Dear Davida: The Token Lesbian Friend

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Dear Davida: The Token Lesbian Friend

Davida Marthenze, Staff Reporter

Dear Davida,

My roommate knows I’m a lesbian, and she’s totally fine with it. I’m lucky. Unfortunately, sometimes she goes beyond supportive. She’s constantly recommending movies about lesbians and albums by lesbian musicians. I appreciate the sentiment, and I love the representation of successful members of my community in the media, but it’s as if she thinks I don’t have any other interests. Not only this, but whenever she meets another lesbian, she says we would make a cute couple. I know she’s just trying to be a good straight ally, but she’s always reducing me to my sexuality. How can I tell her to back off without looking like I don’t appreciate her support?

The Token Lesbian Friend


Dear Friend,

There are the helpful allies who invest time in LGBTQIA causes and work hard to be respectful and inclusive of people in those groups, but there are also “allies” whose contributions don’t go any further than reporting lesbian sightings and vaguely referencing Melissa Etheridge. Your roommate seems to fall into that second group.

It’s possible she might see you as her good deed of the day. Try asking if she wants to join an organization that works to support LGBTQIA youth with you. Invite her to Pridefest in Milwaukee. Maybe she will take you up on these invitations and learn more about LGBTQIA struggles. She’ll realize how much of the “gay agenda” consists of constant exasperated echoes of “Yes, I’ve seen ‘Orange is the New Black.’”

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