Tag Archives: Lipstick Lesbian

#7 Friendship

For most of my life, I have not had many friends. I had a couple here, a few there… But they were always moving in and out of my life for various reasons. I have had more than my fair share of users in my life—people that pretended to be my friends only to stab me in the back later. People like that really make it hard to trust others.

However, if we do not learn to trust, we will not make any friends in life, and friends are important; in my life especially. Without friends, I would not be alive today. A few very important people in my life have helped me to be who I am and where I am today. Without them in my life, I could be a very different person, or possibly not even exist.

I have been lucky in my life. When I needed support the very most, someone came out of the woodwork and was there to help me through some of the hardest times of my life. I may feel alone sometimes, but I do believe that everything happens for a reason.

Friends are in our lives for both us and them. Being a good friend means helping them as much as they help us, sometimes more; and we help each other in different ways. A friend who helps me with rides around gets emotional support and a lunch buddy in return. A friend who offers me times of laughter gets a baby-sitter as payment. A friend who supported me in many ways emotionally gets a patient friend that will always be willing to help in a time of need.

Friendship is a symbiotic relationship. It is about give and take and without both you have a rotting core that will give out eventually.

Eh

I’m not sure where I was going with this. Hope you all find something to be positive about today.

Goodnight.

The Resident Femme

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#6: Mental Illness – Part 2: The difference between “Emo” and Depression

(Read part one here)

As a life-long sufferer of dysthymia (chronic minor depression), I have experienced the phenomenon of being referred to as “emo”. My goal today is to explain the difference between “emo” (emotional) and depression.

These two terms are widely different, almost opposite.

Emo: the act of being overly emotional. Using “heightened” emotions as a possible way to find both positive and negative attention. This sort of behavior CAN stem from depression based on certain problems, but is generally just teen angst.

Being “emo”, one is generally fairly /active/. They—those that are considered “emo”—are fairly forward in their actions and behavior. Everything tends to be a melodramatic, over-exaggeration and over the top reactions. Everything is intensely one thing or another and there is never usually an in between. Everything could be considered a tragedy.

I will repeat: teen angst.

Depression, however, is much more complicated. Depressed is not the same as sad, or emotional. Sad is a specific emotion, and depression consists of … duller? emotions; sometimes a lack of proper emotions at all. There is a huge lack of motivation, energy, hope, etc. . . One is trapped in what seems to be an endless cycle of internal pain, confusion, hopelessness, and sometimes fear.

When people who are depressed “react” things are generally less dramatic, but more helpless. They are not fishing for attention, just feeling hopeless and lost. There are few people whom they will feel motivated to talk to, usually they won’t even let people know of their symptoms. These people tend to be quiet, reserved… And accused of being “emo”.

I speak from experience here, though my words may seem distanced. My depression has basically been my whole life. I didn’t really know that there was more than my lack of “normality”. I was diagnosed with Dysthymia February of 2014. I was sitting in the psychiatrist’s office and he asked me when my last happy memory was.  I couldn’t immediately pull up a happy memory. I sat and thought for a long while and still couldn’t really bring anything up.

Now, let me  go off for just a moment, not everyone understands depression. I have been told by several different people to just “get over” my depression. For some people, as I have mentioned in a previous post, depression hits as a “one off” thing. They have a passing down-ness and can get passed it rather quickly. However, every single person deals with life in a different way.

For one thing, our bodies are built differently. Balances of emotions, hormones, life experiences, and more, help to determine how we can handle our lives. So those that don’t understand the overwhelming control that depression takes over its sufferers should not criticize those that are there.

Now, to return to my story: The psychiatrist asked me several other questions and determined that I have dealt with chronic depression since early childhood. Though I didn’t want them, I was prescribed anti-depressants. My first couple days I felt very strange… I felt like something was wrong with me, and this was wrong.

Even now, if I want to remember something happy from my past, I have to think really hard for several minutes, and even then, the memories are short and vague.

In high school I was a little melodramatic, most of us are. However, I kept mostly to myself. I didn’t have many, if any, friends. Either I did not eat lunch or I ate alone. Typically I either sat in my class or reading in the library. I honestly kept to myself a lot of the time. I tended to wear darker colors because it was easier. Fewer decisions and bright colors got you noticed.

I was not, however, an over-the-top attention-seeker, not intentionally.

Taking this to the next step, I also have PTSD. The symptoms of this caused me to sometimes act out in strange ways, these could appear to some to be attention-seeking behavior. These actions were usually reactions to my anxiety, flashbacks, high stress levels, and trying to find ways to make the internal pain go away.

After I was raped, My behavior got more confusing. Brace yourself, this is where I get “crazy” though I am not supposed to use that word… in the raw sense of the word, at the time, it was true.

My logical self didn’t know how to make sense of what had happened to me. My OCD intensified. I was “dirty”, I was “broken”, I was… those were thought of a self-punishing, PTSD-triggered OCD, Dysthymic, scared woman.

I was alone for the first time, living in a freshman dorm, and for a long time I was “that strange girl” (honestly I have been that girl all through my school career, because I didn’t know why I acted the way I did. I own it now and thrive off of my differences.) It took me overly-long to admit to myself that I wasn’t at fault. Sadly I kept my secret for several months more, wondering why no-one liked me, why I wouldn’t make friends.

One night, a hall-mate burst into my room while I was crying and demanded that I talk to her. Bless her heart. I finally had a support. My story flowed out of me through broken memories that couldn’t have made much sense to her, but she pulled me into her arms, held me while sobs racked my small body. She repeated to me again and again that it wasn’t my fault. I wasn’t broken. I wasn’t dirty. I was strong, and beautiful, and confused. It was the first time I had gotten so much out and I had gotten love in response.

She gave few enough details to others in the hall that she considered close friends, just enough for them to understand why I was so “strange” but not enough for anyone to have any ammo to judge me. I honestly don’t know what she told them, but suddenly I had friends. Over the next few days I was approached by different people insisting that if he ever showed up to the school, they would tear him apart.

For the first time in my life I felt accepted, welcomed, protected, by friends. I think I have gone off on a tangent. The point of all of that was to attempt to give you an insight into how I lived with my depression. Understand that even now: I struggle with my depression every day. I have a combination of both therapy and anti-depressants… but that doesn’t make me weak. Even though I am still fighting my depression, I am not a lesser person I am still fighting. I am strong.

The most important thing to understand: depression is an illness and it cannot change overnight. Those with depression need support and love. Do what you can to try and make their day a brighter one by being supportive. KNOW that they may not have a different attitude that day, but know that they felt your love. I know that it’s a tiring process. Trust me: I know. But do not doubt that they are also tired of being depressed. If we could change at the drop of a hat, we would.

If you yourself, or someone that you know, has issues understanding depression or how depression affects others, and this post did not help, I urge you to read or share part 1 of the mental health series. Thank you.

I encourage you to comment: agree or disagree with me. I will try to explain everything in a scientific way if needed.

Thank you.

(Read part three)

The Resident Femme

*Note: I may not be a medical professional, but I have lived with depression my entire life.

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#5 Mental Illness—Part One

This specific post was originally written in June of 2014.

I am just going to come right out and say it: Everyone has issues. Not everyone’s issues are of the same caliber. Some people only deal with mental illness once in a rare while, maybe it’s a wave of depression, a really anxiously lived day, a random moment of insanity. . . But there are those whose lives are controlled by Mental Illness.

Mental Illness Is not an attempt at attention, and some people deal with similar situations in different ways. Some people take the pain inside and it festers. It turns into a black poison that tears their soul apart. THIS DOES NOT MAKE THEM WEAK! This means that they are dealing with this pain again and again every day until they learn how to work past it. This makes them strong.

It may seem hard for some to realize this; however, I read something on my Facebook yesterday that I would like to share with you all.

“I don’t like the phrase ‘A Cry For Help’. I just don’t like how it sounds. When somebody says to me

‘I’m thinking about suicide, I have a plan; I just need a reason not to do it, ‘ the last thing I see is helplessness.

“I think: Your depression has been beating you up for years. It’s called you ugly, and stupid, and pathetic, and a failure, for so long that you’ve forgotten that it’s wrong. You don’t see any good in yourself, and you don’t have any hope.

”But still, here you are; You’ve come over to me, banged on my door, and said: ‘Hey! Staying alive is REALLY HARD right now! Just give me something to fight with! I don’t care if it’s a stick! Give me a stick and I can stay alive!’

“How is that helpless? I think that’s incredible. You’re like a Marine: trapped for years behind enemy lines, your gun has been taken away, you’re out of ammo, you’re malnourished, and you’ve probably caught some kind of jungle virus that’s making you hallucinate giant spiders.

“And you’re still just going: ‘Give me a stick. I’m NOT dying out here!’

“ ‘A cry for help’ Makes it sound like I’m supposed to take pity on you. But you don’t need my pity. This isn’t pathetic. This is the will to survive. This is how humans lived long enough to become the dominant species.

“With NO hope, running on NOTHING, you’re ready to cut through a hundred miles of hostile jungle with nothing but a stick, if that’s what it takes to get to safety.
“All I’m doing is handing out sticks. You’re the one staying alive.”

I read this and cried. It is a very true thing for most people. It is a constant struggle to feel normal while trying to live with the world around you

I personally have PTSD, OCD, Conversion Disorder, and Dysthymia. I have been living with consistent anxiety and depression: pretty much my whole life.

I have finally gotten to the point where I was able to accept that I needed to seek help and my current agreement with my therapist is that I will not currently discuss what has caused my issues. Yet. I can let people know that I have the issues, but it is not healthy for me to tell anyone details as to why or what happened.

What I will say is that I have three major things that happened to cause the PTSD, things that I need to figure out how to work through so that I am no longer afraid of the world around me. I sometimes feel like it has been forever. I honestly had no real idea what happiness was even supposed to feel like. I was started on anti-depressants and I remember telling a friend: “I feel like I am malfunctioning. I am glitching and I need to be sent in for repairs.” I did not feel like how I knew myself to be for so long. I was finally being pulled out of my depression and being put into a healthier mental cycle and it felt WRONG.

It should never feel WRONG to feel enjoyment in your own life.

For a very long time I believed that I did not matter. Everyone and everything came before my needs. Because of this way of thinking, I became very sick. I was in a situation where I was living in pure anxiety for several weeks on end. I could not eat, I could not sleep, I couldn’t take notice in myself or anything around me. I was close to 130lbs and I lost almost 30lbs in 2-4 weeks. I was had already had stomach issues and could hardly keep anything down, and now I wasn’t eating.

My moods got worse and I continued to fall deeper and deeper into both mental and physical illness. It has been almost a year and I am still working on getting my stomach back to the size it was before. I have to forcefully remind myself that I have to eat at least three meals a day. (I have alarms on my phone for crying out loud!)

I do not know how to explain how my life is to people. I need the medication I am on right now to survive. They are keeping me in a place where I can value myself and not let myself be buried deeper and deeper in other people’s crap.
I was told in sixth grade that my only weakness was that I cared too much about others and not enough about myself. She never saw me as a broken human, she always saw me as a whole, beautiful, human being that was helping people so much I was hurting myself. It took me a long time and many people repeating these same words for me to understand what they meant.

My life is helping others, but if I do not take the time for me first, then I will not survive. I will wither away and die—literally.

Mental Illness is not something to be taken lightly. If you know someone who struggles with any at all: (Depression, Anxiety, PTSD, OCD, Schizophrenia, Anorexia, or one of many other mental disorders, etc.) Please be a support to them.

It is a mistake to accuse them of acting out for attention. In most cases, people are not trying to get you to see them, they are trying to follow what their brain is telling them to do. They hurt and they are afraid. Offer love and a kind shoulder. Offer healthy activities and just be a friend. I know that when I had the loss of friends around me, life got a lot worse. I had nowhere to turn, and so when I needed people and support the most… I locked myself away.

Now that I have friends in my life, people that are willing to sit and help me through my downs… I find myself still having issues with reaching out. It was impossible for so long that it is hard for me to ask for help now.

To my friends: Please understand that I am not trying to hurt you if I start to push you away. It is a safety mechanism. I am afraid. I know that I am hurting and that I do not want to end up hurting you with the $#!+ that I am going through. Sometimes it’s for the best to insist on being in my life, on MAKING ME get out of the house and distract me from what I have been dwelling on. ASK  me if I am working on my senses—hell you don’t even need to know what it means! Just know that it is important to my mental health right now. Ask me if I am alright and if I need some time to breath. Ask me to be a friend, because even if I am not reaching out for it… I need friends more than I ever knew I did.

This kind of turned into a strange rant about mental health. I hope that this post helps people understand that mental illness is not an act. LOVE THE PEOPLE IN YOUR LIFE WHO HAVE THESE ISSUES. (Also, do not take possible mean things personally; we learn that to survive, it may be safer to be alone. Usually we do not realize that we are pushing/have pushed people away until it is too late.)

(Read Part 2)

~A Girl on the Edge of the Wild~

AKA
The Resident Femme

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#2: Yes, I really AM a Lesbian!

Okay, so this is something that really ticks me off. I tell someone that I am gay and then I usually get the same responses: “Are you sure?”, “You just haven’t met the right guy.”, “No you’re not, your too feminine to be a lesbian.”. “You look too straight to be gay.”, “It’s just a phase.”, “You’re just looking for attention.”

WHAT?

Why would I make something like this up? To the guys who are interested: I am not just playing it up to get you to go away, or to get your attention. I really am gay. Really. I am 100% lesbian, I will never be with a guy. Ever. Gross.

I look really girly so many people assume that I am straight. Seriously, even other lesbians have accused me of being straight. I. Like. Boobs. Soft skin, gentle touches, whispers, being able to compare periods. Maybe I took that too far, I am just a really open book. I like being able to discuss things with my partner without having to worry about grossing them out. I might be making it worse.

I have had so many experiences of men who think that when I tell them that I am a lesbian, that it is a challenge to their masculine prowess. Seriously?

I was sitting in City Limits one night and a guy approached me. He asked me incredulously: “You’re not a dude are you?” … I responded “Um no, but I am a lesbian.” Him said with a smirk on his face: “Oh, okay, that’s fine then.” My hope was that he would understand that it was Gay Night at the Utah County Bar.

I let it go at that, he seemed a little drunk already and I really didn’t think anything about another drunk guy acting like an ass. I went back to playing pool with my friends. A little while later he walked past me while I was aiming and grabs my ass. NOT OKAY.

First: If I tell a guy I am gay, it means: leave me alone, I am not interested, I like women! Second: It is NEVER polite to grab a girl (or guy) that you do not know! It is just rude. Third: don’t piss off a shy girl who has been abused by men in the past.

I followed the ass outside and confronted him. “Excuse me?!?” I exclaimed.

He had the audacity to laugh and tell me: “I didn’t do it, someone else did.”

I took a deep breath and decided: instead of giving in to the rage I was feeling, I would be the bigger person and try to ignore him for the rest of the night. I could feel my anxiety rising and fought the anger that was unusually accompanying it.

Now, This is super frustrating. My whole night was brought down because some jerk thought that me being a lesbian was an open invitation for harassment. My friend applauded my self-defensive gumption to confront my harasser. I didn’t feel like I had been strong. I thought later about how I should have reacted differently… But when he approached me later in the night I was not going to have any more of his behavior.

Loud enough for the amazing drag queens near me to hear I announced, “Back off and leave us alone.” (he had been harassing other girls in the bar that were with us.) He advanced. I shifted my stance and said louder “Back the #### off!” The DJ’s wife heard me and stepped between us and the advancing man. She pulled herself up to her intimidating (short) height and glared. “Back off, these girls are with me!”

We laughed about it later, but I shouldn’t have to be on the defensive when I am out. (This guy even had his girl friend there. Seriously? Do you know what respect is?.)

That is not even the worst thing that has happened to me. I had an old man tell me once that I just needed a more experienced dick. EW! What the hell? Being a lesbian does not mean that … just… NO! *shudders*

I have girls jealous of me because they think that I am just making up the whole “Lesbian” thing to get closer to and steal their boyfriend. WHY would I do that? Why would I chose to be bullied, harassed, and looked down on just to get closer to your boyfriend? I don’t mind being friends with decent respectful men. But the rest of it, more power to you. I. Don’t. Want. It. Keep it.

Being told that I am not really gay is my most common frustration, though, as shown above: not my only one. I am also currently living in Utah, which isn’t inherently bad. As with everywhere else, there are more accepting people and there are jerks.

It is really too much though. After taking so long to discover myself (See the Femme Post) I will not let anyone else try to force me back into the closet.

Because I love me.

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Confession 1: I am a FEMME

First, let me define what a FEMME is in my world. A Femme is a lesbian that ENJOYS being a woman in all the ways. Make-up, dresses, feeling sexy, doing all the girly things. This does not mean that any other “genres” of Lesbians don’t enjoy being women. Studs can enjoy being a girl as well, they are just typically more “masculine” then Femmes.

Every single person is different. Gay, straight, in between: I don’t care. Each person has their own way of defining themselves. Though Labels are very un-helpful in most things… I think of myself as a Lipstick lesbian. I love dressing up, I love wearing make-up and making other girls stare at me. However; I really like fixing things. I love my power tools.  I was in a long relationship in the past with someone that I would have considered a stud. She was very dominant, very masculine… But I was “Mr. Fix-it” in the relationship. I fixed everything, I built furniture, I also cooked, cleaned, crafted.

I’m not sure if I am creating any sense of my thoughts. Let me take a few steps back and talk about my life for a minute. . .

I grew up in Utah, smack-dab in the middle of Mormon-ville. That is not necessarily a bad thing. Some Mormons are perfectly nice. But most of them that I knew were very judgmental. They lived hypocritical lives of “love your neighbor…unless they are different”. I didn’t even know what gay was!

I lived such a sheltered life in Utah—I am ashamed to admit it but I didn’t know what black even was. There was one girl in my school that was black and we all thought she was from India—I didn’t know anything. I was raised on a diet of judgment and the unknown. My life was confusing and I couldn’t keep friends…

To try to help you understand who I am: In Jr High I told everyone who asked “There are no bully’s in my school.” I truly believed that… Because I thought being abused was normal. There was a girl in my grade that went out of her way to try to make my life a living hell. I’m serious. She would do whatever she could to torment me and my friends. There were so many things that she did—I cannot remember them all. But one event I remember very well was when she called me a Lesbian.

I had no idea what in the world a Lesbian was. She came into the class pretending to kiss her best friend. She saw me looking and said in a very jeering way “You are such a lesbian” Of course I denied it. I didn’t know what it was, I didn’t know what I was… I just didn’t know.

By the time I was in high school I was convinced that I was “Bi-Curious” (The problem with this, was that I was never really attracted to men, but I was taught that happiness was a man and a woman. So I tried to force it.

I had a lot of online relationships because they were safe. There was no real way to have to be “romantic” in person. And then I had a couple boyfriends from school. The first one scared the shit out of me. The one time we hung out he told me “We don’t have to do anything if you don’t want to.”  I wanted to vomit. I couldn’t even imagine doing anything with him. I felt so sick and I wanted to run away. He didn’t force himself on me… I was lucky then. He followed that up with a story about how he was so proud of throwing chairs at teachers. RED FLAG!!! I couldn’t even break up with him in person. I was terrified of him. I thought that if I made him upset that he would kill me.

My second boyfriend was my first kiss. My friends thought it was so weird that I wasn’t attracted to anyone… So I created an attraction to a friend of a friend. I thought he would be okay. He was nice and kind of odd. But then he wanted to keep kissing. I felt like I was drowning. I couldn’t breathe and fear overcame me. I dumped him for it, and for attempting to have sex with me.  Gross.

I spent a long time after that staying away from people. I had to create a crush later in my High School career… But I’m fairly certain that he was gay.

By the time I had admitted that I was actually attracted to women, I was about to graduate… and I STILL was telling everyone that I was “Bi”. I had my first girl-friend. It was amazing… and terrible. Neither of us was ready for anything serious… She was full of self-hatred… and I was broken. . .

I had been raped and I hadn’t told her.  I lived in Michigan and she lived in Utah. I had met her while visiting a friend. In between visits I was taken advantage of by a friend. I don’t need to talk about it. If you want to know you can watch my slam-poetry about it. I don’t NEED to tell my story any more than that. I have already allowed myself to be angry and not “at-fault”.

Regardless. Freshman year of college was still confusing. I went to Hollins University. An all-women college that existed in what I can only describe as a “Lesbian Bubble”. These women were fantastic in helping me learn to accept myself. As I went back and forth with my “girlfriend” I made friends that accepted me. Times changed and I finally admitted to myself that I was a lesbian. I questioned for a while what that meant.

Did that mean that I had to be dominant? Did being a lesbian mean that I had to do this or do that to be happy? No. I could still be myself. And then I met my “EX”. She was perfect. We fell in love and we had our ups and downs. But she was mine and I was hers. Life was okay for a while. After two and a half years, we got married.

We are not married anymore because of things that I did not know. But I think I have gotten a little off topic. I was discussing why I am a Femme.

I am a FEMME because that is just WHO I AM. I can’t change who I am, heaven knows I’ve tried. If I could choose who I was, I would not choose to be gay. I did not “Decide” to be gay for attention or to be cool. When I think back, I have liked girls since I was three years old. My first love was another girl in daycare. She asked me to tie her shoes and I couldn’t say no. But I have always been girly. I like having my hair done. I like looking pretty. I like dancing. I like being me.

Just let me be me.

As a last note: Not all Femmes like studs. I do. But, as I have said before, everyone is different. Studs can like other studs and femmes can like other femmes. Studs can be submissive and femmes can be dominant. Just because I fit certain stereotypes, does not mean that all Lesbians are the same. I am unique and I will always be.

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