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Lesbian Vs. Gay Woman

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Here's a question I received today:
I feel really dumb asking this question, but hope you can clarify for me. What is the difference between "lesbian" and "gay woman"? I saw the two options on a webpage profile questionnaire and was totally stumped.
Hmm... Good question! As I understand it, taking on the label lesbian is more of a political statement, like an identity. Gay woman is less political, like someone who dates women, but isn't involved at all in the gay and lesbian community. What do you think? How would you define the difference between the terms "lesbian" and "gay woman?" Add your thoughts to the comments section below.

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