With my recent uprooting across the country, I’ve had a lot of time to myself. I went on a 0.7 mile run, I’ve started drinking coffee regularly, but most importantly, I’ve had a lot of time to think about my *~fEeLinGz~*. This month has been my emotional exorcism and the power of Christ compels me to write about it.
I’ve learned that for someone who always tries to do everything right, I do a shit load of things wrong. Cue the list:
Don’t let the past set the precedent for your future.
Similar to most human beings with souls on planet Earth, the way that I view relationships and my own self-worth has been defined by the first time I got my heart ripped out of my nearly C-cup chest.
When I first started realizing that I liked girls, I didn’t even know any lesbians. I thought they all lived in New York, wore power suits to their magazine editor job and went to art gallery openings with other lesbians that wore their hair in tightly pulled back sock buns that I very recently learned how to do thanks to YouTube. I didn’t meet lesbians in Chicago because I had way too much anxiety about my sexuality that if I even set foot in a gay bar, I would’ve combusted all over the walls (A feeling that still hasn’t gone away). So naturally I liked straight girls because they were all I met. And I figured that if I was exploring my sexuality for the first time at age 18, that I’m sure other girls were too. Not quite. I got so used to liking girls that never liked me back that when one finally did, I fell in love so hard that it completely destroyed me. I misconstrued her desire for attention from anyone with a heartbeat as a desire for me and only me. Months and months later when she finally came around to loving me back with the same fierceness that I had loved her with all along, she had already ruined me and I was just an empty shell of a human being with nothing to offer but a lot of jealousy and even more resentment.
Our biggest problem, besides her inability to not fuck other people, was that she ultimately wanted a future with a man. She looked at what her older sister had with her husband and three kids, and that’s exactly what she wanted and wouldn’t accept anything that looked slightly different. Her ex-boyfriends that weren’t half the person that I was, held precedence over me because they have sperm. I competed with practically every guy in her life that she was stringing along the same way she was stringing me along and it was exhausting to be a contender in a race that I could never win. After it didn’t work out with her, I was certain that I would no longer get involved in a situation even close to this one.
But I didn’t learn. In fact, when that didn’t work out, I got into a nearly identical situation and got the same result. And then again. And again. And you guessed it, again. Becoming more and more hopeless each time. Ultimately trying to recreate my past experiences to reach a different outcome and to convince myself that it could work if I tried a little harder. Which is insane. Like an even more fucked-up version of The Butterfly Effect except I don’t get to date Amy Smart and no one videotaped me as a child in a poorly lit basement wearing colonial garb.
What started off as a couple of coincidentally similar relationships eventually evolved into a plague of me jumping from hopeless situation to even more hopeless situation. Which brings me to my next point:
Stop going after straight girls, you fucking idiot.
Anyone who knows me in real life and not just the Internet life, knows that on a monthly basis there is a new girl I’ve met and wanted to keep my mouth in her mouth until she decided she didn’t want my mouth in her mouth anymore. Then I cry. Like my period, it is certain to come every month. And it’s a pattern that’s getting harder and harder for me to ignore. I’m one of those people that can do the same thing 30 times, get the exact same result, yet still try for number 31.
Relationships with straight girls never work. Because I’ve realized that straight girls usually don’t view their lesbian relationships as “real” relationships. You’re their girlfriend that they try on crop tops with at Forever 21, go out to tapas dinners with and then you have to call yourself a cab home at 3am because they’re too afraid for you to sleepover. They don’t foresee the relationship having a future, more so it’s just what they have going on now to occupy their time until they meet a guy that they effortlessly can see a future with. They don’t view it as a real relationship so they don’t believe the rules of relationships apply to them. They go out on incognito dates with guys, they flirt in front of you, they don’t show any affection in public, essentially treating you like you’re temporary. Or as my wise friend Erin Higgins puts it: “Straight girls think that their lesbian relationship is some shiny new toy to play with until the head falls off. Only for them to return to their usual heterosexual relationships.”
Which brings me to my next point:
When a straight girl ends up with a guy instead of you, don’t take it personally.
I’ve come to realize that I can’t always fault the straight girl. I mean, some know that they were total stains to me. Stringing me along like a child on a leash, sleeping with my roommate while I was sending you flowers like a moron, bringing me along to clubs that I hate with the guy that you were secretly seeing just to make him jealous. A moment of silence for those gems… But for the most part, they’re just being straight and I’m just being gay. They’re being experimental and seeing what they like, and I’m still just being gay. When they realize that they just want to hook up with a girl but not actually date one, I’m still just being gay. Then when they start hooking up with another girl that’s not me, I’m just being a sad gay that’s contemplating acting more butch.
I used to get angry at these girls who either knowingly or unknowingly tortured me. But ultimately I can’t be angry anymore. I can’t be mad that they looked through the window of what a relationship with a woman would be like and they quickly pulled the shades down because it wasn’t for them. I can’t be mad at them if it wasn’t for them the same way that a man couldn’t be mad at me because a future with him is not that I want. I can’t expect everyone to know what they want just because I do.
When these relationships don’t work out, it’s easy to assume it was you or something you did. You can drive yourself crazy thinking about all of the different things you could have done differently. Counting all of the “what if’s” – what if I played it more cool? What if I didn’t make myself so available? What if I wasn’t so nice? It all boils down to the very simple fact that it’s not that you did anything wrong or that you didn’t do enough things right, it’s that a relationship with a woman is not that what they want.
Which brings me to my next, closely related point:
Stop trying to compare yourself to men.
It’s literally comparing apples to oranges. If apples had penises and oranges had tits.
An overwhelming amount of fear and insecurity that arises when you’re with a girl (that is unsure of her feelings towards dating a girl). You feel as if all this effort and care that you put into a relationship into a girl can be trumped so quickly and so easily by a guy. Because no matter what we as lesbians can do (plan perfect dates, send them flowers when they least expect it, overall just being the best version of ourselves), there’s nothing we can do about not being a man. I mean, there IS but we’re not going to because most of us revel in the fact that we have tits and vaginas and stuff. And we know that we’re just one step away from being “that lesbian you used to hook up with” while you’re walking around the zoo hand-in-hand with your new boyfriend that’s most likely not going to do half the shit that we would’ve done for them, but they win. They win because they’re a guy and we are not. And he makes you pay for your own beers. What a dick. This insecurity has taken over my life, even on the rare occasion where I date a lesbian I even get insecure about men because I’m crazy and that’s what crazy people do.
This fear isn’t unwarranted. More often than not, these situations with women end because a man got involved and in a dramatic twist of my overreaction or my underreaction, and it generally takes place outside of a bar after 2am. Yeah, let’s go out me, you and your ex-boyfriend who is “totally just your best guy friend now” that just sounds like the best idea you’ve ever had. Then when you two start walking around the bar holding hands to “get through the crowd”, I bite my tongue so hard that I can taste blood. You leave the bar without saying a word, only to go back to your dorm room and cry. Cry because you feel hurt, cry because you know when you wake up in the morning she won’t call you to apologize or to explain, but that you’ll be the one to blame because you couldn’t get your feelings under control and you were being “such a girl” which to her, is the exact opposite of what she wants. You’re a lesbian, you’re supposed to be stoic like a man but soft and cuddly like a woman, on her terms. She makes you feel so guilty for over-reacting but then when you two break up a few months later, he’s the first one in her bed. Oh hey sophomore year of college, I didn’t see you there.
Experiences like that have tainted the way I view even the slightest insecurity I have about a girl I’m interested in and a guy in her life. I’ve overreacted and ruined relationships that probably could’ve worked a bit longer and a lot better had I not been so jaded by the women that treated me like human garbage. You wake up the next morning and reflect on the scene you made at Uncle Fatty’s the night before and you feel fucking nuts. You got soooo pissed because she was talking in this guy’s ear, come to find out it’s her cousin and you’re fucking crazy. You should’ve just said something when you had the chance but instead you decided to blow up like the first wave of feminism and accuse this poor girl of betrayal and infidelities that she wasn’t even guilty of. Now you’ve ruined it, all because you were too filled with rage to introduce yourself to the guy and see what his deal was. Now she doesn’t want to talk to you and she is completely back to dating guys only, because she’s convinced that all lesbians are insane.
Women generally know if they want to end up with a man or not. So trying to change myself to fit that seems impossible. The one thing that I keep wishing I could’ve changed for them to like me more ends up actually having a penis and I don’t want a penis at all. They seem incredibly inconveinent to have and I’m not even quite sure how to properly clean one if I had one, I’d probably use pipe cleaners like we used to play with during arts and crafts to make colorful caterpillars and wands.
Eventually you’ll reach a point of insecurity where you’re afraid to take them to a basketball game because you fear that them watching sweaty, muscular black guys running up and down a court will put a resurgence in their impending desire for a nice heterosexual fucking (Note: This is a real phenomenon. Three different occasions with three different girls have occurred where we go to an NBA game and afterwards they decide they just want to be friends. I think a study should be done on this). Lord forbid you take them to go see a movie starring Channing Tatum or Ryan Gosling, because then you’re fucked.
Aside from comparing myself to men, on an even broader level..:
Stop trying to tweak yourself to fit what the other person wants.
Whenever someone realizes that they didn’t want me anymore: I’m too nice, I’m too straight-forward, I’m too beautiful (hahahahah JK Rowling but seriously I’m waiting for some girl to tell me that one), I end up thinking that those qualities are unappealing to other people and it makes me believe that I need to change otherwise I will die alone. You reach a point where you’re like “Fuck… is it me?”
The fact is, no matter what the circumstance is you can’t keep trying to change yourself to fit the profile of what you think other people want you to be. A few more of these awful situations with confused girls and I’ll probably walk into a surgical office and ask to get a penis put on me.
This is not right. Eventually you’ll lose so much of yourself that when the right person finally does come along, you won’t even be the person that they could’ve fallen in love with because you’re just bits and pieces of what you thought other people wanted and you’re not yourself at all. And all your weird quirks, like how you still own the entire Abercrombie and Fitch fall 2006 collection because you’re too sentimental to get rid of them, or how you know every line to “Dumb and Dumber” and have acted it out to its feature length. All of these things, you won’t have to pretend isn’t SO you. Or the fact that you’d rather write a 10-page research paper on the Oxford comma than set foot in a gym. I can’t keep pretend that I enjoy working out or being active. I used to when I was younger and more agile, because the truth is, if I can’t be really good at something, I don’t want to do it at all. Which is why I don’t like sports anymore and why I don’t like things like yoga or pilates because I’ve tried them once, felt like a moron and never wanted to do it again. But all of these things, will be appreciated at some point and you won’t have to change who you are. As my good friend Jenny Shah said to me once, “Eventually… someone will like you.” Deep.
Going along with that..
Don’t be ashamed of the fact that you go balls to the wall for someone you want.
I’m not capable of having a purely sexual relationship with someone that I actually like. I’ve tried convincing myself that I can stabilize my emotions and do such a thing but I’ve realized I can’t. Even Mila Kunis realized in Friends with Benefits that she can’t just fuck JT without thinking he’s her soulmate. ART IMITATING LIFE, PEOPLE!
I’m trying harder and harder to engrain it in my brain that it’s okay that I can’t change how I go after what I want. It’s silly to act cavalier when I’m actually quite excited about a girl but then I’m afraid that she will know I’m not acting casual and she’ll be like WHOA get away from me weirdo. No come back, I want to take you on dates and eventually take a picture with you and post it on Instagram so that we can get double-digit likes and it will build my self-worth (also because I can’t keep taking selfies… people are catching on to my selfie binge). To quote a white trash girl named Deseray’s lower back tattoo, “Life is short” – so why am I going to waste my time trying to play it cool when I want to go all in?
Also, when you do try for someone, make it someone who isn’t afraid to hold your hand in public or is unsure of if they want to fuck you.
If someone only wants to sleep with you but doesn’t want to date you: Stop.
If someone only wants to cuddle you but never wants to fuck you: Stop.
FIND SOMEONE THAT WANTS TO DO BOTH!
Someone that is unsure of how they feel about themselves is certain to make you start to feel uncertain about yourself. They’re nervous to sleep with a girl so you misconstrue that for them not thinking you’re hot enough. You fear that they’ll run in the other direction when you take your shirt off. Which is crazy because I have good boobs. They deserve to be seen, not hidden away like an Israeli daughter. Next thing you know I’m joining Crunch Fitness all because I was certain you thought my stomach was looking a little doughy and now I’m going to Bo Flex the fuck out of my abs.
Try for someone that makes you feel good. Someone that makes you feel sexy already without having to buy new thongs or even wear thongs in general, because they’ll still think you’re hot when you wear your American Eagle boyshort panties from high school that may have a few minor holes in them.
Unfortunately I blindly go after the wrong people. Without thinking I try to turn Thursday’s drunken make out into the next great love story. Fully convinced that we will persevere against all odds, share our lives together and live somewhere in the mountains with our adopted Vietnamese children, Rilo and Kiley. Most of the time, I hardly know this person. I look back on it a few months later after we’ve broken off all forms of connection, and realize that I don’t even like the person that they are. But I had a goal. A goal to get them to have feelings for me. Sometimes you push so hard for a goal, that you end up losing sight of what the reality would actually be. Months later I realize that the sweetest thing this person ever said to me was “You too!” and that she had no interest in ever making me happy.
When you continually go after people that have nothing to offer to you, you need to realize that you need to..
Stop trying to cure everything with distractions.
I’m becoming more and more cognizant to the fact that I go after women who have nothing to offer me. I’ve tried to psychoanalyze why I do that and I’ve come up with a theory that seems accurate:
As human beings we tend to go through great lengths to distract ourselves from what’s actually bothering us. We’re upset that the person we have true feelings for is dating someone else or not interested in us, so we hook up with someone who we don’t have feelings for at all, just because for a short amount of time, we won’t be miserable. Eventually we mistake the comfort that we found in this distraction, as something real, and the distraction turns into something else that we will eventually need distracting from once it doesn’t work out. Most likely, none of these people are actually making you happy, they’re just making you less miserable about the person that came before them. Ultimately you’re just layering distraction upon distraction, like the world’s largest layer cake of bad decisions.
Once you deflect your sadness a certain number of times, it becomes hard to decipher who or what is making you happy or sad. Don’t do this anymore. You can’t keep distracting yourself from what’s actually bothering you, otherwise you’ll inevitably turn into one giant ball of despondency and be depressed, or even elated, over someone who you don’t actually have feelings for.
Sad I know, but..
Don’t lose faith, little B.
At this point, I feel like hot girl repellant. I’m surprised that every time I look in a mirror, I don’t break up with myself and tell myself I think we should just be friends.
And it’s easy to assume that this will happen every time. But there comes a point where Brittany has to sit down with Brittany and realize what Brittany actually wants. It’s easy to walk away from the same situation again and again and say, “Fuck this, I’m never going that again” but then the opportunity arises and you throw yourself right back into those trenches. You’ll spend the rest of your 20′s and maybe some of your 30′s getting in these month-long flings that end with this same conversation. Even if you find a lesbian, you’ll be so used to being fucked over that you wouldn’t know a faithful, considerate person if she punched you in the crotch. So even when you have a lesbian, you fuck that up too. All because when you were 19, some straight chick took your heart, stabbed it with scissors and blew a bunch of her “male friends”. Successfully ruining that good faith that you used to have in people, so much that you wonder if this insecurity will ever go away or if you’re ruined forever by all the girls that just thought it was fun to make out with you but wanted nothing more, all the while you were doodling their names in your Lisa Frank trapper keeper in sheer ignorance.
But you can’t lose faith. In a perfect world, all these experiences have taught you what you want in another person and what you absolutely don’t fucking want in someone. And at least it’s given me something to write about.