer of invisibility, another layer my painted nails have to struggle to claw through. But when I put my key into the lock of our house, when I walk through that door and my Butch greets me with a hug and kiss I become whole once again. I'm seen. I exist. I'm loved.



  1. I think this a great piece and interesting insight into how you (and possibly other Butches) view Femmes.

    But I feel as though you are saying Femmes don't have an identity outside of their relationships. It's almost as if you are saying Femme is not a complete identity, like a Femme is only a Femme when with a Butch.

  2. Femme and Butch are dependent (for different reasons) upon one another for lesbian visibility, not identity, thats what I was writing about.


  3. Thanks Dirt for clarifying. I re-read the post with your comment in mind and it changed my perspective on it. I agree with what you're saying in regards in visibility. Femmes do get more visibility and in some respects "street-cred" from the Lesbian/Straight community when they are with their Butch.

    Also, I think that the mix or dance of Butch and Femme energy is really special. I don't think there is anything else like it. It's the epitome of the Yin Yang symbol. It is balance and completion.

    I think that Femmes have a responsibility to support our Butches. Butches most definitely experience direct attacks from a number of different places for their appearance. And we need to comfort and boost them up – be reassuring and proud. I noticed that was a big point in your post. This Femme is very proud of her Butch and often mentions her with pride.

    (I'm the same Anon as before. I normally don't post anonymously, but I fear being blackballed from my community if they knew I read your blog and let alone positively commented. I guess reading your blog is a dirty little pleasure for me. And yes, I know it's cowardly and not the behavior of a strong and proud Femme. But there are very few places where I am welcome and I don't want to lose those. I admire your strength and courage in being so open with your beliefs, even when it leads to being ridiculed and ostracized from the Butch/Femme community.)

  4. Thanks for your comments Anon, I hope in the near future you can find your voice regardless of the possible consequences when and where you use it. The fact that you havent here and now only goes to hurt us all.