Confessions of a Complex Lesbian: How To Tell If She’s Messing With Your Head, Or If She Actually Likes You

You have no clue what’s stewing inside that multifaceted mind of your complex crush, DO YOU?

Are you currently dating uh, what one might describe, as a wildly “complicated” woman? Actually, allow me to reframe the question because chances are, if you’re romantically intertwined in ANY capacity with a complicated woman, you’re like, sort-of-kind-of-dating-not-really-maybe?-Oh-it’s hard-to-explain-look-it’s-fucking-complicated!!-OK?

“So, what’s going on with you and this chick?” your friends incessantly press, raising their furrowed eyebrows in collective concern for your wellbeing. And you’re not sure how to answer them, are you?

Because the truth is you have NO goddamn idea what the hell is going on with you and this fierce force of a complicated woman! All you know is you’ve got it bad, baby. You’re weak between the knees, mesmerized, tortured, losing sleep and putting up with a hell of a lot more than usual.

Look, honey: I of all the lesbians in the great Isle of Lesbos, get it. I’ve been lusting after complicated, tortured, difficult-to-decipher women since I first fell in love with the sad-eyed Christina Ricci in the ’90s classic “Now & Then.” And I would be lying if I were to say; I’m just an easy-peasy, non-complicated “go with the flow” lesbian, myself.

I’ve spent enough money on therapy to know that I’m quite the opposite. I’m horrendously complicated, myself. It’s complicated on complicated over here in Zara’s love life. This is why I have adult acne, I’m convinced. My relationships consist of an endless series of heavy conversations attempting to figure out “where we are going?” and “what does this mean?” I’m exhausted. Always.

But hey! It is totally easy to understand why smart lesbians like you and I would be drawn to a complicated woman. Complicated women are interesting. Fascinating. They’re mysterious prowess is sexy! They’ve got that tortured little sparkle gleaming in their expressive doe eyes. It drives us crazy! The minute I’m in the presence of a complicated woman, I’m overcome with a strange obligation to take my clothes off.

I’m full of lusty wonder: “Are her eyes wet because she’s on the verge of tears or does she just have springtime allergies? Is she being quiet because she’s bored by the soul-crushing mundaneness of it all, or is she just lost in her own colorful daydreams? Is she impossible to get in touch with because she’s got 10,000 Angelina Jolie-style lovers scattered across the globe, or is she just too ‘present’ in the ‘moment’ to glance at her phone?”

You’re the sharp power lesbian in proverbial power blazer, the kind of woman that nothing slides past your keen eyes, right? But this girl—holy shit. You have no clue what’s stewing inside that multifaceted mind of your complex crush, DO YOU?

She’s got problems, she says. She’s got a past, she says. She’s got to rescue herself, she says. And while you tell her how oh-so-heroic it is for her to want to be her own knight in shining armor, you’re secretly fueled with an aching desire to fix whatever’s “wrong” with this gorgeous complicated girl creature, right?

Photo by Shutterstock

And you think, perhaps she’s got the feels for you too, despite her difficult-to-read behavior. She looks you directly in the eye when she speaks to you. She makes you feel like you’re the only person to ever exist in this sick, sad world. When she touches your arm the little hairs stand up, electrified. She must feel it too, right?

But you really can’t tell.

Because you can never tell if a complicated, tortured, elusive girl ever really likes you, or if she’s just playing sophisticated mind-games. This where your lesbian big sister (me) comes him.

I’m here to save you from being screwed over by the Complicated Girl. I have a master’s degree in Complicated Women. I have an honorary doctorate in “deep rooted issues” from Lesbian University. Graduated at the top of my fucking class.

Complicated girls are, sadly often wont to mess with the heads of sweet, selfless lesbians like you and I. If they haven’t spent at least two years in therapy, they’re most likely deeply bored and devastatingly sad. Deeply bored and devastatingly sad is a dangerous combination. It’s a recipe for disaster.

If you haven’t learned how to creatively channel the demons that tug at your soul yet, you’re very likely going to act out as an energy vampire, feeding off the validation of innocent lesbians with hearts of gold.

I refuse to sit back my sweet lesbian, and merely watch as you have your blood sucked out of your body by a complicated woman. Not during Pride Month!  I’ve seen complicated women ruin so many pride parties for my friends over the last decade, and I’m over it. You deserve to dance in a goddamn rainbow onesie, like every other queer in town. You don’t deserve to be fighting in the middle of Christopher Street with a melodramatic complicated woman, who’s pissed off because she’s not the center of attention.

(PSA: No one is the center of attention at Pride. That’s the beauty of Pride, bitches. It’s for all of us.)

So, that being said, this is Zara’s official guide that will help you tell if she actually likes you, or if she’s just a complex lesbian messing with your head out of boredom, selfishness or lack of treated mental health issues.

If she’s always saying she want’s to “HANG OUT” but will NEVER lock down a date, she’s messing with your head, babe.

If she’s doing the whole “I would LOVE to hang out with you, babes!” charade, but can never provide you with a solid day that she’s actually free—she’s screwing around. Complicated girls can be flighty and completely ditzy (again it’s hard to fit so many haphazard thoughts into one brain—also the antidepressants which she may or may not be on, can make you really spaced out, I put my damn makeup bag in the fridge the other day!)—but even the airiest of us can LOCK down one day to hang out with a girl we’re crushing on.

If she says she’s “really busy” but manages to squeeze a SOLID date with you, she really likes you!

Chances are this girl has a whirlwind circulating around her troubled life. She’s probably in therapy twice a week, trying to sweat out the demons in the gym three times a week, or some kind of a crazy workhorse (those of us with deep-rooted issues, are wont to become workaholics. Anything to distract us from the incessant dark thoughts, you know?).  

But as long as you can pin her down for a date in the *nearish* future, she’s the real deal. We don’t make plans with people don’t like (usually).

If she won’t have sex with you because “she likes you” but you happen to know she’s having sex with every lesbian this side of the Mississippi, oh girl! She’s messing with your head.

The “I like you too much to sleep with you, so I’ll just be sure to have sex with everyone who isn’t you” game is twisted. I’ve done it, I’m not proud of it, and Karma (who I’m convinced is a surefire dyke) bit me in the ass. It happened to me several times after I sinned, and oh honey! It stings. And it’s bullshit.

Real Talk: If she wants to hold out on the sex, that’s fine. My current girlfriend and I waited two whole months before we had sex (her choice NOT mine, and I don’t recommend it).  But if she’s holding out on only you and she’s getting down and dirty with every other lez on the block, that’s *very* suspect.

If you’re having intimate hookups with loaded feelings and deep conversations, she likes you!

You can intrinsically feel if someone wants more than just sex from you while you’re having sex. It’s hard to describe with something as simplistic as words but it’s in the intensity of her touch, her exploration of your mouth with her tongue and the way in which she longingly gazes into your eyes after sex. It’s animal. It’s primal. You can just feel it in your loins, babes.

Are you having emotionally loaded sex followed by long-winded conversations about your childhood traumas, with your sweaty bodies perfectly intertwined, twisted up in the post sex sheets? She likes you.

A complicated girl can’t fake intimacy. She can put on a good show with the sex, throw in some convincing moans, but she can’t bring herself to let her guard down in that kind of raw, stripped-down way if she hasn’t caught authentic feelings.

If she says she’s going “through a lot” and “can’t hang out” but you see pictures of her partying on social media every single night of the week, she’s messing with your head.

If she’s too twisted up by her demons to hang out with sweet, gentle you, why is she able to turn it on for the vicious masses? She’s either playing games, or she’s in a very dark place and can only stand to be around hard-partying, vapid energy. And if that’s the case you need to let her crawl out of this hole by herself, I’m afraid.

If she calls you when she’s wasted, she definitely likes you! (Or is definitely messing with your head)!

If complex bae is thinking of you when her head is swirling with boozy thoughts, that means something.

However, If she ONLY calls you when she’s hammered and lonely and longing for affection and never calls you when she’s sober and clear-headed—run, my little lesbian sister! She’s messing with your gorgeous head. She using you if she only wants to hang out when she’s vulnerable, drunk and teeming with empty voids she desperately wants to fill.

If she says she “afraid to be in a relationship” but “really likes you” but it “can never ever go anywhere,”  she’s messing with your head.

She might want to take it slow. You might have to hop through some bizarre hoops with her, but trust me. She’s not going to shut it down if she’s into you.

Also to tell someone you’re “into them” but won’t “date them”—that’s a pretty twisted mindfuck to bestow onto a person.

Not nice. So if this is the case, imagine me your lesbian big sister adorned in a rainbow haute couture gown, standing over your bed as you wake up this morning, waving a giant cherry red flag over your head, chanting “you deserve better. You deserve better. You deserve better.” And after about five minutes, you’ll believe my rhetoric. And you will run like the wind in the opposite direction, honey!

If she say’s she’s afraid to be in a relationship that “really likes you and will give it a shot anyway,” she actually likes you!

Chances are this complicated creature wasn’t born this way, she was made this way. She’s been through some dark shit in her haphazard life. She associates feelings with pain and darkness because the dark feelings have been the most powerful, dominant feelings she’s ever experienced. She’s terrified of feeling anything, let alone love.

But if she’s willing to try, because she knows deep down that you’re a wonderful entity and she doesn’t want to stifle her intoxicating sexual attraction to you—she likes you. So if this is the case, give her a shot. Now, how to navigate a relationship with this wild, complex, brilliant, sexy woman—that’s a whole other article.

Feel free to message your mascara lesbian big sister on Facebook anytime if you seek more of my counsel. Or could you just say hi. I mean we’re sisters now, for god’s sake. Just say hi!