It’s June people and we are ready to celebrate all of queerdom! I am lucky to have been blessed in both same-sex and hetero-sex relationships. It wasn’t and still isn’t, easy owning this as a brown, first-generation Guyanese Canadian of Indian Ancestry. For those of y’all unfamiliar with the West Indian vibe, it can be heavily laden in post-colonial shame, religious law, and sexual binaryship. Sound familiar? This challenge is global.
From the tender age of 11, I fancied Drew Barrymore. I also drooled over Will Smith and confusedly shared kisses with my first boyfriend and female best friend within the same year. Both rocked! Continuing this journey, my brother told everyone I was a lesbian in high school. The intention was to keep boys away from me, and while that wholly backfired, I enjoyed the attention his female friends would bestow on me. I even enjoyed my first ‘second base’ encounter with one of them.
As it stands, I date where my heart desires. Period. Even some of my best friends have unintentionally tried to discern my sexuality saying: “That was just a phase, right? You know you like d*&%!” Ya babe, I do, and I like that peach too. I’ve finally made peace with this. Whomever loves me, will honour that.
I stress the above because I just spent my first week away after four years of non-travel, at the Gran Muthu Rainbow Resort in Cuba. It was a huge reminder that creating spaces for varied sexual orientations and gender is essential! As someone with the privilege to travel and to ‘blend in’ and choose hetero relationships, I can wholeheartedly say that I have never felt more ‘myself’ on a vacation. If this was the case for me, can you imagine the importance of safe spaces for those who do not have my privilege?
LGBTQ2S+++ awareness (I’m 38 and am doing my best with the evolving acronym) – is not about denouncing heterosexual relationships. It is about honouring individuals born with authentic, genuine, and non-harming sexual desires and preferences. Preferences that have dated back to the beginning of time, across ALL cultures and races. and that continues to exist despite varying ideologies trying to stamp them out. If your son or daughter is straight, they will honour that—ask my myriad of straight friends that have never been swayed by my sexuality.
This month’s ask is to carve out space in your heart to support your queer and trans family, friends, or strangers alike. Listen a little closer, sit with your discomfort, and most importantly—know that your sexual preference and gender is loved and valid even as you make space for others.
With great love,