Butch Desire

Butch desire is to fem hunger what peanut butter is to jelly; what ying is to yang.

I recently read a really GREAT blog about “hunger”; specifically fem hunger. You can read it here, which is my previous cross post about this blog, and will connect you with this wonderful blogger. The writer is a fantastic femme, who writes with elegance and ease about this topic and many others concerning Butch-fem relationships and dynamics. As with anyone, I don’t always agree with her, but I have found that she quite often stimulates me to write more!  I truly value her opinions and perspectives.

This article she wrote about fem hunger has made me think much about what it is that I, as a Butch who desires that fem hunger, feel and how I respond to that hunger.

Butch desire is the deep, almost primal, need a Butch feels when acknowledged by a femme. It’s the riveting eye contact that conveys the message that they want more; they want to take it all. Butch desire runs deep in the body, and is activated like an electrical current, making the heart race and the breath come in heavy sighs. It’s that desire to be wanted and needed exactly as I am – Butch and proud – not to be told to “tone it down” or hide in any way.

It’s the unending need to fix everything; to make everything good and right for her femme; to treat the femme like the queen of her world, as it should be. Then it’s the aching need to take what is hers; to conquer and devour every savory morsel of femininity exuded by her fem lover, and to do it with force and precision.

“I want you as a woman, not as a man; but I want you in the way you need to be, which may not be traditionally female, but which is the area you express as Butch…….I make it right to want me that hard. Butches have not been allowed to feel their own desire because that part of being Butch can be perceived by the straight world as male. I feel I get back my femaleness and give a different definition of femaleness to a Butch as a femme.”
Amber Hollibaugh, “What We’re Rollin’ Around In Bed With” My Dangerous Desires

Butch desire is the raging need that fills my mind with visions of her, spread before me quivering and waiting for my touch, sometimes gentle and sometimes rough and demanding. It’s the ache in my entire body that is only stopped by her moans, that deep connection we make in becoming whole together, mind, body and soul. It’s her unbridled hunger for being taken and my overwhelming desire to claim her as my own. Butch desire is all of those things, plus much more. From the way it makes me lick my lips in anticipation, to the guttural noises I make as I find my release with her body quaking under mine.

That hardness; the rigidity of our closely guarded emotions, that we keep locked up safe behind our walls of protection, is also our vulnerability. When a femme sees momentarily behind the wall that we build, it’s an intimate and very exposed feeling for a Butch. We do not show our vulnerabilities readily, nor often. Some say we are damaged goods; that our lack of visible emotion and response is from some trauma – or from our “wanting” to be male – nothing could be further from the truth for a truly authentic Butch.  Femmes have a way of seeing through our thinner walls, and of reaching past those super-tender spots without threatening or damaging us.  This serves to heighten our desire; to fan the flames of heat and passion.

Never have I desired to be “male” – although standing to pee is very appealing – it never came to me to transition to the male gender. Femmes get this. They don’t push us to change, but accept us for who we are and how we represent ourselves in the world.  We are women who push the gender boundary and skew the binary; who look, feel and think a bit differently perhaps. There’s a thin line; a boundary of distinction, invisible to most and yet something that we are very keenly aware of as we move about our world.

Being a dominant Butch it’s often assumed that I take on a “male” role in any relationship.  While this has some truth to it, it’s not really that cut and dried; every Butch owns her own butchness – and what that is and how it plays in her life, daily.  Being Butch doesn’t stop when no one’s looking, it’s an authentic way of being in the universe. And it’s that combination of being female, yet very masculine that feels every so right to a Butch – and to her fem partner.  It’s what gives me life and joy in being.

When I am with people from outside of the gay community I am more keenly aware of my differences with them.  Whereas when I am with my counterparts I am much more relaxed and less guarded overall.  The more “mainstream” lesbian community generally frowns on the Butch-fem dynamic, lifestyle and those who partake in it’s beauty.  Sad for them in my opinion.  Lesbians seem to have a real tendency to be judgmental of other lesbians – at least that has been my own observation.  I see more lesbian on lesbian bashing than I care to see.

Personally, I don’t give much weight to their opinions, rude remarks, comments, or slurs of others – lesbian, straight, or whatever.  That’s their business; their own frame of thinking, generally constructed from within their own culture, community and situation in life.  People get hung up on what they do not understand; it frightens them, so they try to minimalize it however they can.  I find this to be a real form of “internalized” homophobia.  Preach about equality, but disrespect those who do the same things you do – just tweaked a bit.  That does NOT make much sense.  And perhaps me even saying this here doesn’t either, it’s MY own internalized phobia of occasionally worrying about what others may think.   And there I will leave it.

~MB

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Butch-phobia….my personal rant

I was directed to a blog last night that stunned the crap out of me with its anti-Butch/Femme/Trans overtones and direct, blatant lies and misconception.  It infuriates me that this far into the fight for equality across the board the we are still belittling and ridiculing each other right her within the LGBT alphabet soup community, and with such harshness and berating that it’s unbelievable.

When I see a snake in the garden I am one to confront it and deal with it, rather than let it slither at me and try to scare my ass.  And while there are many “snakes in our gardens” so to speak, the ones that are particularly venomous are those who are spouting phobic bullshit.  If you are phobic about something and do not understand it or haven’t experienced it yourself, so you are afraid of it and thus feel you need to belittle or shame it away somehow, I think you are just so full of your own internalized homophobia and woman-phobic bullshit. 

Short of going on a full out ranting rampage here I am going to choose a few sentences of the bullshit blog I read and share them with you. 

“…how the Butch and Femme identities are two sides of the same gender coin that limits the full potential of who a woman can be.”    What does this fucking mean?  That because I identify as Butch and walk that walk in my own life that I cannot possibly live up to my “potential”?  WTF? 

This person also seems to think, from what I understand, that somehow being Butch is a lead in to becoming an FtM trans person.  Yes, perhaps I walk a thin, thin line in this aspect, but let it be known that I am NOT trans, and I AM a lesbian.  A woman loving woman.  I respect and admire my brave trans friends to the nth degree.  Their walk is so like my own, at times very lonely, scary, and confusing I am sure.  And to be continually fighting against the Butch/Transphobia we both face from within the Lesbian community, it is just ludicrous. 

I am Butch no matter how you dress me up.  As another blogger coined I am “clockable” regardless of what I wear or don’t wear.  It’s like lipstick on a pig to put me in a dress, and it fools no one.  I’m straight up Butch and damned proud, and damned sure not going to try to twist it or change it for some other fool who thinks it’s not “feminine” enough, that I am “aggressive and inappropriate” in my appearance or presentation to the world.  Fuck that.  I never ever felt very feminine and it’s stupid to say that that makes me less of a woman, when it’s just MY way of being the Butch woman that I am. 

Shame me all you want, I am not accepting YOUR shame.  I will not be shamed into changing the core of who my being IS in this world.  Accuse me of “playing a role”, but understand if you can that I am NOT playing a role, but I am just being myself, plain and simple.  It’s sad that people cannot just be who they are in today’s world without causing someone else to start throwing therapeutic assumptions at them that they are suppressing some inner battle and that’s causing them to “act out” in the way that they present to the world.  Utter bullshit in my opinion.

I have experienced oppression as a woman, as a Butch, because I am not feminine enough, woman enough, too masculine, “other” and more.  I am a gender non-conformist, and it seems that some Lesbian people just seem to hate that idea!  Like they expect us to all shout at the tops of our lungs that “we are woman” but yet not be too “Femme” or too “Butch” as to make them look twice. They would rather have everyone fit more into a “neutral” kind of box where we could all be some sort of touchy-feely kinds of Lesbians with woman attributes that were apparent, but not overly so. 

I’m not some college educated left wing Feminist.  To the contrary, I often am confused by radical Feminism and all its negative connotations on our lives.  Seems like it’s that we want to be treated equally – but separately somehow, and that’s not exactly equal if you ask me. 

Who I love, whether it be a more Femme woman, another Butch or someone who doesn’t fall into an identifying group, is none of anyone’s business.  And it doesn’t matter, I am still a card carrying Lesbian no matter what.  I am romantically attracted to women and only women.   I have many male friends and respect them as they do me. 

What we directly experience and see in life is what matters to us as human beings.  It’s how we navigate our way through our often complicated, complex and dynamic lives.  People choose the facts that relate to what they already believe.  Human engagement isn’t about facts, but about our experiences and our relationships to each other.  And yes, these relationships take on all forms, we take on all types of personalities and personas, that make us comfortable in our own skin.  No one can take your core values and your core being away from you, and no on should every shame another for being who they ARE in this world.  Walk your walk.  Butch or Femme or something else, just be proud and walk tall.   

Shaking the Umbrella

It seems, unfortunately in 2012 that being comfortable in just being who you are, and allowing others to do that same thing, not policing them in return – even when they do it to you – has just become the sort of “norm” way of thinking inside of the LGBTQ  community   I am saddened by stories I hear about individuals (and groups) being put down by others inside of the LGBTQ umbrella for expressing themselves as individuals, and not being swayed by “stereotypes” or “rules” of how to act, be or present that appeases our seeming need to be seen as normal in the world at large.

Since I began questioning the ideas of gender policing, transphobia, and hate from within the LGBTQ community itself, I have recieved quite a bit of input from others.  Some telling me their horror stories of incidents they endured, or that a partner or lover went through.  Some lamenting the by-gone days when it was “ok to be gay” and we all carried the rainbow flag together – Butches, Femmes, Dykes, Queers, Bisexuals, Trans people and those still seeking their identity.

Be that.  The LGBTQ community has become so hostile towards it’s own “members” in recent years; no longer affording us a “safe space” to just be the unique individuals we are intended to be.  But trying to “police” us and set “guidelines and rules” for who can and cannot claim an identity, a lifestyle, or just their own unique style.  For some reason some have gravitated toward more rigidity in how others are “supposed” to present to the rest of the world, which lends heavily to the “one bad apple” thing that happens so easily when you are already part of a group that is already viewed thru the eyes of skepticism.

Remember the Toronto Gay Pride chair who wanted – paraphrasing here – us to tone it down – ie no “Butch” lesbians or “Flambouyant” gay men, but for the crowd to exhibit a more “family friendly or normal” presentation in the parade?— Yeah, like let’s all pretend we are “normal” like the rest of this fucked up world’s inhabitants! SMH

God forbid that we take “pride” in who we ARE, in our own families and in our community as a whole.  I remember that incident very vividly, because, as a Stone Butch myself, I felt completely negated – within the so called “safety net” of the community that I loved – and represented.  And by someone who was supposed to be leading a showing of PRIDE and fighting PREJUDICE.  It felt to me like a direct insult; a frontal attack and left a very very bad taste in my mouth that I have yet to be able to fully rinse from existence.  I only wish I had the opportunity to address the person who spewed those words into the air with such whimsical ease; to say, “HEY, wait a damned minute!…”

I have so much more to share related to this topic of hate and discrimination experienced under the umbrella.  I thank those who have taken the time to contact me with their painful recollections -L, G, B, T, and Q’s!  And please if you would like to share I am wide open for hearing your experiences and opinions!  More to come…