I’m going to be very Canadian for a moment and start off by saying, I’m sorry.
I had a post ready to go on Friday, but something inside of me wasn’t satisfied with it.
I had been working on that article for almost a week. It was about PRIDE, specifically about my queerness and what that looks like exactly – an extension of last year’s article entitled, Pride Tribute: Why It Took Me So Long to Embrace My Queerness.
One of my challenges as a blogger is finding ways to communicate my own experiences authentically and compellingly. The truth is, in RL I find speaking about myself very uncomfortable.
I feel more at peace when listening to others.
As my husband and many friends have said, I am a great audience.
But that isn’t helpful when I’m sitting behind a keyboard, searching for content to share with you.
Luckily, something interesting happened during our most recent date night; this, I felt compelled to share…
My husband and I went to our new favourite happy hour spot. It is a lounge bar next to the sea. We were settling in, when a group of young people between (my best guess) the ages of 18 and 24 sat at a table in front of us. He watched them for a moment, then turned to me:
“Are you envious of the younger generation?”
Curious, I counter-inquired, “What do you mean by envious? Envious of what?”
He thought for a second, looking back at the youth. Then he said the most humbling thing:
“They were given options we didn’t know existed, let alone, were allowed.”
These are the kinds of things that come up on date night. We get real real over mojitos and aperol…
He then went on to describe a recent conversation he’d had with his 13-year-old nephew, Peter*.
James had asked Peter if he was dating anyone from school. Peter replied (translated from French):
“I have a girlfriend. But when we’re not together, we can do whatever we want. We’re both really happy with that.”
He said it so nonchalantly, James didn’t pursue it further.
You see, where we live, young people seem less confined by monogamy. Young people seem less pressured to display heterotypical attitudes, behaviours, and appearances. An example:
The other night, at the same lounge bar, James and I saw a couple who were no older than 19. They wore the exact same outfit, even if it looked more stereotypically masculine.
It was adorable!
This conversation made me think about a close friend…
He identifies as a cis male, and he has only ever dated cis women. What’s interesting, however, is him and I have spoken extensively about his desire to be in a throuple with a woman and another man.
When asked why he doesn’t pro-actively pursue this, the obstacles become obvious.
He was born in the early 80s, and the idea of him having to explain such “sudden” life choices to family – even long-term friends – gives him a migraine. It’s easier to just carry on with half of his desire – partial preference – than to reconstruct his life, especially when the world is unready for it.
Many of us have been oppressed by the culture we were born in – be it family culture, culture of our community, or our nation.
Those learnings run deep.
They create blocks that take lifetimes to deconstruct.
Take James, for example.
He is entirely heterosexual (no one’s perfect). He has never had a fantasy about another man in his life. If I’m being entirely honest, he doesn’t even enjoy heterosexual porn.
He loves women.
He grew up in a household with monogamous, heterosexual parents. He was taught the importance of love and loyalty to a single person.
He spent the entirety of his twenties in FWB relationships because he hadn’t “fallen” for anyone.
Then I came along, and he ended all FWB relationships because, for him, you do not risk love for sex…
I know my husband. I love him deeply, and I can see he has the capacity to love more than one person. I can see he has the capacity to remain loyal to me, even if he’s involved sexually with others. I see him.
I can also see the unconscious, moral web he is tangled in.
Fortunately for the two of us, our relationship has developed into something less rigid than traditional monogamy. But it hasn’t come without its trouble.
Which brings me back to James’ initial point. If we had witnessed other versions of love, our current desires would be easier to navigate because we wouldn’t be forced to unwind what has become a cellular understating that:
Love equals the sexual and emotional loyalty to a single person!
I am queer. (Is this a shock?)
I have openly described myself as queer to exactly five people in my life (not including all of you).
Like our friend, we too dance with the idea of one day being a throuple.
It is exciting when we speak about it on date nights or while watching You, Me, Her. But, beyond the safety of those moments, also like our friend, we think about the repercussions.
The communities in which we live and visit.
Would we have to hide ourselves?
How painful would that be?
Who would we lose?
Whose love, would we learn, is conditional?
“It is not our differences that divide us. It is our inability to recognize, accept, and celebrate those differences.”– Audre Lorde
If we, as a seemingly heterosexual (passable) married couple live in wonder (and worry) of this…
Imagine what others under less privileged circumstances are going through?
This month is filled with so much love and hope, yet we can’t ignore the simultaneous fear, struggle and sadness.
If you can be the light – the other option – for someone, anyone…
Let that flag fly.
“There will not be a magic day when we wake up and its’s now okay to express ourselves publicly. We make that day by doing things publicly until it’s simply the way things are.”– Tammy Baldwin
And if you are that someone who needs a light, I have included resources below.
Also, as I said, I am a good listener. Never hesitate to contact me here to share your story.
Until next time,
Hold on. We’re almost there.
Love well, friends.
Quean Mo xx
Understanding Queer History
Them put together a comprehensive list entitled, 15 Essential Plays, Books and Movies for Understanding the History of Queer Liberation. For education, inspiration, and pride, take a look!
LGBTQ+ Instagram Community
Here are some of my favourite people from the LGBTQ+ community, who are taking up space and flying flags for everyone: