J. R. Sa – “Dear Younger Queer Self” Contest Finalist Story

Dear Younger Queer Self,

I am sorry.


You were but a child, praying to be seen, and yet you had to hide behind a mask of “normalcy”, a poorly painted smile on the outside, rough cuts around the eyes, thorns on the inside.

I am sorry I convinced you it was dangerous to tell your friends the contents of your heart. I regret that your mind saw disgust and judgement before anyone you loved ever did. I am sorry you broke down crying when you told your mother about her; how her eyes were chocolate and her hair was silk and her mind was an expanding Universe. And how her boyfriend did not respect her, but you would… if only she was like you.

You are under no obligation to wear camouflage when you can paint yourself with the rainbow´s brightest shades, take a deep breath, and acknowledge your own existence. You are allowed to be the colorful lighthouse you always dreamt of becoming, a beacon of love and acceptance – but you must first accept yourself. You must root your feet on the ground with bravery and assert firmly “Your ability to validate me does not dictate my worth”.

Dear, I am here to say, possibly for the first time, that you are allowed. You are allowed to hear thunder in his voice and to see the movement of the tides in her hips, wanting all the while to dive into the waters and to be caught in the storm. God does not love you less for seeing beauty in all that was created, nor does he blame you for your way of loving. What does it matter whose lips you want to kiss? What is the harm in seeing treasure in someone´s mind rather than their privates? For you, it was always about the soul, wasn´t it? To see one´s contents as if through a looking glass and a kaleidoscope, all at once.

My child, please don’t mistake their judgement for contempt. They know no better, in fact they were taught to look with disbelief and caution. They too are children, struggling to accept the contents of their hearts, however different from yours. 

There is an ocean of wisdom I could shower you with, but even the most skilled of sailors might drown in a strong enough storm. I will try to keep it simple: You are allowed to love differently; the nature of your attraction is not a direct reflection of your ability to be human, and the targets of your interest do not make you more of a sinner. You need more than kind words and incandescent glances to set your heart ablaze, and that does not make you broken. 

With all my love, 

Your future asexual biromantic self