Recently, I encountered a pretty female offering samples from a local yogurt shop she worked for. I was having an incredibly shitty day in the field – my attitude had crumbled under the pressure of producing the results I knew I was capable of. As the girl wandered up to me and I took another sample, I put on a smile while fighting with the more carefree side of my personality that felt the day was already unsalvageable. As she began walking away, my bolder side won and I did something completely uncharacteristic.
“Hey, sample girl!”
The short girl with long, dark black hair stopped and turn to me. The expression on her face was friendly, but hardly without a hint of apprehension.
“Yes?” she replied in a calm tone. She really did seem like a sweet, attractive female with enough social skills to be out on this crowded street making a moderate living.
Now was not the time for thinking, however. I turned on the confidence and didn’t bother putting up the usual emotional shield. The day was already shit and I had nothing more to lose by asking.
“I have a question for you,” I said slowly, making direct eye contact as I approached slowly. I’m almost certain a coy smirk ran across my lips in lieu of my bolder, carefree side handling this conversation.
“Hm?” Her face was quite nonplussed by now, but clearly she was well trained in interacting with others as I had been. She didn’t back away. Likely because I was also just another woman in sales as she was. Perhaps she too was curious as to what I had to say next. So I wasted no time getting to the point.
“Do you like girls?”
Pure indifference rolled through me as the words jumped off my tongue and into the air. I really didn’t care what happened next. The worst that could happen would be receiving a confused “no” and declaration of heterosexual preference. I wasn’t going to make a dime today, so why not accept the hinted possibility based on seconds of interacting with her that just maybe she could be a single lesbian.
Upon processing my question, she closed the gap between us, signaling she preferred a more personal exchange from here on out. “Umm, you mean like…dating girls?”
“Oh, okay. Well I’m bi actually.” I could see a hint of uncertainty on her face, but she wasn’t ashamed at all of her preferences.
“Could I..maybe take you out on a date some time?”
“Unfortunately..I’ve got a boyfriend right now,” she said cooly.
“Ohhh! Nice. That’s cool.” I said with a chuckle, attempting to play off the swirling feelings of ‘HOLY SHIT I WAS ACTUALLY RIGHT’ and ‘WELP THAT FIGURES’ careening through me. As is in line with my truer nature, I backpedaled. “I mean, I’m not looking to bother you if you’re already involved.” I was already dejected from the day, so under such negative circumstances, a relaxed countenance managed to win out.
“I don’t mind being social with other people,” she said with a smile. She shifted her weight to the hand holding her sample tray and pulled out her smartphone. “We can exchange numbers~.”
“Oh! S-Sure! My name is Nina. What’s your name?”
“My name is…”
I shared this in a narrative format because I felt there aren’t many tales of how transgender people handle approaching someone of the same gender identity. As this is the first time I’ve ever approached a perfect stranger like this, I wanted to paint a proper picture of how everything unfolded and what was going through my mind at the time. As a transwoman, having romantic interests is extremely tricky, let alone discerning the sexual preferences of females.
Female to female, it seems the best way to approach is to 1) Have a initial shared interest/interaction, 2) be confident, 3) show respect, and 4) don’t be pushy.
Funny how in my interactions with men, the majority always seem to skip #1, focus purely on #2 and forget #4. I may get into that in another post.