It is frustrating, being invisible. It is still something that I cannot figure out how to navigate.
Years ago, I had a heated argument with my former partner about black femmes. I told her that we are invisible and that in order to be seen, we must either wear something which identifies us as gay, be in an environment that would identify us as gay, or overtly flirt. Otherwise, how would you spot us? I mean, there is no specific haircut or handshake. We are largely invisible. I mean, if your gay-dar is really, really good you might spot me, but you would question yourself. I challenged her to test it out. When we are out, how many black femmies do you see? Then, when at a gay event, gathering, how many of the femme women there would you walk past and assume to be straight if you were in another environment?
It's frustrating. I do not, generally, flirt. I mean, I have had my moments, but for the most part I like to be approached. Actually, I love to be approached. I make eye contact, to communicate that I am open to some conversation, but that is about it for me. It's subtle, and if you are not looking for subtle you would miss it completely. I really don't like the bar scene, unless I am going out dancing. I like live music, museums, and the theatre. I like to learn things and have wonderful conversations. But I am easy to miss.
I am femme. I cannot walk hard. I do not act hard. I think butch women are sexy. I do not define butch as masculine, or hard. It's hard to define, but so delightful to see. It is not about 'acting like' anything, it's natural, sexy, and real. That is what I like. I assume that a woman who is attracted to me, is attracted to my heels, purses, lipstick, and tight jeans.
So, femmes, be of good cheer. Keep your head up. Making eye contact; you know, the kind that would make a straight woman uncomfortable, but lets a butch woman know exactly where you're coming from.