I would like to share this, if that’s okay. TW rape and abuse mention, sexual imagery.
When I was wondering what I was, I saw the various communities. I hung around lesbians because something felt comfortable. It seemed soft and warm.
Then the blogs I followed started posting images of people kissing (without tongue) and cuddling. This was right after my rape, so it made me uneasy, but it seemed not-sexual so I became OK with it. I looked at the pictures like they were just adorable cuddling pictures between loving partners.
Then one blog posted a list called “things we love about women.” That made me really uncomfortable because it was a list of body parts. They phrased it like “soft whispering lips” but take away the flowery language and it read “their lips, boobs, butts, etc.” I unfollowed but that post is still going strong.
Then there was an incident where lesbian pda was made out to be a bad thing, and the community responded by posting really involved kissing. Full make-out sessions with tongue and hands and everything.
I couldn’t handle that. I know that it was consensual images, but every single one looked like a rape scene to me. (Note: this is true for any gender or orientation couple/group make-out scene I see. If there are hands and tongue, I see rape. But it was the lesbian community I was following so I got affected by them.)
I still wanted to be a part of the lesbian community, but I couldn’t handle this. So I asked one of the blogs I was following could tag it. (Only one at first because anxiety.) Any tag was fine, just so I wouldn’t see it. They could have tagged it “all hail this glorious romance” if they wanted.
They called me lesbophobic and posted even more sexual images. They encouraged their followers to do the same, which they did. My dash got filled with it.
So I ran. I ran away from any and all LGBT things. Until I found out about asexuality. It was so nice to survivors and victims. There was occasionally one person who was like “trauma doesn’t make us this way” that had the vibe of “survivors/victims get out,” but it was isolated and ignorable.
I felt safer here than I did with anyone else. And I felt comfortable talking about being a rape victim. I felt comfortable talking about being abused. (Which was the other thing; the lesbian community didn’t like it when a woman was your abuser.) The ace community, and later the sister community for sex-repulsed people, felt safe to me.
I eventually realized that I was both, but I can’t go back to the lesbian community. I can’t even call myself the word; I use gayrom ace. I know that my experience was with one facet of the lesbian community, and I know not everyone is like that, but I feel that those types are emboldened by acephobia. I’ve seen more of those posts on my dash than ever before, and I don’t even go near them. And any triggered person is disregarded or treated as a bigot. Or like, there was a post talking about a queer space that was no-sex zone, and all the gay and lesbian people could think of that post was that we were homophobic.