Love is love, and everyone deserves to feel that they are genuine within themselves and this can include choosing who you want to love. We hear so many stories of being embarrassed or ashamed to come out as gay to friends and family. With America, allowing same sex marriage in all 50 states last year, we see so many opening ups and sharing their love journeys. One queen shares her story with us about the struggle of coming out and feeling comfortable enough to speak about it and allow herself to become free. Jessica Rochez is a photographer and videographer who shares her story in an interview with The Queen Sessions.
The Queen Sessions: What was the hardest moment when coming into self-actualization of your sexual identity?
Jessica Rochez: Knowing that I couldn’t change it and that I will lose people in my life. I haven’t technically come out to my family. But, Yes I did feel a slight relief when I came out to my friends, I no longer had to stay silent or hide.
TSQ: How would you advise others who struggle with sexual identity?
JR: Be who you are. I may not have had that conversation with my family but I’m still me. I live how I want, I still date women, ( I’m single *wink wink* ), and I still support my community. You can’t live for your parents or for other people, you will never be happy that way. People may hate but if you have true love, I promise you won’t even feel it. if you’re struggling with your faith and your sexuality, then my advice would be what my high school teacher told me, God doesn’t make any mistakes, take that and use it however you want.
TSQ: In the Caribbean community, there is seems to be homophobia, how do you stand your ground and still feel prideful of your culture?
JR: I don’t focus on that part and religion has so little to do with Garifuna culture. I’m always gonna be proud to be Garifuna ( afro – Caribbean), It’s such a small tribe, I feel like a part of something special.
TQS: Looking back at younger you, do you feel you made yourself proud?
JR: Definitely but I have a lot left to do, I honestly don’t feel as accomplished as I wanted to. Younger me would be proud of how vocal and confident I’ve gotten.
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