man i wanna be her intern

Dear lesbians,

I don’t wanna be #divisive but I’m just saying, maybe your bisexual girlfriend cheated on you with a man not because “she doesn’t value your gay relationship” and “it’s easier to just be straight” but because you’re not giving her a reason to feel safe with you, and she panicked. Like, please, recognize that you’re dating a woman who has internalized a lifetime of emotional abuse and insecurity at the hands of your community. Think of the perceived risk she took in choosing you. What are you doing to reassure her that she made the right choice?

Bi women, we’re positively riddled with personality disorders and hypersexuality and a host of other bullshit that makes validation hard to come by, sometimes unrecognizable. And we’re this fucked up in no small part because of the stress we undergo navigating lesbian spaces, the stress that other lesbians actively foster. Whether or not it’s fair to you, personally, entering a relationship with a lesbian feels, to a bi woman, like she’s putting herself in active danger. A fight or flight response is always going to be right around the corner.

Like I’m not saying it’s your fault if you get cheated on, that’s… largely unfair. But dating a bi woman as a lesbian carries a lot of complications that you’ve probably never considered, and it is your responsibility, as a kind and caring lover, to address those complications, to help work through your partner’s anxieties, and to do everything in your power to make yourself a safe presence in your girlfriend’s life in ways that she can recognize and internalize. If you’re not willing to put in that work, then frankly you’re the one wasting her time, not the other way around.

If this seems like an unfair demand for emotional labour, please consider: the vast majority of bi women will just flat out Never—by default—feel safe in a relationship with anyone who is not another bi woman. It takes a lot of work to get us there. Pursuing a relationship with a bi woman forces her to confront a lot of trauma that she may not be ready to. Entering a relationship with a bi woman is, in itself, a huge demand for emotional labour—and one that, without intentional cares being taken, goes largely unreciprocated. All I’m asking is that you help level the playing field for the person you love.

Dear bi women,

You didn’t pick her for no reason. Try to recognize if and when she is putting in the effort, and try to work with her, even if you can only meet her a third of the way. Our anxieties are real, and valid, and largely out of our control, but I know that sometimes—rarely—we know when we’re being completely batshit, and we still choose to self-sabotage. You’ve earned your fear, but you’ve also earned love. You deserve to be loved. Let her love you.