‘Coming out’ stories have helped propel gay rights issues internationally as we’ve seen in the case of Ellen DeGeneres, Elton John, Jodie Forster, Frank Ocean and many others. Even though there are a lot of inspiring stories in the community, celebrity coming out stories make more impact because they bring more focus to the issues. Currently leading the pack for Nigeria is our very own Dewy Oputa, the daughter of controversial entertainer, singer and political activist; Charles Oputa a.k.a “Charly Boy”, she recently came out publicly via Instagram to talk about her relationship with Atlanta based artist S. Jaè and introduce their couple’s page @dewyandsj.
The Rustin Times Editor in Chief; Boye Black had a chat with Dewy Oputa to talk about her ‘coming out’ experience so far, her family’s support, the role her sister played in finding her courage and her hope for Nigeria’s LGBT community.
Read the full interview below;
You made headlines after you revealed you had created a couple page on Instagram with your girlfriend? How has that experience being for you since it happened?
Honestly, the love has been heartwarming. I have no words that can fully describe how much I love and appreciate everyone that has chosen to support me on this journey.
Was there a point after it blew up that you regretted making the decision?
No regrets! Funny enough I was extremely nervous before coming “out” in the public eye. My sister, Adaeze, literally had to call me and give me a pep talk. Her support in that moment gave me all the courage in the world to embark on this journey. The positive feedback I have received so far has only confirmed it.
Let us take it back a bit. For many people in the LGBT community in Nigeria, coming to terms with their sexuality and coming out is a difficult process. How did that journey happen for you?
I have always been attracted to women. At first, I was reluctant to engage because it was against the societal norms. It wasn’t until my early adulthood that I realized that this wasn’t a phase. The attraction has always been organic. There was no big sit-down and announcement of my queerness.
Your father Charly Boy is a legend in the Nigerian media/entertainment space and he openly came out and declared his support for you and the LGBT community. How was it like coming out to your family?
Discussing one’s sexual orientation is never an easy conversation to have. Especially with loved ones, it can be overwhelming. Whenever a person of the LGBTQIA+ community “comes out”, that person risks losing family and/or friends. In my case, I was fortunate enough to have family that always preached the importance of being true to oneself. Living my life based on the judgments of the next person is not living. It would only leave me tired, frustrated, and miserable. My family has always encouraged me to do what makes me happy.
Your relationship page @dewyandsj has blown up already since it’s creation. Does it put pressure on your relationship now that it is in the public eye?
Creating the page has always been a project I wanted to pursue. Representation is critical for the LGBTQIA+ community to thrive; and waiting for the right time and woman to share this journey with was equally important to me. Meeting SJ has been life-changing. As our relationship grows by the day, it also teaches me how real unconditional love is. It is definitely hard to find; but when you have it, know it, and reciprocate it, the bond becomes unbreakable. Our chemistry is organic. Since the day we have met, we clicked instantly. Loving the right person is the easiest thing you can do. There is no pressure. She has been supportive every step of the way.
What is your hope for Nigeria’s LGBT community?
I hope for the day that we can LIVE, LOVE, AND BE freely without judgement and persecution. That we can truly view Nigeria as being a safe place like a home should be.
To read our full report on Dewy’s coming out post, her fathers response and her talks of future projects, Click HERE.