Coming out in America as a black gay man may be difficult but in Jamaica it's a death sentence. On Logo's documentary "Coming Out Stories" we meet a young man named Xavior from New York City who works as a counselor at Gay Men of African Descent . Xavior is in a comitted relationship and counsels young gay teens on coming out to their families and healthy living, but he has yet to come out to his father.
The cameras follow Xavior as he flies home to Florida to break the news to his father. Prior to the visit Xavior has to deal with all of the "what if's " as a result of sharing his truth with his dad. Fear of violence, disownement, and death is a reality for any gay Jamaican and Xavior fears that his dad's reaction could possibly be any of the three due to the hostile nature of Jamaicans towards gays.
The most poignant moment of the show for me was when Xavior asserted himself and shared his truth with his dad despite knowing that their relationship might never be the same again.
In true parent fashion his dad stated there was still a chance for him to change, and he knew of many women who would love to have a chance with him. Sound familiar? I know I've heard it before.
One thing I can say about black families is that our love for one another runs deep, sometimes to our own detriment, but even if I love you isn't verbalized everyday it is definitely understood to be true.
It takes real courage to share with your loved ones apart of yourself that you're taught from an early age is perverted and immoral , and to even retrain your own thinking around the issue.
Xavior's story gives me the courage to not only talk about it but to be about it. I'm determined to let my light shine for others to see in hopes that it will be a guide towards their individual truth.