“I am attracted to gay/queer women and I strongly identify as such” (anonymous)

I am a biological male. My gender identity is male. I do not consider myself gay, straight or bi. I do not consider myself transgender, being very comfortable with my biological assignment, although sometimes it feels a little at odds with my emotional and sexual self. I am not a submissive and I am not a domme. I am not attracted to men. I am occasionally attracted to heterosexual and/or bisexual women. I am, and have always been, emotionally, physically and spiritually attracted to gay/queer women, and I strongly identify as such. I do not identify as a “male lesbian” or a lesbian in a male body. I do not like the term “guydyke” either, the closest term that I think that comes close to explaining my orientation is “XY Dyke”.

From a very early age I have known, loved and been nurtured by women and in particular have always been drawn to gay women. There was one couple in particular whom I was very close to as a child. They were in their mid forties and had been together since they were at university. They had one of the most genuine bonds of love and trust I have ever seen. I would spend hour upon hour with them. I just liked being in their company, learning things from them, mucking about in their garden, and playing with their dogs. They were the kind of people I admired, respected and dreamt of becoming one day. I was also at the age where I was blind to sexual and gender orientation, I just knew that there was something different about them and about me as well.

Later as I became sexually self aware, I realised that I was not particularly attracted to the girls that I was supposed to be attracted to. People assumed I was gay. I assumed I was gay. I knew I was not attracted to men; I was attracted to women, but not the ones that society wanted me to be attracted to. I did not and still do not like being in male and /or “straight” environments. I just do not get it and I am always the outsider in such situations. There is no commonality, no points of reference and no interest for me. I have always got on better with and related better to women in general. Most of my good friends are women. All my really close friends, my non-biological family, are gay women.

It was not easy admitting to myself that I am sexually and emotionally attracted to gay women. People assume that all straight men are attracted to lesbians. Straight men, as a rule, are aroused by straight or bi women having sex with each other. Hetero porn with lesbian scenes is a prime example of this, and we all know porn sex is not real sex, mainly because it lacks the all-important emotional component. Some people, lesbian, gay, straight, bi etc, find it laughable at best and offensive at worst that a “straight man” is attracted to gay women. They assume it is fetishistic, deluded and insulting to the LGBT community at large and their own sensibilities and integrity. They assume it is because I have the idea that all lesbians really need a man, need a penis. Some people also think that I am gay and have not yet had the courage to admit that to myself. They think that me being attracted to “masculine or butch” women is just a sign that I am not ready to “move up to men” but that it is an inevitable step. (I have had gay and straight men, and sometimes women say this to me many times.)

For the longest time, I thought they were right in their thinking. Then I became friends with a very inspirational woman. A very inspirational gay woman, who taught me to follow my heart and soul to whatever end and to trust my instincts. I ended up trusting myself, and we became lovers. For some reason, this seemed to be a very big deal for everybody except the two of us. Most people, our fiends etc, were loving and supportive but the world at large was against us from the start. Straight men seemed baffled and derisive. Most straight women seemed angry and vindictive. Some gay men were amused and dismissive. A small but vocal minority of gay women were hostile, defensive and excommunicated this woman from this community because she was seen as a traitor to her sexuality and her gender. These external factors ultimately drove us apart. I was resentful because these people had come between me and someone I loved, and still love, dearly. They had helped to destroy the best, most fulfilling and happiest relationship I had had up until that point in my life. Yet, despite all this the thing that upset me most was the hypocrisy.

I learnt from this episode. I did a lot of soul searching and asked myself many hard and difficult questions, the kind of questions that any gay/queer person knows all too well. After a time and a lot of heartache and heartbreak I learnt to only listen to myself, to be who I was meant to be and not what others wanted me to be. I learnt to be the happiest human being I could be by sharing my love with those that I want to, those that I love and care for and those that are of a like mind. Being dishonest to your self, especially for the spurious reasons of conformity and not wanting to upset people simply by being yourself, is the greatest of sins. Be true to your own sense of integrity.

“Why gay women?” That is a question I am asked all the time and I do not mind answering it anymore. I was raised by strong, powerful, intelligent women who knew their own minds and knew who they were and who they wanted to be. These women were beholden to their own principles and their own integrity. I learnt this at my mother’s knee and I continued to learn this from all the amazing women that I have had the pleasure to meet and commune with. These are traits that are not unique to gay women but that are more prevalent simply because of how society treats people who are not “normal” or subvert the status quo. Also, I find the androgynous, “masculine” and dyky extremely attractive, both aesthetically and sexually. I always have and always will, and I am (now) proud to say as much. The standard norms of what is sexy, alluring and acceptable for a woman are lost on me, happily.

Since that time I have been in many mutually fulfilling, genuine, honest, caring and wonderfully free relationships with women who like women. I would like to thank each and every one of them for looking beyond gender, sexual labels and community dogma and instead following their own moral, ethical, emotional and sexual compasses. I just wish at we all could be a little more open, honest and mindful of ours and others inner selves, inner voices and inner dreams and strive to make them all content, vocal and tangible.