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Let’s burst the heterosexual bubble first. There is nothing like only a man-woman sexual relationship.
The sex-gender binary- that tells us that a female body is supposed to become a woman, or a male body a man, and that trashes other sexes and also compulsorily attaches a sex to a gender, before imposing the coercion to engage only in heterosexuality as the only “natural” way of expressing and experiencing your sexuality- is a purely social construct. This article does not intend to impose a certain kind of sexuality on its readers, but tries, sometimes in the way of fun, to bring light to the fact that no certain kind of sexuality is legitimate.
The social training that we, as social beings, receive right from our birth, makes us oblivious to the nature of sexuality, and not even experience sexuality as an intrinsic need/expression that can have almost as many facets as people have behaviours.
The intension is not also to pit any one sexuality against the dominant one, that would just mean giving more power to the socially accepted sexual behaviour, and, by the way of justifying a “deviant” sexuality, to propose it as something that might offer an equal option. This is not about offering diverse options and claiming something can be as good as man-woman relationship (which would be keeping the superficial, socially constructed superiority intact) but embracing the fact that if the debate rotates around the central axis of heterosexuality, the point we make is only going to debase itself. Here, I just pick up one such “unaccepted” relationship and try to show how it is as fun as any other, how in little things we get our joys, and how we do not have to face some frustrating aspects of other relationships, which makes us chuckle and laugh.
No matter how societies reached a consensus where only opposite- sex relationships were legitimised, we have many friends, including many inspirational women achievers, around us who like and indulge in same-sex relationships. What else do we need other than the presence of a sexual orientation to conclude that it exists and is natural? We might have been made to believe that any sexual attraction apart from the usual, conventional man-woman one is anomalous, but can the reception of pleasure or the feeling of emotions be straight-jacketed into such compartments, can’t love bloom between two women, or two men, or a trans man and a woman, or two trans men?
Considering that gender is only a social performance, a theatre costume you wear to come out into the world, can’t this costume be drooped so that we come out of the closet naked, with our bare sexual instincts and all that emotional baggage that comes naturally to every human being?
I am a lesbian. A proud one at that. I do not think making love to a woman is in any way a less intense sexual experience than doing it with a man. There are many top inspirational women- inspirational women theorists, top women achievers who are also involved in LGBT activism- who have endorsed the idea of same-sex relationships and tried to reasonably justify, to those who are chained with custom , how homosexuality is not unnatural. I used to be a bisexual, but then I realised I was having a lot more fun with women. I had pretty strong reasons to develop a stronger sexual attraction towards women, and eventually, I dropped men altogether.
Let me list out the reasons for you, just in case you are not being able to make a decision here.
Gender has been ruling the world, is it not?
What we experience right from childhood until our death goes through a car-wash-like set up where different sexes are treated differently. This is how a male body should present itself, this is how a female body should. Even our sexual desires are controlled and regulated by the unspoken rules.
Women have the same set of general experiences because their treatment by the people around them is similar. They share their woes and their misgivings about a particular social set-up.
In such a scenario, will not a particular gender identify more with itself. I found, in my lover, a collection of stories just like mine. We were novels with different plots but in the same genre. We could share everything and could understand each other better than any man could. It is the kind of bonding that comes when you mutually identify with each other based on shared experiences. I am not implying that other sexual relationships can not have these bonds, I am just trying to present the positives in mine.
We always have each other’s shoulder. Being lesbian women living together, we have all the time in the world to discuss how women are harassed in colleges, at workplaces, in public places. We lie in bed and share stories of sexual harassment. I tell her how I was touched inappropriately while in a bus from Pitampura to G.T.B Nagar. She comes up with her story of a train travel where the man seated across from her kept staring at her breasts all the time even after it had become apparent to everyone else around. We always have a story for a story.
For a woman loving another woman, it becomes more than sex or the mundane exercise of togetherness that might come with resentment sometimes- it becomes an analysis and a critique of womanhood.
Oh! Did I tell you about the time we get our periods?
It is almost like someone understands that you are not hysterical, that it is painful and any kind of pain is as irritating.
Periods don’t become disgusting, they just become an unnecessary liability and the knowledge that our pain is neither being exaggerated nor being trivialised, reduces half the problems associated with periods.
On a lighter note, we don’t need condoms.
For us, every time is a good time to make love. We are at it all the time, in the morning, while making our breakfast, while returning from a movie late at night, and we don’t have to rummage desperately for that condom!
We don’t freak out if our period is late.
Haven’t you met women in heterosexual relationships who go crazy with relief when they finally get their period after a long delay? Well, we are saved! It’s like bonus everywhere. We love doing it with each other, we enjoy as much pleasure as any heterosexual relationship can promise, plus we don’t have to go through the anxiety that comes with those ominous anticipations about getting pregnant. Intake of contraceptive tablets is just a different form of gender violence. Many women health and fitness blogs also talk about this issue. Are not their times when women in heterosexual relationships, because cis-women also face as much oppression as women of sexualities considered deviant, though of a different kind, HAVE to have that pill, just because they are not sure? The man always escapes and the man is not always to be blamed, it is also how science has progressed in a patriarchal way. Anyway, being a lesbian has saved me from screwing my body with those little pink pills.
We don’t have the man duties and the woman-duties.
It’s not like I’ll go out shopping and lifting all that bulk while she makes sandwiches for me at home, or otherwise. We go grocery shopping together, we cook food together, and even if we don’t we don’t have those strict gender rules that sometimes creep in no matter how equal a heterosexual relationship. Not saying that heterosexual relationships can’t break gender norms, but we haven’t entirely reached there yet.
So, stop with that judgemental gaze already.
Same-sex relationships have their own perks. They might not be PERFECT, but then what relationship is? We need to come out of the shell patriarchy has forced us into and experience every aspect and decide for ourselves. How do you know you like kadhai-chicken more than butter-chicken unless you have not tried both!?
I am sure you are getting my point.