Thursday, December 02, 2010


I wasn't always Femme.

Heck, I spent many years of my life playing the straight girl I thought I had to be to make everyone happy. Until I realised I wasn't happy. I came out, cut my hair short, wore cargo pants and drank cheap beer.

Cos isn't that what lesbians do?

And then I saw 'Bound'.

I wanted to be Violet (Jennifer Tilly). I wanted to date Corky (Gina Gershon). It resonated.
I started wearing skirts and makeup (it wasn't pretty at first, but some Drag Queens helped me on my way). Baby steps.
I got hassled by my feminist-lesbian-seperatist flat mates for buying into the patriarchy.

The image of Corky and Violet never went away.

Girlfriends came and went. They were always kinda butch. They all had a thing for the slightly more feminine girls. They liked women in heels.

I met others like me. I took inspiration from their pride, fierceness and damn-good dress sense.

I still got derided and ignored by the mainstream dykes (the gaystream). I still do. The majority of people out there think i'm straight.

But I don't care anymore - it might have taken 10 years but i'm finally Violet.


Moxie Tonic said...

What can I say, some of us are just girly girls! As difficult as it must have been to come to terms with your sexuality in a less than understanding world, how frustrating to then feel like now there's this other mold you have to force yourself into. So glad you have stayed true to yourself, and grown into the whole person that you were meant to be!

Cheri Pinktrix said...

I've always been a femme. Butchness has never been that appealing to me. Glad to see other femmes out there exist! I have gotten 'straight taxed' at gay bars before, but they can eat my shorts.

Emily said...

Yay Violet!

I had the whole butch thing when I first came out, not realising there were other ways of being a dyke. Now I'm comfortable somewhere in between, and with my girl beautifully boyish. Suits us both, and doesn't stop me being the one to deal with the spiders!

Justine said...

Sorry Bex, as your sister - you are such a better femme than butch, but I love you whatever your dress sense xx

Pixie Needle said...

Hi- I found your blog through craftster. I just wanted to say I loved your high waisted skirt and I really love your blog.

Lisa said...

Hello there. A lot of this resonates with me, though I'm a bi femme rather than a lesbian. Femme invisibility is a massive problem - in fact one of my friends wears a necklace that reads "femme" seems to work for her. ;-)

Thank you for this lovely post and for a wonderful blog generally. I'm planning a blog of the month on mine and would like to make your blog the first one I mention. Would that be OK?

Bex said...

Aww thank you lovely peeps. And Lisa, I'm so flattered! (lovely to meet another queer-femme out there)

geekette said...

i consider myself neither butch nor femme...i don't know what that makes me...i hate the division there is in the lgbt community...dykes hate the gayboys, the "gaystream" hates the whole butch-femme thing...they all seem to hate the transgendered bothers me. don't we have enough trouble from the breeders (lol which i say with as little scorn as possible...i just like that word :) ) without hating eachother?

i'm glad you found your corky :)
happiness should be all that matters...

BaronessVonVintage said...

This is a really fascinating and important post. I'm straight but have taught many gender and queer studies lit and culture classes and this really speaks to the fact that Western culture (whether looking at the gay or straight mainstreams), STILL try to force problematic equations on people. Example: if a man is not stereotypically "masculine" by our culture's socially produced notions of whatever that means, his sexual orientation is called into question (when in fact there are lots of straight non-hegemonic men out there and lots of gay "manly" men). By the same token, just as in the "gaystream," an equation has emerged that lesbian must=butch dyke, if you are a straight woman who feels uncomfortable with society's mainstream definitions of hegemonic femininity, you may be assumed to be a lesbian (esp. amongst the rednecks in my prairie hometown where, just by having short hair, a straight gal like myself was immediately pinned as a dyke more times than I can count). In short, these essentialist notions of gender and sexuality need to be questioned and used or discarded as each individual sees fit. Whether gay or straight, if we let anyone other than ourselves define our gender-sex-sexuality identities, the results can be disastrous. Good on you for being YOU!

BaronessVonVintage said...

Oh, just for fun, as a non-breeding straight femme with a serious tomboy side, I have to smirk at the "breeder" comment.

Lisa In Oregon said...

A great post! Also a queer Femme (I don't make ANYONE'S gaydar go off, LOL)- the whole post resonated...the cutting my hair and trying to "be lesbian" after being told I'd never get a gf if I had long hair and wore makeup - I hated every minute. Now I am me, happily so, happily partnered and fine with who I am...but sometimes, I wish I had a sign on my forehead that said, Yes I am TOO queer!

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