SL Letter of the Day: What Does a Boyfriend Prove?

Comments

1
It's amazing how often the answer is "Just ask and see." Good guidelines for immediately afterwards though.
2
I dunno, based on her description of the situation, it really doesn't sound like there's anything there. If it wasn't for her use of a few odd idioms, it actually sounds a lot like how nice teenage boys talk about every pretty woman that has ever been nice to them.

But hell, as long as you're not her boss...
3
"my straight friend says that someone wanting to spend time with you all the time is a sign that she might like me in that way."

Does your straight friend wear a fedora and complain about being a "nice guy" in the "friend zone"?
4
Does the crush know that CRUSH is gay? If she has an intensely catholic bf, she could be the sheltered type that is just oblivious to leading on a lesbian.
5
@3 K. Well that made me snort loud enough to clue my coworkers in that I'm not exactly grinding away.
6
Don't try to get people in monogamous relationships out of them no matter how boring you think their partner is. It's just a shitty thing to do. If they don't want to be in the relationship, they can figure that out like grown ups.
7
If person A is seriously attracted to person B, but person B is currently in a relationship with person C, I would be extremely wary of any evaluation of person C by person A, especially if I don't know person A, B or C.
8
It always makes me a little sad when some nice, boring schmo's wife is about to cheat on him.
9
@5: Me too. Audible snickering. Co-workers: alerted. (Good one, @3.)
10
How exactly does a house on fire get on?
11
@ 10: Burned? =)

On a completely off topic note, Smitten Kitten FINALLY changed their add! Yay!
12
8

Forget it, Jake; it's Dannytown.....
13
@11: Yeah, I was tired of seeing big red dildos all over my screen every time I go to SLOG.
14
"What should I do?"

Get a dildo and a new hobby.
15
@11, 13

https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detai…

It even blocks youtube ads.

16
seems like CRUSH could get a lot more information about her odds by having a few benign conversations with her love interest about her boyfriend before making a move. my friends and i talk about our relationships, air our grievances, etc. not tell-all, or even that frequently, but it happens. if they're spending all that time together, would it be ridiculous to say, "so tell me about your boyfriend! how's that going? are you happy?" the conversation would probably tell her more than dan, her friends, or anyone here in comments could.
17
I would say that I could have been CRUSH's crush when I was 20, and it took a female friend hitting on me, for me to decide to act on the attraction I had for women, and move away from my "straight" identity.
It's definitely worth an ask.
18
I don't think there really are straight women. Not in the same way there are straight men, at least.
19
Workplace romance? Maybe not such a good idea regardless of who/what/where/how/why.
20
@18. oh jesus, pretty sure there are. And especially based some conversations I've had w/ close straight guy friends lately -- I'm not even sure that women's supposed higher inclination for same sex experimentation is actually unique to women. Women are just allowed/encouraged to talk about it or be proud of it.

As a lesbian, this situation seems like a recipe for disaster, and I honestly don't know how lesbians can develop feelings for straight women like this -- it's akin to those unfortunate straight women who fall for their gay guy friends. Like, what's going on when this happens? To me someone being straight totally short circuits the potential for any serious feelings. (I mean physical attraction is another thing, but that's not a big deal and can even be fun as long as things don't go off the rails.)

Her friends telling her that this straight girl might be into her could be one of those situations where certain friends tell you what you want to hear......listen to your lesbian friend, lesbian. Presumably she has seen these two interact?

21
@20 - I agree with you. It's hard to believe the letter writer is old enough to hold down a job. Completely ignored by Dan is the fact that she just broke up with her girlfriend and is now crushing on the hottest straight chick she knows. If this were a straight woman writing about how her hot gay male friend is sending signals, Dan would've shut this thing down in the first sentence.

And yes, bi-curiousity, fluid sexuality, blah blah blah. Straight chick is in a relationship and the letter writer's opinion of her boyfriend is completely biased and self-serving. What Dan should've said is, deal with your breakup, move on, and find a woman who is available, rather than some unobtainable straight woman, before you fuck with a lot of relationships unnecessarily.

And that acronym is just annoying as hell, too.
22
@4 Being friendly and enthusiastic is NOT "...leading on...," however much douchebags and rapists would like us to believe otherwise. The object of the crush is not required to censor herself.
23
@22 - That's what I thought.
@20 - also, there's the fact that we as a society still think the idea of women being in relationships with women is somehow 'cute', or not serious, at least compared to the big icky no-no of men who have sex with other men. Imagine what it would be like if Kanye West or someone wrote a song along the lines of 'I Kissed a Boy (and I liked it)' - career suicide. It's just that we don't take women's sexual preferences seriously in the way that we take men's - a woman says she's a lesbian? Probably just needs to meet the right man (imagine the letter writer being a straight dude writing of his lesbian friend) A woman says she's straight? Well get some shots in her and talk her into making out with her female friend. A woman says she's bi? Great, can I/we watch?
24
@18: I don't think there really are straight women.

You've been reading too much Savage Love. The world is crawling with straight chicks. I've been in a handful of LTRs, and all of those women were as straight as I am. That's not to say that they couldn't play act at lesbianism to turn on a guy, or even make out with a chick while drunk or rolling on E. But if you knew them, you could see how there just wouldn't be any serious, sustainable sexual chemistry with another woman. Garfunkel and Oates "The College Try" kind of captures this, I think.
25
I seriously distrust everything this woman says about her straight friend's boyfriend and potential interest in her. That's probably hope speaking. I know I've unfairly vilified the girlfriend of a guy I was crushing on. It's pretty uncool. Maybe the boyfriend really is boring, but there are much worse sins. Who knows, maybe his girlfriend finds him fascinating.

That said, the worst that happens if she takes Dan's advice is the friendship ends and they go be awkward coworkers. And I don't know about the straight girl, but I have no interest in the "friendship" of someone who's really only interested in fucking me (provided I'm not interested in fucking them).
26
Be careful CRUSH. If your friend/coworker doesn't know you're gay, there's a good chance she just sees you as a great friend that she can be really close and at ease with.

I've been on the other side of this problem with a couple of guys over the years. I'm on the shy side, so I can be awkward around men I'm attracted to, and perfectly at ease with men I like but am in no way attracted to.

When the romantic/sexual element isn't in the picture for me in any way, shape, or form, I can just be my unawkward friendly self. Trouble is, this is very easily mistaken for flirtation by someone who is attracted to me.

Dan's advice is perfect. But I'd add this: If she says she's not interested, believe her the first time. If after your disclosure the friendship continues exactly where it had been (after a period of awkwardness or not), it will be way too easy for you to convince yourself that she does like you after all. If you keep pushing it, it will creep her out. Not because she's a straight girl being pursued by a woman, but because not taking no for an answer is creepy coming from anyone.

I'm wishing you good luck though. I've been on your end of crushes that turn out to be unrequited, and it's painful. Especially if it's someone you have to see every day at work.
27
The letter writer gives me the vibe of a narcissistic player type who deep down to her core, believes that EVERYONE wants her. So why not this awesome straight girl?

Why would you EVER EVER believe the opinion of an interloper (and her surely yes-men friends) on the qualities of her target/victims existing partner?

I predict that if this relationship goes off, it's two months until CRUSH is ignoring her calls and "accidentally" showing up at places with her new chick.
28
Nice Girl.
29
Jeebus! 26 year olds are dipshits!
30
Colour me confused again. First of all: straight-identifying or straight-presenting?

There ought to be ways of opening the door without actually having to go so far as to make a formal Declaration of Interest. CRUSH is curiously silent about how much the two have discussed Her Life and Adventures (which sounds almost as if it could have come right out of Miss Austen's juvenile work, Love and Freindship - her original spelling) as a Gay Woman (not so Austenish, though one might wonder about a select handful or two). Mr Savage's response seems to read as if he presumes CRUSH is out to Co-worker, which is not established beyond reasonable doubt, and fairly open about her life in general. It feels hard to advise any particular line of conduct without further particulars.

There is also the question of how CRUSH would feel about possibly causing a TMFDM (the flip side of a DTMFA). Mr Savage mentions people bored to tears in their relationship who gratefully jump on a welcome hit, but surely there are situations that have more in common with entrapment, in which the expression of interest (often of a glamourous sort) sparks the dissatisfaction and serves more as a direct cause of the breakup.

My go-to reference for this sort of situation tends to be Linnet Doyle from Death on the Nile. CRUSH can be considered to be not quite in so bad a position, as she's not out to steal the love interest of a close friend. But her logic regarding the boyfriend doesn't serve CRUSH at all well. He's "boring" and she and others "didn't think much of him". If we accept her assessment as factually accurate, it could be considered worse than if we think she's deluded. A boyfriend who was as handsome, clever and rich as Emma Woodhouse with charming thrown in seems much less likely (in broad generalities) to suffer extremely through the appropriation of one girlfriend than a boring Catholic who might resemble the poor man in the Bible who had one ewe lamb. CRUSH appears to be painting the BF as a Loser who Doesn't Deserve a Girlfriend (as much as SHE does, at any rate), which is an ugly way to think. Unless he's done things to prove himself objectively poor relationship material (some would argue "intensely Catholic" qualifies but "boring" isn't close), then CRUSH is just looking like a bully or a Popular Girl decreeing who is or isn't worthy of a relationship for superficial reasons.

I recall a fair amount of old second-wave feminist literature dealing with How to Turn Straight Women. CRUSH might read some of that and see how she reacts to it.
31
@26 Chelydra--"Trouble is, this is very easily mistaken for flirtation by someone who is attracted to me."

Whew. Thank you for that. I appreciate someone acknowledging that being friendly and at ease can be confusing to another who takes it as a sign of interest. No harm no foul, just an acknowledgment that it can get tricky. The tendency I find is to shrilly declare that no one owes anyone anything and it's up to the interested party to refrain from acting on non-verbal cues which are ambiguous unless they aren't.

(Btw I share your inability to act normal around someone I have a crush on. Remove the interest and I can be relaxed as all hell though--charming, even. It's annoying. Different dynamic if you're het male too, and expected to take the lead. Awk-ward.)
32
"There are lots of straight-identified bisexual women out there—that's most of the bisexual women out there" ... sigh. Statistic? Study? Anything to back this up or is this another little-bit-kinder-gentler-to-bi-people-but-still-making-humungous-generalizations Dan Savage?
33
"some would question the ethics of hitting on someone who is in a relationship"

If one's ethics change because of gender or orientation they aren't really ethics.

If this was a straight man asking if it was a good idea to hit on a female coworker who is in a committed relationship I'm not sure this crowd would back it up so quickly.

Criticizing the significant other of the woman/man you crush on is self-serving rationalization. A cabal of lesbians found a straight dude lacking? Quelle surprise!

All the 'signs' the lesbian gives sound like run of the mill straight female friendships to me: long conversations, hanging out, strong commitment...

While I'll enjoy the spank-bank material of imagining all the housewives in my neighborhood desiring secret hot lesbo sex with their closest girlfriends, I don't think there's any truth to the fantasy.
34
@23 yeah..... It's funny, Cynthia Nixon marries a woman after being w/ a man for a long time and there's all this buzz about female sexual fluidity. But Stephen Daldry ends a long relationship w/ a man then marries a woman and the talk is very different. I mean I think he's in an open relationship, but still: is his behavior not also sexually fluid?

This poor lesbian's question (again, maybe I'm wrong and she's having beginner-level lesbian sex w/ her coworker as I type this (in which case, godspeed)) is an example of the problems that can arise as a result of this over-estimation of female sexual fluidity.

It's not that it's offensive or "privileged" or politically incorrect or rude to say that women have (to quote noted female sexuality theorist Andrew Sullivan) "less fixed" sexuality, it's just that it's wrong. I've never seen or experienced any indication of that, aside from women being more likely to talk about same sex experiences in public.
35
What part of "oh gawd no" is so hard to understand. Even if she's "a little bit bi" that's just a little bit of dynamite. Sexy, sexy dynamite.

Don't get me wrong, bisexuals exist and it's ok to date them. But this girl? Either you've got a lot of wishful thinking going on (not uncommon after a break up) or she genuinely gets off on flirting with you. But recall "getting off on flirting with women" != "actually prepared to date one."

If she doesn't know what she wants, then she doesn't want you.

Trust me, you're just setting yourself up for failure.