A Straight Gal’s Guide to Lesbians

Probably the most frustrating part of law school is all of the straight girls. Don’t get me wrong ladies, you know I love ya, but so many heterosexuals have questions about the LGBT community and straight men CERTAINLY won’t ask, lest they appear to be a ghey. Ladies, however, are more open about their feelings and talk about these things.  Law school ladies are smart and articulate, which generally ups the ante on the quality of questions. Here’s a smattering of my favorite questions from straight girls (this is not limited to law school students’ questions… this spans five years for me of being out of the closet and in between the legs of a lesbian).


Q: “How do you know, you’re like, into girls? Because I check out girls. Does that mean I’m gay?”

A. No, you are probably not gay. If you want to experiment… get another straight girl, have a couple cocktails and plan a sleepover. Unless you actually like, wait… LOVE the smell of vagina, you aren’t gay.


Q: “Do you like scissoring?”



Q: “What do you count as sex? I mean, ummm…. what do you guys, do? Like together?”

A. I take back what I said earlier. Go watch queer porn.


Q: “Are you a lipstick lesbian?”

A. No, those only exist on the West Coast and a smattering in big Northeastern cities. Here in the Midwest, all the lesbians are a little sturdy and have a few years of intermural sports under their belt. I’m more of a chapstick lesbian (which I will explain later).


Q: “What’s, like, your ‘type’?”

A. EXCELLENT QUESTION! I like my women like YOU like your men… looking like men. Give me a girl with man pants, a wallet chain, and a Grandpa haircut, and you will have to hold me back from mauling him-oops!!! I mean her.

To help you out as to what types are available… I have constructed this chart:


The categories above will be described for your knowledge and convenience. You’re welcome.

Lipstick Lesbian/ Femme:  An extremely feminine woman who likes other women. Usually done up to the nines… hair done nails done. You get the picture. Femmes generally will date either extremely butch or another femme lesbian (shudder). High maintenance and generally not indigenous to Ohio.

Chapstick Lesbian: This is me, readers. Still feminine, but without too much work. Maybe played some sports, but still identifies strongly with her femininity. (Note: probably isn’t very good at sports, and just as emotionally high maintenance as the lipstick lesbian but deceptive about it).

Sporty Dyke / Softball Dyke: This part of the chart can get a little murky, but sporty dykes generally get real casual when going out. Headbands, gym shorts, cut-off tees… that’s what they wear to the bar… on a Saturday. On a Wednesday? They may be at the bar in sweatpants. These are former college/community college/high school athletes. They played soccer, softball, or women’s football, and will want to talk to you about it in-depth. Run as fast as you can, but they will probably catch you. They are fast.

Androgynous: Get ready to get confused! Androgyny covers the range of the chart to an extent, and it can touch almost every category of lesbian. By definition, this gender muddiness is extremely attractive to both ends of the spectrum. These are the women that confuse the fuck out of gay boys because they hit on them by mistake. This is right in my wheelhouse. Mmmmmmm.

Soft Butch: Soft butches generally are butch on the streets, femme in the sheets. Flat brim hats are a MUST, though beware. Some sporty lesbians also wear flat brims, and you can be a sporty dyke AND a soft butch. When we dissect the words “butch” or “femme”, there are implications present about how you are in the bedroom. Soft butches identify as women, but take on the sexual/relationship role of the man more often than not.  Hobbies of a soft butch: defending their woman through sappy or defensive Facebook statuses, mean-mugging other potential lady suitors that might hit on their woman, and generally looking tough. Well, as tough as they can look in a sports bra and cargo shorts.

Stone Butch: This is where the straight girls *sometimes* get confused. Stone butches (famously identified in Leslie Feinberg’s incredible memoir, Stone Butch Blues) generally do NOT identify with their lady parts, although they do not plan on taking the surgical leap into trans-guy territory… at least not currently. Get out your strap on’s, kids, stone butches are MY SHIT. Love ’em.

Boi: Bois go by Bois, Bros, or any “man-erism”! This is where we teeter as a sexual orientation, dipping our toes in the deep end of gender transition. These are biological females who identify as males, prefer male pronouns, may even take testosterone boosters, but do not want to have surgeries to alter their biology currently. The next concrete step is synthetic testosterone and becoming a transgendered male. Again, mmmmmm. Ok, ok… I’ll stop creeping you out.

The next question on every straight gal’s lips:

Q: “If you like girls that look or act like guys, why not just date gays?”

A. I don’t know. Why is the sky blue? Why are my girlfriend’s sweatpants so comfy ? The neuro-center of attraction in my brain may be wired different than yours… I could not be more thrilled about it.

Readers, there are exceptions to everything. Not everyone will fit into every or any category, just like not all straight girls ask offensive questions. We are all unique lesbian snowflakes floating around this dykey midwestern city. Also, there are multiple subcategories I did NOT get into… like power lesbians, studs, subs, doms, bulls, etc. I am not made of time, readers… remember I am in law school. But I hope this chart gives you at least a general concept of not only where I stand in the spectrum, but where your awkward lesbian neighbor stands, or your second cousin Krsytal (who of course goes by “Kris”).  Happy asking, straight girls.

And remember, if you have any more questions, buy me a martini and we can talk about it.

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