Home > Uncategorized > Soft.

Soft.

I talked with a gay boy last night, who self-described as a “nelly little bottom”.  Adorable.  He asked me whether I thought I was butch.  Always curious, I asked what he thought.  He said I seemed too “soft” to be butch.  I frowned and said I did, in fact, consider myself to be butch.

I am “soft”.  I don’t have a “hard” personality.  I feel that my masculine energy comes out most obviously during sex and in my relationship with my girlfriend.  I may have “typically masculine” (whatever that means) characteristics at other times, but my general, day-to-day, social personality is pretty devoid of any gendered reading.  I care about what other people think of me and I strive for empathy in my social interactions.  I talk – a lot – with varied facial expressions and open body language and frequent hand gestures.  I have no compunction about sharing my feelings.  I guess to some people these things are feminine, but to me, it’s about openness and honesty.  These things come easily to me, and I won’t tone them down to fit some ideal of stoic masculinity.  I’ve been friends with many people who find it difficult to share honestly, and I’ve come to realize that my ability to do so is a great gift – not only to my loved ones, for by it they know me more easily, but also to myself, as it lets me process in a healthy manner.

A few people have thanked me on here for being able to write so openly.  What you get here is an extension of the way I am most of the time.  I’ve been surprised by the thanks.  This stuff may be hard to talk about, to articulate, but I know that it needs to happen.  I just made this blog because I knew, eventually, I’d have to talk about my gender, and it needed to happen in a safe space.  I hope that, in turn, reading what I write here makes it easier for you to open up and share yourself as well.  I know that that is what I have taken from gender blogs, and I am even further grateful for that.

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Categories: Uncategorized
  1. July 25, 2010 at 3:21 pm

    I have to say that my butch friends and partners are all better at being open, and true to themselves, and emotionally available than I am myself. I realize that is a direct contradiction to the “feminine” standard, like you mentioned here. I think it’s because it is completely impossible for them to blend in socially.

    It’s also one of the things I find most appealing in the masculine-gendered population. I can hide behind my femininity both socially and emotionally, and I know I do both of those things. Rhett can’t. You probably can’t. So I admire the both of you for being willing to be so very much yourselves.

    That takes a remarkable strength, and so “soft” is not an adjective that would spring readily to my mind in describing that kind of strength.

    Thank you for sharing.

  2. me
    July 25, 2010 at 7:24 pm

    Mhm I agree, butch shouldn’t equate to chauvinism…nothing should.

  3. e
    July 26, 2010 at 12:25 pm

    My gf identifies as ‘soft butch’ and neither of us see this as a negative or demeaning version of butch. In her outward presentation she looks somewhat masculine, and one look at her and you know she’s a dyke. But the lines are blurry when one tries to pin down specific characteristics and label them as butch (or femme or anything else.) Also, some days she is more butch and some days less, but she is never not butch and she is never, ever femme.

    As you say, there’s more than one way…

  4. July 26, 2010 at 8:12 pm

    Interesting how other people seem to feel like with butch (and femme, really) that THEY get to have an opinion on whether you are or are not. I think one of the best things about being a lesbian (a femme lesbian, for the record, who dates butches) is that WE get to decide for ourselves what constitutes butch and/or femme. I’m pretty new to your blog (thanks for the Twitter follow, btw!) but I’ve added you to my feed. I’m looking forward to seeing what else you have to say.

  5. G
    July 27, 2010 at 7:38 pm

    It’s funny, but the characteristics you described here don’t strike me as being hard, soft OR gendered, really. They seem more particular to the person, like you said – open and honest. I kind of hate how butches are assumed to have hard personalities; I’ve had that comment before, too, that my personality doesn’t seem that butch. I think sometimes we do, sometimes we don’t, just like everyone else. I for one like your personality (from what I know on here) and really like your writing. Don’t change a thing.

  6. August 1, 2010 at 1:30 pm

    Hi! I just found your blog through G/can i help you sir and WOW I’m having fun reading – some of your posts had me in smiles, others in tears. I myself would be an old lady who figured out she’s gay after twenty years of adult life, oops! I love your take on – everything I’ve read so far. I’ll be hangin’ around, how’s the coffee in this place?

  7. August 5, 2010 at 5:45 pm

    Well, as you and others have said, being butch isn’t about any one characteristic. ‘Butch’ covers a pretty wide range of behaviors, identities and appearances. Rock the butchness in your own style, be authentic and enjoy.

  8. August 9, 2010 at 1:16 pm

    Thanks to all for weighing in. You are all awesome!

    Look at me, being all “soft” in thanks for your help during “hard” times.

  9. August 19, 2010 at 7:08 am

    I too have been described and self-identify more as ‘soft butch’ (though maybe a more accurate reading would be ‘hard femme’ lol). I personally have seen soft butch become more fashionable since there are more girls are out as femme and as the stereotype of a lesbian being automatically ‘hard butch’ is being dismantled everyday. I was confused by this initially, thinking realizing that I was gay meant I had to be as masculine as possible. But I have since toned it down and embraced being myself and not having to be super-butch.

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