In my post last week I discussed how linking the symbol for Female with another symbol for Female does not equal Lesbian, it merely denoted two Females of any sexual orientation together:
A well known, but until now unexplained commonality among Lesbians (no matter the variety) is feeling different from our earliest memories. Something that goes well beyond not merely fitting in with kids our own age. Our different is SO different, that as children (teens/adults even) we cannot locate ourselves anywhere. We are told we're girls, but nowhere among girls do we exist. This is often something that is pigeon holed as only occurring among Girls who are tomboys or baby Dykes or baby Butches, but the truth is, it occurs among ALL Lesbians, even the girliest of Dykes.Why? The simple answer is because we're Lesbians, but what does that really mean beyond attraction?
The very thing that makes us Lesbian is discussed somewhere between rarely and never and that thing is our brain, singular. We do not need two females or even two Lesbians, to be Lesbian. Lesbian isnt an action, Lesbian is a noun. Our Lesbianism was mapped out as soon as our father's sperm met our mother's egg. And based on that gene map, our Lesbianism, with each trimester created us accordingly. Thats the dry clinical simplistic breakdown of Lesbian, but how does that translate in the world as we know it for Lesbians?
One does not have to be a child psychologist to know that behavioural differences among general heterosexual males and heterosexual females is recognizable in infants/babies. As Lesbians, we've all been told childhood stories by our mothers/fathers and other family how we werent ever like normal girls. How we were more action oriented than Girls, more interested in how our toys worked rather than the toys themselves. Not doll or baby doll crazy. Crawled/walked before our sisters or girl relatives. Were either fine with playing alone or preferred it. More maverick than mainstream. Mrs Dirt for example, preferred girly little dresses, but her maverick behaviour for climbing trees or over barbed wire fences forced her mother to put her into pants more often than she would have liked. Girliness or lack there of (per heterosexual norms) does not define the Lesbian, but having a Lesbian brain does Re-define/unhinge girliness or lack thereof (per heterosexual norms) in Lesbian children.
It is this doing Girl differently that sets Lesbian children apart from Girls. We as Lesbian children know we're different and once around Girls our age, we know they know it! Usually by age three, Lesbians (no matter the variety) do not comfortably identify with the category Girl. Girls may resemble us, Girls may even dress like us, but we know they are not us. Girls do not simply confuse boys, Girls confuse Lesbian children as well, a pattern of behaviour that doesnt change as Girls age!
Some general but accurate early observations every dyke has noticed about Girls by age five at the latest:
- Girls generally get upset quite easily.
- Girls seem always to be upset about something.
- Girls are catty about other girls.
- Girls often tattle to authority figures.
- Girls are indirect about their feelings.
- Girls get horribly jealous over friendships with other girls.
- Girls act silly or odd around boys.
Some general but accurate truisms about Lesbian children:
- Lesbian children are not easily riled.
- Lesbian children miss a lot of spoken and unspoken messages/rules Girls apply to other Girls.
- Lesbian children do not often confine their friendships/interests to Girls or Boys.
- In the same token, Lesbian children feel they do not fit into either category of Girl or Boy.
- Lesbian children say what they mean and mean what they say.
- Lesbian children lack adequate language for their feelings and behaviour.
- Lesbian children tend to be more independent.
- Lesbian children often question social rules/concepts or outright ignore them.
It also signifies to Lesbian children that we are in fact NOT Girls:
- Because Lesbian children know the category Girl does not adequately describe us/fit us.
- Because Girls never fully accept Lesbian children as one of their own.
- Because Girls view/treat Lesbian children as alien or other.
It is a gargantuan disservice to label Lesbian children Girls. Girl implies much more than simply the clothes worn or toy preference, it specifically delineates heterosexuality and the schema that goes along with. Lesbian children are NOT heterosexual, therefore Lesbian children by nature are not Girls. Girl is the first (in a long line) of experiences Lesbian children undergo with mental and some cases physical discomfort. An uncomfortableness that is nameless, because as Lesbian children we are nameless.
This is the first post in a three part series I am writing to help Lesbians be better understood, to help Lesbians better understand themselves in a heterosexually dominated world and to give a voice to the namelessness that begins in Lesbian childhood and is now haunting Lesbians into transition rather than inspiring Lesbian survival as had in previous centuries.