Label Whores – Black Lesbians’ Obsession with Labels

Femme. Stud. Goldstar. Lipstick. Chapstick. Boi. Soft Stud. Pillow Queen. Touch Me Not. Baby Dyke. Sike a Dike. AG. Aggressive. Butch. Domme. Agressive Femme. Tomboi. Ultrafemme.

Am I missing some? I know there are some regional labels that only two blocks and a corner bar of lesbians know. My question is why? And moreso why is it that Black lesbians seem to be so much more obsessed than “other folks”.

I have a couple of thoughts/theories that have come to me that I want to share. Feel free to tell me your thoughts and I will feel free to ignore you if you come at me crazy (I’m just being honest, you know some of y’all don’t know how to talk to people).

Not exactly the Brady Bunch..

Contrary to what many of us like to think Black lesbians are some of the most conservative people in the world. Though many of us didn’t grow up in two parent households, most of us were taught that that is the ideal family structure. Come on who didn’t want to be the Huxtables? Even if in our perfect scenario Heathcliff is replaced by Heather. Add that with the lessons we were taught in the big church (in between passing notes that is) and it is only natural that we bring those ideals into our adult relationships. Even if Daddy is spelled D-A-D-D-I.

Oh My God Becky Look At Those Dykes…

I guess I never realized how divisive labels in the black community in general, and the homosexual community specifically, were until I started hanging out with more white lesbians. No No No this is not going to be the “White is Right” portion of the post but it does seem that overdosing on labels is a black epidemic. If you go to the white lesbian parties and bars you see PLENTY of women hugging and dancing with women that have the same Justin Bieber haircut and brown Birkenstocks. Two women together… not much of shocker. But let two black lesbians with low boys and bowties walk in the club, you can hear the whispers from the cheap seats. In a world where everyone is telling us who we should love, why must we do it among ourselves? Does it actually make you feel better to be in a “regular” lesbian relationship?

*side eye*

And I am not even going to try and touch why two femmes being together is soooo hot and two studs being together is soooo not? But I will say one word: PORN

Forget the A-a-a-a-alcohol. Blame it on the Facebook… and Twitter… and Downelink… and…hell Blame Myspace

In a world where 15% of the time we spend online is spent checking Facebook, it makes sense that it is becoming the birthplace of a lot of our friend and love relationships. Maybe we use all the uber specific labels to skip steps in relationship building. A/S/L no longer mean Age/Sex/Location. It now means Age/Status/Label. It’s a lot easier using a one or two word label to define someone when getting to know them than to take the time to delve into the idiosyncrasies of that individual.

Heck let’s take it a step further. Maybe this is why labels are more prevalent with newly “out” lesbians. Is it easier to define yourself when you have a label that tells you how you are to navigate your new identity? Maybe labels are a useful tool that we use until we are secure enough in ourselves and our lifestyles to do away with them…

Brain freeze… Kinda like when you drink a Slurpee too fast...

*turns the mic to you* Thoughts? Tweet me @kristiweb

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18 thoughts on “Label Whores – Black Lesbians’ Obsession with Labels”

  1. Girl I def agree. That’s why I don’t too much deal with black lesbians. It is either a fashion show or a clique up thing. It is very messy.

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  2. I lol I tell ppl all the time i’m a no label.hell i’m for women…. But idk bout some folks hell is like high school in the black gay community but instead or the goths Jocks n cheerleaders you have studs, soft studs fems Doms etc.etc…. I just don’t get why we just don’t like the women t like with out the fear of being judge on what label i’m supposr to be with it’s just plan silly to me

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    1. The black lesbian community is DEFINITELY like high school in a lot of ways. Just know I might be stealing this concept for an upcoming blog post!

      ~K

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  3. I finally came out a couple of months ago to my family. So now I am in the exploration phrase and trying to understand the community. As a Black lesbian, I did notice the whole labels and roles thing. So I mentioned this subject to a white lesbian friend of mines and she stopped me and said that it is a thing in the lesbian community including the white one. She has to deal with it also.

    I mean look into the gay community and all you see is tops and bottoms, the masculines vs the feminines. Within, heterosexual love-making, fucking, whatever you want to call it, positions are more fluid then it seem to be with the gays/lesbians. I was with one lesbian and she did not want to receive. However, being with *straight women, I see they give, take, whatever. I am not into straight girls but we can work things out*.

    Again, I am trying to understand the lesbian community. If I can have a label, I would label how I think as a ‘stud’ but people say I am a femme for one reason or the other. I found this to be ironic because when I was assumed to be heterosexual, I was called a tomboy. As a doctoral student, I just can not dress nor do I want to dress like the black stud: gangsta rapper look…..puh please.

    So yeah, this whole label thing is a problem. I just do not agree that it is a black thing. I mean, what about the black professional lesbians like me who may be politicians, activist, religious leaders, professors etc. How we express ourselves is a little different….sometimes.

    KK, what do you think?

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    1. Whew! That’s a lot to chew on. Let me give your question the thought it deserves. I am actually going to reach out to one of my fave non-skirt wearer friends for her opinion.

      Thank you so much for reading and commenting!

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    2. I guess ad s label free girly dykr…I let live. I have been a lesbian for about six years…officially. When I was comfortably bi, labels weren’t important. I must’ve been riding on the rim of gayness. Lol.

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