Femme Friday – Sandra Steingraber

Sweet sisters, I confess that I do not know if Sandra Steingraber identifies as femme. I haven’t met her, and I can’t find anywhere where she says, “I am a femme,” which is usually how I tap my featured femmes for Femme Friday. So please don’t jump to any conclusions and please don’t think that I am “claiming” her as femme, because I’m not. Only she gets to identify herself! The reason I’m featuring Sandra today is because her story touches my heart as so quintessentially one kind of femme story, a version of which I’ve heard over and over from other femmes. Whether or not Sandra identifies as femme, her coming out story struck a chord with me, and I hope she won’t mind hanging out on The Total Femme today!

How many of us femmes came out late and stuck with men as romantic partners because we had no other options? Because we were so isolated? Because of a lack of community and role models? Because of full-blown heterofacism? For me, femme bookworm that I am, it wasn’t until I could find diverse, love-filled, well-written, and humorous representation of queerness in publications like Dykes to Watch Out For and Hothead Paison that I was able to begin to dip a toe into an exploration/admission of my own queer identity, and even then, it still took forever to come out as femme.

Deep gratitude to Sandra, for her unwavering dedication to justice, for her vital scientific work, and for her generosity in sharing her survival stories. Welcome to the family, Sandra, sweetheart!



Every Friday, I showcase a queer femme goddess. I want to feature you! Write to me at thetotalfemme@gmail.com and let me shine a spotlight on your beautiful, unique, femme story! If you’ve written a femme story or poem or song, oh, please let me post it! New Femme Friday feature starting fall 2018: Books from which queer femmes can draw inspiration. What are your trusted sources of light and love? Please share!

At the Total Femme, my intention is to post three times a week: Meditations for Queer Femmes on Monday, Pingy-Dingy Wednesday on Wednesday and Femme Friday on Friday. Rather than play catch-up in a stressful fashion on those weeks when life prevents posting, I have decided to just move gaily forward: if I miss a Monday, the next post will be on Wednesday, and so on. Thank you, little bottle of antibiotics for inspiring me in this! (“…if it’s almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Don’t take a double dose to make up for a missed one.”)


Published in: on July 19, 2019 at 10:52 AM  Leave a Comment  
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