new york dating rules: boys who like girls who like girls who like boys who like boys

I've been dating in New York for nearly six years now, with about two of those years being in some form of committed relationship (the lion's share of that, of course, going to my most recent slash favorite ex). Of my casual dating escapades, probably two-thirds have been men and the rest, more or less, have been women*. All told, I've gone on dates or casually hung out with... several... people. I was going to do the numbers, but, I sort of feel like I don't want to figure out exactly how many people I've dated. If I were to ballpark it, I'd say, more than ten, less than a million. (Also, this is having-gone-out-with-in-a-romantic-context, not necessarily implying anything else, including but not limited to actual interest and/or kissing.)

Basically, what I'm getting at:

Never assume your life would be easier "if only [you] could be a lesbian, and [you] could date [me]!"

As someone who dates multiple genders, I hear this crap all the time. Straight-identified people LOVE to think that all the problems involved in dating are because they're working with the opposite gender.

Men are from Mars! Women are from Venus! they cry.


You see, everyone assumes that the group of people they're trying to date is uniquely insane. If I had a dollar for every time I've heard a lesbian say "bitches be crazy," I could buy myself an island. If I had a dollar for every time I've heard a straight guy say "girls have it so easy because guys are easy," I could have like twelve fully-trained monkey butlers wearing tuxedoes on my island. And if I had a girlfriend for every time one of my straight girl friends has said, "you're so great, I wish I liked girls so I could just date you," I would need more monkey butlers to accommodate my ladies.

I've dated plenty of needy, emotionally draining men, and I've dated plenty of women that acted like they never felt anything in their lives. The issue with dating isn't the gender you're interested in - it's that you're dating people.

I'm starting to think that lady who's dating the Statue of Liberty has the right idea.

Anyway, guys, what I'm really saying here is that it really doesn't matter what gender you date. At some point, no matter how you or they identify, you're going to be sitting at a bar next to your best friend, drinking beers, and saying, "But, seriously, what the hell? What does that even mean?" And your best friend is going to think carefully and respond, "Honestly? I don't know that it means anything. ___ is just, like... so..." And then you'll start nodding furiously and saying, "YES! Yes! Exactly! What the hell!"

Or maybe you're a sane person, who can actually actively communicate with the people you're dating without being completely and utterly confused half the time. In which case, why the hell are you telling me you'd rather date a different gender? You're doing great! You're a champion! High fives for you. You get all the high fives.

This took a weird turn, but I think I like it.

Moral of the story: dating is hard.

*here, and in most of my blogging unless otherwise specified, if I'm using "men," you can assume that I mean anyone presenting publicly as male (cis-, trans-, or what have you), and if I'm using "women," anyone presenting as female.