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4 April 2011, 11:00 am 11 Comments

Sexuality: The Lesbian Stud Manifesto

Submission by Knowledge, StudWithSwag.com

Crossposted with permission from author. View original article here.

Be yourself.

Treat your woman like a treasure.

Stay true and committed to you.

Let me begin by saying that identifying as a more dominant or masculine lesbian has little to do with gender maturity and everything to do with finding our internal comfort zone. Gender maturity is something we usually reach by the time we are firmly planted within that comfort zone and begin to embrace it as our own. Being a Butch/AG/Stud Lesbian in today’s society can be a journey within a journey that we struggle to come to terms with daily. These struggles most often encompass not knowing exactly how to embrace our identity in its infancy. Many young studs struggle with issues relating to self-acceptance, identity, and self-esteem. Many others, brought on by age and maturity, no longer concern themselves with how they’re seen and viewed by society. Instead, they are concerned with creating and investing in the physical and emotional growth of the gay and lesbian community as a whole. Included is the reinforcement and awareness of redefining roles and labels within our culture and the promotion of the positivity within both. A community that often tells us that we’re confused about our gender when for the most part we are not demands that our persistent and respectful enlightenment teach them the opposite.

The Stigma

The label “stud” imparts negative feelings and reactions among many lesbians and primarily heterosexual men. This is due in part by perceptions and misconceptions that lesbians and straight women harbor about what it means to be a stud.

Most of us start out as tomboys and only later in life do we begin to embrace our uniqueness, our masculinity and our differences as lesbians within an ever-expanding, diverse gay culture. Some begin to mimic behavior they feel is reminiscent of society’s view of “typical stud behavior” with the onset of “typical stud mentality” following closely behind. Most of the negative behaviors associated with butch lesbians only begin to manifest themselves after they’ve embraced a particular subset of popular culture and its view of sexuality usually through music and art. To a large degree, most of those embracing these behaviors and attitudes have subsequently forced themselves into a role that seemingly does not fit.

The Realizations

We realize that every stud or butch lesbian is unique. She is an individual. The diversity among us is staggering. Some studs prefer to sag their pants to the knees and others can rock the hell out of a pair of DKNY’s fitted and resting slightly below the waistline.

We realize that not every stud will turn down the loving touch and tender embrace of another woman, choosing only to give pleasure in lieu of receiving.

We realize that there are those of us who are highly educated intellectuals with goals for the future. We will work tirelessly to achieve them through any positive means possible.

We realize that those who have conquered and won the fight of self-acceptance are no longer restricted by society’s view of our womanhood, our lesbianism, our self worth and our labels.

We realize that those of us who are comfortable with their bodies and their selves have made it. We are no longer confined to others definitions of who we are and what makes us tick. We no longer feel constrained by the judgment of others because we are our own greatest judge.

We realize that being a stud may not mean being more masculine for some or being more dominant for others, it is everything to do with being well, You.

We realize that with everything in this world, there are those whose actions give us a bad name, but we refuse to allow those members of our subset to strictly define us. Society does a good enough job doing that on its own.

We realize that we are the only ones who hold the power in the meaning of these words, regardless of the attitudes of others and their miss-categorizations.

We have adopted these labels and only we have the power to redefine.

Those among us who identify as Studs/AGs/Butches are equals, not adversaries.

Our outward behavior is often attributed to those who identify with us. As with any community, this will have positive and negative connotations. For studs, the negatives have been outweighing the positives for far too long.

It’s time for change.

The Summation

As a lesbian who identifies as a woman first, soft-“Stud” second, it is my duty to tear down negative stereotypes relating to my fellow gender-bending lesbians. I feel it my duty to express in the only way I can my outright disappointment at studs who adopt misogynistic attitudes and behaviors and incorporate them into their relationships with other women as the norm. You, yes you, are not only wrong, you are shining a negative light on the rest of it and it’s not appreciated.

Being a stud is not about trying to control someone or collect women as trophies. It encompasses everything having to do with treating a woman like the Queen she is. In return, she will embrace you as the female King of her castle or however you wish to be honored by your woman. She will understand that just because you may at times feel entirely comfortable expressing your masculine side, you are 100% woman and that doesn’t mean you want to be a man nor does it give her license to strip you of your womanhood in the process. There were women kings throughout history that took on roles as leaders of entire nations. There is only pride and respect to be found in fulfilling such a role.

Studs have individual set preferences, but diversity among lesbians more feminine than us or androgynous must be respected and embraced in turn. We must not try to set standards upon non-butch identified lesbians in any limiting manner that makes light of her individuality, her appearance, behaviors or attitudes just because of our rigid and faulty nuances. This form of polarization is an unacceptable breeding ground for negativity. We must respect that lesbians who are more feminine than us are just as diverse and hold a very important role in our culture and society. These differences must be honored above all else.

Studs young and old must not allow music culture to dictate and deteriorate their behaviors and actions and the measure of respect they show other women. There is only shame to be felt in the degradation of women, which is often embraced by mainstream music and the youth and adults it inspires.

I’m putting it out there because my sanity depends on it, but thankfully my self worth does not. My ability to co-exist among my gay and lesbian family demands it.

My fellow Studs, AG’s and Butches, we’re done selling ourselves short. We allow those within and outside of our community to define, redefine and ultimately restrict our visibility. The truth is we are about as diverse as a United Nations gathering. We form a powerful cohesive within the lesbian community and our time to shine is now.

We are:

Mothers

Daughters

Sisters

Grand Mothers

Matriarchs

Pretty Bois.

Pretty Girls.

Beautiful.

Average.

Tomboys.

Bisexuals

Transgenders.

Amateur & Professional Athletes.

Entrepreneurs

Writers

Artists

Those in the middle who haven’t yet figured it out.

And so many more…

We are many and we are diverse as one.

We allow others far too much leverage and power in determining exactly who we are, when we should be doing our self. We have the ability and the POWER to define and redefine masculine womanism, dominant lesbianism, tomboyishness, and androgyny. We make up such a force that this topic deserves to be addressed. We owe it to ourselves to aptly follow through in our pursuit of self-confidence, self-esteem and most importantly self-identity in a society that frowns upon those who appear and who are different. Our identity deserves the same respect as any other, even those choosing to transcend their gender. No longer will we allow ourselves to be thrust into a revolving trend where a word that encompasses so many positives is thought of and seen in a largely negative light. We understand that our definition of “stud” may not jive with how another self-imposed stud sees herself. We must no longer make excuses for immature, irresponsible, misogynistic lesbians who call themselves studs, AGs or butch, but instead we must educate. We are empowered through positivity and we aim to promote growth through change in our community.

There are no strict gender roles no matter how you identify in the gay community. In order to be accepted and appreciated for who you are, my advice to you is to be yourself. The gray areas are limitless.

 


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11 Comments »

  • Ang Lawrence said:

    Once again you have put things into words and with great clarity and perspective! I love this piece, and it explains so much so clearly. As a damned proud Butch, I can vouch that this article is very well written, and really addresses the points in ways many of us want to be able to say but cannot for a variety of reasons. Thankfully we have this incredible writer to do it for us when we need it most! Much love to you Bro! ~Ang

  • Nhawndie said:

    wow! I’m not yet 100% sure of the exact labels I fit into in this world, but what you just desribed here is a mutual feeling. If only more people in our society thought this open-minded the world wouldn’t be as stressful to nature and ourselves.

    Thank you so much for these inspirational & meaningful words, for it feels awesome to know someone out in the world shares this view with me!

  • Jazz said:

    You are quite frankly amazing, inspiring, motivating, and well worth the read

  • Darnessa said:

    I read this article and instantly was proud to see the writings of a mature lesbian that encompasses an outlook for growth as a people, most importantly as individuals. Job well done!!!!!

  • veezworld said:

    Well written! Loved it!

  • windygreen said:

    Your Beautiful. Keep being you.

  • Mz.Reezi said:

    Hi,im reesi n I do hav a stud that I lv very much,n its kinda hard bcuz evrybody wants her. Now dont gt me wromg ,iv ben n the life for frteen yrs n ive witnessd how a lot of u studs get dowm. Well I do hav a good one n we hav ben togtjr now fr a yr,its ben a journey but so far we stuck it out!I just gv hands up to u studs,especoally the ones thts rite by their ladies,,,thts rite by thm. Keep up the good work!

  • Lashawn said:

    I like how you spoke your mind most people don’t do anything like that what you just did and I have to say I like that you are a strong person.

  • Heather said:

    I have to say this article is well written! I’m a stud and have been my whole life! I’m 36 yrs old and can’t stand the way ppl put you in a category of soft stud,butch, androgynous, stem you get my point! Why can’t we just be our selves and either you like it or you don’t! Don’t waste you time trying to figure it out! There’s another topic I would like to bring up… Why do other studs feel intimidated by other studs? Can someone please help me to understand! Studs seem to have a problem w me

  • Indiabeautifulthebest Fuller said:

    I love tbis message it help me understand my stud a lot more it was dead on and i love her she is awesome to me thank u

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