Lesbianism Declassified Part III : How to Get the Girl!
This one here is for all the Sapphic Sultans of Seduction, Lady Lovers and Lady Bois, Boi-Loving Women, Non-Binary folks and all of the folks that like other folks and would like to date other folks, but aren’t sure where to start.
Can I tell you a secret ... just between you and I? Dating in the LGBTQIA world is complex! Whew! There I said it, glad I got that off my chest! I was really excited when I was available to date, however nobody told me how intricate it could be... or how to do it at all. That being said, it is totally doable! You can date happily and maybe even find that special someone (if that is what you are looking for) and hopefully you will find the advice I have to share helpful.
1. Know who you are and where you stand
At least have a clear picture in your head. This can change, you can be fluid (no judgment) but in all fairness, you owe it to yourself and potential suitors to give some definition to who you are for informed choices to be made. Please note that a definition is just that, this is just the outline, the shape of you, not all that you are. For example, I am Malaika Salaam, I am interested in women. I am Femme. I am Fat. I am Black. I am Queer. My pronouns are she/her. I am in a long-term committed relationship. I am an ethical non-monogamist. I am only interested in non-sexual relationships with others at this time.
WOW, That’s a lot of information! I know right… However, you get to choose how much info to put out and when.
2. Be clear about what you want
Now that you have a baseline to work from, let’s talk about what you want. Are you looking for a platonic friend? Friends with benefits? Sexual play? A Long term committed relationship? Something else? Relationships can change over time, it happens. However, what I am referring to is not the “let’s start as friends” model. In my experience it’s mostly safe bullshit that people use to give themselves an out. If you are truly looking for friendship then be clear about that. Don’t try to make it something else, value the friendship.
If you are looking for sex with or without strings, be upfront and don’t string interested parties along with hope of something more. Additionally, DO NOT deny yourself the right, comfort, or desire to be in a committed relationship, by saying “I’m looking for a friend” when that is not what you really mean. This is the time to walk in your truth and ask for what you want. If you want a girlfriend (or boyfriend/boifriend/etc) say it!
3. Identify who you want
Now that you know who you are and what you want. Who do you want it with? It may seem like a no-brainer, but sexuality and gender are multi-faceted, so it bears consideration and really understanding who and what you are attracted to. Do you like cis-gender women (who identify with the biological gender they were born with)? Would you prefer someone more masculine? Do you prefer more feminine women? Or maybe, you are looking for someone who’s gender identity is unfixed. Just in case you are unclear on any of this I have included a nearly complete glossary of gender identities. Your preferences can change at any point in your life and that's ok. What is important is knowing who you want right now.
4. Use Your Resources
Ok, we are heading into the homestretch. You know who you are, what you want, who you want it with, but where on earth will you find your unicorn? Glad you asked. The most common ways I have found everything from friendship to dating are socializing via family, friends, work, community, and online.
Ask Your Circle
Seriously, do you know people? Those people probably know people too. If they are loving and supportive you can say to them, “Hey, I am interested in _________, anybody know somebody?” Your super loving and supportive circle will likely have a list of folks they been dying to hook you with anyway, so there you go. Yep, hang out with people and meet more people.
Work is also a good place to meet people, especially if your workspace is LGBTQIA-friendly. Some jobs even have clubs, conferences, meetups and are extra-hella supportive of their LGBTQIA employees, providing you with ample opportunity to interact with other people and potentially meet “the one.” Plus, there is always that one co-worker … You know the “let-me-introduce-you-to-my ___________” person. Let them introduce you, there is a 50/50 chance you will meet someone you at least like. On the other hand, if you aren’t open to the possibilities then there is a 100% chance of you meeting and liking exactly 0 people. You do the math. Of course, I must caution you relationships and work can be tricky, so take extra care when dating/playing/screwing around in the workplace. You don’t want to turn a dream job into a hostile environment with a bad breakup.
Do What You Love
Get out into the community, volunteer with organizations and causes that you are passionate about. Maybe, you will meet a BLM Bae like Nova from Queen Sugar… working together, fighting to change the system. Join a queer sports team. I know it sounds cliché, but seriously if you are into physical activities you may hit a home run on a lesbian softball team. You might also consider going to concerts of your favorite QWOC artists, I know at least one person on our staff who is always down for a Kehlani concert. While a concert is not an ideal space for conversation, after the show you could certainly ask that beauty you’ve been locking eyes with all night out for a drink.
Finally, the internet is becoming the modern way to meet people. There’s Facebook, where you can meet people through your friends, groups, and your friends groups. There is Instagram and Twitter, where you can also meet people through your friends, do some detective work and check out who they follow and who follows them, checking hashtags and finding folks to follow or engage with who share similar interests and slide into those DMs. Then there are the dating apps (although some apps are not exclusively for dating, like OKCupid, where I met two good friends). Then there are apps that are specifically for Queer Dating like: THURST (a queer dating app created by a women of color) and HER. Other apps, while not queer focused can yield a potential bae like Hinge, Bumble, and of course Tinder.
Alright ladies, gentlewomen, boi's, her's, and they's. You know who you are, what you want, who you want it with, and how to get it. Now go forth and get the girl!
P.S. If you have specific questions or would like more details, please feel free to submit your question to Asking For A Friend