Sexuality (as a woman) has always been a difficult topic for me to explain. For the longest time, I didn’t even know where I stood with myself on the spectrum: one day I liked guys, the other day I liked girls. My sexual preference fluctuated throughout my teenage years, even well into adulthood. It wasn’t until 2013 that I identified myself as bisexual, and then another three years to be comfortable with it.
I never got into the dating scene in middle school or high school– heck, even college. To be honest, I’ve never officially dated in my life. Much of it was due to the fact that I’d spent so much of my life questioning myself that I was too distracted to ask someone out. I still have a hard time today, even if I’m more comfortable with my sexuality: now, I attribute it to being too shy and nervous to do so.
However, this isn’t to say that I’ve had my fair share of flirting and “interesting” encounters with various people, both of the same and opposite sexes. Being the introverted and shy person that I am in real life, I commonly get anxious in these situations, as I’m totally not used to this sort of attention in my life. But at the same time, I react slightly differently to guys and girls when they flirt, and that’s why I wanted to discuss the differences between the two. We all might be human, but there’s still truth to the saying that “Women are from Venus, and men are from Mars.”
I’ll be basing my discussion primarily on my personal experiences. If you have anything to add, please let me know! Let’s get cracking!
Guys or Girls?
Let’s start with guys.
While there sometimes that “playing-hard-to-get” game that happens, men aren’t too hard to read. Especially as a woman, I can easily tell when a guy has any remote interest in me, romantically and/or sexually. Same goes for when it’s just platonic. The way they speak, their body language…those aspects make it very clear that they are interested in you.
Essentially, it’s not what they say to you, but how they say it. Even the innocuous “what do you do for work?” is sure to send off signals. And the “could I buy you a drink?” is a dead giveaway– unless you know the person and owe them a drink, there’s no way that it would be a platonic statement.
From personal experience, I’ve had guys (none of whom I was attracted to) do a lot of things to get my attention, some of them quite ridiculous. There was one guy who was perhaps ten years older than me who emphasized our “friendship” a lot, that he “really appreciates it” after a break-up with his ex-girlfriend. Along with multiple requests for hugs and little-to-no-effort chats on Messenger late in the night (when I was trying to sleep). Got to the point of creepy, and I had to limit the amount of attention I gave him.
Same goes for another guy (and recent one, actually) who would message me in the wee hours of the morning about nothing in particular. Context is that we met in France and have similar friend groups, but we barely talked in-person! It’s not until I left the country to return home that he starts “catching up” with me and, while I didn’t think much about it at first, the realization is starting to sink in. I reckon he’s shy with his feelings, which I find endearing in certain circumstances, but the way he’s going about it isn’t my cup of tea. Granted, it’s only been happening recently, so it’s a matter of being careful of what I say not to get his hopes up.
Essentially, guys aren’t hard to tell. I’m attracted to some of them, but on the bisexuality spectrum, I’m more into girls than guys. And considering the fact that I’m “straight-passing,” it makes it hard at times to fend them off. But when it comes to deciphering their intentions, it’s easy as pie.
As for girls, it’s the complete opposite: they are hard to decipher. Okay, I’ll say that my gaydar isn’t too bad, as I’ve at times can absolutely tell if they’re straight or not. But in many other instances, it’s super difficult…let alone knowing if they like you back. It’s a matter of knowing whether she really likes you or if she’s just being nice. It’s all too easy to interpret her looking at you as a sign of “something more,” when in fact she’s just being polite. Same goes for compliments (“I like your dress!” “Your hair looks so nice!”), which can be perfectly platonic.
What I forgot to mention was game. In the sense of flirting, and how to go about doing it. With guys, again, it’s easy: if you’re a woman, you flirt back. Be coy and aloof, and it keeps guys interested and wanting more. But when it comes to women, flirting becomes a risk: if you make it too obvious and she’s not interested, it’s game over. If you make it not apparent enough, you miss an opportunity and end up getting yourself friend-zoned. I confess that I’m that “useless lesbian” (well, bisexual) in that I never have the courage to flirt with a woman: I get awkward, flustered even, and I embarrass myself. Maybe some women have sensed that I like them when it happens, and by then, I just revert to friend-zoning myself, to save myself the embarrassment of telling them how I really feel.
I’ve had a couple of instances when women flirted with me, and I knew that they were. One of them was bi-curious, and she was getting close to me at the bar and asked about my sexuality. I think she knew, but I was way too nervous and didn’t want to waste my time with someone who was bi-curious (I’m not your experiment!), so I just told her I was straight to avoid dealing with it. She then proceeded to make out with some guy for the rest of the night.
Another time was when a girl I knew was bisexual wanted to “get with me.” We had a talk about our sexualities over drinks, and she wanted to hold my hand as we headed to the next bar. While that could’ve been a good chance, I wasn’t attracted to her at all, and she was also flirting with guys. It wasn’t serious, and I wasn’t in the mood to be “back up” in case she didn’t get anyone else.
So basically, girls are complicated. Even as a girl myself, I find it hard to deal with it. There are so many layers to it: knowing their sexuality, knowing if they’re interested in you, and how to go about it. While at times I like the challenge of finding out, there are also plenty of moments when I prefer to keep it simple, like with guys.
But then again, maybe love isn’t suppose to be simple. After all, romantic feelings are based on emotions, and irrational ones, to say the least. Maybe with more experience, I’ll have it down, but I suppose many people can relate to this, especially bisexuals. I’d like to hear your thoughts and experiences getting romantically-involved with guys and/or girls, so feel free to comment!
Thanks for reading, and take care.
— The Finicky Cynic
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