This month we celebrate Pride! In honor of Pride Month, Kehlani has been shamelessly speaking out about queerness and why all of us (especially women) should start embracing it. The 23-year old singer was recently interviewed by Paper Magazine, where she discussed her identity as a queer woman and how the whole experience has affected her in the best way.
Kehlani always stresses the importance of being 100% your authentic self. She explains that when she was younger she felt like she didn’t belong in any specific niche. She was very unsure of the labels society imposed on her and avoided being her genuine self in order to fit in. Kehlani reflects back on her sexuality in high school and shares, ““I feel like I had to define it: I had to be gay or straight, that was a big thing I went through for a long time. I was really butchy in 11th and 12th grade because I just felt, if you like girls, this is what you’re supposed to look and dress like. I wasn’t comfortable with my feminine side.” Looking at the multidimensional image of the singer now, it is hard to image Kehlani as anything but confident in herself.
Kehlani is composed of honesty, vulnerability, and light-hearted humor, making her a wonderful strong, independent, female role model. Her raw advice resonates with many fans who may be going through the same identity crisis that she went through. She looks back on her confusing teenage years and concludes, “Once I really understood that if someone likes me, they like me for all of me. I started being myself depending on how I felt that day, not based on who I was dating at the time.”
i want to take the time to say thank you for all of the support, but also mention that when you call me brave, i have to credit those who inspire my “bravery” and who i consider to be more brave than i could ever be. as a non black passing, hetero passing queer person, i don’t get nearly as much shit as some. those who do are the very people who founded pride, who fight the hardest and deal with the most… black queer / black trans people. the most strong people i know, whilst being the most loving from my experience. thank you for your fight, i am an extension of your teachings and legacies, and only hope as i grow to honor those who inspire me, and give the credit where it’s truly due. i hope to only add ammo to this fight, and point my viewers and supporters in the direction of the ORIGIN. i love y’all. we love y’all, cuz you always loved us. bless! @papermagazine
As Kehlani rises to mainstream fame, she receives more attention from the media regarding her sexuality as they try to “define” her. Being a multi-racial, LGBTQ-identifying woman, the singer often addresses the criticism she has endured for passing in the industry. She admits that, “As a non-black-passing, hetero-passing queer person, I don’t get nearly as much shit as some. Those who do are the very people who founded pride, who fight the hardest and deal with the most.”
Watching Kehlani grow into the stunning sunflower that she is has been pleasantly sweet, and we are very proud to see how far she has came on her journey to become her most authentic self. She sets the example that we should all live and love apologetically. After all, we are all human!
Happy Pride! ❤
Featured Image: Instagram (@Kehlani)