LGBTQ+ Nigerians benefit from the support provided by volunteer counselors via the Qtalk app, which is supported by this site and by the St. Paul’s Foundation for International Reconciliation.
Kenechukwu, a 26-year-old Nigerian student, does not want other men to find him sexually attractive.
In his Qtalk support request, Kenechukwu wrote:
“Even though I think that I might be gay, I still do not feel entirely comfortable with other gay men making advances at me or trying to be sexually interested in me. It feels totally weird and I just wish that there was something that I could do to make that not to happen”
In a response to his support request, the counselor acknowledged that his feeling was totally normal, especially when one is closeted and living in a hostile environment where homosexuality is criminalized.
The counselor explained that what he was feeling had to do with internalized homophobia. Explaining further, the counselor stated that most people who struggle with same-sex attractions often hate themselves and wish to be heterosexual.
The counselor added that, even though this was normal, prolonged feelings of self-hatred could be dangerous as a person might become suicidal, depressed, and frustrated.
The counselor pointed out that, for many people, it could be a phase; however, for others, therapy is usually required to help put things into perspective.
In an attempt to help Kenechuwu identify what the real issues are and to discover and affirm his sexual orientation, the counselor asked him to write down all of the things he hated about himself and about homosexuality. The aim of the exercise was to help Kenechuwu identify the root cause of why he seems to be in denial of his feelings and what’s triggering his internalized homophobia so that he can overcome it.
At the time of putting this together, Kenechukwu is still accessing support from the counselor and, according to the counselor, all looks promising.
To download the Qtalk mobile app, click HERE.
To support the Qtalk project financially, click HERE.