If you get a group of bisexual women together to chat about dating women and what their sexuality is like for them in practice, there’s one thing you’ll hear over and over again: that however their sexual orientation works, their sexual history contains more male-identified people than it does anyone else. This isn't universal, of course—there are plenty of bisexual women whose little black books are inches thick with female lovers—but it does seem to be a recurring theme.

 

Why does this happen?

 

The simple answer would be statistics—there are more men who fancy women around than there are women who fancy women, so any woman interested in hooking up with people of more than one gender is pretty likely to end up with an uneven ratio. That’s how math works, or so they tell me.

 

While there might be some truth to that, it’s not the whole story: frankly, men are easier to pick up. This isn't because of some sexist nonsense about women not being as interested in physical encounters—we all know that’s not true—but because of the socialization we've all received, whether we wanted it or not. We’re more confident about approaching men and we know more about how to recognize the cues that they’re flirting with us, so as a result we’re more likely to take the risk and make a proposition.

 

the bisexual womans guide to dating women

 

So what can we do about it?

 

1. Use the power of fantasy liberally


The way you think about things determines the way you feel about them, and if you get anxious about inadequacy when you imagine hooking up with a woman, you’re more likely to bottle it when you’re trying to go for it in real life. Maintain a hot, healthy fantasy life. Amuse yourself by imagining exactly what you’d like to try the next time you go down on a woman, in as much detail as you can. Rather than feeling like you’re getting out of practice, you’ll be all the more eager to get in there and do some of it for real.

 

2. Remember that we’re not all that different really


It’s true that it’s more socially acceptable for women to be intimate and tactile with each other than it is for men, and that some of the things people do to hit on men happen between straight women naturally. It’s not hard to subtly move this to the next level, though; your standard bag of tricks: frequent eye contact, briefly touching someone’s hand a little more often than is strictly necessary, and a little more interest than normal in what they are saying will all get your point across. Men and women are not actually from different planets.

 

3. Try to be a little more assertive


Have you ever heard the lesbian sheep metaphor? The story goes that when a ewe is ready to mate, she stands still and waits for the ram to mount her—so if you had lesbian sheep, they’d just freeze in the field next to each other rather than getting down to it. I’m not suggesting that you start mounting random women at parties, obviously—not without their prior consent, at any rate—but a lot of us are still affected by the socialization that tells us we have to wait for the other person to make the first move and that it’s just not “ladylike” to be direct.

If you’re going to go home with her tonight, one of you is going to have to ask the million dollar question - “your place or mine?” - and you've got a lot more control over whether or not you do than over whether or not she does. The same goes for determining if she’s into women at all; if you do it in a non-creepy manner, you really can just ask. One of the best pickup lines a woman has ever used on me was “So, are we going to fuck later, then?”*

 

4. Keep in mind that she probably worries about this too


Pretty much all queer women have at some point felt like successfully picking up girls is an uphill battle—including the uber-lesbians we’re all so jealous of. By trying to be a bit more direct and a bit less, well, sheepish, and you'll be doing her a favor as well.

 

5. Put your fear of rejection into perspective


Nobody likes being turned down, and most people are familiar with the feeling that someone might be amused or offended by the mere notion that you think they might sleep with you. In truth, though, this almost never happens. Think about times when someone you don’t fancy has tried to hit on you: chances are high that, unless they were creepy or pushy or otherwise unpleasant, you were simply flattered. It probably didn't make you think less of them afterwards, either.

 

6. Stop worrying about your qualifications

 

You know what qualifies you for bisexuality? Being sexually attracted to people of more than one gender. There’s no ‘you must have fucked this many girls to ride’ deal going on here, we're not looking for your credentials on how many women you've dated and we’re not going to confiscate your Bisexual Membership Card if you don’t meet your cunnilingus quota this quarter. Don’t let yourself stress about whether or not you’re a ‘real’ bisexual—just concentrate on enjoying your sex life no matter the genitalia involved.

 

*Oh and PS: we did.

 

Abi Brown is a freelance writer and general pen-for-hire devoted to genre fiction, social justice and M.A.C lipstick. Follow her on her website or @see_abi_write.

 

© jul14ka / Dollar Photo Club and LesMedia with a CC BY-SA 2.0 license

 


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