Beyond the European and North American worlds, there is still an ample amount of hostility and misunderstanding towards LGBTQ people. (Though, there's also a lot in those earlier regions too).
One continent that seems excessively hostile is the continent of Africa, which is ironically based on Christian rhetoric brought on by colonialism.
In today’s world, however, there are signs of understanding, or at least an effort to understand LGBTQ people. For instance, the country of South Africa has provided the same rights to LGBTQ people as non-LGBTQ people for several years now. But even then, there is still hostility within this fairly accepting land.
In the midst of all that, LGBTQ people are existing and living with their own complex perspectives on life.
Talking on the podcast The Eusebius McKaiser Show, three black bisexual men explained their experiences as black bisexual men in South Africa.
“I've always known that I was bisexual, even as a kid,” said environmental justice activist Mpho Ndaba, who wrote an article about being a black bisexual man in South Africa. “When I was 16 I was able to find the language to articulate and understand who I am. I'm glad that I was able to do that earlier in my life.”
He then added, “As much as I understood who I was then, it was difficult to live that life… I've gotten used to the questions.”
Meanwhile, software developer Kabelo Thwala says that the lack of information about sexualities led him to struggle with his feelings.
“In high school, I never thought of sexuality as a thing. I always knew there was something different about me,” he said.
It wasn’t until later finding an online community that he became enlightened on the existence of bisexuality.
With that, photographer Youri Sunguza shared that he grew up confused on whether he was straight or gay because he never knew of the possibility of being bisexual.
“For some time, I actually thought I was just gay. Growing up, the fact that you don’t really hear about bisexual people on tv. You don’t really see anything. Even when you look at outside media or the Western world, you will never hear about someone talk about them being bisexual. So I never really thought it was a possibility. So all throughout high school, I was like, ‘I’m straight. I may find this guy cute, but you know that’s normal. You can do that.’ But after that I thought, ‘Ok no, maybe this is something deeper. Maybe I should lean into it.’ So, like, 10 or 11, I actually thought I was gay.”
He also talked about that lack of awareness around the concept.
“Everyone told me I can’t be bi.”
To hear more from these men and their perspective, check out the entire podcast down below.