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My community right now isn’t made up of LGBTQ+ people but my friends support me, although I wish I knew more asexuals.
When our bodies do not fit convention and the status quo. We are relegated; seen as dirty and sinful. In a society where sexuality and sex are rigidly approached; where there is a deviation.
Document Women dived into the world of an asexual woman to understand what it is like living in a society that does not tolerate sexual freedom. A society that is as conservative and religious as the north.
Beatrice from Adamawa has spent all her life in the North.
“Last year. I was having a conversation with myself about sex and I understood that sex has a very different meaning to me and doesn’t necessarily mean the final level of acquiring intimacy and satisfaction,” She told DW, “I’d always found sex itself uncomfortable maybe because of what I grew up hearing. Honestly, I’m still trying to understand what this means for me. Am I broken? Am I demi-sexual? Is it because I’ve never had sex before? Am I asexual? I try reading but most times I watch videos but mainstream media has very little helpful content on asexuality.”
The queer community in the northern part of Nigeria suffers more, with religion playing a huge role in how she and other members of the community are treated.
“LGBTQ+ members in the North suffer more than those in the south because the North is so rigid and close-minded. It’s really hard to change their minds on something. Most of them want to do a Lot! of things, but because it’s a ‘sin’ they’d rather chastise those who do unlike the south who I believe are a tad bit better. From online friends and observations, I feel the southerners are only okay with queerness as long as it’s not male nor have any masculine representation.”
She also talks about support from friends :
“My friends were very supportive of me, some expected me to come out, but my family doesn’t know yet. I was only saved by them having an idea of what it was when I came out to my friends but to my family, I’d have to explain, and man! that’s something I haven’t yet defined for myself either”
With support comes chastisement and she makes this clear:
“Oh my God! I’ve heard so many nasty comments, but the nastiest would be “You’re just confused.” It came from a disappointed homophobic classmate who wanted me to be lesbian/bisexual so bad just to spread more rumors to fuel their anti-Beatrice agenda, he didn’t get it and I kept it that way. Funny how they will say/do anything to make people hate you.”