Gay Life 101


I don’t even know what to say about this here. Most firstly… I would like to say… that I never ever talk about my gay life. Not because I’m shy or like closeted. Because I don’t consider myself to be. I mean people know… The reason I never talk about my gay life is because there’s not shit going on in it to talk about. My gay life is the complete anti-thesis to my professional/academic lives. Or the sides most frequently shown here.


I wouldn’t even know where to start in breaking down how things have been for me in my years here in life. For me, at least currently it makes sense to start with simple questions and to develop the clearest picture for you, and really more for myself by speaking to you this way.

What is it like to be gay?

Hell I don’t even know really. Some times I feel like I’ve had a very unique experience. Other times I feel like my experience is indicative of culture in which I operate. While I don’t want to fall into the trap of generalizing and compartmentalizing the members of this culture. I will say that personally, I feel as though I participate in some variation of urban black gay culture. I have very few if any ties or connections to the larger mainstream gay culture shared across the country.

I don’t know how to break that descriptor down cleanly in a way that would make sense to you or I. However, I would have to say urban black gay culture is a multi-faceted collective of experiences that in some way shape or form bind me and my black/diaspora gay brothers across the globe.. It encompasses individuals from all regions of the black queer and lgbt community. As a member of the black-gay community, I find that still even to this day, I’m finding myself in new and different experiences that can sometimes make me uncomfortable, or really show my natural prejudice to my predefined norms and comfort zones.

Its taken me many years of reflection and development to understand how my sexuality intersects with the other facets of my personhood that make up the whole of who I am. Until recently, I’ve felt like my sexuality was working in opposition to everything else going on in my life. While the opposition itself had been difficult to comprehend, I would say the more difficult chore has been getting to a place where I can recognize this incongruence, yet still find the love and esteem within myself to still work to create the world I want for myself.

My sexuality had become something that I operated around. It was an obstacle that I detoured around for years, not understanding why there seemed to be so many inherent differences and misappropriations between my black and male self, and my gay self. I was talking to an associate the other day, explaining this story for one of the first times. Early into my monologue he interrupted and said – “What do you mean you have a black self and a gay self? Shouldn’t they be one in the same?”

To which I responded – For me not really. I mean my gay self is full of… failure, most of the other pieces of myself are filled with success or confidence, or stability… Its take me a minute to accept this as a type of balance that I experience in my life.

He pushed back, “I learned to love myself a long time ago.”

I tried to hear him. I wasn’t quick enough to share it with him, but… its taken me a while to figure out how to really love myself. Sometimes I feel like people aren’t really trying to hear that. As though they’ve fully loved themselves from day one. Its been a journey for me. I still struggle with the idea that I have reached my adulthood and still failed to harmoniously integrate my gay identity as fully with my other parts of being.


I’ve struggled honestly since SkoolHaze’s inception to think about how my sexuality would play in the contents of this record. I look forward to seeing how this extension will serve this space.

Share your thoughts below.


13 thoughts on “Gay Life 101”

  1. I’m proud of you. I also admire your ability to use self-reflection and written communications in positive ways!

  2. So cool kid! It’s a difficult thing sometimes for people to admit having difficulty loving themselves for who they are. I think those that have to go through the “journey” to self discovery/love have a better time coping and loving themselves through the trials of life.

    1. You know…. I don’t know if I would have said I didn’t love myself before. I mean, I think what I found out is that I can, and have been working to love myself even more than I thought possible now.

  3. Well written and good read . Thanks for sharing your honest and venerable thoughts . It’s refreshing to read something from a raw place in a person’s mind – non filtered –
    Or catered to what you think others want to hear . I look forward to reading more from you .

    1. Thank you. You know. I was just punching some keys and recording my thoughts. The response has been unexpected. Hopefully we can all figure this out together as we move forward 🙂

  4. This was definitely an interesting read and something that I can very much relate to. I think often, as we many different situations, people fail to understand that your full perception is more than one thing (i.e. not just a black man, but rather a black man who is gay, a teacher, in a fraternity and writer). Many in the larger gay community focus on the sexuality portion w/o seeing the totality of the person.

    1. Thanks Rick.
      I agree completely. We have to take into account all of the different pieces that make the whole. I’m glad you could connect with the post. Make sure to check out some of the other posts while you’re here.

  5. Being black and being gay both carry with them associated identities based on cultural expectations, stereotypes, etc, and its possible as you stated that both identities never really align with each other.

    From my experience, my father was my first teacher of what black men should be, and so I’ve always assumed that all black men were the same growing up. That they were strong providers, teachers, loving and caring and very invested in family and tradition. Never was I taught that some black men could love other men or that some black men could reject black women. So fast forward 20 years as a straight black woman I don’t even see how I fit into the equation of my own culture. Because the roles of the black men have shifted, so has the role of black women, and I still haven’t gotten the proper teachings of what it all means.

    I spend so much of my time having the same conversations with my straight black female friends. We sit around thinking to ourselves. Where are our black men? Where are our fathers and teachers for our children? Where are our educated counterparts? Sometimes I feel like I’m in a cultural war where women and children are the casualties. I’ve contemplated more than once, having a child without a father, then I think…… since when was this socially acceptable? Than I realize in today’s culture it very well may be….

    1. Thanks Ades.
      You say a lot in your post. All of it important. Knowing us, we could probably talk for hours about these things. I think overall, what I would say is that yes, I agree. The role(s) of black…. emerging adults has shifted. I think many of us feel less guided by pathways used by our parents and elders. I have no immediate answer. But I would say we also live in a time where it is easier to create our own vision of a successful family than ever before. I think that is something that can and should be taken advantage of while we have the opportunity.

  6. It aint shit funny about being funny…If I had the ability to to be with a woman I would have never stepped into such a miserable state. However, praise be to Allah, who gave me the wisdom to understand that no matter how much wealth I secured, no matter how many degrees and accolades, critical acclaim, no matter how high I raise myself up in this world, I am NOTHING If I can not be the “Me” that Allah created me to be. Yes it has caused me a great deal of pain to live and love mysrlf out loud and stand in the sunlight. Like all homosexuals witn a shared experience there were the dark days when you just dont have the energy or the will to go on because those who know and love supposedly, don’t have the wisdom to know or to understand this one truth that will suck the moisture from the air…Given the stigma, social isolation, disrespect and degree of hatred shown to us, who in the righteous mind would ever choose to be gay if they didnt have to be gay? A double minded man is confounded and the Prophet Muhammed went further to instruct that it dangerous to the soul of the eunuch know a woman. I know many of you would rather overlook glaring abundant sources of evidence that we are eunuchs, deny and object to robust scientific evidence that we are natural born and are here for a purpose. We are human beings that need to be able to share our lives, our passions our love.with another. Ecclesiastes clearly stated that it is not good for man to be alone, two is better than one. Its a painful life when you can go him or to your homies who happens to be straight as yourself. To hear my people discredited for being who they are….and if our conditions are due to a genetic or biological condition, then it is not a sin in the eyes my Master Allah. Who is insulted every time a straight dude criticizes thay which He Created. He commanded us to love one.another and some people forget themselves when they judge servant, prisoner of Allahu Akbar.

    The Rainbow Revolution was not televised…but Allah looked upon the jealous penises in this land and made it impossible for the community to begin healing deeply. Go get married, buy a house and a dog and start celebrating Gay365!

    1. Hey Richard.
      This is a lot man. You have many points where I nod in agreement and some others that I’m less encouraged by. Overall though, you’re right, people should be able to be themselves. And we need to live in a world where everyone feels like they’re participating in the work to make that happen.

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