A little help from my friends?

One of the hardest parts of being one of those crazy lesbian feminist sometimes is remembering that I am, in fact, being one of those crazy lesbian feminists. I never have any problem being myself online, but I have lived in hostile environments in meatspace for so long that the suppression of myself becomes not just second nature, but first nature, so that if I spend too much time without the internet, it leaves me scratching my head wondering if I made a mistake about the whole “gay” thing.

It feels wrong that my identity, my basic sense of self, can go away, let alone that it does. It leaves me wondering even after I’ve returned to myself (i.e., the internet) if its impermanence is a sign of its incorrectness.

It’s not an identity crisis that lasts long, because then I just go, “Sure, I’m a straight girl, who is totally repulsed by penises and flat, manly chests. Worst straight girl ever.”

There are ways in which I am also the Worst Lesbian Ever (mostly just to do with the fact that I’ve dated more guys than girls, though if you took out the gay guys it would be even) but I am at least a lesbian. It’s part of my identity, and it’s not changing.

It just takes so much energy to remember that I am a lesbian, and a feminist, and to refuse to accept the eleventy-bajillion messages I get every day telling me that I am wrong and abnormal, and it’s so often just not safe enough to do anything but hide it, that sometimes… I forget.

I hate this, and I want it to stop. It is unacceptable to me that I find myself acquiescing to the patriarchy in almost every aspect of my external life. I need to be someplace where I can remember to be me.

Which is why I need a little help from my friends! I might be transferring schools in the future, away from my small-town conservative school of Young Republicans, and I’m trying to get a feel for what places might make me happier, and freer to be myself. So! If you know what it’s like to be at any of the following schools (which I have applied to), and especially if you know what it’s like to be one of those crazy lesbian feminists on campus, please tell me what your experience has been like!

  • University of Texas – Austin
  • UNC – Chapel Hill
  • Columbia
  • Carleton College
  • NYU
  • University of Vermont

Please just let me know in the comments, or if you have a lot to say (or it’s private), email me! My address is eloriane (at) gmail (dot) com, and I am looking forward to hearing you!

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2 Responses to A little help from my friends?

  1. Jezebella says:

    I haven’t lived in Austin since the 90s, but my friends who are still there assure me it’s lesbian-friendly. I think there are actually several lesbian bars, whereas most cities just have one, or maybe get a night to themselves at the boy bar.

    Austin’s awesome because it’s a college town, a great music scene, AND the state capital, so there’s a lot going on. Also, lots of outdoorsy stuff to do if you are into lakes and hiking and rock-climbing. Or you can be a night-owl, plenty of clubs and bars to hang out in. Also: tacos!

  2. Well, you’d certainly be able to find a good bunch of crazy lesbian feminists at NYU or Columbia. NY in general has all sorts of people, which is good and bad. You’ll always be able to find people just like you, but you’ll always find people who are the exact opposite.

    NY is a great place to live at, at least for a little while. In that sense, I would encourage anybody considering a move to NY, however long or short.

    BUT! The city is intense and very hard to get used to for anybody who is used to more friendliness, openness, cheerfulness, etc. or just general comfort and coziness.

    As far as the schools themselves, it’s up to you to really research which is best academically. Talk to students and professors, check out the student activities, consider costs, etc. In a way, being a transfer student is easier b/c you’re older, wiser, and know a bit better what you want. But you also have less time to fool around — you might need to catch up on requirements, change your expectations for your major a bit, etc.

    Email me if you need anything else, I’m happy to help. =)

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