Because Someone Had To Tell You18 Things Lesbians Never Want to HearJill Layton

I’m a woman, and I’m engaged to be married to a woman. Walking down the street, people stare at us if we are holding hands. They question how we know each other. They say things to us that they would never consider saying to a straight couple. We are singled out because we are “different.” It’s weird though, because we don’t feel different. We don’t think of ourselves as a “lesbian couple.” We think of ourselves as a “couple”—a couple who is madly in love and who doesn’t want to hide that love in order to make other people feel more comfortable. People have their own idea of what a lesbian relationship looks like, and if someone doesn’t fit that bill, then it’s really hard for people to understand. And not understanding, apparently, opens the door for a line of questioning.

These are some of the real-life questions my fiancé and I get on a daily basis, along with my responses:

1. Which one of you is the guy in the relationship?

Neither. We are both girls. That’s kind of the point.

2. You look like sisters!

Well, we’re not. I’m almost positive that a man and a woman who are dating (or married) don’t get told they look like siblings. In fact, that’s probably the last thing anyone wants to hear about the person they’re sleeping with.

3. Have you always been a lesbian?

I was straight until I wasn’t. Have you always liked mustard? You didn’t until you did, right? Sexuality isn’t always one way or the other.

4. I’ve never been to a gay wedding, can I come?

There will be cake, dancing and that one relative who gets too drunk. It’s pretty similar to a non-gay wedding. Actually, it’s exactly the same. So, let’s just call it “wedding” and leave out the “gay.” And sure, you can come if you’re invited.

Posing with my fiancé

Me with my soon-to-be wife.

5. Do all lesbians dress like their partners? 

If we dress alike, it’s because we have the same style. And we share clothes, because why wouldn’t we? If you could share clothes with your husband, I’m sure you would.

6. Why do some lesbians dress like boys?

What people wear is a form of expression. It’s no different from straight women wearing dresses.

7. Wait, so how does sex work?

That’s a weird question to ask someone. Use your imagination or Google it.

8. (From an ex boyfriend) Oh, so THAT’S why we didn’t work out?

Wrong. We didn’t work out because we weren’t right for each other. Me being with a woman in no way validates you cheating on me or us not working out.

9. (From an ex boyfriend) Can I join?

Can you join what? Our deeply emotional, fully satisfying-on-all-levels relationship? Or our bedroom? No and no.

10. I’ve always wanted to be a lesbian, but I just can’t give up sex with men, you know?

Ok. Good talk.

11. Have you ever had real sex?

Sorry, explain to me what your definition of “real sex” is.

12. Did you choose to be a lesbian?

Did you choose to be a straight? I chose to be with the person I’m with. We all choose our partners.

13. Are you sure you won’t want to be with a man again?

If you are in a committed relationship, hopefully the only person you imagine yourself being with is that person. You wouldn’t ask a married straight woman whether she would ever want to be with another man again, would you?

14. Will you use a sperm donor or someone you know to get pregnant?

We will discuss that and keep you posted.

15. Are you attracted to your friends who are girls?

No. Even if I wasn’t in a committed relationship, my friends are like my family. And I am not attracted to my family.

16. You’re a lesbian? What a waste.

Excuse me, sir. Are you implying that my worth is based on whether or not you have a chance of sleeping with me?

17. You’re so pretty! You don’t look like a lesbian.

What do my physical characteristics have to do with my sexual orientation? All straight people don’t look alike, so why is it assumed that all lesbians do? You’re basically saying that there are no pretty lesbians, and that just doesn’t make any sense.

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  1. You two look lovely together! Congrats!

  2. ’7. Wait, so how does sex work?
    That’s a weird question to ask someone. Use your imagination or Google it.’

    Still to this day, some of my best straigth friends ask me and our male gay friends, ‘how do you guys do it ? You also like foreplay and stuff ? … i’ve tried to explain before that is the same, we are humans too, you know…. So last nigth i just answered “google it dear” : ) and today i read this… hilarious [so true!] Cheers and Congratulations on Your Weeding : )

  3. Ok. Good Talk. Lol – that cracked me up. But yeah, it’s totally true, people are people no matter what. My sister’s had a lot of trouble coming to terms with her sexuality (she’s a lesbian too) but I’m happy that she’s not happy.

  4. My mom was a wedding photographer and she had a /lot/ of heterosexual clients who looked like they /could/ be siblings. When I asked her about it, she shared a theory that people tend to be attracted to people who look like them, or who at least have some similar features. She also told me that she thinks couples who have some similar features tend to stay together longer.

    Now, she by no means was an expert, and her theory was based on the clients that came to her door and she had no real way of knowing how many of them stayed together or divorced a few years later, so take it with a grain of salt. That said, she would have told you that you two look alike, because you do have a lot of similarities. She also would have predicted your relationship’s success. :-) Mazel tov on your engagement. May you two enjoy a wonderful life together!

  5. What I get is that this was written with the intention to be acclaimed for being lesbians and a bunch of people trying to look good and avoid to look bad. “Look how cool I am. I like lesbians.” It’s not that I don’t like them. I love people for loving people caring less of their choices period.
    One of the things that you must get, is to take responsibility for what you choose to be. The longer you take, the longer you’ll be miserable. Questions come with your choices. I’m married to a 20 year old women; I’m 41. We knew questions will come and we took responsibility for what was coming and will continue to come (some are awkward, but so are we per say)
    Most of you whine because of discrimination, but guess what you’re doing whining because of people’s questions?
    When something is off, people wonder. That’s the human design whether you like it or not.

  6. Actually, the cutest couples look like siblings.

  7. I honestly have to say that I am shocked at how rude people can be. I always think, “No way would anyone do or say that” but I know I’m just naive because I am forever reminded how clueless I really am.

    I also have never cared who anyone is in a relationship with, or sleeping with. It’s a shame that people have to ‘come out’. I didn’t ‘come out’ when I started dating my husband. As a woman in a relationship with a man, no one questioned it. It’s sad that some people are made to feel that they have to justify their relationship. The world would be a much better place if people would just mind their own business.

    Best of everything to you, Jill.

  8. Some girl at my work recently found out I am bi-sexual and asked the question if that means I want to sleep with all my female friends and I just looked at her dumb founded then finally said do you wanna sleep with all your male friends? Just because I can find the beauty in both men and woman, and fall in love based on personality and not which genitals they possess doesn’t mean I want to sleep with everyone I meet…

  9. First, great list! Also, please know I rarely correct people I don’t know (and even don’t do so commonly with those I do know), but this one is worth knowing… when referring to a female, fiancé is spelled fiancée. :) I only let you know as using the former in writing will most likely lead to even sillier questions, LOL! ;)

  10. Actually people have assumed my gf and I are siblings because we both had blond curly hair. So that being marked a “gay only” issues is just blowing steam. These “x Things you should never say to a _____.” articles seem written by aliens that just do not want people to talk to them at all.

  11. Fantastic blog – loved it! And am constantly getting asked most if not all of these questions. Great responses to give and so true too!!!

  12. I love being asked these questions! Open-mindedness in other individuals always gives me the opportunity to educate someone about an issue s/he might have never been aware of.

  13. ok so did anyone read the question “Did you choose to be a lesbian?” She basically just came out and told us that being Gay is a choice where most people will flip out and say there born Gay not a choice. Got lots of friends getting really worked up right now who are gay and they want to rip her a new one for saying its a choice without actually saying out loud.

    • She likely didn’t seek out or choose a woman to fall in love with; it just happened, and then she chose to commit to that person forever. Sexuality is a spectrum, not a black-and-white situation. You do not choose to be attracted to the opposite sex, the same sex, or both, but you can choose your partner within whichever sex you may be attracted to.

    • The question was not, “Did you choose to be a lesbian?”. It was, “Have you always been a lesbian?”. For me, that was the case. I was straight until I recognized that I wasn’t. I am in no way saying that being gay is a choice, because I absolutely do not believe that. I am only sharing my experience. I am not speaking for all gay people, nor do I claim to be. You can read more about my experience here if you’re interested – Please keep in mind – you found my story on Hello Giggles, a lovely forum where writers and readers go to share their experiences.

  14. This article is seriously gay. Like it is really gay. Damn.

  15. Since this seems to be all over Facebook now, I’ll comment here as well:

    First thing first, this article sails under a missleading title. It implies that the article is valid for all gays, but when you take a look at the conent you find out, that this is a highly personal point of view. E.g. the following part:

    “15. Are you attracted to your friends who are girls?

    No. Even if I wasn’t in a committed relationship, my friends are like my family. And I am not attracted to my family.”

    The autor can not speak for everyone, maybe some gays don’t see it that way and are indeed attracted to their friends.

    The thing that really made me bang my head on the table though is the following:

    “13. Are you sure you won’t want to be with a man again?

    If you are in a committed relationship, hopefully the only person you imagine yourself being with is that person.”

    And here we are again. Gays asking for being open minded while being hipocritic in the same breath, by bashing non-monogamy and telling people that they can’t have several relationships. Where is the difference to saying People they can’t have gay relationship. *think about it!*

    Just looool!

    • Excuse me, but I think the author’s responses are based on HER opinions. Not yours or anyone else’s. And if a gay woman wants to use those responses (as I will as well), then that is her right, but you can’t say that this article speaks for everyone. I’d think about that before you post again. :)

  16. Also… #6 about straight women wearing dresses… that’s a bit stereotypical in itself if you are as PC as you try to appear to be you would reply it’s the same as a PERSON wearing a dress – gay, straight, male or female. Anyone remember the Drew Carry Show? Part of what I liked about it was Drew’s brother on the show was a straight cross-dresser that married a big hunni and they could not have been more in love :D

    • I’m straight and I love to wear men’s clothes. I also loved this article, she unashamedly presents her point of view. Good job.

  17. dated a couple girls that looked kinda like me… I guess I just think I’m THAT HOTT ;) lol congrats ladies! But I do have to say I agree it is human nature to question what we do not understand. Yes some are plain stupid – asking someone about their sex life is always rude… we all have google USE IT, but I also think on some of those questions – if we never ask (in one way or another) we’ll never know.

  18. Hey
    Funny thing right I’m straight but completely support equal rights and I have been questioned more then once about my sexual preference. As I have short hair and refer to my man as partner because boyfriend sounds so high school.
    My response is always the same:
    Does my sexual orientation affect our relationship (working friendship etc?)? No? then it doesn’t matter. Yes? Then I don’t need someone like you in my life. Although it’s only happened once or twice I’m always shocked not that someone might think I am guy or bi but that they would question me about it after only talking to me for half an hour.

  19. Hello my name is Raven Ludy and I am proudly Bi-sexual and I have been asked a few of the questions as well and others that I would like to mention.
    1. You’re Bi? how does that work.
    A. Like any other relationship except I’m open to both genders.
    2. How do you know you’re bi? Is it just a feeling you have?
    A. I know just like you know that you’re straight/LGBT.
    3. Does the person you’re with accept that and if so do ya’ll have alot of fun?
    A. Yes he knows and if you mean having both girl and guy then no. I think of that as cheating. I’ll only date one or the other.
    Theres alot of questions like you that I’ve been asked as well. One day I got this though: “I don’t want to sound rude nor do I want to upset ya’ll or make ya’ll feel uncomfortable….but are ya’ll in a relationship? And I want to assure you before you answer that I am perfectly fine with your type of people.” a lady a a gas station said that to my best friend Megan and me.
    Congrats on the engagement and good luck out there. This world can be a rough place for the LGBT community and I wish ya’ll all the happiness in the world. :)

    • yeah, I knew a girl who claimed to be bi…

      I advised her that she was really a slut. She took it harshly, but she believed it gave her the right to date as many people as she wanted to. It was great that some of them accepted her that way (she was a booty call to most of them), but I had to explain to her how she was disillusioned about what ‘bi’ meant.

  20. So well written. I love all of it. Bravo!