On the Shelf

Q: I have been w/ my gf for 9 mo. We’re in love & the sex is great…BUT this is her first time with a girl (we’re both 21) and it freaks her out. She wants to go on a break until we graduate college in May because her friends give her shit, should I wait?

Diva Says: Oof. That’s a hard one, pumpkinpants.
In one respect, looking out for your own sense of worth dictates that, and pardon the 80’s pop culture reference here, “NOBODY PUTS BABY IN THE CORNER!”
You don’t want to spend your last semesters of college pining away for the unavailable object of your desire, simply because she values the opinions of her friends more than her own internal, independent voice of love and reason.
On the other hand, patience is a virtue, and coming out is a hard process, in college and any other time in life. If her friends are being disrespectful of her choices, she may very well feel like her entire system of support is threatened by your relationship and that might be a bit much for her. Supporting her through that, even from a respectful distance, might be right up your alley.
But, personally, I think you’re 21, living the last days of the last group-educational experience of your lifetime — your fake i.d. is in a sock drawer ‘cuz the world is your dyke bar now that you’re legal, and life is so much shorter than you think it is.
I say — break. And break on your terms, as well as hers. She doesn’t get to set all the groundrules. If you love her, and you want to maintain a connection that might eventually bring you two back together, you can communicate, compromise — Have the hard discussions to set boundaries on what it’s ok to do with other people, and what will be grounds for permanent break-up, and how often and in what fashion you two will see each other while you’re on this ‘break.’
If you want this to work for the long-term, give her the space she needs to get comfortable with the idea of being out, learning how to stand up for herself against bigotry, and learning how to deal with hard stuff within the boundaries of a relationship. But also remember that you are an equal half of this equation and you get to have some of the things YOU want and need, too. If she can’t communicate and compromise with you, then you have your answer. Best of luck!

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4 Responses to On the Shelf

  1. Butterfly says:

    If you love her… yes :)

  2. freewill says:

    well, there is alot of life to be seen when your as young as you are. Waiting a couple of months is different than a couple of years. Just turning 21 is truly the beginning of a young dykes social life and contact making, the dyke bar. As much as we want young love to last, there are very few instances where we actually end up with our first lover. In my experience taking a break is usually the beginning of the end. My advice is to tell her to either get over the fear of her “friends” or move on and if she still feels the same about you after college than to look you up, she may suprise you. I know it sounds cold but you will thank me in your 30’s.

  3. tenth_crystal says:

    I think that you should be gentle with her. If you push her too hard about getting over her fear, you might just end up hurting her. Maybe she could feel out whether or not her friends are “gay-friendly” or not? I see nothing wrong with waiting a little while for her. And while we do rarely end up with our first loves, we do sometimes. If she wants a bit of time, I would give her that, but keep in contact with Her. ;) you’d be surprised at just how much you can do and it still be considered “just friends” by other people.

  4. Amanda 16 says:

    I,ve been in a relationship like this before and i think you should give her time, you remember you needed time to think when you figured out you were gay, and so does she, everything will work out the way its supposed too.