Lesbianing With AE! Dating When You’re Allergic to Weed

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Dear Lindsey,

Why does lesbian and pot smoker seem to be synonymous!?

I live in Texas and finding Lesbians in my age range who are single, not crazy religious, and not recent divorcees “sick of men so giving women a try” is difficult enough to begin with. Add to that challenge that every lesbian I meet seems to smoke pot, now I have nothing against weed to each their own. The problem is, I am highly, HIGHLY allergic to weed. I discovered this when stoners moved in next door and I started waking up covered in hives, with my eyes swollen shut, and my throat swollen. The longer I lived next to them the worse the symptoms got. It’s to the point where if someone who smoked weed sometime recently walks near me I break out in hives. On top of that no one seems to take my allergy serious, and I get accused of being intolerant of pot smokers and limiting my own dating pool by not being willing to date people who smoke weed. How on earth do I date when so many in our community partake in recreational drug use that could literally kill me.

-It’s Not Just the Stench

 

Hey Stench,

My sincere apologies for your struggles. I haven’t spent much time in Texas (just the panhandle, which is not representative from what I’ve heard) so I can’t speak to the makeup of the lesbian dating pool. I also don’t know how old you are and how strict you are regarding the age of your partner, but if you’re only looking 3-5 years on either side of your age, you might expand that a bit. The less selective you are, the more you have to work with—and I wouldn’t ask you to budge on religious fervor or straight women trying lesbianism for kicks.

Let’s say you do decide to be more open-minded about who you’re looking for, your biggest problem is the pot allergy.

Before you deal with explaining your uncommon allergy to a date, let’s reduce your discomfort. Have you been tested for marijuana allergies? If not, that’s where I’d start.

A skin prick or blood test can confirm the allergies. Your allergist may recommend over-the-counter meds to reduce your symptoms or offer a prescription product (like a steroid cream or an epi-pen) that will help you feel better.

Once you’re managing your symptoms, you can move on to screening women. I would disclose this either in your online dating profile or when you’re messaging about where to meet up. Keep it casual but firm. All you need to do is say something like, “Not sure if you smoke, but I’m super allergic to weed so I’ll need to be somewhere where people aren’t smoking. How about we meet for a game of pool at the pub?”

You can add more detail in person, whether that’s explaining the severity of your symptoms or assuring her that it isn’t the smoking habit you mind but the adverse effects on you.

My guess is, it isn’t what you’re saying so much as how you say it. If you’re coming off as moralizing or judgmental, or if you’re launching into it from a dramatic statement like “Weed could kill me!” you are putting a new date on the defensive. While some women can pause the automatic kickback reaction, many will default to the sort of stuff you’re hearing: You’re oversensitive, intolerant, etc.

My guess is, it isn’t what you’re saying so much as how you say it. If you’re coming off as moralizing or judgmental, or if you’re launching into it from a dramatic statement like “Weed could kill me!” you are putting a new date on the defensive. While some women can pause the automatic kickback reaction, many will default to the sort of stuff you’re hearing: You’re oversensitive, intolerant, etc.

I don’t know if you would be willing to date someone who smokes so long as she doesn’t smoke pot around you, but that is an option. A former roommate used to use the garage as her pot-smoking place because our other roommate was asthmatic and couldn’t handle the smoke. Perhaps you could find a middle ground with someone, where your date can partake as much as she wants at her place so long as she showers before she sees you and abstains when you’re together.

I know you can’t be long-term with someone who is a pot user, but you might want to leave the door open to dating people who smoke—if only to increase your shot at romance with. You never know if someone who smokes occasionally because her friends smoke might be willing to give up her occasional joint because she cares more about you than getting stoned.

By actively excluding anyone who uses pot from dating you, you deny potential partners the opportunity to get to know and love you—and then choose not to use pot because you’re that important to them.

Assuming pot use is an automatic no for you, then you need to keep going through this process. There’s really not a better answer.

Disclose your weed allergy on your dating profile, disclose it again before or when you meet, and keep moving forward without dwelling on things. You may have a tiny dating pool where you live, and you may decide (as I’ve suggested others do) that the odds of finding someone you’re compatible with would be higher elsewhere. Good luck!

Need Lindsey’s advice? Write us with “Q for Lindsey” in the subject line: memoree@afterellen.com 

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