I am a 30-year-old lesbian who would like to marry a woman and raise children together, yet most women seem to settle for men. I am frustrated that any knuckle-dragging monkey-man can get a beautiful wife while I’m doomed to live my days alone with my cat.
THE DILEMMA I am a gay woman who has just turned 30. Over the past years, I’ve had only one relationship and it was abusive. I increasingly wish to settle down, marry and raise children, yet although I still have no problem getting dates, it never lasts. I usually discover they’ve settled down with a nice man as the easiest route to a family. I don’t want to settle for a nice man; I love women, I have a great job, I earn a decent amount, I am attractive, outgoing and great in bed. I am frustrated that any knuckle-dragging monkey-man can get a beautiful wife while I’m doomed to live my days alone with my cat. Please help.
MARIELLA REPLIES Where to start. Boy you’re competitive. Setting yourself up in competition with every Romeo in the country is hardly going to help smooth your path to a perfect partnership. As for settling down with a man being the “easiest” route to a family, I know plenty of women who’d disagree vociferously. More often than not, convincing ourselves that everyone else unfairly has what we want becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. Such negativity promotes a general air of dissatisfaction and petulance that’s not appealing. It’s not that guys have it easy, but that you’re having it hard. Convincing yourself that you’re the only woman out there who can’t find long-term happiness is to blindly ignore the facts.
You’re in a relationship rut that’s all too common for women of all sexual persuasions in their early 30s. A quick rifle through my postbag and you’d understand that there are plenty of men out there struggling to find the perfect partnership, too. Your early 30s marks one of those watershed moments in life where your generation divides; some reach maturity and start hankering for the picket fence, while others remain committed to having “fun”. In many cases it’s worse for heterosexual women, as men feel none of the same pressure to procreate and can meander up to 40 and beyond without giving family a second thought.
Then again, not all lesbians want to have children either, so you’re looking for a particular variety of woman, again reducing your catchment. The longer the checklist of requirements we attach to “acceptable” partners the harder it gets to find them. If you’re only interested in a vegan, belly?dancing vet from the home counties you’re not going to find her overnight. I exaggerate to make my point, but hankering after suburban desires â€“ children, marriage etc â€“ may not sit comfortably with plenty of lesbians. Many will feel that, having chosen an alternative lifestyle, they aren’t rushing to join the suburban two-plus-two throng.
Nor can you lay the blame on men for stealing your quarry from under your nose. I don’t get many letters from blokes awash with retired lesbians! I’ve only once encountered a lesbian who changed her spots, hopping into bed with a male colleague after a few too many bottles of chablis and baffling us all by never looking back. Almost overnight she was ostracised by the south London sapphic community among whom she’d been a leading light. I tell you her tale in order to illustrate another truism: that no choice comes without compromise and personal sacrifice. Even now, with two kids, a husband and yes, the picket fence, she misses her old friends. But having been forced to choose by, dare I say, a petty, small-minded action on the part of the sisterhood, she opted for the lifestyle that felt right.
You say you are, and intend to remain, a lesbian. Bravo for your commitment, but I’m afraid it too comes at a price. Having children is just that little bit more of a challenge, and certainly a less organic procedure. So accept that you’ll have to work a bit harder to achieve your goals and stop bleating about the boys. At your age you shouldn’t be looking for someone who ticks all your boxes but just someone with whom you really get on. Marriage, family and all the rest aren’t a divine right for any of us and certainly don’t arrive on a plate when you start stamping your foot.
I’m glad your self-confidence is high â€“ a rare and precious gift in a woman. It’s refreshing to hear that you have no concerns about your own eligibility, but sometimes by marking yourself a 10 out of 10 you leave little room for others to appreciate you. I’d bet there are plenty of women who’d be interested in a longer-term relationship with you if it didn’t come with all the preconditions.
How about you forget how much you deserve a perfect partner, resign from combating with the male of the species and continue to play the field without brandishing your agenda at those who stop to take a look. Sometimes chasing your desire is the best way to ensure you never realise it. Frustrating, I agree, but just one of life’s many bemusements.
Two weeks ago Mariella addressed the dilemma of a stay-at-home mother who was considering an affair with a “handsome, well-built” father who she had met at the local pool. She asked where she should arrange their tryst. Here are some readers’ webposts:
If you lived in Japan you can go to a love hotel â€“ they have private rooms you rent by the hour, so they are quite economical. HOSHINOSAKURA
You surely owe it to your children and the poor sod who is supporting you to make an effort at improving your marriage first. Don’t expect too much from your paramour. If he’ll do it with you, he’ll do it to you. SHEILAD
Oh Mariella, I think you’ve been had. This is the plot of the first half of the brilliant novel [and Kate Winslet film] Little Children. TAYLORL