What you need to know

LGBTQ+ an initialism for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender.

The acronym, which is often used as a blanket term to refer to the queer community, first became popular in the 1980s when it replaced the term gay to reference all those who do not identify as heterosexual.

Queer Community includes; Lesbians, Gays, Transgender, Bisexual, transsexual, queer questioning, ally, asexual, pansexual among many others.

In 1973, the American Psychiatric Association removed homosexuality from the psychiatric disorders list.

‘’It’s apples and oranges, sexual orientation is who you go to bed with but gender identity is who you go to bed as.’’

One fact that we should accept sooner is that the Queer community is here to stay and history can attest to the fact that gay people are the most unproblematic of the human lot.

Male and female relationships are not the only form of sexual orientation; they are simply the most common. And we human beings like to think in binaries of man or woman, right or wrong, us and them. There is nothing wrong or bad in this, but it may be a lighter form of insanity.

Secretly we know the world is more complicated than these simple binary thoughts we hold in our heads. This is just a coping mechanism in our attempt to make the world simpler.

The truth you should know

Contrary to popular belief in Kenya, homosexuality is not a mental illness or disorder. Rather, it is a sexual diversity experienced within the society.

In 1973, the American Psychiatric Association removed homosexuality from the psychiatric disorders list. This was followed by a decision to remove homosexuality from the International Classification of Diseases in 1990 by the World Health Organisation.

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The evolution of the status of homosexuality in the classification of mental disorders highlights that ;concepts of mental disorder can be rapidly evolving social constructs that change as society changes.

Today, the standard of psychotherapy in the U.S.A and Europe is gay affirmative psychotherapy, which encourages gay people to accept their sexual orientation.

LGBTQ + in Kenya

While the Constitution of Kenya criminalizes homosexuality, it affirms inclusiveness and protection of the marginalized as valued tenets of the Kenyan state. Further, it prohibits direct and indirect discrimination against any person by the State or any other person. This arguably includes sexual orientation and gender identity, since the grounds for non-discrimination are an illustrative open-ended list.

As someone who has interacted with lots of queer people, there is no reason whatsoever why people react differently when they realise that someone is part of the LGBTQ+ community.

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At the realization that someone is gay, all of a sudden their humanity ceases to exist, and we view them as such morally corrupted individuals who don’t deserve any kind of humanity shown to them. We Kenyans are a very judgemental lot, and the homophobia on social media is a sad story.

Whenever someone comes out as gay on social media, you see people commenting that, ‘’ the LGBTQ+ agenda is being forced down our throats.’’ This is such straight bullshit.

What to do as a queer

How about we address the fact that heterosexuality has been so normalized by decades of queer erasure. If folks cared to know their history right, they would realise homosexuality has existed for eons and not just in the western world but worldwide even in our African communities.

Recently it was revealed that a very popular cartoon character is queer, and social media lost it.While most liberals were elated with the news, as most already knew this without needing an announcement, the conservatives lost it.They turned into activists and champions of morality.

The straight agenda has been on literally everyday children films and not once did these morality police get this mad.

For everyone out there struggling with their sexuality, you got this. It is good we exist in a place where sexual fluidity is spoken about in such a beautiful way currently and no one is pressured to have it all figured out.

There are a lot of people suffering outside here just because they are queer. Having their entire queer struggle reduced to something fashionable is hurting. Just because someone does things differently doesn’t mean they are wrong and you being judgemental while throwing in your unsolicited comments doesn’t help the situation.

Reach Out

To come out as queer is choosing your happiness over your security in most African nations, and this takes lots of courage. And being around people who will give you all the support you need and treat you with love rather than disdain is a blessing to many faced with such a dilemma.

One fact that we should accept sooner is that the Queer community is here to stay and history can attest to the fact that gay people are the most unproblematic of the human lot. Notable gay activists have campaigned for reforms that benefitted the entire human generation.

For everyone out there struggling with their sexuality, you got this. It is good we exist in a place where sexual fluidity is spoken about in such a beautiful way currently and no one is pressured to have it all figured out.

Take the baby steps as you walk this path and explore your sexuality. It might be slow, but for sure you’ll get there

Dont forget to leave your thoughts on the comment section below.Subscribe also to get the next update as we discuss each and every sexual orientation and what it means.!

Credits to
Anteros Diogenes (Activist)
Email: diogenesanteros@gmail.com

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