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Strong gf : actuallesbians

Strong gf : actuallesbians

A place for discussions for and by cis and trans lesbians, bisexual girls, chicks who like chicks, bi-curious folks, dykes, butches, femmes, girls who kiss girls, birls, bois, aces, LGBT allies, and anyone else interested! Our subreddit is named r/actuallesbians because r/lesbians is not really for or by lesbians–it was meant to be a joke. We’re not a militant or exclusive group, so feel free to join up!

Alex and Kelly Take a Big Step

Alex and Kelly Take a Big Step

Welcome! Thanks for joining me here in this Supergirl recap for episode 603: “Phantom Menace.” Let’s dive right in, shall we?

Previously on Supergirl, Brainy thought he had to work with Lex to ultimately stop him and it got him in a heap of trouble, Lex sent Supergirl to the Phantom Zone, Team Super tried to get her back but failed spectacularly, and Lex was found not guilty of his attempted MASS MURDER because the justice system and also maybe the structure of this TV show is broken.

This week, Kara is set on her plan to hitch a ride on a phantom to get through a portal to see where it leads, but things go sideways and she hurts her leg, and her and her dad find themselves in a crater with some raiders. While they’re being tied up, a woman drops in and manages to convince the men to leave with a little trickery. The men take Father Zor-El but leave Kara behind, and she’s grateful.

Supergirl recap: Kara looks up at her new friend.

“Honestly he looks nothing like I remember so we can probably just let him go.”

Back on Earth, Brainy is working in the Tower, talking to himself while scanning the Phantom Zone for signs of a petite blonde heroine, when Lex comes on the TV. Brainy starts to lose it, screaming at the news coverage, almost punching the image of Lex, but luckily before Lex can claim the TV as another victim, the Martians swoop in. They had found Silas at his apartment and he told them a phantom had hitched a ride inside him and now is loose in the world. Silas says his roommates are missing and J’onn needs his team but looks around and finds his numbers lacking. Brainy explains that Nia is taking over for Kara at a reporter retreat (which let’s be honest she probably would have had to do for Kara even if she were here) and Alex hasn’t come in yet today, so J’onn calls her.

But Alex isn’t answering her phone right now. No, she’s wallowing in her grief and watching Kara’s Legacy Download, listening to Kara talk about how Alex was her first companion on this Earth and taught her how to be human. Kelly comes in and asks why she’s watching it now when she wouldn’t before, and Alex says before she didn’t think Kara is gone, now she does.

Kelly comforts Alex.

Alex was making some really good points here like, “What’s the point of anything” and also “Why bother trying.”

Alex thinks Kara is in hell because of her, and what’s the point in doing anything if she can’t save her baby sister. Kelly comforts her, says that she was upset when Obsidian folded but found helping people made her feel better. Showing up for other people can be easier than showing up for ourselves. Only she can decide to keep going, but she had to make that choice.

Across town, Lena arrives at her office to find her brother lurking like a bad stench.

Supergirl recap: Lena looks comfortable but angry. Also: BRAID.

I love that as Lena finds herself, she is starting to loosen up, emotionally and re: her outfit/hair choices.

He’s mad about being shut out of his company but Lena is dead-set on protecting not only LuthorCorp but also the world from him. She doesn’t want to give him more power so she’ll fight him at every turn. Lex says he has tricks of his own and he will win this game she’s playing, he’s seen the Queen’s Gambit and thinks he knows how it ends.

 Lena glares at Lex.

“How dare you say anything even remotely related to Oliver Queen in my presence.”

At first I thought this was going to be Lena’s new role despite finally knowing Supergirl’s identity, that she was going to just be stuck alone in Lex’s web, but luckily I was wrong.

After her pep talk from Kelly, Alex does manage to pull herself together enough to make it to work, where J’onna and Brainy have figured out the Phantom that was let loose can make new Phantoms now, and probably started with Silas’s roommates. Unfortunately they get to watch the process in real time when Silas’s soul leaves his body and he becomes a Phantom before their very eyes. As the Phantom rises up and attacks, Alex has flashbacks about the last time they fought Phantoms which makes her think of Kara and how she might be gone forever and Alex just…freezes. Alex “would jump off a balcony because it looks cool” Danvers can’t move for fear she’ll be unable to save her friends, that she’ll lose someone else she cares about.

Supergirl recap: Alex looks stunned.

This is what I’m going to look like the first time I’m in a social situation with more than one other person.

But luckily the team rallies and stops the Phantom before that happens. There’s a lot of totems shmotems here about the history of the Phantoms and their alien race and how all this metaphysics works but the important thing is, they come up with a plan to stop the Phantoms before they start a Phantom apocalypse.

Alex goes out on to the Feelings Balcony and J’onn joins her for a Space Dad pep talk. Alex doesn’t understand how he can soldier on, but J’onn says marching forward is the only way to get Kara back. But Alex is too tired to march.

Supergirl recap: Alex looks incredulous.

Me @ my day job when they want me to do things despite the world falling apart.

Back up in the prison world, Kara is trying to stand on her broken leg, unused to this pain but trying to power through it, and blaming herself for her dad getting kidnapped. The new lady says that the men who took her father are going to sacrifice him to a terrible monster, but the good news is there’s some time before that will happen.

They decide to get to know each other, Kara giving her the spiel from the top of every episode and explaining how at one point she thought there were only two Krytponians left in the universe but then they started popping up like weeds so that’s no longer the case. The lady introduces herself as Nyxly, a fifth dimensional imp like Mxyzptlk. She has a power dampening cuff on so she’s not at full power but she has a crystal ball she can use to scry on dad, who seems fine for now.

Nyxly looks into her crystal ball.

Don’t even worry that this looks exactly like the one the Wicked Witch of the West had, just don’t think about it.

Down on Earth, M’gann has an idea to contain the Phantoms, but J’onn rudely yells at her to not, which is a surefire way to get someone to do something, in my humble opinion.

Lena is working in her office when Brainy holograms in to discuss what they’re adorably calling Operation: Vengeance, aka their plan to take Lex down. They talk about how they already locked Lex out of some aspects of the company, and the next step is to take money from one of his shady fake foundations he uses to buy Kasnian weapons and donate it to a children’s hospital.

Supergirl recap: Lena smiles a mischievous smile.

Mischievous looks good on her. Well fine literally everything looks good on her but I like this a lot.

And so Brainy gets to hacking for her. A formidable duo of intelligence, these two.

But then Brainy hears something happening in the Tower so he hangs up his hologram and goes to see what’s happening. The Phantom looks like he’s trying to head south even though he’s in a containment unit, and Alex scans the news and finds an alert for a disturbance at a warehouse to the south. They turn to tell M’gann to suit up and realize she left without them, against J’onn’s orders. Which frankly doesn’t feel like something M’gann would do? But maybe when they melded souls she caught some of J’onn’s “my way or the highway” tendencies.

It does turn out J’onn was right this time though, because when they find M’gann at the warehouse, the Phantoms are portaling away and M’gann has been scratched. If they don’t do something fast, she’s going to start luring teen girls into her watery underground lair.

In the Phantom Zone, Nyxly tells Kara that she was sent to the prison realm for no reason other than she was the daughter of a mad king. Her father was a power-hungry, paranoid narcissist who got rid of his heirs, killing Nyxly’s older brother and banishing her.

While she tells her princess origin story, she builds Kara a splint and a crutch, all while calling herself useless without her powers. But Kara points out that she has saved her twice over at this point, and that Nyxly is resourceful. They might not have their powers, but they have each other and they have the one thing this place hasn’t taken from them yet: Hope.

Kara looks determined.

Literally a light in the dark, this one.

In his lackluster lair of lethargy, Lex is trying to strike a deal with Kasnian weapons dealers when he realizes his accounts have been drained and donated to the Luthor wing of the children’s hospital. And what happens next Lena learns about on the news: Lex sets fire to the wing and publicly blames Lena, saying she was in charge of the most recent updates to the hospital.

Supergirl recap: Lena looks horrified

I don’t know how anyone ever thought this precious bean was a villain.

While Kara gets some rest, the princess imp uses her crystal ball and Kara’s inspirational speech to access her powers again and get the power dampener off; she has her magic back. She tells Kara she’s been having flashes of parallel lives, likely due to CRISIS, but that she was happy to save Kara because she has a good feeling about her. And now that she has her magic, she’s more ready than ever to help. And Kara is so happy she was able to spread hope in such a dark, cold place.

Supergirl smiles in the shadows of the Phantom Zone

I can’t wait until Kara is back under the yellow sun, partially so she has her powers back, but also because there are TOO MANY SHADOWS FOR SCREENSHOTS.

Lena and Brainy are in the Tower bonding over their hatred of Lex and Lena off-handedly says she wishes she could kill him and Brainy takes that idea and runs with it, serious as can be about taking him out once and for all, and while Lena watches Brainy devolve before her eyes, her expression goes from rage to a soft empathy.

Supergirl recap: Lena looks empathetic toward an upset Brainy.

As much as it hurts to watch Brainy break, it must feel so nice to realize how very not alone she is.

Brainy doesn’t understand why she’d oppose this plan, she’s already killed him once. But Lena remembers that timeline and how it broke her, turned her into the darkest version of herself, made her more like him than she ever wanted to be. Brainy is having a hard time dealing with these feelings, the depth and weight of them being fairly new to him. His rage feels like an endless ocean, he wants it to go away, he wants to shut it all off.

Next page: Sentinel babes!

“I’ll Build You a Bookcase” Celebrates Diverse Families and a Love of Reading

Mombian - Sustenance for Lesbian Moms Since 2005

A lovely rhyming story shows diverse people and families, including one with two dads, as it seeks to inspire a lifetime love of reading. It’s also available in four different bilingual editions!

I'll Build You a Bookcase - Jean Ciborowski Fahey

“I’ll build you a bookcase before you are born / that’s made out of boxes from shoes that were worn,” says a pregnant Black woman at the beginning of I’ll Build You a Bookcase, by Jean Ciborowski Fahey and illustrated by Simone Shin. On the next spread, two White dads watching their infant pick up the story, “for books we will read in the soft morning light / and books we will read before saying good night.” Each subsequent spread introduces us to parents building bookcases and sharing something about how they’ll interact with their children around them—filling them with library books, putting their phones away while they read, exploring the world through books, and reading the same story “for the tenth time.” One spread touts building bookcases for other kids, too, and subsequent pages show neighborhood library boxes being enjoyed by adults and children in the community.

The people depicted have a variety of skin tones and range in age from infant to elderly. We see the two-dad couple as well as a mom-dad one, single parents, and grandparents. There are no obviously queer women in it, but one woman wears overalls and dons an Amelia Earhart-style pilot’s cap and goggles while playing make-believe with her child, giving her a lesbian-ish vibe (or maybe that’s just my wishful thinking). One child is in a wheelchair and two parents wear hijabs. Two final pages offer parents tips on “How to read with your child.”

The book is available in Spanish-English, Mandarin-English, Arabic-English, and Vietnamese-English editions. It came into being after innovation program OpenIDEO, with funding from the William Penn Foundation, launched the Early Childhood Book Challenge in 2019, “seeking an original story for children ages 0 to 3 that would inspire children and their caregivers to read together,” publisher Lee & Low explained. Fahey, an early literacy specialist and parent educator, submitted a story that was selected by a committee of literacy and family engagement experts. The publisher, Lee & Low, is selling the book through the usual online and offline channels—and the foundation’s funding will allow 25,000 copies to be distributed free to Philadelphia families with young children.

My only criticism is that the book feels aimed at an age (0 to 3 years) where a board book edition would have made sense. So far, however, the Spanish-English version is only available in hardback and the other editions in paperback. Nevertheless, it’s one of those books that would make a great first book gift for a family with a new baby. As a book nerd myself, I love books about books, and wish I’d had this celebration of diversity, community, and reading for my own son when he was a toddler.

(For another recent queer-inclusive kids’ book that features a free library box, check out The Little Library, which features a nonbinary librarian.)

my long distance gf was worried about daylight savings coming up so i made a spreadsheet about it to make her feel better

my long distance gf was worried about daylight savings coming

A place for discussions for and by cis and trans lesbians, bisexual girls, chicks who like chicks, bi-curious folks, dykes, butches, femmes, girls who kiss girls, birls, bois, aces, LGBT allies, and anyone else interested! Our subreddit is named r/actuallesbians because r/lesbians is not really for or by lesbians–it was meant to be a joke. We’re not a militant or exclusive group, so feel free to join up!

Why is Bianca Del Rio Not On The First Drag Cruise to Gay Puerto Vallarta?

Why is Bianca Del Rio Not On The First Drag

Drag Superstar and self proclaimed “Clown In A Gown” sensation Bianca Del Rio Tells GAYPV Travel Magazine about her first appearance in Puerto Vallarta. The Almar Group is bringing her as part of the entertainment during Puerto Vallarta Gay Pride held May 24-31, 2021. However, she is NOT included in the group of legendary drag superstars headlining the 1st drag cruise stopping in Puerto Vallarta in January 2022.

Was there a catfight over top billing credits Or was it something more deliberate by Bianca Del Rio? Is Lady Bunny pissed and not speaking to Bianca anymore? Find out why here.

Photo credit of Bianca Matt Crockett

Six places to take your ‘southernmost selfie’ on a dream vacation in Key West / GayCities Blog

Six places to take your ‘southernmost selfie’ on a dream

GayCities encourages you to stay safe during the Covid 19 pandemic. If you choose to travel, we recommend that you follow all CDC Travel Guidelines and adhere closely to all local regulations regarding face coverings, social distancing and other safety measures.

Famed for having one of the largest per capita LGBTQ populations of any city in the U.S., Key West is cherished by many for its welcoming and inclusive vibe. ‘One Human Family’ has been the official island motto for decades.

Despite its compact size (2 x 4 miles), it offers a range of attractions, not to mention some iconic selfie opportunities.

GayCities offers some of the best places to strike a pose on a visit to this beautiful, tropical getaway.

The Southernmost Point Buoy

The Southern Buoy, Key West
Thomas and Xavier (Photo: @xaviermcknight)

The Southernmost Point Buoy is literally the southernmost point of the United States. The colorfully painted buoy was established at the corner of South Street and Whitehead Street in 1983 and has since become one of the most photographed spots in Key West.

Pictured above at Xavier McKnight (right) and his boyfriend, Thomas Burchim.

“I’m actually a Florida Keys native,” McKnight (@xaviermcknight) told GayCities. “I was born in Key West, which makes me a “saltwater conch” and raised about an hour away in Marathon, Florida, which is the heart of the Florida Keys. I moved to NYC six years ago to pursue an acting career.

“My favorite thing about Key West is the sense of community. The locals are very sweet and greet everyone with a smile and a friendly ‘Hello!’ If you ever visit Key West and are looking for quality queer entertainment, be sure to check out Aqua Nightclub for incredible drag performances and the Waterfront Playhouse for professional Broadway caliber shows!”

Marilyn Monroe in front of the Tropic Cinema

The Marilyn statue outside Tropic Cinema (Photo: @henry.gutty16/Instagram)

You’ll find this beautiful retro-style movie theatre at 416 Eaton Street, in the old town district. It’s hard to miss the neon signage against the starry sky, or the statue of Marilyn Monroe outside. She’s posed above an air grate, like the iconic scene in the movie, The Seven Year Itch.

Unsurprisingly, many visitors can’t resist taking a photo with the legendary screen goddess. Here’s @henry.gutty16, visiting from Long Island, New York, and loving his first Key West experience, praising the city’s beauty and color.

Cuban Coffee Queen’s Key West mural

(Photo: @valdeznoel25/Instagram)

One of the area’s most beloved coffee stores, there are actually three Cuban Coffee Queens in Key West. However, it’s the original, waterfront branch at 284 Margaret Street (near the ferry terminal for Fort Jefferson and Fort Myers) that remains the most photographed, thanks to its iconic Key West mural. The image was originally painted by the artist, Letty Nowak.

This photo shows Instagrammer @valdeznoel25, from California, who visited Key West for his 28th birthday late last year and tells GayCities he loved going to the beach and the amazing views offered by an ocean cruise.

From the top of Key West Lighthouse

The view from the Key West Lighthouse
(Photo: @therossbynum/Instagram)

You can see the Key West Lighthouse from almost everywhere in town, as it’s the tallest landmark in the old part of the city. You’ll find it at 938 Whitehead Street, in the neighborhood known as Bahama Village.

“It was my first time in Key West, and I stayed at Island House,” says Ross Bynum (@therossbynum), from Houston, Texas, pictured above. “The food around the island is fantastic, and that was the biggest surprise. There are lots of mom-and-pop restaurants that are amazing. I had hogfish for the first time and it’s a must-try.

“The other part that was so great was the people I met. Everyone was so friendly … a group became friends, hung out over the weekend, and regularly text and plan on heading back soon. It really was a relaxing, great time: just the right amount of relaxing and fun. And, the clothing-optional places are awesome!”

Key West Lighthouse
Key West Lighthouse

On the Rainbow Crosswalks

The rainbow crosswalks in Key West
The rainbow crosswalks in Key West (Photo: @thelovelyescapist/Instagram)

The Key West Rainbow Crosswalks brighten the iconic intersection of Duval and Petronia Streets at the heart of the LGBTQ bar and club scene. The crosswalks were first laid down in 2015, but following repaving of the area, permanent, more vivid crosswalks were installed in summer 2020.

“I love that Key West isn’t afraid to show their love and acceptance!” says travel Instagrammer Angie Cox (@thelovelyescapist). “As we walked down Duval Street, there are rainbow flags above nearly every business and there’s even a rainbow crosswalk at Duval St. and Petronia St!⁠

“Key West also has an amazing drag queen scene. You can catch a show at Aqua, La Te Da, or 801 Bourbon Bar (the pink building behind me in the photo).” ⁠

Outside the Tennessee Williams Exhibit

Tennessee Williams Museum in Key West
The founder of the Tennessee Williams Museum, Dennis Beaver, outside the exhibit (Photo: © Tennessee Williams Museum)

Key West has provided a warm and welcoming refuge to many LGBTQ writers, artists, and other creatives over the decades. One of its most famous residents was Tennessee Williams, the Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright behind such classics as A Streetcar Named Desire, and Cat On a Hot Tin Roof.

Williams began visiting Key West in 1941 and bought a home at 1431 Duncan Street in 1950, which remained his home until he died in 1983. The Tennessee Williams Museum can be found at 513 Truman Avenue, in the historic old town. You can read all about Williams’ life and check out a wealth of old photos, rare newspaper and magazine articles as well as many artifacts, including one of his old typewriters.

Out front, on the porch, you’ll find a life-size cut-out figure of Mr. Williams, which is a popular spot for selfies.

For the latest health and safety protocols in The Florida Keys, visit fla-keys.com/gaykeywest.

18th century gangs threatened to out men as gay unless they paid

Portrait of Sir Edward Walpole, Kt., 18th century, (1915). Artist: Edward Edwards

Edward Walpole, the son of prime minister Robert Walpole, was accused of sodomy by a gang.

Bands of extortioners targeted men – including the son of a prime minister – and extorted them for cash in the 17th and 18th centuries, researchers have discovered.

Middlesex University London found that there was a “trend” of gangs of three to five people who prowled London’s cruising spots, coercing men into compromising positions before giving them an ultimatum: Pay us money, or we turn you in.

The threat was made all the more terrifying by the punishment the victims might meet if they declined –  the death sentence for homosexuality.

A paper written by Dr Paul Bleakley and published in the journal Springer Link stated: “Court records suggest a trend of London blackmailers setting out to extort men for money, threatening to charge them with homosexual offences if they did not pay the price demanded.

“In fear of the threat to their reputation or severe punishment, if found guilty, many of the victims reluctantly acceded to the demands of the extortionist.”

“There was greater potential for success when extorting men with a reputation to protect,” it added.

“In the cases of opportunistic blackmail, the victim was usually unknown to their blackmailer and targeted only because they were in the right place at the wrong time.”

Their playbook was one of jumping on men while urinating or even breaking into their homes to accuse them of sodomy.

Often, gang members would work together, one being the accuser while the rest acted as “witnesses” to create what researchers said was a “climate of fear” that compelled the victims to give away their money.

“Often there was a scenario where one person would lure someone into a sexual act or what seemed to be a sexual act before three other people would jump out and start yelling, creating a scene and an intentional climate of fear so the victim is more willing to do whatever it takes to silence them and stop the situation getting worse,” explained Dr Bleakley.

“At this time there was no official police force as the Met Police did not come into existence until 1829, so we’re talking about a legal system where people would bring their own claims to court.

“So if they were extorted or blackmailed they had to find the person responsible and sue them.

“It was a hard prospect to explain why you were in these known cruising sites such as St James Park or by the river in the dead of night.”

In one high-profile plot, Edward Walpole, the son of prime minister Robert Walpole, was accused of sodomy by unemployed servant John Cather in 1750, according to court records.

Detectives found that Cather was part of a six-strong group that were bullying Edward into extortion, saying they would drop the charges if given the cash.

Combing court proceedings between 1674 to 1913 at the Old Bailey, London’s top court, university researchers found cases of gangs even attempting to extort money from lawmakers.

MP Humphry Morice was railroaded by Samuel Scrimshaw and John Ross in 1759, according to court documents seen by the researchers. The pair demanded money from Morice or else be accused of queer sex.

‘Miss Kitten’ would target men and demand money

For men in 18th century London, the name “Miss Kitten” jolted fear and unease.

From well-heeled areas such as St James’ Park to the Highway, a “disreputable” stretch of road snaking around the city’s financial district, queer cruising spots were targeted by the likes of Miss Kitten as part of countless gangs’ sprawling money-making schemes.

Miss Kitten, real name James Oviat, was fined, pilloried and sentenced to three months in prison in 1728 for accusing men of sodomy.

He would corner men in St James’ Park and accuse them of “behaving very indecently”, the paper stated, before brusquely demanding money.

Oviat met his downfall when an accused man fought back, countersuing him. Judges, knowing Oviat’s track record well, remarked that “his old acquaintances in Newgate Prison expressed a surprise that he had been so long from among them”.

John Bollan, in 1724, approached a man urinating the river in Tower Hill. Grabbing his genitals, Bollan and the victim were then swarmed by “witnesses” – the rest of the gang – who demanded he hand over money.

Being queer would not be decriminalised for more than a century to come, however a new law meant that extorting money from someone for being gay became a crime.

An Act for Allowing the Benefit of Clergy 1823 made it a crime to “maliciously threaten to accuse any other person of any crime, punishable by law with death, transportation or pillory, or of any infamous crime, with a view or intent to extort or gain money”, the paper added.

“The same fears homosexual men were experiencing in London in the 1700s were very likely similar to what people faced in 1966,” said Bleakley, reflecting on when homosexuality was finally decriminalised in 1967.

“There’s a very long history of persecuting the LGBT community, particularly gay men, and while extortion may seem unfathomable today, in a historical context tolerant attitudes are far less common.”

Dinner cruise proposal under Amsterdam’s lucky Skinny Bridge

Dinner cruise proposal under Amsterdam

Jess and Cori met on Instagram in the Spring of 2017. They spoke every day for three months until Jess finally decided to fly from Seattle to Arkansas to meet Cori in person.

“The moment I saw her, I felt so much joy and excitement,” Cori says. “Much more so than I ever felt with just a friend. Moments after I met her, I asked her if I could hold her hand. I was so nervous and had butterflies but luckily for me, she said, ‘yes!’”

The couple dated long distance for 10 months until Cori moved to Seattle to be with Jess.

Jess proposed to Cori in August 2019, and two months later, Cori decided to propose back to Jess in Amsterdam, at the end of a 2-week trip to Europe.

“I booked a private boat cruise through the canals of Amsterdam with a 3-course romantic dinner on board. Jess has always loved boats so I knew I couldn’t pass this opportunity up. We were passing under the Skinny Bridge when I dropped to one knee. Legend says that if you kiss under the Skinny Bridge, you will have a lifetime of love together. It was absolutely perfect and she said, ‘YES!’ We continued our boat cruise and then concluded the night by staying in a fancy hotel overlooking the beautiful city of Amsterdam.”

Dinner cruise proposal under Amsterdam's lucky Skinny Bridge| Big Little Amsterdam | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Dinner cruise proposal under Amsterdam's lucky Skinny Bridge| Big Little Amsterdam | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Dinner cruise proposal under Amsterdam's lucky Skinny Bridge| Big Little Amsterdam | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

Dinner cruise proposal under Amsterdam's lucky Skinny Bridge| Big Little Amsterdam | Featured on Equally Wed, the leading LGBTQ+ wedding magazine

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Photographer: Big Little Amsterdam

How Do I Explore Casual Sex If I’m Demisexual?

How Do I Explore Casual Sex If I'm Demisexual?

Q:


“My idea of how I’d enjoy expressing my sexuality the most is at odds with me being demisexual. I’d love to be a person who can enjoy any type of “no strings attached” activity (sexual, kinky or both simultaneously) in the name of exploration and joy in experiencing each other, but me being demi implies that there are always strings attached when I’m attracted to someone (namely, emotional connection).

I’d like to know in what ways my definition is too narrow and how I can honor this in the future. All of my experience has been me being a pan cis woman partnered with straight cis men in long-term monogamous relationships, and the dominant narrative of what “emotional connection” means is hard to unwire. Romance isn’t mandatory for me to have this connection, but most of the people I’ve known are of the “friends don’t fuck with each other, romantic partners do” mindset and seems to be the only thing I can internalize, despite having read otherwise from fellow queer people. That said, I feel jealous of people who have FWBs, to mention a non-romantic example.

If it helps for nuance, there are other factors going on, namely “if desirability was a scale, I’m usually put at last place in queer spaces”. It feels like I’m not even read as a sexual person, least of all a person worth connecting with in this specific sense. I also struggle at signaling my intentions for fear of being seen as “predatory” or “too much” or to have my already pathologized struggle at social skills exposed, but on the flip side, I end up with the assumption that I’m aloof. That, in combination with me being demi, feels more like a wall than another aspect of my sexuality I can work with.

Tl;dr: how can I make demisexuality work with me instead of against me?”

A:

There are multiple questions within this question, and I want to honor them all. First, it sounds like you’re feeling curious about the limits of your own sexual expression, but you’re struggling to clearly identify your desires. Let’s start there! Then we’ll move on to the part where you put yourself out there and experiment.

Labeling different aspects of our sexuality can help us identify our desires, share our desires with others and find community. In some parts of the LGBTQ+ community, pushing against the boundaries of those identifiers is expected and encouraged. Of course, there are those infuriating, dangerous people who insist that “real women” are assigned female at birth and that being a “gold star lesbian” is some kind of high acheivment, but the rest of us understand that some labels — especially those that pertain to gender and sexuality — are not fixed. We can subvert those identifiers. We can expand their definitions. And sometimes, if we want to, we can change them.

So is your definition of “demisexual” too “narrow?” Maybe. Definitions of “demisexual” reference a strong “emotional” connection in order to feel sexual attraction, but an “emotional” connection doesn’t have to be romantic. And you can still have “no strings attached” sex with a friend or someone else you care about if the “strings” are romance and the expectation of exclusivity. If you’re feeling sexual desire for friends or if you like the idea of a “friends with benefits” situation, then it seems that most widely-accepted definition of “demisexual” still encompasses your experience. But the more important questions here are: what do you want and why do you want it?

In order to uncover those answers, let go of “demisexual” as an identity word for the sake of a mental exercise. I’m asking you to do this because while identity words can be playful and fun, they can also be suffocating and prevent us from recognizing our true wants and needs. You might find that you’ve been repressing some of your desires to fit demisexual expectations, or you might find that the “demisexual” identifier fits you perfectly. You might decide to continue embracing a demisexual identity while simultaneously exploring aspects of your sexuality that stretch the fabric of the demisexual umbrella. There’s no right answer to any of this. The most important thing is that you feel comfortable with your sexuality and feel free to embrace your desires in healthy, satisfying ways.

OK — now that the way you feel desire is label-free, it’s time to use your imagination. You said you’d “love to be a person who can enjoy any type of no-strings attached activity.” When I refer to “no strings attached sex,” “casual sex” or “FWB sex” throughout this article, I’m referring to sex that happens with anyone who is not a romantic partner. When you picture yourself engaging in casual sex, how do you feel? Do you feel turned on? Excited? Anxious? Curious? How do you feel in your body? Do you feel floaty? Buzzy? Sweaty? Then ask yourself why you want to be a person who enjoys casual sex. Would it fulfill your curiosities? Would it make your life easier or more exciting? Would it grant you some kind of social currency?

Sit with these feelings and investigate them. That investigation might look like journaling, masturbating, talking to a friend, talking to a therapist or just thinking. Take your time and trust your gut before deciding how you want to move forward. Maybe you’ll decide, “Nope! No-strings-attached sex is not for me — I didn’t want it for the right reasons,” and that’s ok! Maybe you’ll decide, “I definitely want a FWB” or “I actually want to try having casual sex with total strangers.” That’s ok, too! Of course, your gut might not give you a clear answer, especially if you’re a hands-on learner, so in that case, you just might have to try some “no strings attached” flirting and/ or sex and see how it feels. If you’re looking to try something new, read on.

Since you said that your friends aren’t down for FWB arrangements, I’m assuming that you’ll be seeking new friends with whom you can share some sexy benefits. But if you find an existing friend who’s down for some sexual exploration, approach the situation with care caution. Mixing sex and friendship can blow up in your face if you don’t communicate clearly about the arrangement. I highly recommend Carolyn’s article “How To Be Friends With Benefits” for tips on how to pull this off without losing a long-term pal.

But let’s assume that you’re seeking some “no strings attached” sex outside of your existing social circle and you’re not sure how to initiate it. First, it’s ok to feel awkward and lost! Since your sexual history happened in the context of long-term, monogamous romantic relationships, this is new for you. It can be hard to try something new in your sex and dating life, especially when you don’t feel desirable. Well, you’re in luck — being sexy and desirable isn’t some magical inherent quality. It’s a practice, and you can choose to embrace that practice whenever you want. For tips on how to do just that, I’ll steer you towards one of my favorite advice pieces in Autostraddle history — “Assume Everyone Thinks You’re Hot, I’m Serious,” in which Vanessa reveals how to put your sexiest foot forward. Vanessa reminds us that we might have to “fake it til we make it” sometimes, but the practice still works.

So let’s say you’ve taken Vanessa’s advice, you’re full of bravado and you’re ready to hit on all the hot queers (or maybe just one hot queer). You said you’re worried that you’ll come off as “predatory” if you express your desires. You can get your flirt on and avoid predatory behavior if you follow these rules:

1. Be clear about your intentions

Somehow we decided that flirting has to be vague. Wrong! Tell the person you’re flirting with you think they’re a babe. If you’re silently hanging around them or staring at them across the room while you attempt some kind of sexy telepathy, that’s creepy. Plus, if you’re upfront about your interest, it gives the other person an opportunity to turn you down if they’re not feeling it.

Also, be clear about the fact that you’re not looking for a romantic partner (and make sure this person knows that before you have sex). If you think you’re getting casual sex with this person and they think you’re on the road to marriage, then feelings are going to get hurt. If you’re seeking FWBs on dating apps, include that in your profile so that the folks who swipe right on you know what you’re looking for in advance. It might also be a good idea to lay out exactly what a “FWB arrangement” means to you, since FWB expectations vary from person to person.

2. Don’t get attached to a particular outcome

Flirting and FWB arrangements might not go the way you expect. The other person might be into it at first and then change their mind. Maybe you’re ready for sex right away and the other person needs to take it slow. Maybe they decide that they only want sex but you’re craving an emotional connection. Maybe you’re already in an established FWB situation and one or both of you catch feelings. If the situation doesn’t meet your expectations, don’t pout about it. Accept that your desires don’t align and move on.

3. Pay attention to all forms of “no”

When you initiate flirting, a “no” isn’t always going to sound or look like a “no.” A “no” might sound like short answers to your questions. A “no” might look like physically leaning away from you, avoiding eye contact, directing their attention to their friends or going days without answering questions in your Tinder chat. This kind of behavior usually means that the person is trying to let you down easily or they’re scared that a firm boundary will seem rude, but it can be really confusing! If you notice any form of “no,” back off, and if you’re not sure if this person is signaling “no,” it’s ok to ask for clarification.

Remember that your sexuality is yours. It can shift and change and grow, and experimentation can be really rewarding! Ideally, we can all get to a place where we feel sexy, confident and comfortable asking for what we want, and I hope you can find that sense of ease within yourself.


You can chime in with your advice in the comments and submit your own questions any time.

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lori_Lightfoot

One of the most notable things about her is what she wears: untailored suits. She's short, and her pants are typically too wide and too long.

Now I have a visual image of what the short butches here are struggling with, and why it's brought up quite a bit here. I'm 5'8" and have never really struggled to find pants that properly fit me.

submitted by /u/FatBlackKat
[comments]

Lesbian In One Day – Once Upon a Journey

Reykjavik In One Day - Once Upon a Journey

Reykjavik In One Day - Once Upon a Journey

Want to see Reykjavik in one day and don’t know where to start? This guide contains all you need to know for how to spend one day in Reykjavik perfectly.

If you’re visiting Iceland, there is a very high probability you will arrive and depart from Reykjavik. It is Iceland’s capital, the most northern capital city in the world, and the home to many of the top things to see in Iceland.

But Reykjavik is more than just a gateway to see the rest of Iceland, it has much to offer too. From architecture to rainbow street art, coffee shops to museums, there is something to do in Reykjavik for everyone, no matter the weather or time of year!

When you’re planning your trip to Iceland, add (at least) one day in Reykjavik to your Iceland itinerary. And with the many day trips from Reykjavik, museums, and tours on offer, you could certainly stay longer than a day in Reykjavik if you wanted to as well.

Full Story at Once Upon a Journey

Iceland Gay Travel Resources

Glenn Greenwald is being dragged for suggesting Matt Gaetz has a right to commit statutory rape / Queerty

Glenn Greenwald is being dragged for suggesting Matt Gaetz has

Glenn Greenwald is currently taking heat on Twitter after he suggested that Matt Gaetz is legally entitled to have sex with whatever “consenting” 17-year-old girl he pleases.

As you’ve likely heard by now, the Florida lawmaker is currently ensnared in a teen sex/prostitution scandal involving a 17-year-old girl and $900 transferred on Venmo to an accused child sex trafficker who is currently sitting in a jail cell.

None of Gaetz’s Republican colleagues are sticking up for him, except for Marjorie Taylor Greene and Jim Jordan, who is currently ensnared in his own college wrestling gay sex abuse scandal. And even Fox News wants nothing to do with Gaetz.

But for whatever reason, Greenwald, who is openly gay, has decided to come to the antigay congressman’s defense.

“If you don’t think it should be legal for 17 year-olds to have sex with anyone they want, go write to the governors and legislatures in 37 states & the District of Columbia which made it legal,” Greenwald recently tweeted while defending Gaetz.

There’s just one teeny tiny problem with this. And by “one teeny tiny problem” we mean a glaring omission of some pretty important details about age of consent laws.

Raw Story notes:

[Greenwald] failed to note that many states that allow 16 or 17 year olds to have sex require that both consenting partners be of similar ages. For example, Virginia has a close in age exemption that allows teens between 15-17 to have sex with each other. At age 38, Gaetz could not legally have sex with a 17-year-old girl in Virginia because the de facto age of consent is 18 years old.

Another important detail Greenwald neglected to mention is that the age of consent in Florida is 18, meaning a 38-year-old man having sex with a 17-year-old girl would be considered statutory rape under state law.

In a followup tweet, a defiant Greenwald wrote, “I think consenting adults should be able to do what they want in their private lives and those who try to control them or restrict their choices or impose judgments on moral grounds are creepy sexual morality police similar to the Moral Majority & Pat Robertson of the 1980s.”

And we would tend to agree. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with consenting adults having sex with one another. It happens all the time, and sex is a beautiful thing. The problem is, in Gaetz’s case, that doesn’t appear to be what happened.

Also missing from Greenwald’s defense of Gaetz was any mention of the sex trafficking accusations being made against him or the allegations of illegal drug use.

Gaetz insists he is not guilty of any wrongdoing and claims to be the victim of a $25 million extortion plot.

Here’s what folx on Twitter are saying about Greenwald’s deeply flawed defense of Gaetz…

Graham Gremore is the Features Editor and a Staff Writer at Queerty. Follow him on Twitter @grahamgremore.