A Letter to my Mother by Boye Black

Dear mother, 

I got your message and to be honest, I really wanted to reach out. I have just been caught up with work and I haven’t even had time for myself. 

OK. That’s entirely not true.

The truth is I have been busy. However, I admit that it is not enough reason to not reach out. I know I have not seen you this year considering you stay 30 minutes away and I know I should do right by you. I know you miss me and the truth is sometimes I miss you too. 

But I am avoiding you. 

You see mum, I am in a different place in my life. I have let go of the internalised homophobia that I held on to for so long because of religion. I am happier and I feel like I am fulfilling my purpose. I have embraced my queerness and I see it as a gift rather than a curse. I have moved on from the nights I spent praying for God to take it away and from the deliverance program you made me embark on. 

I am free. 

I believe that there is freedom in truth but I know you see my truth as a lie. I get it. Your religion says that people of the same sex cannot be together. I understand that you love me and you want the best for me but I know you won’t approve. There is no point wishing that you will accept a gay son because that will just be a pipe dream. This doesn’t mean I doubt the love you have for me. It’s just one of those things I know you won’t reconcile. 
So when I don’t call or when I avoid coming over, it is not because I don’t love you. It is because I love you too much and it hurts to know that you might see me as a disappointment. I understand the sacrifices you have made for me all my life and it would give me great joy to give you the life you deserve. However, it’s hard knowing that the tables can turn if news about me gets to your front door. I am trying not to think about how you will react. The thought is a nightmare and I don’t think I am ready to experience. 

So mother, I love you but permit me if I don’t call as often as I should. Forgive me if I don’t come see you from time to time. I am sorry our relationship is stuck on weekly calls, WhatsApp messages and credit alerts. The less involved you are in my life, the better for us all. Maybe someday I will find the courage to reveal myself to you and maybe you will accept me and love me regardless. Maybe you will disown me and never speak to me again – who knows what the future holds? Right now I am OK with the way things are; this mutual love and respect is enough to keep us going till it can’t no more. 

I really hope you understand. 

With love, Boye ❤️

Boye Black (a pseudonym) is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of The Rustin Times.

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