It took almost four years after being with a girl for the first time for me to accept that I liked girls, and it wasn’t a phase.
In between, I have gone through many phases: The stage where I thought it was about one girl, then realised it wasn’t; the period where I couldn’t understand how I could genuinely have feelings for both men and women; and then there was also the phase where I felt like the worst sinner – I love God, but he hates my sexuality, so what where does that leave our relationship?
Five years after that first girl, here I am: Bisexual, Christian and Closeted.
I still periodically remind myself (self-validate) that my bisexuality is a real thing – it is not a phase or a fancy label; it is not curiosity, nor a means to sleep around. It is just how I am. And my Faith? I have gotten to the point where all I see and think of is the unconditional love of God. The God I know and love loves me, and that’s all that matters. Damn religion and the church.
I can’t (at least not yet) say this publicly though: Queer people will come for me (Twitter made me realise that a lot of them (us) do not believe in religion) and Christians will have my head for dinner that day (annoying because they should be the ones who love and do not judge/condemn).
Very often, I ask myself “will you ever be able to come out?”. I don’t know the answer to that question. It feels like there’s so much at stake – my brand, my family, my church, my work, etc.; I also don’t think I have the strength to deal. But time will tell, won’t it?
Anyway, here’s what I wanted to say when I started writing this.
I think that for the first time in my queer existence, I felt the loneliness of the closet the most, last year. I fell in love, insanely – I gave all of my heart, my body and my mind.
When it was good, I wanted so badly to talk about it openly; flaunt it (flaunt her), but I couldn’t. Every time I had to change pronouns when talking about the person I was dating, it broke my heart. I hated having to be overly cautious about my relationship, calling my girl-friend ‘my bestie’ as a subtle attempt to show we had a deeper connection.
When it ended, I hated the closet even more. I hate how I sometimes felt guilty about my pain – was the relationship even real? Would it have been different if we could love more freely? It sucks how my friends who I am not out to still ask me about her. “Hey, haven’t seen you and x in a while,” or “Hey, how is x, will you come with her?” and then when I explain that we are no more friends, I get the “aww, I’m sure you girls will sort it out”. I just want to clarify that “lol, we broke up”, but I can’t.
So yeah, there’s no winning in the closet.
The truth is I pray a lot that the next person I fall in love with is a Man. That Gender has plenty wahala, but heterosexual love is easier, isn’t it? But if that doesn’t happen, plan B is to japa. Nigeria is hard enough; I can’t come out in this country ever.
But hey, this is me – Bisexual and Closeted. I am still navigating what it means to be Queer, Christian and Nigerian; and maybe one day I will find the courage to live freely. But for now, I live through every Queer person who is out. I see all of you, and my oh my! I love it. I love you. Keep living.
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