Kakra Boye-Doe, M4, Class of 2022
I didn’t think I would ever get to this point in my life, if I am being honest. I have hated a major part of myself since I was eight years old. I remember, as I am sure anyone who was raised in a Christian family would, praying to God that he would take this feeling away from me. The feeling I was describing was having an attraction to the same sex. I ran away from these thoughts and feelings as much as I could, but I could only get so far. I remember hearing people in church describing the abomination of homosexuality — destined for an eternity in hell. Hell ain’t it for me so I decided that wasn’t an option. I needed to suppress my attraction to men so I could be chilling in heaven. Suffice to say that didn’t work — and I am glad it didn’t work. What resulted out of this attempt was years of hating a part of myself; begging to God to take this away from me and trying to come to terms with how a merciful, loving God could have no mercy on individuals simply for something they have no control of. I now reject that notion that homosexuality is a hell sentence. If you believe homosexuality is a sin, fine — but a sin is a sin. Which makes my “sin” no better or worse than yours. But Christians choose what “sin” takes precedent over another. I reject that notion on the basis of love. I believe that it is not the case that homosexuality is a sentence to hell and I would implore “Christians” who are spreading that message to do a great deal of introspection — why does this bother you so much? Additionally, you “Christians” are doing a great disservice to the religion that you so fervently claim is about love — this isn’t love. This is hate. Full stop.
Although I rejected this notion, I still believed that I would die not telling anyone or not “coming out”. Years of therapy, still ongoing therapy, I felt like I had enough. I had seen people live their true lives and I was so envious of it.
My journey began in 2019 when I told my roommate — my best friend in this world — I had been hanging out with a guy and was bisexual; I wish everyone to have someone as accepting as him. Slowly but surely I started casually bringing up the conversation to others. I wanted to do it in a way that was authentic and that felt natural because it is for me. It felt important, though, that I did “come out” as I could only imagine the amount of people who were in my shoes; moreover, I knew how important it was for me to see individuals who looked like me “come out”. The hardest people to tell were my family. I will not go into great detail but my parents were the last ones I told — and it had everything to do with religion. I think it is very unfortunate that religion prevented me from living my true authentic life and allowing my parents to have insight into that. But love always proves to be stronger. You can logically accept that “my parents will always love me” but to see it on full display is everything.
I say all of this to say that I am a bisexual male; I have been since I was 8 and I no longer care to live a lie. This is truly one of the most freeing acts I have done in my life. I don’t wish for opinions — this is me. I have never been at such peace with myself and with who I am — and for that I am so fortunate. I am looking forward to living my true, unapologetic self. I am looking forward to continuing to heal my wounds and overcome the trauma of my childhood and early adult life. I am committed to self love at the highest form.
My advice to all family members and friends of someone who is choosing to share such personal information: don’t make it about you — it is not about you. Don’t tell them that “you knew”; that is so invalidating. Simply listen and be supportive. Whatever discomfort you’re feeling — they are feeling at least double of that. I’m fortunate to have that support and fully understand that not everyone is privileged in that regard.
With an immense amount of gratitude and liberation,