The End Of My Love Affair With The Butch Femme Community?

To those who have asked what’s going on with me or the NYC Butch Femme Outings…

I decided to shut down the NYC Butch Femme Outings before the summer because attendance was at its lowest and I didn’t have the time, energy, and patience that it takes to organize free or affordable outings for people not to show up, to smile politely when people who never came to butch/femme gatherings gave me their unsolicited two cents about venues/activities that they wouldn’t come out for anyways, to not give back a piece of my mind when someone complained about the outings not being affordable or accessible, to chase people to come out on X day because I suspected those who had RSVPed wouldn’t show up. Etcetera. Etcetera. Etcetera.

This comes as nothing new to equally burnt out organizers of poorly attended butch/femme events in NYC, Boston, and Philadelphia, although it may surprise folks from the middle of nowhere in America and other countries who look up to us the cool, lucky kids who have privileged access to (what others perceive as) a butch/femme community.

My goal when I shut down the outings was to refocus on what’s important: face to face time with friends and writing. I planned to support other butch/femme gatherings in the area by showing up and/or helping spread the word when my schedule didn’t allow me to attend. I was looking forward to marching with the Butch Femme Society during Pride and even venturing out to Brooklyn for whatever a group of local butches organized throughout the summer. As it turns out, these and other butch/femme groups were also winding down.

I have dragged my feet about blogging all summer. I have been apartment hunting (West Harlem is the new Brooklyn {ridiculously expensive}, fml!), spent quality time with friends, witnessed and heard things that made my karma-believer femme’s heart happy, written two poetry books in English and one in Spanish, explored the city, caught up on reading, fell in love with San Francisco, developed an insane fitbit addiction, gone into a full blown Rocky phase and gotten up at the crack of dawn to hit the gym before work, kept doing instagram wrong (posting way too many photos), traveled locally, gone to Broadway and off-Broadway shows, dated and kissed the occasional frog… but I felt none of it was something to write home about. Not here anyways (I’ve started another blog that I shall keep password protected for the time being).

I have also wondered if this blog is (a) relevant – not only with everything going on around us (LGBT marriage is finally legal in the US, the Black Lives Matter movement, Iran’s nuclear deal, Europe’s migrant crisis, Cecil the lion was killed, lesbian feminists being attacked in Europe and uninvited from conferences for expressing their opinions…) but also by the fact that almost everyone under 25 identifying as queer or trans these days. Or (b) worth it. I keep getting emails pointing out how each time I write about butches or stone butches (admiring, treasuring, loving, and ogling them) I am really just oppressing others who don’t ID as butch or stone butch, participating in femme erasure, and/or deliberately attacking trans-rights (the right to get into my pants when you are not my type?). Not to mention a very long email from a very observant reader who had the stronge urge to lecture me for not using the label “cis” when identifying myself (’cause I’m just a girl who doesn’t know what her place is at the tender age of 37).

I’m still closer to a “no fucks given” than most of you and I will keep blogging. Fuck it if nowadays everyone under a certain age and their mothers identify as “queer” or “trans” (I don’t write for you anyways). Fuck it if someone who can’t even put two sentences together in English thinks that being a femme who is into butches/stone butches makes me a TERF. I’m back, children. I. Am. Back.

12 thoughts on “The End Of My Love Affair With The Butch Femme Community?

  1. I’m quite a bit older than 25 and all these new terms make my head spin . . . what’s a TERF?

  2. Good to see you back at one of the things you do best! I think it’s sad that you are being called out for referring to butches and femmes as exclusionary language – talk about cultural appropriation! In the end, it shows how out of touch with reality they are. Keep up the good work, doll!

  3. Glad you’re back, I am a femme and my partner is a butch and no one can change that. Younger generations want a more fancy hipster kind of identity but it still comes down to they are either femme or butch. Now that marriage is legal it seems that people feel that the fight is over and I don’t have to outings or socialize anymore. They don’t see that there is still discrimination and attacks on they gay communities. I will still be there and here reading your wonder blog.

  4. Ditto for my efforts to organize b/f events in my community. I co-started a Facebook group last June and have trolled personal ads, fetlife, other folk’s Facebook pages, and to build up our membership to 70. I’ve organized just a few events so far but no luck with attendance. “Yes” folks who don’t show. “no” folks who can’t come because of work/weekend cottages out of town/driving distance,no driving on highways or after dark, money issues, etc. I wish they would appreciate how lucky they are to have the opportunity to connect with other folks like themselves.

  5. Well, it’s been 89 days since you published this, so I’m not entirely sure that you haven’t quit this blog as well as the other things you’d decided not to waste any more time on. I hope it’s just that you’ve been busy doing the things that make you happy and leave you feeling fulfilled. I want you to know that I appreciate your views on the butch/femme identities and how they’ve been usurped by more radical terms that only sound exciting but are really nothing more than a ‘rebranding’ of the same, age-old dynamics. I understand your concern with being considered ‘exclusionary,’ as I would be as well, being a number of years ahead of you, having ‘grown up’ in the years just after Stonewall, when ‘butches’ & ‘femmes’ were the only subclasses of ‘Lesbian.’ You’re a good writer, I hope you keep on with it, and that I get to read more of your work in the future.

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