"What exactly is Planned Parenthood?": Tales of the Well-Intentioned Heterosexual Roommate, Part 1

Posted by Elli S on

Dear Queers,

Let me begin this post by explaining something very important: I made the conscious choice to live with a straight person. We have gender-neutral and Social Justice housing on campus, both of which attract queers like a moth to a flame. But I knew that having feelings for my roommate would complicate things for me tenfold, so I opted to hunt for a girlfriend within those halls, but live in a different one. In a way, I brought this upon myself.

Source: www.thecord.ca

My roommate is really great. She's kind and understanding, and we really click (which is lucky because housing is essentially random). She even said a resounding yes to appearing on my blog, even when I explained the premise of this post. She's learning really fast and is really trying her best, and the purpose of this post is to jest, not to criticize.

However, she comes from a place of privilege that has never been checked in her life. She went to private school. She lived in White Suburbia, USA. And she'd never met someone that uses "they" pronouns until last week. Without further ado, here is a sampling of some of the privileged, concerning, and downright No-Homo-Gold-Star-Heterosexual things my roommate has said to me so far.

"You said 'they', you meant 'she'".

I was video chatting with a lovely non-binary friend of mine, who is typically more female-presenting and has a stereotypically female name. I was telling Roommate a story about them, and my roommate stopped me and corrected me. She corrected my pronoun usage, in front of my friend on video chat. "You said 'they', you meant 'she'", she explained. "Sorry, I'm a writing major." My non-binary friend cackled and I quickly explained to Roommate that no, the person I'm speaking to is not a girl. Roommate looked confused and concerned, but nodded and did not correct me again.

"What exactly is Planned Parenthood?"

I'm in a few progressive clubs on campus, one of which is currently campaigning to prevent the defunding of Planned Parenthood. Roommate glanced over my shoulder at  my computer to see what I was doing, and cocked her head. She lowered her voice and said "I have always wanted to ask this...what exactly is Planned Parenthood?" I actually almost gasped. I explained about everything from birth control and testing to abortion and medical services. "Okay, but if it's so dangerous and horrible then why does anyone want to be an abortion doctor?" I countered by asking why people volunteer in war zones or places with Ebola. I'm still not sure if she understands.

"You're the second gay person I've ever met"

This was intended to be a counter to "am I the first gay person you've ever met?" Roommate got defensive and said no, her friend from high school is also gay. But I'm the second, which for some reason doesn't make me feel better about the situation.

BONUS: "Don't steal my girlfriend haha!"

This was said to me by Roommate's boyfriend, who lives back home. He comes to visit every so often, and usually mentions things like this at least once or twice per visit. This drives me up the wall, because one of my least favorite stereotypes is the Predatory Lesbian. I've mentioned it to both of them, but he seems pretty set in his ways. He also said the pink towel would make him look gay, and then looked me in the eye and muttered "uh...sorry". The education continues.

Be sure to let me know if you like posts like this, and I'll write more installments! You guys are the best, keep on being your cool homo selves.

Best wishes,





Elli Streifer is a full time college student, with a little bit too much to say about Harry Potter, outer space and intersectional feminism (among other things). She's an American Sign Language major, probably uses too many emojis and is as gay as the day is long. 50% of the Bobo Academy BlogSquad. Currently blogging out of her dorm room in Boston, Massachusetts. Tweet at her, she's always looking for ideas.

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