What Lesbianism Means to Me

Why it's lovely to be a lady lover

by Ione Dellos

To me, being a lesbian feels warm, like sunshine. It’s a part of you, more than just who you end up with at the end of the night. It’s in the way you get dressed in the morning, putting on what you want to wear instead of dressing for the male gaze. Maybe it’s wearing something that you would never have worn before, for fear that you wouldn’t be hot or sexy enough in it. It’s when you put a Princess Bubblegum and Marceline sticker on your laptop and start doing your eyeliner in ways that you would never have thought of before. It’s a breath of fresh air, to finally exist for yourself and no one else, free from the constraints of what once weighed you down.

It can be looking up an “Am I Gay” quiz when you were fourteen and then promptly ignoring the results, or never looking at Victoria’s Secret when you pass it in the mall. It’s also learning to move past these things when you are older and wiser, laughing at the memories with friends who had similar experiences. Lesbianism is an act of resistance, to say no more to the patriarchal systems that run your life and live wholly and unapologetically without men. While it can be challenging, as it seems like you have to fight the heteronormative appropriation of your sexuality left and right, it is very important to resist these inaccurate deceptions of lesbianism. Think of ads, no matter where you’ve seen them, of two women posing suggestively to sell a product or yet another overly sexual lesbian indie film (cough “Blue is the Warmest Color” cough). Doing that can be as easy as waking up every morning, just existing as your authentic lesbian self. Being a lesbian feels like dancing like nobody’s watching, celebrating all the little lesbian traits inscribed on your body.

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