I met Meredith (Mere- pronounced “mare”- to me) at a conference in Las Vegas in 2012. It seems like we’ve known each other much longer than that, but it’s only been two years. We’ve roomed together in three different states and logged countless hours on Skype, Google Hangouts, texts, and phone calls. We have internet friend dates where we watch Buffy The Vampire Slayer: Once More With Feeling together and sing along even if we have our copies out of sync. I adore my friend and want the best for her even when we vehemently disagree.
Mere’s story is installment two of Single Is The New Black. I’ve posted it in its entirety below but head over to All American Blogger and show my girl, Ce, some love. She’s the creator of the series and an amazing woman.
I have been single for that last two years. Before that I was single for nearly a year. Before that… well let’s just say there is a pattern.
Make no mistake, I’m not defined by who I date and I don’t need a relationship to complete my life. I have plenty of great friends that I would not trade for the world, but friends can’t fill in every gap left by being single.
I’m not talking about sex, get your mind out of the gutter. Y’all need Jesus.
There are so many ways that a romantic relationship is beneficial to a person, but for some people it’s really hard to find “the one” that we were promised by every Disney movie we grew up with.
I’m not single by choice, I would certainly like to have a long term relationship, but being a conservative has really killed my love life.
I guess the problem is that I am consistently looking for a long term relationship, rather than just part time dates to pass the time. If I want someone to take me to dinner and a movie, I have my best friend.
So I remain single while I keep looking for “the one.”
I’ve probably spent just as much time looking at dating profiles online in recent years as I have spent looking at houses in the last 6 months and I have found that there is a lot of similarity between looking for a healthy relationship and looking for the house you want. Both are long term investments (in either money or time) and both involve a certain amount of compromise.
If I had unlimited money or an unlimited pool of dating prospects, there would be no reason to compromise on anything. I could find the absolute perfect match for me and never have to worry again.
Unfortunately life does not work like that for most people.
So here’s how I look for a house. I made a list of everything I wanted in a house and then I took a long hard look at it and cut away anything that was negotiable, which left me with a pretty short list of “absolutely must haves”. Which included a pool, at least a 9,000 square foot lot, at least 1900 square feet of house, and 3 bedrooms. Anything else I can work on and improve, but some things are just necessary for a home to be livable from the start or are just impossible to change later.
I have done the same thing with relationships. Though how much you want to listen to me is debatable…after all I am single.
My list is short and to the point.
- conservative or right leaning libertarian
- doesn’t do drugs
- attractive (in my opinion)
- sense of humor
- wants kids
Everything else is negotiable. I don’t care if we like all the same books or music or movies, as long as we can agree on a few things we enjoy doing together. I don’t need them to always agree with me or like the exact same food or tv shows. That stuff is negotiable. We will find things we have in common over the course of a relationship and find interests we both enjoy, even if I have to order anchovies on her half of the pizza or she can’t stand that I actually likeLove Actually.
I’m willing to compromise on just about anything, just not those 6 things, because without those 6 things a relationship could never be long term, unless I was prepared to be miserable.
You would think that my list, as short as it is, would be easy to find. I should have dinner invitations all the time, after all I am a fairly attractive woman. I’m smart, can hold a good conversation, and I clean up nice.
Unfortunately I am also a lesbian, which makes this list a little harder to fit to my small pool of dating applicants.
Less than 3 percent of the U.S. population identify themselves as gay, lesbian or bisexual, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported Tuesday in the first large-scale government survey measuring Americans’ sexual orientation.
Let’s just think about that for a second and do a little math.*
The population of the United States is around 313.9 million.
3% of that is about 9.4 million.
Since around 51% of the United States population is female, that leaves about 4.8 million who are lesbians in the United States.
Now while the percentage of conservatives in the United States is pretty good, within the minority of the gay community the percentage seems to be pretty small. I’ll be generous and assume that 25% of my fellow gay women are also conservative.
That leaves me with 1.2 million gay, conservative women in the United States and the likelihood that I’m attracted to all of them is pretty low. I’m probably going to find around 50% of them attractive.**
That’s what I’m left with. In truth the number is fairly low and given that I only get along with about 50% of the conservatives I meet and, while I consider myself attractive, that does not mean that every woman I’m attracted to will also find me attractive. For various reasons, the true number of women in my dating pool just gets smaller and smaller.
What’s a gay conservative to do? Especially a gay conservative that is naturally introverted and politically outspoken.
Even at CPAC, a place that is almost literally crawling with conservatives (many of whom fit all 6 of my specifications), I’m dateless.
Gay conservatives, female or male, are basically Unicorns.
I was never the type to announce my sexuality when I was younger. I didn’t do the whole “I’m here, I’m queer” bit and I certainly didn’t have any pink triangles or rainbows in conspicuous places on my person, but now I feel like I need to wear a sign that says “lesbian, conservative, single, please apply here to date me”. It’s not about shoving my sexuality in anyone’s face, it’s just a slight tinge of desperation.
Maybe it would easier if I just didn’t care about the politics of who I dated, but I want to date someone who I can see a future with and there is no future with a liberal for me. I spend my free time mocking liberals and doing my best to prove how absolutely wrong they are and that does not sound like a healthy relationship to me.
The last time I made the mistake of dating a liberal, she told me that my political beliefs were “embarrassing” and this was before I was as far right as I am now.
I’ve had people say that I have unrealistic expectations and I should just lower my standards just a little, but why should I do that? I know what I want and respect myself enough to know that I’m worth the kind of person that I am looking for.
The thing about being a conservative, whether you are gay or straight or male or female, is that we know that lowering our standards is never the answer.
What is the answer then? I ask myself that same question every day and I’m beginning to think the answer may be cats…lots of cats.
*This is highly unscientific, basically I’m just throwing numbers at a wall for effect. Whatever.
** Again, I’m being rather generous here.
* Meredith is a writer who is addicted to politics, legal jargon, and logic. When not frustrating others with her pragmatic, yet sometimes idealistic, approach to politics she loves British television, fantasy novels, and crime dramas.
You can find her online at The Snark Who Hunts Back, Elementary Politics, A Convenient Cook, or on Twitter.
You can find Meredith on twitter as @MeredithAncret, and read her personal political blog atwww.thesnarkwhohuntsback.wordpress.com* All American Blogger thanks her for her contribution to our blog.