This is our “Excerpts from a Dairy” series. We publish excerpts of thoughts and reflections from emails, dairies and journals of people from the queer community. These excerpts could be complete entries or uncompleted and unstructured excerpts that show our personal thoughts and reflections about our lived experience.
We welcome submissions and they can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The relationships and friendships we build in the queer community play an important role in both helping us accept ourselves and in navigating the homophobic and transphobic Ethiopian landscape. The below excerpt is an email shared between two queer Ethiopians.
I just opened your email at work so I am not able to respond in as much detail as I would like. I just wanted to write a quick note to say Selam and thank you.
And to remind you that it takes a lot [of] courage to come out even to yourself. We grow up learning – as women – that being sexual beings is bad which makes it impossible to have discussions about sexuality and to own our desires. For someone who comes from such a culture, being able to say “I am a lesbian” is a big deal. Own your courage. As Maya Angelou would say you are [a] phenomenal woman. You live in a country with a large Ethiopian population and as someone who is embedded in that immigrant community you need to take precautions. That is understandable. And you still rock.
I hope to respond in more detail soon. My apologies for cutting this short and one can always use a good friend:)
– A fellow homo