How to Deal with Lesbian Loneliness During the Holidays

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The radio stations are blasting “All I Want for Christmas is You.” People are dusting off the menorahs. Every grocery store is sending out flyers for their sales on turkeys. It’s official. The holiday season is upon us. While many people are excited about this, some of us dread the holidays. Lesbian loneliness is just much stronger during these last two months. But don’t worry sisters, we got your back. We’ll help you deal with lesbian loneliness during the holidays. 

What is Lesbian Loneliness?

There’s loneliness and then there’s Lesbian Loneliness™. We lesbians experience our own unique kind of loneliness. Sure, it might feel strongest when we’re single, but it truly encompasses much more than that romance. Once flourishing lesbian bars and bookstores are endangered species, in many cities already extinct. Every other letter in the alphabet soup acronym seems to love throwing us under the bus.

Even our online spaces are shrinking. We gather in secret Facebook groups, but how do we connect in real life? The gay men have Grindr. What do we have? Next to nothing. Having online friends acts as a salve to soothe this ache, but more often than not they live hundreds, even thousands of miles away. Some of us are left feeling isolated and alone. This loss of community leaves a huge wound.

But the constant imagery of being surrounded my loved ones only fuels the pain of being alone during the holidays. Especially if you’re not out to your family, or if you have come out and they didn’t take it well. Aren’t we still lonely if we’re surround by people who do not understand us, and who have made no effort to do so? 

Not all is lost. There are a few things you can do to forget about the lesbian loneliness for a while. And hey, you might even have a good time. 

Spend Time with Your Squad

If you have lesbian friends who are close enough to you, why not spend the holidays with them? It might take a bit of planning, but it would be a good chance to create holiday traditions of your own. You and the crew can go on little adventures or orchestrate a gift exchange. The sky’s the limit here!

Now you might be like, “All my closest friends are so far away from me.” Here’s where the beauty of technology comes into play. FaceTime your besties and watch hilariously bad movies together. Send each other packages and open them at the same time. Just because an ocean separates you doesn’t mean you can’t still have fun.

If you are forced to go to a family function, it always helps to have someone to text if you’re not feeling completely comfortable. But maybe you have a caring aunt or a cousin who accepts you wholeheartedly. Try to spend as much time with them as possible. They may not be lesbians, but it’s definitely comforting to have family members who accept that part of you. 

Celebrate Yourself

Why not? Who says you can’t spend this time alone, anyway? You’re already stressed from work, why stress yourself out with holiday parties, too? Take the time to celebrate your accomplishments this year, no matter how big or small. Spoil yourself. Buy yourself that thing you’ve had in your shopping cart for the last eight months. Get all your favorite foods and cook yourself a feast. No one can complain about the pineapple on that pizza if you’re the only one eating the pizza! Watch all your favorite movies and turn up that playlist with all the songs you’re too embarrassed to admit you like. It might feel odd at first, but there’s absolutely no shame in going out on your own to enjoy the holiday season on your own. Splurge on a fancy coffee and take yourself to a movie. Take some advice from the queen of bops herself Carly Rae Jepsen, it’s a party for one. Dance for yourself, make love to yourself, get back on your beat. You deserve it!

Volunteer

Sometimes, helping others is helping ourselves. You can volunteer at a children’s hospital, a soup kitchen, or a women’s shelter. Many cities also have organizations to help gay and lesbian youth. You could do a world of good just speaking to the younger generation and showing them that a bright future as a homosexual adult is possible. But mostly, it helps to be around other people.

Are people a little much for you? If you prefer animals, that’s no problem. Just because cats and dogs have no concept of Thanksgiving or Christmas doesn’t mean they can’t get some holiday loving too. And who could feel lonely playing with a bunch of cats and dogs? Not only would you be helping a good cause, staying busy will keep your mind off the loneliness.

Sometimes, giving back can be as simple as messaging another lesbian to let her know she isn’t alone. Reach out to elder lesbians. Intergenerational lesbian relationships are all too rare. If you’re feeling shy, start a lesbian meet-up in your area so you’ll have allies when you go in to volunteer somewhere. The possibilities are endless. 

Begone, Loneliness!

These are just a few suggestions of things you can do to get over the lesbian loneliness this holiday season. The key is finding what works best for you. If you find yourself becoming overwhelmed or feeling unbearably low, don’t be afraid to reach out to friends or family. There might be a demonic little voice in your head telling you not to because you would be a bother, but that little gremlin is lying. Talk to your family — whether they’re your chosen family or the ones you came with! They would want you to. And while it may seem like you’re alone in all this, you’re not. Your lesbian sisters are out there, waiting for you to reach out. Don’t be afraid to take that first step. We’re here.

What are some of your favorite ways to beat the lesbian loneliness over the holidays?

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