This carrd works on both pc and mobile, although some sections will be much longer on mobile.If you're seeing this, you were probably sent this carrd to learn more about lesboys/lesbian men!
To any lesboys/lesbian men or allies just checking out this carrd, hello to you as well!Click on any of the buttons below to get started!Last Update 08/17/2023
(Kirby by @radicallyQueer)
A few things you need to know before learning from this carrd.This carrd is no longer being updated.
The creator of this carrd no longer identifies as a lesboy and wants to separate herself from queer discourse, but the carrd will remain up for educational purposes.This carrd works best when you click on the buttons in order.This carrd will only provide sources of lesboys/lesbian men, however it is not an extensive list of examples of real life lesboys/lesbian men. To find sources regarding the history of the lesbian identity, I recommend doing independent research.The term "lesbian man" is sometimes called "male lesbian", and although the term "male lesbian" contains the word male, which is usually used to refer to someone's sex, "male" in the identity is mostly used to refer to someone's gender. This is being clarified because some inclusionists use the term instead of "lesbian men".To the exclusionists reading this, instead of immediately disregarding this carrd and the information within it, please, keep an open mind.
TRIGGER WARNING: D-slur (beginning with d and ending in e)Don't know what a term is? Click on it to redirect to a definition.How can someone be a lesboy/lesbian man?Click for transcription of image
There are many reasons how someone would identify as a lesboy/lesbian man, below here are some reasons with explanations!A multigendered/genderfluid person who is attracted to women while being a man/sometimes being a man
Someone may be both a man and another gender while being attracted to women, whether it be at the same time or different times.
Examples: Someone who is both a man and a woman and attracted to women, someone who is a nonbinary man.Someone who isn't a man gender wise, but uses masculine terms and/or pronouns to describe themselves
Some women/nonbinary people who call themselves men sometimes do so because they present in a masculine way or go by masculine pronouns while identifying as lesbians. Butch, transmasc, and he/him lesbians are sometimes examples of this.A system with both men and lesbian members
This section was written with help from systems/plural people.
Some plural people may identify as a combination of LGBTQIA2+ terms, for various reasons. Sometimes, it's because the identities between two or more members is blurred or complex, and their individual LGBTQIA2+ identities blend together in such a way that they can't be separated. Other times, they simply prefer to ID as all the identities each of their members has. For whatever reason, it may result in a system collectively identifying as a lesbian man/lesboy.An AFAB trans man who feels connected to their AGAB
Some trans men who were AFAB can feel a connection to their AGAB, for multiple reasons. One reason is some trans men who have not physically/medically transitioned yet feel more comfortable with the lesbian label. For some it is because they started identifying as men later in life, and still feel connected to being a woman due to how long they identified as one. For others, it is because they identified as a lesbian before they realized they were transgender, and decided to keep the identity. And for some, they simply still feel connected to being a woman in some way.A transfem lesbian
A transfem person who does not realize they are transfem and may identify as a lesboy/lesbian man.Some other reasons someone may identify as a lesboy/lesbian man:
• Someone who is cusper between a transgender man and a cisgender butch lesbian, or between a transgender woman and a gender non-conforming cis man.
• A man-aligned/solarian girl
• A woman-aligned/lunarian boy
• A lesbiangender, sapphicgender, or sapphogender man
• A transfem who's gender non-conforming
• A transfem reclaiming being called "boy"
• Bigender who uses it as "les = fem" and "boy = masc"
• A lesbian who's butchgender
• Identifying as a boydykeWhy would someone identify as a lesboy/lesbian man?
The reason why anyone identifies as any queer identity! It fits them, and makes them happy. Many queer individuals like having labels to help them find other people to connect with, and help comfort themselves that their experiences are valid and exist.Something to keep in mind when it comes to complex queer identities is that we are all complex beings with different experiences. Just because you share an identity with another person does not mean you will have the same experiences as them. Just like how not all trans and nonbinary people are the same, that also applies to lesbians.When people identify as lesboys and lesbian men, it is done in good-faith. They are not doing so to purposely hurt any other queer people.
(Credit to @lesboyotd for the 'Lesboy Identity Reasons' image)
Multigender person who's a boy and a lesbian in some way
Trans man who doesn't feel misgendered by lesbian, doesn't like being called straight, and/or feels his attraction to women is still queer
Butch who likes to use boy for gender non-conformity
Lesbian who's butchgender
Transfem lesbian egg
Boydyke (historic identity)
Bigender who uses it as "les = fem" and "boy = masc"
Transfem reclaiming being called "boy"
Transfem who's gender non-conforming
And many more!
TRIGGER WARNING: Mention of rape in last argumentClick for transcription of image
"Lesbian is non-men loving non-men"
In order to discuss this, it needs to be decided what being a "non-man" means. It is usually defined as either someone who is not 100% a man, or someone who is 0% a man. We will discuss how both have several issues with them.Looking into the first definition (someone who isn't 100% a man), it is simply putting a label on gender identities that just doesn't work. There are people with multiple genders, like nonbinary boys/men, bigender people, genderfluid people, etc. There are also people who are partially a man, like demiboys/men. Trying to push them into the binary system of non-men or men cannot be done without dismissing a part of their identity.Regarding the second definition (someone who is 0% a man), which also runs into issues regarding multigendered and genderfluid people. A multigendered/genderfluid person can be both 0% a man and then some percentage of a man at other times, so once again it is dismissing a part of their identity.The 0% a man definition is also usually paraphrased to "women and fem-alligned nonbinary people", which also has issues. Someone can be a man by being multigendered and be "fem-alligned" while being a man, and while that fits, they would most likely be unwelcome by exclusionists.The concept of labeling others as “men” or “non-men” is extremely invalidating to many nonbinary people. The two labels are pushing many people into a binary system that they do not want to be a part of."Lesbians can't like men or be men"
That phrase is TERF (Trans-Exclusionary Radical Feminist) rhetoric. TERFs created this phrase to exclude transgender women from the lesbian label, calling them "men", making the phrase "lesbians can't like men or be men" actually mean "lesbians can't like trans women or be trans women." There have been many examples of TERFs saying this phrase. Not only does it completely contradict the lesbian label, but many trans women have expressed discomfort in the phrase due to its TERF origins, and how it only spreads the influence of TERFs.(Addressing the above argument) "So you're calling trans men women?"
No. People have the ability to recognize harmful rhetoric without believing in it.
"Trans men can't be lesbians because they're men"
What's important to know when it comes to the experiences of being queer is that not all people in a label describe themselves the same way, or experience the same things. While many trans men do not feel comfortable labeling themselves as lesbian (which is valid), some do."Trans men are misgendering themselves by identifying as lesbians"
Trans men do not need to be assisted in identifying themselves and not misgendering themselves. They are capable of identifying as what they want within their own comfort."Cishet men will want to identify as lesbians now"
The issue with this statement is that it is presenting an issue that doesn't exist. Cishet men wouldn't identify as lesbians because they're straight, it's in the name."So cis men who mockingly/jokingly call themselves lesbians are lesboys?"
No. Like all other queer identities, lesboy is a good-faith identity. Cis men who want to mock lesbians are not lesboys."You’re invading lesbian spaces"
It isn't possible for lesboys/lesbian men to 'invade' spaces they have always been welcome in.Lesbians who are trans men and butches who call themselves men have been around in the community for a very, very long time. Nobody is in any place to exclude them from a community they've always been a part of."Genderfluid/Bigender people are genderfluid/nonbinary, not men/women/etc."
Being genderfluid/bigender does not mean you cannot identify as a man/woman/other gender. Some people who are genderfluid/bigender identify as genderfluid/bigender while also identifying as the separate genders they experience."Being transmasc/going by masculine pronouns doesn't make you a man"
True, but for some people, it does. This is another example of people identifying as a label not having the same universal experience."Just make/use a different label"
Making a different label is useful when no other label exactly fits the experience, however, lesbian is such a broad term that many people with many different experiences can identify with it. Of course, someone who has the experience of a lesboy/lesbian man could choose another label, but lesbian is an available option for them still. It's also important to remember that labels are a completely personal choice. They cannot be decided for others, and just because you fit a label doesn't mean you have to identify as it. Unless the identity is only to be used by a specific group of people, such as disabled people or POC, then no one has a place to tell others how to identify."Lesboys/lesbian men invalidate me"
If someone's existence is invalidating to you, that's something you need to work on, not the people identifying as the label(s). It is not any queer person's responsibility to change their way of identifying to make others comfortable in said label. Not everyone who identifies as a label has the same experience as everyone else.Ask yourself: Why are you so afraid, or angry, at them? Why do you have such a kneejerk reaction to their existence and experiences? Why do other people having valid experiences make you feel like it's invalidated your own?Bullying other queer people in the community to try and restrict labels and bully them into not identifying as those labels will not improve anything. It will always bring our community down, which has been shown before in anti-pan, a-spec, neopronoun, and nonbinary discourse, when identities are attacked for being "invalidating." Our community is built on breaking boundaries of labels and supporting each other as we are.Seeing a label you feel comfort in accept people you do not understand can feel invalidating, uncomfortable, and alienating. It is important to understand that these people are not trying to make you feel that way, they are simply existing as they are, just like you. Talk with them, and try to understand them. We are all simply queer people trying to find happiness."Lesboys/lesbian men want to make all lesbians like men”
Just because somebody is a lesbian does not mean that they have to be attracted to everyone else who is a lesbian. Inside every community, people have their preferences. Claiming labels like this is all about freedom of expression and to live authentically, forcing people to be attracted to certain groups runs against that."The idea that lesbians can like/be men supports corrective rape"
Blaming queer people for the actions of queerphobes is both queerphobic and victim-blaming. Lesboys/lesbian men do not support violence against lesbians in any way, and never have. Fight against queerphobes, not your own queer community.
(Credit to @moonf1zz for the men/non-men argument image
Credit to @boygirlangel for the gender spectrum charts
Credit to @cottaboo for the TERF rhetoric comic
Credit to Yan for explaining the "non-men loving non-men" counter-argument on their account)
men CAN'T be lesbians
non-men CAN be lesbians
are both true or synonymous statements,
what about people who
boy, not man
more than one
do they not intrinsically contradict that?
Click images to expand.TRIGGER WARNING: Sexual topics, reclaimed d-slur and f-slur, outdated lesbophobiaClick here for transcribed versions of images."Self-Made Men: Identity and Embodiment among Transsexual Men" by Henry Rubin (He), 2003
"Tommy Boys, Lesbian Men, and Ancestral Wives: Female Same-sex Practices in Africa" by Ruth Morgan (She) and Saskia Wieringa (She), 2005
"Transgender Butch" by J Halberstam (He/She), 1998
"Butch/Femme: Inside Lesbian Gender (Lesbian & Gay Studies)" by Sally Munt (She), 1997
"The Lives of Transgender People" by Genny Beemyn (They) and Susan Rankin (She), 2011
"Transgender Warriors: Making History from Joan of Arc to Dennis Rodman" by Leslie Feinberg (She/Zie), 1996
"Labeling" by Leanne Franson (She), 2004
(Credit to @StarNosedMoles for some images above)
TRIGGER WARNING: Sexual topics, reclaimed d-slur and f-slurClick on a title to jump to its transcription."Self-Made Men: Identity and Embodiment among Transsexual Men""Tommy Boys, Lesbian Men, and Ancestral Wives: Female Same-sex Practices in Africa""Transgender Butch""Butch/Femme: Inside Lesbian Gender (Lesbian & Gay Studies)""The Lives of Transgender People""Transgender Warriors: Making History from Joan of Arc to Dennis Rodman""Labeling"End
"Self-Made Men: Identity and Embodiment among Transsexual Men" by Henry Rubin (He), 2003First Image
"Well I said that I identify as a dyke. And as a gay leather top man who happens to be into girls. Which is a bit of a twist and a bit of a tweak. But also in terms of gender stuff, I identify as ninety percent male and ninety percent female. So, I don't see that as a paradox."I included Mark because I felt s/he would make a powerful contrast case to the others in my study. The interview with Mark reverses the trend of including one FTM in recent collections of essays and performance art shows about butch lesbians (e.g., Burana, Roxxie, and Due 1994). In each case, an "other" is included to mark off space, to delineate identity. Mark maintains a lesbian career with a twist–he says he is a gay leather man who likes to dominate women.Second Image
Ericsen acknowledges the slippery quality of his definition, especially with regard to those Dillon termed "mannish" lesbians. In "old gay life," it was common for butch lesbians to claim that they had "got mixed up in the wrong body" (Davis and Kennedy 1993, 349). Transsexual men and lesbians share a history of childhood tomboy behavior, romping with the active boys in their neighborhoods, climbing trees, playing sports, and even claiming an identity as a boy in games or otherwise. Ericsen also recognizes that many females, straight and gay alike, hold the belief that it is a man's world. Using similar phrasing, Blue Lunden, a butch lesbian who came out in the mid-1950s, recalls, "When I came out in the bars of the French Quarter, I was coming from a place of being mad as hell that I was a girl, because clearly it was a boy's world. Later on I was falling in love with other girls and thinking of myself as a man trapped in a woman's body" (Lunden 1980, 32)
Ericsen's ambition is to draw an unambiguous line between transsexuals and lesbians. To do so, he is compelled to find an unequivocal standard of judgement. He tries, therefor, to find unequivocal criteria. He offers several promising measures: a different sex life, stormy rela-
"Tommy Boys, Lesbian Men, and Ancestral Wives: Female Same-sex Practices in Africa" by Ruth Morgan and Saskia Wieringa, 2005First Image
Lerato sees her partner as a lesbian, based on the knowledge that her partner will never have a relationship with a man in contrast to herself as she is still open to that possibility. Her partner has a strong male identity:"Okay, what I see as a lesbian is, correct me if I'm wrong but this is how I see it, it's like, like my partner. She is [a lesbian], she won't have a relationship with a man, and she's a man herself. I see them as women who don't want to have anything to do with men. Ja, that's how I see a lesbians In my case it's like if it happens, then I can have a relationship with a man, and with my partner, she won't do that, she'd rather go for another woman."Lerato and her partner have created a traditional family set up where one partner is the 'man' and the other is the 'woman':"Okay, my role in the house I would say is [that of] a mother, and if we were married I would have said as a wife also, but now at this point I'm a girlfriend. Neties is the man, she's the man in the house. Like a woman would play a role in the house, I'm playing that role in the house and Neties is playing a man's role in the house. When it comes to disciplining the kids, we discipline them the way a mother and father would have done in a normal relationship."Second Image
Two of my respondents and the lover of Marianne identify themselves as men and they use male names for themselves. This is why I have also given them make names as pseudonyms, Hans, Calvyn, and Mihes. Helen doesn't use a masculine name for hirself, that is why I have given hir a feminine pseudonym, S/he also identifies as male. Because they see themselves as men, I also call them men, and as they are in same-sex relations I call them lesbian men. This is very common for women who play the butch role in same-sex relationship in Damara culture. In fact, of the more than 30 lesbian men that I know personally all have either given themselves male names or they have been given these names by other people. This can be seen as a symbol of a second baptism in which you consciously take up a masculine identity. Hans for instance got hir nickname at school. S/he was named after a male singer when it turned out s/he could sing exactly like him.
The terms butch and femme are not known in Damara culture; they are only used by the new feminist and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered (LGBT) groups, such as Sister Namibia and The Rainbow Project. In fact in Damara culture we have no name at all for same-sex relations.Third Image
One of hir first lovers respected all this and treated Hans with the respect due to a man, which pleased hir mightily:"It was excellent. It was so good. She made me feel that she loved me. At her own place she had her own room, so we had privacy; my clothes were cleaned and I could eat on time, a man's plate with handles on the side and a lid [a big metal bowl in which men are usually served]. (Laughter from both of us.) So I was treated very well."All the lesbian men carry a lot of responsibility for family members, particularly financial responsibility for girlfriends and their families. They are also very actively involved in the community, such as in the church. They see it as an integral part of their masculinity and in fact scorn biological men who do not live up to their obligations. To take responsibility for others increases social acceptance of their lifestyle. Another reason why so many tasks are loaded on them may be that as lesbian men and not officially married, many problems of the family are automatically diverted to them. However, all lesbian men I interviewed were in relationships and they had children of their own. Sometimes there may be tensions between the claims of the original family of the lesbian man and hir lover. Marianne regularly sends-Fourth Image
Sîros uses sex toys (vibrators and strap-on dildos), which she purchases from the sex shop or on the internet. The local sex shop also caters for lesbians, as the owner is gay.
Lerato, who has two children, sees herself in the female role in their domestic life. She recounted that during sex, her partner Neties is the man and also doesn't want to be penetrated:
"Okay, in our situation it's not a 50/50, it's like she's the man and that's it. I'm the woman. Yes it's fulfilling to both of us and she doesn't like penetration, so we do it in such a way that she also gets satisfaction but I don't penetrate her. So she's the man."
"Transgender Butch" by J Halberstam (He/She), 1998First Image
So while it is true that transgender and transsexual men have been wrongly folded into lesbian history, it is also true that the distinctions between some transsexuals and lesbians may at times become quite blurry. Many FTMs do come out as lesbians before they come out as transsexuals (many, it must also be said, do not). For this reason alone, hard-and-fast distinctions between lesbians and FTMs are not always helpful. The editors of Dagger: On Butch Women, for example, include interviews with FTMs as part of their survey of an urban butch scene. The five FTMs interviews all testify to a period of lesbian identification. Shadow admits that "the dyke community's been really great, keeping me around for the last 12 years" (154); Mike says he never really identified as female but that he did "identif[y] as a lesbian for a while" because "being a dyke gave me options" (155). Similarly, Billy claims that he feels neither male nor female but that he did "go through the whole lesbian separatist bullshit" (155). Like Shadow,-Second Image
In an article in Girlfriends magazine on "What is Stone Butch–Now?" (as opposed to stone butch in the 1950s), Heather Findlay interviews stone butches about their various modes of gender and sexual identification. Stone butch for the purposes of this article occupies "a gray area" between lesbian and FTM. One of Findlay's informants simply calls him/herself Jay and relates that he/she is considering transitioning: "As a stone butch you have a sense of humor about your discomfort in the world. As an FTM, however, you lose that sense of humor. Situations that were funny suddenly get very tragic." Obviously, in this comment, Jay already seems to be speaking from the perspective of an FTM. In order to do so, s/he must cast the stone butch as playful in comparison to the seriousness of the FTM transsexual. The stone butch laughs at her gender discomfort while the FTM finds his discomfort to be a source of great pain. The stone butch manages her gender dysphoria, according to such a model, but the FTM cannot. Again, these oppositions between FTM and butch come at the expense of a complex butch subjectivity and also work to totalize both categories in relation to a single set of experiences. As other stone butches interviewed in the article attest, however, being stone might mean moving in and out of gender comfort and might mean a very unstable sense of identification and lesbianism or femaleness. In order to separate the category of FTM from the category of butch, Jay must assign butch to femaleness and FTM to maleness.Third Image
Eric feels that for a while "the lesbian place was really good for me" (156), and, finally, Sky suggests that while certain individuals in the dyke community are hostile to him, "I'm forty years old and I've been involved with dykes for nearly half my life. I'm not going to give that up." (158). Obviously, these FTM voices are quite particular, and they in no way represent a consensus (or even a dominant version) of the relations between FTM and dyke communities. They have, in fact, been carefully chosen to fit into a collection on lesbian masculinities. However, these transsexual men do articulate one very important line of affiliation between transsexualities and lesbian identities. Many transsexual men successfully identify as butch in a queer female community before they decide to transition. Once they have transitioned, many transsexual men want to maintain their ties to their queer lesbian communities. Much transsexual discourse now circulating, however, tries to cast the lesbian pasts of FTMs as instances of mistaken identities or as efforts to find temporary refuse within some queer gender-variant notion of "butchness."Fourth Image
-bility of identity. These distinctions do not map onto categories "transsexual" and "nontranssexual" in any easy one-to-one correspondence. Many of the reasons that butches make themselves at home in often indescribably alien female bodies sound very like the reasons that some transsexuals remain ambiguous: lack of funds, body limits, attachment to gender queerness. Furthermore, some butches might feel that unless medical technology can produce a fully functional penis, the transition is not worthwhile.
As Gayle Rubin remarks in her essay on the varieties of butchness, "Butches vary in how they relate to their female bodies." She goes on to show that "forms of masculinity are molded by experiences and expectations of class, race, ethnicity, religion, occupation, age, subculture, and individual personality" (470). Rubin also casts the tensions between butches and FTMs as border wars (she calls them "frontier fears"), and she notes that the border between these two modes of identification is permeable at least in part because "no system of classification can successfully catalogue or explain the infinite vagaries of human diversity" (473). Rubin also advocates gender and sexual (as well as other kinds of) diversity not only as a political strategy but moreover as simply the only logically adequate response to the enormous range of masculinities and genders that we produce.
"Butch/Femme: Inside Lesbian Gender (Lesbian & Gay Studies)" by Sally Munt (She), 1997First Image
From bad to hard: hip hop masculinity and the modern black manDréd pulls on a black turtleneck, black pants, a black leather jacket and black sunglasses. There's a hard East Coast beat in the air now; she's taking us to the heart of Brooklyn, her home town. She's synching to 'Puff Daddy', throwing her arms out in the gesture of the hip hop nation. Her face is a study in hard black manhood. In the words of the hip hop mantra, she's 'keepin' it real'.I don't want to be a man, but I love dressing up in drag. It feels very natural because I think I was a man once or something. I don't know. I have a lot of masculine energy which drag helps me express.
I've been on the train, on the bus, on the street in drag. I took a friend out on a date once in drag.
Sometimes I'll know I'm a man; I have a hard time catching a cab when I'm dressed up as a man. The first time it happened I was so upset, because I had my sweatshirt on and I had it pulled down, you know, like. . . . So of course, you know, you can just imagine what the driver was thinking. So the cabs would come up to me and they'd slow down, and then they'd rush off. And it took me half an hour. Sometimes I have those problems as Mildred, but it's really bad in drag, because that's what it's like as a black man. I have a problem as a black man, no matter what I'm wearing. Once when I was waiting, this white woman stepped in front of me to try and catch a cab. And I just went off on her. And she went down the block. I said [drops voice] 'Yo! I was waitin' here!' And she got it and she left.
The cab incident has made me a little more sensitive to some men, and hear them talk about discrimination. But I don't really like men. I've never been with a man; I've known I was gay since I was a little girl, and I'm not attracted to men. Because I've seen so many of them be disrespectful to women and to me. I'm not going to make an effort to make friends with a man.
A lot of drag kings do the chauvinistic, disrespectful kind of man in their act. I don't do that because I'm not comfortable with it. I like to be a gentleman and a gentlewoman.Second Image
... possibly the butch tomboys , are simply read as boys , as gender ambiguous or ... some move back and forth between boy identities and woman identities.Third Image
But I see what Hausman's problem is with this argument. It's twofold. First, many self-identified transsexuals (like John, for example) are quite fond of the two-gender status quo. In their eyes, their only problem is that they were born on the wrong side of a fence they have no intention of breaking down, only of jumping over. The position of such transsexuals cannot simply be dismissed as politically reactionary. Their position marks the second problem with - indeed, the very limit of - the Bornstein/post-structuralist take on transsexualism, which is that, says Hausman, 'there is a logical inconsistency between doing away with gender and making more genders'.
Hausman is saying that the true disruption of gender lies not in some free-play of signification, a proliferation of genders, some utopian world populated by (in Halberstam's words) 'guys with pussies, dykes with dicks, queer butches, aggressive femmes, F2Ms, lesbians who like men, daddy boys, gender queens, drag kings, pomo afro homos, bulldaggers, women who fuck boys, women who fuck like boys, dyke mommies, transsexual lesbians, male lesbians'. For Judith, all this gender freedom on the frontiers brings forth the 'more general fragmentation of the concept of sexual identity' - that's why she thinks - or at least thought, because I've heard she's publishing again on the topic - we're all transsexuals.
But Hausman is saying, rather, that it is our task as critics and activists to focus, paradoxically, on the resistant, non-signifying materiality of the body. The subversion of gender lies not in the multiplication of gender meanings, but in the limits of gender meaning itself, the mute irreverence of the body. The history of transsexualism in particlar is marked by the body's blunt refusal to co-operate in the construction of the social meanings of gender, either by doctors or self-identifying transsexuals: 'the body does not accommodate all the procedures of "sex change": the body, in other words, resists making "gender" real'.
"The Lives of Transgender People" by Genny Beemyn and Susan Rankin, 2011First Image
Even transgender people who fully transition and who see themselves (and are seen by others) as male or female may still struggle with how to name their sexual orientation. In particular, some of the FTM/transgender and female-to-different-gender participants who were attracted to women and who had their roots in the lesbian community continued to identify as "lesbian," "queer," "a dyke," or "nonstraight" - even though they no longer considered themselves female - because they did not want to erase their pasts and did not feel that the label "heterosexual" adequately reflected their experiences. Eric, for example, stated, "I used to identify as a dyke very strongly and still do, just in a different way. I was occupying a more female space, but now a more masculine space, but not really as male." Another participant, Michael W., also sought to remain connected to his pretransition sexual identity:
I lived openly as a dyke for more than 20 years and no number of shots (of testosterone) . . . will ever change my history. Nor do I have any interest in that happening . . . . I've been without my lesbian ID card for several years now, but I can't really call myself straight either. I really have no concept of "straight" as a life experience so "heteroqueer" seems to fit best, or "I'm a guy who likes girls who like 'special' guys.Second Image
Another noteworthy finding was that a small number (28) of the FTM/T respondents self-identified as lesbians, despite not identifying as female, and were primarily attracted to women. Likewise, a small number (31) of the MTF/T respondents described themselves as gay, despite not identifying as male, and were primarily attracted to men.
"Transgender Warriors: Making History from Joan of Arc to Dennis Rodman" by Leslie Feinberg (She/Zie), 1996First Image
Transsexual women are not a Trojan horse trying to infiltrate women's space. There have always been transsexual women helping to build the women's movement - they are part of virtually every large gathering of women. They want to be welcomed into women's space for the same reason every woman does - to feel safe. And our female-to-male transsexual brothers have a right to feel welcome at women's movement events or lesbian bars. However, that shouldn't feed into the-
(Continued in next image)Second Image
misconception that all female-to-male transsexuals were butches who just couldn't deal with their oppression as lesbians. If that were true, then why does a large percentage of post-transition transsexual men identify as gay and bisexual, which may have placed them in a heterosexual or bisexual status before their transition? There are transsexual men who did help build the women's and lesbian communities, and still have a large base of friends there. They should enjoy the support of women on their journey. Doesn't everyone want their friends around them at a time of great change? And women could learn a great deal about what it means to be a man or a woman from sharing the lessons of transition.
"Labeling" by Leanne Franson (She), 2004First Image
...labelling seems to be a big problem for sexual minorities:......i love when, but i refuse to say that "L-Word"!!
...i'm a dyke, but i do sometimes sleep with fags...
...i sure as heck ain't queer!!...who's tryin' to call me 'queer'?!!
...i'm married to a man, but i'm lesbian-identified.
...i'm a lesbian, not a woman. WOMAN is a patriarchal construction.
...i'm a butchy femme...
...i do think i'll stay with Anna for the rest of my life, but i feel my bisexuality remains an integral part of my personality...
...dykes are not lesbians are not dykes.
Personal Experiences of Lesboys/Lesbian Men
TRIGGER WARNING: Reclaimed d-slur, f-slur, and t-slur
"im not a boy, im nonbinary
but at the same time, i feel very aligned with masculinity, so i often call myself a boy and similar terms
i prefer he/they pronouns, and masculine terms but i am still not entirely a boy
in terms of ‘men and non men’ id be somewhere in between"Ry (He/Fire)
"I was raised to feel ashamed of my attraction to women and my lesbianism. As I got older and started figuring myself out more, I realized I could be a boy, I could be a trans man.
For so many this means abandoning their lesbian identity, but for me it meant embracing it! I may not be a girl anymore, but I still feel a connection to lesbianism and womanhood. I'm a lesbian and a trans man, not in spite of my manhood, but because of it!"Bumble (Mew/Xe/It)
"so, im a transmasc gendersatyr demiboy lesbigay, so. my attraction to femme-alligned people feels queer. it doesnt feel like a typical mlw type thing, its like.. it feels nblw to me? and being nd and trans just makes me experience stuff generally queer-ly"Rosenda (Elle)
"Hi I'm Rosenda. I'm a Mspec Aspec trans Ftm Xixigender Rellenogender lesboy and I'll tell you guys why I use the term lesbian. I find the term straight uncomfy because I present very fem and I just idk but uh another thing is that my attraction to woman/nb or just fingender ppl feel.. queer! So ye-"Yan (He/They/Lua)
"My relation to gender has always been rather complex, and so has my relation been to sexuality as well. As a genderfluid (gustgender, vernalgender, flowgender, lovegender, catgender, boygender, nonbinary) demiboy, I have had to find ways to define my sexuality in a way that fits my experiences with gender best; and with "bi gay lesboy", I can both express the lesbian part of my queer attraction and its inseparable connection to boyhood. And further, as a boygender boy, I reject manhood; so while I am a lesboy, I don't consider myself a lesbian man."Apricity (He)
"I'm a trans man, and when I first realized I was trans I had already been identifying as a lesbian for several years. I was also in a lesbian relationship at the time. when I realized this I talked to my partner about it, we both agreed that even though I am a man we wanted to stay together. I was still very connected to my lesbian identity as well and after how hard I had fought for it when I was a woman I did not want to give it up, so I kept it. no part of my sexuality really changed, only my gender. I had always been a lesbian, I was just a lesbian and a man."Korin (He/She)
"Hi! I am korin, I’m a lesboy!! I have always found my self, despite knowing that I am a lesbian, i have always struggled with my gender identity. I found myself identifying more with men relationships, but not exactly relating to them. For example, I’d see a MLM relationship and identify with the feelings they did and the relationship dynamic in a way that was queer and in a women sense, and identifying more with the boy and men label. Lesboy is just perfect for me."Fei (They/He/It/Xe)
"Hai! I’m a lesboy and I thought I’d share my experience :) buckle up cause this is a roller costar! Ever since i 9 or 10 i had been questioning my gender and sexuality, while i had been good with sticking with one sexuality label or a bit i had always been changing up my gender label. From cis woman to trans man to nonbinary to demigirl to back to enby again to now agenderfluid its been a ride. It was easy to come to terms with liking women but it took me a long time to come to terms with the fact that I didn’t like men. And it took me an even longer time to figure out my pronouns! But now I’m comfortable with masculine terms and being transmasc while also embracing my lesbianism <3"Eira (Any/All)
"So, my relationship with gender is complicated, but I've ended up at "politically a woman, but my gender is a mix of female-dyke and demiboy", and my orientation is almost entirely towards (genderqueer) women, but I can technically love anyone.I used to be very involved in exclusionist Lesbian communities, and I feared exploring my gender or my feelings towards men & non-binary folk out of fear that it would exclude me from the only label I ever felt explained by (lesbian). Realising I'm capable of loving men initially alienated me from Lesbianism, but that gave me room to realise that my gender has elements of masculinity within it too! After studying queer history some more, I came to understand that Lesbian is as diverse an identity as any other, so I re-explored my place within Lesbianism. Bi-Lesboy is what ended up fitting.To me, being a Lesboy is a recognition of the way my gender, gender presentation, and orientation assign with eachother. I am a woman and a female, but I embody maleness too. I present as a butch-woman, I am perceived by the world as a woman, and I am okay interacting with the world as such.So, when I date women (who I am almost-exclusively oriented towards), that experience is ultimately a Lesbian experience. Calling myself a Lesboy is an acknowledgement of my fundamentally queer relationship to women, and the way lesbianism and maleness relate to my inner-experience of gender - it encompases every aspect of my identity into a lovely little package, and I love having a label that can do that for me"Levi (They/Xe)
"to start off, i identify as pangender, my gender encompasses through all known and unknown genders within my daily life and culture, so i feel like sometimes I'm a women/fem aligned, others I'm feeling non binary/neutral aligned and other times, like a men/masc aligned, it was hard to find the correct label to express my experience with gender but here it is, Pangender. Also recently I've found out I'm a Lesbian, I've always knew i felt attracted to women for a long time, that's the label for me, no other label can describe my love for women, so i identified as a lesbian for some time, however there was a "but", my gender felt masculine too, only identifying with the Lesbian label just made me quite uncomfortable, the "straight" label too, none of these made me feel "happy", so when i educated myself about the label "Lesboy", everything made sense!! That's who i am now, a Pangender lesbian, who also identifies as a lesboy ."Azure (They/He/Hy)
"I’ve always had a complicated relationship with both sexuality and gender. In layman’s terms, I’m queer and genderfluid (as well as intersex). In specifics, I’m bi/pan (attracted to people regardless of gender), aego-aroaceflux (my attraction fluctuates, but I always prefer thinking/talking about sex and romance rather than pursuing it), androgyne (aligning with both femininity and masculinity, but not in equal amounts), intergender (being in-between a woman and a man), and transmasc (feeling more gender euphoria from identifying as masc). I’ve felt directly and indirectly alienated for all of these identities since starting my coming out journey in 2014.When I came across the term “lesboy,” something in me clicked. My genderfluidity consists of nonbinary femininity on one end of the spectrum, transmasculinity on the other, androgyne/intergender on the leaning sides, and agender/neutrois square in the middle. Because of that, I identify with being both WLW and MLM; my attraction to women is just as beautifully queer as is my attraction to men. It also helps that I’m a system, and saying this about myself helps my alters feel validated about their identities rather than dysphoric.The term “lesboy” is also a reclamation in the same way “queer” is, both for my sexuality and gender. Despite leaning more transmasc, I can’t completely divorce myself from womanhood, especially since I still experience misogynistic violence and misgendering/deadnaming. While not something I’ve experienced yet, a common transmasc experience is being asked, “Why can’t you just be a lesbian?” However, I’m not bothered by being called a lesbian because I’ve legit questioned being one before. It’s like I’m reclaiming a hurtful thing that could be said to me before it can even be said. I’m a fag, a dyke, a tranny, and a queer wrapped in one, and that’s perfectly OK with me.In short, being a lesboy means being everything BUT straight and cis."
("my identity is official" edit by @neopronouns)
First off, I want to thank you, the reader, for going through this carrd. It is the result of hours of hard work that I am very proud to present to the community. I believe educating others on commonly frowned upon/invalidated identities will help our community immensely, by helping us connect and understand each other better, and become a more united movement.To any exclusionists, I hope this carrd has helped open your eyes to the wonderful, unique group and identity that are lesboys/lesbian men. Being inclusive only benefits our community.Here are some other carrds of mine:
LGBTQIA2+ Educationand some other carrds not by me you should check out!
M-Spec Lesbians 1
M-Spec Lesbians 2
M-Spec Lesbians 3
M-Spec Lesbians 4
M-Spec Lesbians 5