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two studs kissing

I’m in love With Another Stud

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.

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Article written by:

Zamara Perri

Zamara Perri is the founder and editor of the Black Lesbian Love Lab blog. She loves black love and loves mangoes, cats, reading, cooking and writing about some of the challenges and joys of black lesbian relationships.

Join the discussion

  1. Avatar
    Luned De Carr

    We can date who we want. I have a butch/stud like attitude but I am androgynous. I blur the lines a lot . I only like femme woman, who don’t mine if I dress femme or whatever. I used to be one of those judgemental people who would take a step back seeing two studs together. But I realize young, love is love. What I like is not necessarily what other people like for a partner. I learned mind your business.
    I learned wow that’s really beautiful to see. It was the same discrimination, I received from heterosexual males being an aggressive femme. They would say to me and my partner how about a threesome because we are femme. Or you must be bisexual because it’s two femmes. I was ignorant and I woke up. I hope people would wake up. It’s 2017 I don’t want to have this same discussion 10 years from now.

  2. Avatar

    What to love is love? I think it’s a wonderful thing that you’ve come to grips with yourself and you’ve found that special one for you. I don’t understand the negative stigma from within the black lesbian community over this particular union of women to women love. I think it’s unfair and judgmental which is something we all experienced and didn’t appreciate.

    Congratulations to you and yours and thank you for sharing your heartfelt experience and thoughts on the subject.

    Peace and blessings!

  3. Avatar

    I think that’s beautiful I’m not a stud but I’m in a relationship with a stud who also views this as weird but personally I think that in a world so cold where u find love and warmth is where u should be regardless of all the stereotypes !!!!! I wish u guys the very very best ???

  4. Avatar

    I love it.?
    I’m a femm who is in a relationship with a stud. Who believes this is wrong? (I call her confused because regardless a female ?is a female?) But I’ve always believed that you should love? who you want. I jus recently came out ?????❤?to my family and friends 2 yrs ago. Some still talk to me some still talk about me. I really don’t care. I just do what I know best which is being myself. You guys are and inspiration to so many ppl. I hope nothing but the best???????

  5. Avatar

    I just happy you found someone. I do have one question how did you find her on Facebook?

  6. Avatar
    Vesatile Jay007

    I honestly can’t see myself dating another stud but I would have sex with one just to see who will be the more aggressive. I enjoy rough sex so it would be a turn on for me something most Femme can’t stand. I’m a no label person myself. 90% I’m in masculine clothing and the masculine one in my relationship but there are times I can soft and gentle like a femme. No I don’t wear dresses or apply make-up but I do have other feminine tendencies that whoever I’m dating loves about me cause I’m me and not what the world sees me as. My hat goes off to s4s because these woman are bold and like what they like! Just like the rest of us. So stop with the madness people! It’s 2017 and so being stuck in the past with past rules and roles! It’s time to be happy and whateva makes
    you happy do it! When I first came out as a lesbian 10+ years ago I was taught studs only date femmes. Your either a hard stud or a soft stud and back then I was label as a soft stud lol. Boy I tell you just coming out was hard enough and then the pressure of older women telling you what to do and what not to do. When I was 21 I choose to do me and that’s what I’ve been doing. I’m 28 now and happy and my partners have expect me for me. So like I said do what makes you happy! Don’t trip over the world views. Be blessed

  7. Avatar

    Beautiful! Love who you love ❤️

  8. Avatar

    It sounds like you both have done something that some never do in a life time, and that is to know who you are, accept who you are, and not live your life according to other people’s thinking. I personally will only date a femme but that is because I am so attracted to it naturally. If you are attracted to another stud then that’s the path you should go on so you can be fulfilled. Beautiful love story. Keep using that courage thoughout your life.

  9. Avatar

    Love is Love at the end of the day.. You definitely have to live your life the way you want and with who you want to live it with at the end of the end of the day!

  10. Avatar

    I love the fact that you do, what makes you happy. It doesn’t matter what other people think or say/ Love is love.
    I thinks so many times we try and live up to labels that are given to us, whether they be right or wrong for us.
    A woman is a woman, is a woman. Society needs to stop with the covers and read the book. Congratulations on being you and doing what makes you happy!

  11. Avatar
    Asya Haynes

    I personally love S4S relationships. A have 2 friends who are S4S even though they aren’t really two people that can be labeled.

  12. Avatar

    I think that’s beautiful you two are in a relationship regardless of what others think or fell love it’s not dictated by clothes at the end of the day we are all lesbians. I wish you the best in your relationship

  13. Avatar

    Yasss! Beautiful! I fall on the queer spectrum and am currently dating a guy, but I get frustrated when I’m told that I can’t -take him out on a date, buy him flowers, woo him with surprise chocolates and sweets he likes. And people trying to tell me that I can’t wear men’s clothes while dating a guy! I’m glad that there are more of us doing what feels right and not what people say is right.

  14. Avatar
    A Stud in Va

    Love is Love and you can’t help who you love or what your attraction is. Best wishes to you . I’m a stud but married to a femme. That’s my preference but if I fell in love with a stud, whose business is it as long as I’m happy! Life is too short for BS. Love who you love! Peace!

  15. Avatar

    I’m ecstatic that I stumbled on this article. I’m home!!❤️

  16. Avatar

    Oh my goodness YESSSS!!! I love this article because it truly is about who you love and not what they have to look like according to the ridiculous standards of the society we live in. I am all about no roles because it limits your ability to fully express yourself in any relationship.

  17. Avatar

    I’m what would be classified as a student and I see nothing wrong with your preference. I hate liver however I wouldn’t expect to be ridiculed or looked down upon because I choose not to eat it. People of color tend to place undue pressure on their peers groups. Love is Love

  18. Avatar

    Don’t play by anyone’s rules but yours. If you love her and she loves you it’s a go! Let your friends choose their own relationship paths and you choose yours. Big ups to you both.

  19. Avatar

    You love who you love no matter what anyone else has to say. Good luck to you both and God bless.

  20. Avatar
    Kimberly Johnson

    Brava! Love is love. It still amazes me how the oppressed continue to support the limiting views of the oppressors! Wake up Sisterhood try building your sista up instead of trying to tear her down! You don’t have to understand somebody’s love to support their love!

  21. Avatar

    Brava! Love is love. It still amazes me how the oppressed continue to support the limiting views of the oppressors! Wake up Sisterhood try building your sista up instead of trying to tear her down! You don’t have to understand somebody’s love to support their love!

  22. Avatar
    Tan Shakespeare

    My masculine of center wife (pen name Sharon S. Smith) wrote the urban novels ‘Strapped’ and ‘Still Strapped’ about the taboo of S4S romance. Within the black lesbian community, we have a history of discrimination against S4S and F4F partners. Her books explored that topic after interviewing studs who dated other studs. Certainly a worthwhile read and subject that deserves more discussion.

    • Avatar
      Tan Shakespeare

      Correction: Wife’s pen name is Sharon D. Smith, author of ‘Strapped’ and ‘Still Strapped’, a story of S4S romance. Frowned upon by their LGBT community in Atlanta.

  23. Avatar

    Ashe, eye bless you both Goddess

  24. Avatar

    Love is Love, that is all that matters!

  25. Avatar

    I think it’s great. Love who you want to love we are all human first and capable of loving another human no matter race or sexual preference. We as a community don’t speak on f4f that’s ok so why look down on s4s. If u don’t like it look away. I personally don’t identify I dress how I feel but I support everyone’s decision to love who they want to love.

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