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A Guide to Dating Butch Women
Loving a woman who presents as a butch can be so difficult. Photo by yngcreoleking. Model: brklynbreed.
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Butch and femme are terms used in the lesbian subculture  to ascribe or acknowledge a masculine butch or feminine femme identity with its associated traits, behaviors, styles, self-perception, and so on. This concept has been called a “way to organize sexual relationships and gender and sexual identity”. Both the expression of individual lesbians of butch and femme identities and the relationship of the lesbian community in general to the notion of butch and femme as an organizing principle for sexual relating varied over the course of the 20th century.
The word femme is taken from the French word for woman. The word butch , meaning “masculine”, may have been coined by abbreviating the word butcher , as first noted in George Cassidy’s nickname, Butch Cassidy. There is debate about to whom the terms butch and femme can apply, and particularly whether transgender individuals can be identified in this way.
For example, Jack Halberstam argues that transgender men cannot be considered butch, since it constitutes a conflation of maleness with butchness. He further argues that butch—femme is uniquely geared to work in lesbian relationships.
Butch and femme french term for woman are terms often used in the lesbian and gay subcultures to describe the queering of traditional masculine and feminine gender roles. Femme is also frequently used in the transgender community, see En femme. The terms butch and femme often are used to describe lesbians, but also occasionally gay men. Stereotypes and definitions of butch and femme vary greatly, even within tight-knit gay and lesbian communities. It is not uncommon for butch-looking females to meet social disapproval.
The Dating Guide for Butch Lesbians [Crooks, Erica] on to do if your the nervous type, making sure your femme date is comfortable, and more.
Granted, most of the time we get this question it is just some jerk trying to get under our skin, but as unbelievable as it may sound, there are still some people who look us in the eye and ask because they truly wonder. I acknowledge that there are many different relationship and gender dynamics, but I can only speak based on my own personal attraction. This may be a man whose idea of women has been restricted to what he sees in beer commercials, or it may even be a woman who has not taken the time to acknowledge all the incredible sides of her own femininity.
People with these questions are saying that their idea of a woman is based solely on physical appearance and the mannerisms of June Cleaver. There are so many complexities to being a woman and so many complexities to loving one. Women are deep and mystical creatures full of twists and turns and subtle beauty. We go from playing football in the mud to shopping at the mall, from writing poetry in our rooms to moshing at a death metal concert, from publically crying to pushing down all emotions and closing ourselves off to the world.
We have endless versions of our true selves. On top of that, women can connect with each other on the deepest of levels. Whether we are best friends in middle school or long-term intimate lovers, women can open themselves up to their core and dig until they find yours. On top of all that, women can love like no one else in the world. By saying that because my girlfriend has short hair I should be open to dating men, these people are saying that they have forgotten about all these other parts of loving a woman.
If we put traditional ideas of masculine and feminine on two ends of a spectrum, most of us fall somewhere in between. My spectrum does not have men.
Dating Masculine Women Is Not the Same as Dating Men
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Reentering the dating universe can be a little bumpy, as most anyone can tell you. First, you have to negotiate what you want and need within yourself, and then turn outward to see what the beautiful world has to offer you. But in my case, one thing is sure, I am a femme woman attracted to masculine women and in particular, butches. I assume when people talk about roles, they are thinking along the lines of something my mother told me when I was young when I asked her what a lesbian was.
Some people think the butch—femme dynamic is a dying identity, but I beg to differ. Butch—femme lives and evolves and is a legitimate choice for relating and connecting with a sexual partner. A tired criticism of butch—femme is that it tries to mimic a patriarchal relationship structure , with a powerful male figure, and a submissive female figure. As a femme lesbian, I can tell you that I like to get my nails done, wear dresses when I want to look beautiful, and always keep a lipstick in my purse.
But I am also incredibly strong and self-sufficient. Every femme I know is a strong badass — not some weak, simpering facsimile of a s housewife.
how butch/femme subcultures allow gay women to thrive
Like heterosexual partners, those looking for same-sex love also have preferences when it comes to appearance and personality. The butch woman marked by masculine looks and ways are a particular favorite in lesbian dating. So if you are newly out or looking for the partner of your dreams, here are a few tips on how to meet and date a butch woman.
A butch woman Gender identities are at the best of times complex things but when it comes to lesbian women, constructions of feminity and masculinity involve a whole range of combinations in between. At the two extremes are the butch woman and the femme woman. The latter indicates someone who conforms to the typical notions of feminity — in other words she is girlie in her appearance and dress sense.
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I recently read a Facebook status update from an acquaintance that stated, “I don’t understand why lesbians date women who look like men. If you’re into chicks that look like dudes, just get with a dude. However, I’ve only been asked about my preference for androgynous women by heterosexuals and gay men, never by another lesbian. Coming in at number 11 was “But if you like girls that look like boys If you like boys so much, why don’t you want to date my girlfriend who ‘looks like a boy’?
Case dismissed, overruled, approach the bench, goodnight. This may come as shocking news to some people, but it is a completely arbitrary, socially constructed standard that men should wear bow-ties and women should wear pearls, and not vice versa. Moreover, rules about how men and women should dress and behave are constantly changing, further evincing that these constructs are subjective.
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Many butches are not used to someone wanting them. It throws them off. Oddly enough this is what we see around us… our competition. Ladies you have adoration from every direction. You are the picture of femininity that society loves.
Butch – A person who identifies themselves as masculine, whether it be physically Femme – Feminine identified person of any gender/sex. FTM / F2M.
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A while back I was lunching with a friend and lamenting my lack of female companionship. I always go to this particular friend when I am in need of brutal honesty. Talk about going to the well once too often.
Who pays? (Butch/femme dating question). Some background: I’m newly out of the closet. I don’t super identify with the.
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My last couple of posts have been, well, pretty negative. While expressing my anger is healthier in blog form versus taking it out on people in my day-to-day life, I realize that to someone reading this, I may come across as quite the Debbie Downer. Base capitalism and gender stereotypes aside, I like any holiday that makes it acceptable to have chocolate for breakfast and wine for dinner.
Some may argue that the meaning of V-day is actually love—love and sex. So in honor of this wine-sex-chocolate-love holiday, and partially in response to my last post, I wanted to post ten things I love about dating a butch.
You try out dressing butch but feel awkward AF. A lot of femmes have done this. You like girls and you want it to be evident when you’re in public that you like.
Header by Rory Midhani. A number of responses were racing through my head: Do you own her vagina? Is she not a person with agency over what she does with her body? Important to note is that no, I was not and and am not hooking up with her, but defending the false accusation of conduct was the last thing in my list of things to address. Oftentimes when I am in a place occupied by butches and men, masculinity becomes a kind of currency. I can show a picture of my girlfriend to a man and know I will get instant respect from him based on her attractiveness.
The patriarchy barters and trades with women as currency, and in those moments, we are doing the same thing. I received an overwhelming response of instances that ranged from the ridiculous to the downright terrifying. That last quote troubles me the most. Butch should not be associated with rape culture and patriarchal bullshit, and what does it say about us that to some, it is? I was not always a butch.
Butch/Femme Love & everything lesbian!
I have had the same face powder since I was in high school. Ninety-nine percent of my outfits involve a blazer or a faux-leather jacket, and a t-shirt. The only jewelry I wear is a pair of stud earrings.
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Femme invisibility is so real that Huffington Post started a campaign a few years ago with the hashtag WhatFemmeLooksLike. This campaign showcased a variety of people in the femme community including men, trans folk, and non-binary people. No one knows you like girls. A lot of femmes have done this. You try to wear something butch like baggier pants or a flannel but you feel like a total weirdo.
Is it who takes up the traditionally patriarchal BS role that women and men have been trying to smash for decades? Friendships with your queer gal pals get a bit blurry. Or am I in love with her? Does she like me like that? You sometimes feel like an undercover queer. In locker rooms at the gym, if you dressed more butch or had a more masculine flair, it may be obvious to the women around you that you like chicks , but you blend in as just another one of the girls.