Dear Lipstick & Dipstick: I’m 39 and have been straight my whole life. I’ve never actively questioned my sexuality, although most of my friends are women and I enjoy female energy and company. I have a boyfriend who I see several times a week, but we do not live together. He’s a nice man, but we don’t have plans to get married or anything. I am very confused about feelings that have emerged over the past year. I have a terrible crush on a female Facebook friend. I met her a few times in person socially (She is the girlfriend of a girlfriend of mine.) and I’ve always found her delightful and attractive. I don’t have that much contact with her in the flesh, but I’m addicted to her on Facebook. She is so pretty and funny and has interesting friends. I check on her every day, look at her pictures, and to be honest, kind of stalk her. I wake up thinking about her and the first thing I do when I log on is check her status. I’ve never kissed a girl before and I’m really confused now. Am I secretly or subconsciously gay? Can Facebook make you gay? Can you be gay on FB and nowhere else?—Flaming on Facebook
Dipstick: Jesus, don’t let the right wing get a hold of this. Once they find out Facebook is making people gay, they’ll have the whole internet shut down. But I’m even more afraid of you than the Right Wing. This sounds like a creepy obsession. It doesn’t matter if you’re gay or not, the girl is taken. Leave her be.
Lipstick: Oh Dip, you’re calling the kettle black. Remember when you used to obsess on Rachel Maddow? We drove all night in your Subaru to Northampton, listening to an endless stream of her podcasts just to try to get a glimpse of her at her favorite coffee shop? Facebook Fanatic, just cool your jets a bit. I think you might simply be bored with your life. Try new things, meet new friends. Set some boundaries around your obsession, too—like, maybe you’re only allowed to check her profile once a week, or you can only fantasize about her on days that start with “T.” If you still can’t control the mouse, try out a girl of your own, a woman you can actually poke in person.
Dipstick: I wasn’t stalking Rachel Maddow. I just admire her as a journalist and I wanted to see what coffee drink she ordered. Jeeze. As for you fanatic, it sounds to me like you’re in a dried-up relationship and Facebook hottie is a nice distraction from the doldrums at home. She’s a fantasy, nothing more. Take some of the energy you’re spending on FB and use it to take a good hard look at your own limp relationship.
Dear Lipstick & Dipstick: I’ve been seeing this girl for about a month and she wants to get married, but she hasn’t broken up with her last girlfriend yet. What should I wear to our ceremony?—Lost in Loveland
Dipstick: How about a “I’m a loser with no self-esteem t-shirt!” Seriously, what are you thinking? She said she wants to get married. Does she want to get married to you? You’d better get this clarified. This woman sounds as if she wants to have her wedding cake and eat it, too. Who’s to say that even if it is you she wants to marry that she isn’t going to take someone else on the honeymoon? Step back Lost-in-Loveland. With same-sex marriages becoming legal, this is nothing to fool around with.
Lipstick: While a cute spaghetti-strap dress would look smashing, before you run to the store, sit your ass down—it’s time for school. From your desk, watch your bride-to-be break up with her girlfriend first. Then, give her space and give yourself time to learn her last name before you take it. Wait to see if you have anything in common besides that one little thing you both like in bed. And finally, while our community has, no doubt, earned the U-haul jokes, hot sex does NOT equal successful marriage. So, put your nuptials on hold and find out where you are in Loveland before getting lost down another path.
Dear Lipstick & Dipstick: I was at the gym last week and ran into an old flame. We caught up and she told me to call her. We had a really nasty break up years ago and she stalked me for a few months afterwards. It seems different now; she doesn’t seem as psycho. Should I call her?—Hopeful or Harebrained
Lipstick: Are you crazy, Harebrained? Inviting a stalker back into your panties after you’ve finally shaken her out? Not to pop your cherry…but NO! Do not call her! In fact, install another lock on your door, just in case. And dig out that restraining order, make sure it hasn’t expired. Be cordial, but girlfriend, be smart. Remember: unless she’s had a lobotomy, once a stalker, always a stalker.
Dipstick: Yes, call her. And then call me and my camera crew. What this world needs is good lesbian stalking video! Seriously HH, why are you even going there? Have you heard of the cycle of abuse? One reason people stay in abusive relationships is the batterer apologizes for her behavior, promises to change and then does…for a while. And then, when you’re wrapped up in the game again, BAM! The abuse begins all over. It’s classic. Trust Dipstick, stalking is abusive behavior. This is not a cycle you want to get caught in! Move on and don’t look back!
Dear Lipstick & Dipstick: I’ve recently gotten involved with a new woman. We’ve gone on a few dates and really hit it off. Last Saturday night she took me to her apartment and her place was a pigsty. There was stuff everywhere, hardly a surface not covered with dirty dishes, newspapers and all kinds crap. I had no idea because she has good hygiene and dresses nicely. We did not make the move to her bedroom, but I’m afraid of what I might find there. Is there any hope for this relationship?—Falling for Ms Piggy
Lipstick: Hang on, Pork Lover, I see slices of honey-glazed hope! Years ago, I fell for a pig in a poke and found myself in the same pumps. Like me, you’ll have to get your scale out and measure her dirty disposition with the three R’s—Romantic spark, Relationship potential and Rack. If she’s heavy on the R’s, stay put and confront her about her messy means. Be honest; tell her it to clean up her act. If you hate conflict or are afraid you’ll hurt her feelings, follow this other crumb of advice: Take her to your house for the nightcap. You’d hate to wake up with a caramel apple in your hair or Thanksgiving gravy on your purse.
Dipstick: I smell trouble. Your new flame reminds me of my rugby buddy Melissa. She could drop-kick the ball like Mia Hamm and knew the words to every rugby song. We hit it off fabulously. One day I stopped by her apartment and I was astounded by what I saw. Her cat was on the table licking scraps of moldy meat from a casserole dish and there was no place for me to sit except on a pile of dirty laundry. The apartment smelled like litter box, day-old McDonald’s and sweaty socks. Shortly after, I realized Melissa had deeper problems than her unkempt flat. Turns out the hazard zone sign on her apartment should have been outside her heart. She couldn’t hold onto a job, a girlfriend, or even friends for very long. I say there’s something deeper going on here. Either she’s too stressed, too disorganized, too lazy or too depressed to keep up. Your lass needs more than a dustpan and a broom, she needs some serious therapy to get to the bottom of that junk pile. Besides, if you don’t want to set your booty on her couch, do you really want to knock hooties?
Dear Lipstick & Dipstick: I’m a butch who’s met this beautiful femme I want to date, but she’s confused me. What does she mean when a she says she’d like to get to know me without the pressure of dating?—Dateless in Seattle
Lipstick: It means she’s 95% sure she’s not interested—5% being the distant tingle she gets after a bottle of Pinot Noir, or when you’re in the garden pruning her clematis. Dateless, what you need to do is change the dynamics of your relationship. Tell her she’s not your type and you girls are better off as friends anyway. This always works with Alphas, firing them up like a band of Bible beaters in pursuit of social perversion. It’s a bona-fide guarantee: put something in front of a lesbian that’s off-limits and watch what happens. Oy vey! She’ll bloody her knuckles clawing for it. Play hard to get, Seattle.
Dipstick: Your friend reminds Dipstick of a lady I dated years ago. From the beginning, she said she wanted to hang out, but was not interested in dating. Oh, I remember everything that attracted me to this woman; she was witty, had a PhD in conflict studies, loved to salsa dance and go on long hikes with our dogs. She seemed like my perfect match and I was determined to make her mine. We went out to sushi, the movies and a PJ Harvey concert, on what I thought were dates. Well, as it turns out, I realized Lady Love really did just want to be friends when I learned she was snogging <gasp!> another femme. Take her word so you’re not licking your wounds like Dipstick did years ago.
Dear Lipstick & Dipstick: I am dating a bi-chick who has had a boyfriend since the day we met. It’s been about three years now and they’re closer than ever because they’re having a baby. I always feel second. I don’t think she loves me anymore, and certainly not as much as she seems to love him these days. She and I have been fighting a lot and I’m tired of sharing her with someone else. I’ve never been okay with it and I wonder if I ever will be. What do you think I should do? Stay for her, the baby and him or leave?—Not the Baby Daddy
Lipstick: Dipstick, would you rather share your girlfriend with a guy or stick a habenero pepper up your bum?
Dipstick: The pepper. Duh.
Lipstick: Even if you were hospitalized after?
Lipstick: Me too. I'd take the whole burning bush before I'd let myself play third wheel with a guy involved. Sucker, you feel like second because you are and you're soon to be third. My advice is to stop the bleeding right here, right now, and end this nonsense. Find a girlfriend who *isn't* in a relationship and it's amazing what will happen. You'll suddenly be #1. And, this may be the most exciting part: there will be no one to impregnate your girlfriend!
Dipstick: That's not to say open relationships can't work. I believe they can, but only when all parties WANT that kind of set up. If you're just waiting around for her to get sick of this guy, I've got news for you, now that she has as child with him, Baby Daddy will be in her life forever. If you want to stay with this bisexual beauty, you're going to have to come to terms with her open lifestyle. (And don't call her a bi chick, it's offensive.) Two good books about open relationships are Open by Jenny Block and Opening Up by Tristan Taormino.