As a young queer, you don’t have an obligation to come out, but if you do, Thabiso Bhengu has some advice based on his personal experience
My virginity was overwhelming and I had to get rid of it. This was my reason for leaving Pietermaritzburg to go study in Johannesburg. I had to finally dump it somewhere. I had imagined, at the time, that I would be allocated a room with a closeted gay and we would bonk like rabbits.
My mother, using her third eye, knew that Johannesburg was going to change me. She had seen me wrestle with my virginity.
She sent me a WhatsApp when I arrived at Park Station: “Always use a condom.”
I came back home in December and I had done it. However, something had shifted completely. The clothes in my bags had changed and the books I kept were different. My heart was no longer the same, either. I had gulped down the elusive flavour of freedom – but I was an out gay man in Johannesburg and a closeted man in Pietermaritzburg.
Just as my boring virginity had made me sick, so did my fake straight life. The first semester of second year ended and it was time to go home again. This time, the truth of who I am sat in my throat like a cough, waiting to be expelled at any moment.
A week passed and I realised how much I resented my mother. I realised why I did not answer text messages or call home frequently.
Since I could not speak with my family