In case you just moved here from Michigan because your dad got transferred and you don't quite know what's up or where to sit at lunch, Queer Abby is our weekly advice column where you write in your life questions and DC's foremost lesbian-about-town, Amy, gives you honest, hard-hitting advice. And then I throw in my two sense which is usually unhelpful, but moderately interesting. Got a question? Shoot an email to
Dear Queer Abby,I am a gay lady in my early 20s and I've recently moved to a new city and entered the outside of college dating scene. I've been casually dating this girl for a few months and she's wonderful. We always have a ton of fun when we hang out—she's really laid back, she has a great sense of humor, she's hot. The only problem is that we are pretty much occupy opposite poles in terms of political affiliation. We are both socially liberal about some things—love the gays, love abortions, love drugs, love atheism—but who our age isn't? The problem is that she is extremely fiscally conservative. Sometimes the things she says make me think she grew up on a different planet. I don't want it to seem like I can't stand to be around someone with opinions different than my own, but when she told me she voted for McCain, I almost choked on my own spit. I mean, I think my Dad voted for McCain, but I didn't get to choose my Dad, you know? Plus, he's old. She's said some things that I perceive as kind of racist, and I think she might even be a Tea Party sympathizer (supremely dislikes Obama and I thinnnkkk might believe he is not a citizen). I try not to ask too many questions because it is so clear that we will disagree. Though, when we have discussed these things she is generally respectful of my side. On the whole, she is much more outspoken than I am about her problems with the government, public assistance, immigration, healthcare reform, blah blah blah. I feel nervous to let her meet any of my friends for fear that she will say something totally repulsive in front of them. If that day ever comes, should I ask her to watch herself? Is that totally out of line? And on a broader scale, can two people with such entirely different world views make a relationship work? I am feeling like things are becoming less casual, but should I just end it now? Sometimes it feels like I am dating a crazy TeaPartyingLibertarianBirther zealot. But, when we aren't talking politics we have such a good time. Did I mention that she's really hot? Most of my friends are wayyyy more liberal than I am, so they can't really comprehend speaking to a registered Republican (and fucking one? forget about it!). I am in need of your level-headed advice, please!Thank you!Liberal Lover
As for your first question, yes, it can be okay to ask people to censor themselves in certain situations for the sake of keeping the peace and respecting other people’s feelings… but that’s not what this is. What you’re describing sounds a lot less like, “Don’t mention cats in front of Kevin; his just got hit by a car” and a lot more like “I’m pretty sure you’re bat-shit crazy… but maybe if I don’t ask the right questions and you agree to pipe down around my friends, I can obscure and deny it until something changes.” Would you agree?
As for your bigger questions, lots of couples have differing political views and are just fine. The thing is it’s just not hugely important to them. Like they don’t see it as a defining aspect of themselves and others, and they probably rarely talk about it. However, LL, if the vast majority of your friends have a similar political bent to your own, then I think it’s safe to say that’s a fairly predominant part of who you are and what kind of people you’re attracted to—platonically or otherwise. Likewise, if she’s that outspoken and adamant about such strong/marginal/radical (read: racist and bigoted) perspectives, then you’re right, it speaks to her worldview and who she is on a deeper level. And yea, those don’t have to match up exactly, but it’s really difficult/impossible for two people who don’t share at least similar worldviews to have any sort of sustainable relationship.
But most importantly, LL, you don’t value and respect her opinions, which is totally fine (I personally don’t either) but that’s kind of a fundamental element of healthy relationships. I mean, you take the sex out of this and it sounds like you wouldn’t even want to be friends with her... So, I guess you could just let it play out for dating’s sake alone, but there are plenty of hot people out there and I think your time would be much better spent around people whose positions you don’t find repulsive.
Oh man. I have so many comments. First and foremost, looks like someone went to the Meghan McBlogger School of Em-Dashery, hmmm? @a_trout must be rolling in his grave this morning.
Second and secondmost, "Don't Mention Cats In Front of Kevin" is the name of my newest band. And I think we might be a Butthole Surfers Cover Band...?
Third and thirdmost, remember last week when someone casually dropped the word "niggles" into their question? I can honestly say that that's been the best part of my summer so far, hands down. And you know how depressing that sounds? Well that's exactly how depressing it is.
Now for my actual advice: you should ask Becca. She's in a similar boat. Except it's not sailing through a sea of ladies. (As far as I know...) Becca's fiance, Geoff, is a Republican from a military family. Becca's a Democrat and 99.9% of all McBlogger family dinner conversation revolves around the shared goal of hugging Tim Gunn or what Joan Rivers said that day on QVC. But despite their overwhelmingly different backgrounds and political affiliations, those two crazy kids made it work. What's their secret? I'm pretty sure they have a "Let's Never Talk About Politics Together. Ever." policy and although that may not be the most "mature" way to go about it; I kind of think it's the best way to go.
Relationships should have the same rules as bars: no discussing religion or politics and half-price apps from 5-7. But keep in mind that that's a two-way street. I think it's completely fair to ask your lady to avoid the klan talk for a night if you ask your friends to stop talking about running their Hybrids on 100% emissions-free liberal tears. There's always other stuff to talk about, right? I mean, have you seen the wedding episode of Bethenny Getting Married?
Dear Queer,Alright, so around 3 years back I started dating this girl, and it went pretty well, then just got better after that. We had a bunch in common, we were fairly open even farther down the road, and it was all good. After around a year she moved to a town on the other side of the State, she started lying a lot and I lost trust in her, then she ended it the next year when I wasn't home, and left a note on my bed. Not even taking into consideration how immature that was, that's not the point.Right after she ended things with me, she dated this other guy for a little more than half a year, then he got over-protective and it ended. That whole time after 4 months or so, we became friends, had a fight, made up, had a fight, you get it. After they broke up, we started talking a lot more, then around a month ago we actually started spending time together in person, which kind of prevented another fight. It seemed like she was anxious all the time, and it was pretty apparent that she liked me again, and there were definitely hints coming from her friends.Then a couple weeks ago, we were hanging out with a few more friends and she sent a text to one of the people that were there, but that friend got up and left her phone, in this case right near me, and it read "I just really, really like him." This Friday, we spent time together the whole day and just flat out had a conversation, and it was just so natural and easy, and I thought I was starting to like her again. Ok, finally on to the question part.Around a week ago, she went to this party in a neighboring town and that's all I heard, but I recently found from one of my friends overhearing a conversation between a guy that was there and a group of his friends, that she hooked up with him after he drove them to the beach around 2:30 in the morning. I know it's true, because I brought it up to her last night and she came clean and straight out told me.Now, question (sorry...=/ ) why did she do that? Like, if she was set on liking me, and I know for SURE that she has no interest in her other relationship, why would she go and do that when she wanted to take things slow for BOTH of the relationships she had? Should I still go for her? Thanks, sorry it was so long =/.- Random Life Conflict.
Because she doesn’t know what she wants, that’s why. That doesn’t make her a bad person or anything-- for every reason there is to avoid a relationship with someone, there are always other reasons why it would be great. But usually that’s an ‘it would be great if…’ and you cannot hang your hopes on ‘if’. All you have is what’s in front of you. And what you have in front of you is someone who has proven on more than one occasion that she’s not convinced enough about what she wants to commit to doing it right. I mean she might totally like you, but it’s really easy to not fuck something up if you KNOW it’s what you want, and she is sucking at this.
Don’t take it personally though; this is about her. All you can do is act accordingly based on what you need and what she’s demonstrated thus far, which is that she’s mainly focused on herself and gratifying her immediate needs. And again, that’s okay, but let’s call a spade a spade and recognize that you’ll be much better off dedicating your time and energy to someone who has their shit figured out and will show more regard for your feelings than it sounds like she has in the time you’ve known her.
I know this is going to sound cruel, but did you ever factor in that she might just be kind of a whore? I say this not to be an asshole and more-so to drive home the point that she probably does really like you, but liking you and being a whore aren't mutually exclusive. You really want to know why she hooked up with that guy that night? Because you weren't there, he was, she was wasted on Bartles & Jaymes wine coolers, the ocean air was whizzing up her denim mini-skirt and she thought to herself, "Hey! I bet if I give this guy a handie in the back of his Camry, I'll totally forget about those 15-pounds that I can't seem to lose!"
That is why she did that. So what you need to do is ask yourself if that's the kind of girl you want to stress over to the point of writing in to advice columns about it.
(Jesus, Meg...that felt kind of harsh. Here's a picture of Bartles & Jaymes to soften the blow.)
Dear Queer Abby,
OK, I'm going to come right out and say it: I'm in love with my gay best friend and have been ever since I met him. I'm also kind of in a dry spell at the moment, which only makes it worse. Unfortunately my college also is pretty much THE worst place to meet dateable guys imaginable... Suggestions on how to move on slash meet some guys who aren't completely sketch?
Diana the Dateless
Before giving you advice on moving on, I’m inclined to ask if you’ve completely ruled out the possibility of having something with your bestie. I mean, maybe it’s worth telling him how you feel (or at least hooking up with him) if there may be a glimmer of hope… But, assuming you’ve considered and ruled out that option, then yea, the trick is just getting out there and meeting other guys. After you’ve been genuinely interested in a couple of other people, this should fade (and if it doesn’t, you’ll need to sack up and make a play for him, but that’s another column).
So, I’m not sure of your situation and location exactly, but here are some suggestions:
- Duh, Online- Try okcupid, match.com, gay.com, adam4adam, gaydar.co.uk (which lists some US cities as well) or outinamerica, which has sites for lots of cities so you could actually try outin
.com. I was told it’s also possible to meet people for an actual date on the more sex-oriented sites like manhunt, etc., you just have to be clear up front about what you’re looking for.
- Bars- I’m not sure how old you are, but most gay bars in college towns (especially those relatively isolated from ‘gay hubs’) have at least one 18 and up night a week and probably draw people from neighboring cities as well.
- Volunteering- Check out community centers for gay youth or your schools GLBT resource center. Or, if you don’t have GLBT centers or orgs nearby, try HIV prevention programs or clinics, or look up the Mpowerment Project, which has safe sex outreach groups around the country. Along the same lines, you can also meet guys at fundraisers for any of the above.
- Performing Arts- I swear I’m not trying to be a dick, but you seriously might want to consider hanging out in or around the theater, choir, dance, marching band or cheerleading circles at your school.
...And in the off chance you’re actually a girl who emailed me from a guy friend’s email account for the sake of anonymity… uh, sorry for the useless advice and, trust me, you’re not ready for a relationship.
Wait, I'm confused. To clarify: you're a straight female who is in love with your gay male best friend, correct? Because if so:
DO NOT. BE. THAT. GIRL.
It's girls like you who give girls like me a bad name and it pisses me right off. When people hear that I have a lot of gay guy friends, here's what they automatically assume about me:
1.) I'm a virgin.
2.) I'm secretly in love with every single one of my gay male friends.
3.) I'm holding out for the day when one of them realizes that he's just going through a phase and he's actually in love with me, because I am such a good listener.
4.) I feel safe with my gay guy friends because at least they'll never reject me.
5.) I love going to gay clubs because I get to get dressed up and feel desired by a room full of men.
And now here's the truth:
1.) I know that given the contents of this blog it's kind of shocking, but I'm actually not a virgin.
2.) While I love my gay male friends dearly, I am not, nor have I ever been, in love with any of them. Why? Because they're all better looking than me and find my "bits" revolting. You do the math.
3.) Nobody is falling in love with me. Gay or straight. I've come to terms with that. And truthfully, I'm not a good listener. Have you read any of my other Queer Abby advice?
4.) Are you kidding me? I feel more rejected by my gay guy friends than I do anybody else. Andrew of the Great Juno Debate once refused to drink out of my beer bottle because he said it would be like making out with me and quote, "he'd never do that." Absolutely no part of hearing that felt safe or warm.
5.) I hate going to gay clubs! You know why? Because I exert all that energy blow drying my hair and nobody wants to have sex with me. It's like going into battle knowing that you're going to die because you're outnumbered, but at least you'll die with honor. Uh, fuck honor. There's a Man vs. Wild marathon on and it's a recession. I'll sit this battle out, a-thank you very much.
So stop falling in love with your gay best friend and get yourself on match.com already. I know it's nice to have an attractive man in your life who thinks you're the best, even when you're chugging Bisquick directly out of the bottle in your Jack Daniel's PJ's, but you can't substitute that for a real romantic relationship. You know why? Because he will never, ever, touch your genitals. Ever. Seriously think about that the next time you start imagining the two of you walking down that rainbow-colored aisle.
Now if you'll excuse me, I have to get back to knitting booties for me and Alex's future love child.