MANILA, Philippines - "We just… do what we do to ourselves, only to each other, probably slightly more aggressively. And with… you know… oils and stuff."
Above is a quote from Emily while talking to her lover Naomi from TV series Skins.
Have you always wondered what goes through the mind of lesbians? What challenges they face?
In this week's edition of #AskMargie, clinical psychologist Dr. Margie Holmes shares stories, comments, and answers questions about lesbianism.
Today’s topic is about your questions, stories and comments about lesbians. We received a lot of interesting insights about this topic.
Let’s start with the some myths about Lesbians:
Anonymous: When I was in high school I was scared whenever a tomboy courted me, I was afraid because they say obsessive sila magmahal. Pag hihiwalayan mo magpapakamatay. Sex wise malalaspag ka kasi kung ano ano gusto ipasok sayo. I have no idea if it’s true.
MOI: It isn’t, Mouse 1. Or, more exact perhaps, it is as true for lesbians as it is for Heteros.
2. Ren says: Sa gay women, parang may perception na mas seryoso daw sila at pagdating sa relasyon napaka-possessive daw. At kaya raw nagiging lesbian ay dahil hindi pa namemeet ang tamang guy.
MOI: Ang masasabi ko lang dyan ay, kung naging lesbian daw ang mga lesbians dahil lamang na hindi sila naka-meet ng tamang lalake na magmamahal sa kanila katumbas ng pagmamahal ng isang babae sa mga guys, siguradong mas maraming mga lesbians sa mundo ngayon.
Anonymouse 2 says:
Before I entered my one and only relationship, they say it’s much easier since you are both female and can understand each other’s thoughts, actions, ideas well. But when you read online, most would say gay relationships don’t last long.
Now for some experiences you’ve shared:
I’ve been married and now have a lesbian partner. Here are some differences I’ve experienced:
Housework wise - masaya kasi pareho kayong responsible. Unlike pag lalaki tamad kumilos. Lahat ng bagay aasikasuhin mo para sa kanila. Ok lang if you have time pero pag papano pag may anak ka din inaasikaso.
Emotionally, mas nandyan ang lesbian partner, unlike a guy most of the time wala silang clue how to make you happy when you're feeling down. Worst iisipin nila sex lang katapat nun.
In bed, lesbian knows how to be gentle and enjoys longer foreplay which is good. But sometimes positions can be limited.
MOI: Can’t say I blame you, Mouse!
Anonymouse 4 shares: In my experience, lesbians live "quieter" lives - meaning kakaunti ang nag-a-out na lesbian or bi, at mas tahimik sa buhay dahil na nga rin sa difficulty ng aming choices.
Sa relationship ko ngayon, tinanggap naman kami ng families namin dahil I feel they respect our choice at kung sino kami. But this is something we never really talked about with our families. Basta tinanggap na lang, di na pinag-usapan. Naka-"live and let live" mode sila.
Some of our viewers share the downside and challenges of being a lesbian:
Anonymous 5: What saddens me in homosexual relationships is that walang karapatan ang naiwan when his/her partner dies. I respect the church if ayaw nilang i-recognize, but no excuse for the state, simply because we the people, are the state! Inupo natin ang mga officials to run our nation where every citizen should be treated equally and fairly.
MOI: Korek, Mouse 2! Everyone should be treated fairly, lesbian, gay. Straights, transgender, rich, poor, pro RH or anti-.
Lee: I had a partner for almost three decades whom I lost to heart attack last year. Our adopted daughter who carries her surname will hopefully get a share of the family's asset. After dedicating more than half of my life to taking care of the family we created, I've learned that I was not even considered as "our child's" guardian. It hurts me but I don't want to look as if naghahabol ako. I just hope our child will look after me in my twilight years.
Rica: Lesbian families, gay (and straight) families, are the same when it comes to raising their children. They raise their children the same way they were raised (or better).
They teach them about God, life, religion, politics and happen to be more frank when it comes to relationships - mainly because they will have to explain their own.
Malu Marin and Steve Rogers discuss infidelity between gay and lesbian couples”
Malu S. Marin: The joke in the community was lesbians are into relationships and that gay men are into sex. This has changed over time, with lesbians now also engaging in just sheer 'carnal' activities and with gay men 'fixated' in being in relationships. But in reality -- it's not that simple -- there are differences and there are similarities -- in the end, it really is about two people relating to each other.
Steve Rogers: Of course there's a huge spectrum, and no stereotype fits all. I still suspect that if you compared 1000 gay men to 1000 gay women, you'd find that the level of what we call "promiscuity" would be a lot higher among the men, simply because men are men.
Some of our viewers think society is unkind to lesbians precisely because they’re women.
Ren says: Women have always been marginalized but a lesbian woman is marginalized twice. While people have tolerated (yes, (merely) tolerated) gay men, hindi pa rin ganoon ka-welcome ang gay women. Some movies make it worse by showing "lesbians" who become heterosexuals once they got kissed by a man.
M says: In terms of mas angsty ang lez, perhaps it's because of how we as women are subjected to multiple levels of discrimination - babae ka na nga "lang," "lesbiyana" ka pa. Double marginalizations, multiple bigotry. Iimagine other discriminations added to that pa, e.g. single mother, etc.
Let’s now move on to your questions:
1. Is it normal for a former straight woman to now be in a homosexual relationship?
MOI: Absolutely! Sexual orientation is not set in stone, but fluid. IN my clinical experience, among those who “change” sexual orientations, the happiest are those who respond mainly to the person they fall in love or lust with, not those who are forced because of society or religion. And for all those who discover that their orientations have changed, well I hope you had, you have wonderful experiences both as a straight women, and as lesbians.
2. Someone asked: Meron bang talagang "guy" and "girl" in gay relationships? The more effeminate man, or the more masculine girl?
To which @piedpipergirl replies: It’s like you’re asking which is the fork/spoon in a chopstick.
To which @darlveloso quickly counters: So, no such thing? What about Butch/Femme and Baklang Parlor/Papa relationships?
MOI: Let me just quickly jump in and say: Couples vary in their desire-and need-for communication and response not only in bed but also in other situations. So there are some Butch/Femme and Baklang Parlor/ Papa relationships in gay relationships, so are there in hetero relationships. Some couples, gay or straight, can’t envision no other reality than traditional roles: She an artist, he, the breadwinner. Some, however, chafe against this kind of conformity and refuse to be limited by stereotypical roles. This is true for both homosexual and heterosexual relationships. And bully for them, I say. Cause, indubitably, the happiest couples are those with equal partners, free to experiment and laugh at themselves when these experiments don’t work and cheer when they do
WRAP UP: Let’s end with this simple statement from Ivy: Love is love is love is love. It's no different just because we're both female.