Saturday, June 22, 2024

Trans Girl Playing with Butches and Bears


Wishing you a Happy Pride Month!

One of the mistakes I made when I first came out of my dark, isolated gender closet was thinking the gay and lesbian community had very few layers. 

Quickly I learned how wrong I was. In the male gay community, there were tops and bottoms, drags and bears just to name a few. Not to be undone, women in the lesbian community have butches, femmes, lipstick lesbians, gold star lesbians and baby dykes. Again just to name a few. Initially, I was confused by wondering how I fit in as a transgender woman, if at all.

Just as quickly I learned the male gay world was not for me. I tried going to male gay bars when I first came out and was roundly rejected. For the most part, the majority of the people thought I was a drag queen. Which of course I wasn't. It didn't take long for me to leave the gay scene for the most part and try new venues. About this time, two small lesbian venues opened as luck would have it, I was not accepted in one but had no problems in the other.  The first one was a hard core biker dyke bar and they had no use for a trans woman on her own in their bar. Just to be a pain to them, I kept going back before I found other places to spend my money. 

As I mentioned, the other bar was a direct opposite. I went often and ended up meeting several butch lesbians which were interesting. Ironically, it was not my first interaction with butches since my first dinner date as a trans woman was with a super-butch who later transitioned into a transgender man. Through it all, I thought I could handle myself and deep down I was flattered by any attention I received such as the night I was gifted a beer by a lesbian who said she should take me home with her, Since I was still married at the time, I didn't think it would be a good idea to follow up on her idea, Just like the night a super-butch in a cowboy hat would not take no for an answer when it came to singing karaoke with her. After our ill-fated attempt ended, she commented I had a lower voice than hers as I rapidly paid my bar tab and left. I never saw her again or was asked to sing. Yes, I was that bad.

On the other end of the spectrum were the interactions I experienced with the big burly male gay bears I happened to run into. I have no idea what the attraction was but I could count on at least a couple of these macho looking men with Pride or Bear flags stopping me to say hello. Including the time, Liz and I just happened to go into a gay bar in New Orleans which was frequented by several bears and the same thing happened. Instead of being shunned, I was welcomed. 

I finally figured out there was something in the aura I was exuding as a trans person and it was resonating with a few of the extremes of the gay and lesbian community. For example, I was never approached by a gay man or lipstick (femme) lesbian at all. At the time, none of it mattered because life was so new and exciting to me when I first explored my new world. 

Playing with butches and bears just added to the intrigue and fun as I discovered the many layers of the LGBTQ society. Maybe they realized I had so many added layers to me too and wanted to research more. Even though, I was a new transgender woman in the world, life was so much more exciting and simple at the same time. Maybe I was similar to a child and when the newness wore off, I became more jaded. 

I still feel though, if the world understood all the varied layers of the LGBTQ world they may try to treat us better.

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