Written by Jai
I’m 31 years old and I was born and raised in Houston, Texas. I now reside in Birmingham, Alabama, with my girlfriend, Elise.
On the stud spectrum I call myself a stud because when I came out that was the only term around to describe a dominant lesbian of color. However, as I’ve become more attuned to my sexuality, I would have to say Casual Masculinity fits me better. I identify with Casual Masculinity because I have my times when I’m very dominant but also there are times when I’m a little feminine and submissive. I’ve learned to embrace both sides of me.
I don’t only date studs. My preference would be to date someone who is dominant but also feminine.
I Don’t Think I Would Date Another Femme
I don’t think I would ever date another femme because they insist on gender roles. It really turns me off that when I dated femmes I was the unable to express myself as a woman.
A lot of femmes (not all) think that because you dress like a man and have masculine ways, that that means you want to be a man. That you should be able to do it all without ever complaining or despairing about the burden that you’ve taken on.
In all of my prior relationships, I’ve had to play the superhero manly man, even though that wasn’t who I was.
I had to play hard core and pretend to be unemotional all the while I was actually dying inside. The pressure to be hard core and gangsta was just too overwhelming.
She Told Me We Couldn’t Be Together
I first realized I like studs when I first came out (about 15 years ago) my very first girl was a stud. I was 14 at the time and I thought because she was a girl and I was a girl and we both liked girls, that that meant we could be together.
She put up with it for a few days but quickly told me that that wasn’t how it went. A stud dated a femme. Point. Blank. Period. To date another stud was nasty. I took her words to heart, and buried my attraction to studs deep down and continued doing what was deemed right in the lesbian community.
I felt weird. I fought the hell out of it. I friend zoned so many studs who I was attracted to, simply because I just couldn’t see myself going against the grain to date one.
How I Met My Love
I met my girlfriend, Elise, in a stud for stud group on Facebook. Considering how taboo it is, I feel like that was the only safe, non judgemental zones for us. We’ve been together for a little over a year now.
The one thing I love and admire about Elise is the fact that she stands by everything she says and does. She is steadfast in her beliefs, and I really admire that about her. She’s also gentle yet strong. Protective but subtle about it. She is so hard working, almost to the point of being a workaholic. She is also a sarcastic asshole but that’s what I love about her.
Who is Strapping Who?
The same things I found attractive in a femme, are the same things I find attractive about a stud. Her cologne, the softness of her body, her ability to submit as well as dominate in every aspect of our relationship.
It is very difficult because a lot of studs see S4S as nasty, gay and weird. The thought of dating another stud is met with ridicule and disbelief. Like who strapping who? Your masculinity is questioned and you are automatically assumed not to be a “real” stud.
I think we have become programmed to think a stud should be with a femme and vice versa. Though femme for femme relationships aren’t met with the hostility that S4S relationships are met with, a lot of people in the community don’t respect it either.
Because it’s something that doesn’t coincide with what we deem as “normal.” I think that a lot of us already see our lifestyle (for lack of a better term) as taboo and is something that is frowned upon. So in order to seem “normal” we figure a fem and stud together looks better than two studs together.
There is the possibility that while in public a stud and a femme could be mistaken for boyfriend and girlfriend. There is a chance that femme-stud couples could pass for normal, non threatening and not to draw undue attention.
But you’d have to be blind to miss two studs together. I think the black lesbian community is afraid of the scrutiny that would come from the heterosexual community if S4S became the norm.
My Best Friend Doesn’t Understand
Elise helped me get over it honestly. It didn’t take long because I realized she made me happy and I just stopped caring about what anyone had to say.
My best friend gave (is still giving) me the hardest time over my decision to date another stud. She doesn’t understand and thinks it’s just a phase or my way of coping with so many disappointments from femmes.
My other friends think it’s weird and hilarious. I’ve found myself chin checking a few because their comments were offensive and ignorant. When I first told them I liked other studs, they couldn’t believe it. They were literally in a state of shock and disbelief.
Although Elise and I have a lot of work to do on ourselves as well as in our careers, I do believe this is the woman I will build a future with.
As far as gender roles is concerned in my relationship, we really don’t think about as “roles.” I cook, she cooks, I take her out on dates, she takes me out on dates, I clean, she cleans. At the end of the day we love each other and show appreciation for one another. I think that’s the best way to be. We don’t expect the other to take the masculine role in the relationship.
The models in the image are Tyller McGraw (Ty Padmore) and her fianceé, Loyalties Williams.