Sometimes people tell me they don’t want to be labelled by their sexual orientation. “There’s so much more to me than being gay, ” they say.

Not me though.

For many years, I rejected my GAY identity. The last thing I would have ever have said was…… “I’m gay”. Taking ownership of that word was a terrifying thought because I believed it would have immediate devastating, as well as eternal consequences.

In fact, I did everything to remove any trace of it in my life. I tried everything to hide it, deny it, break it, kill it, eradicate it, exorcise it, heal it, therapy it, marry it to a woman, and heterosexually sexualise it.

I could never let the word “gay” come out of my mouth. The closest I ever got to acknowledging my true orientation was admitting secretly to a church leader that I had “a homosexual problem”.

Accepting I was GAY was a decades long journey. But once I’d accepted who I was, then learning to embrace and celebrate being GAY led me to deeper places of authenticity, congruence and integrity.

We have multi identities. We can have different identities in different contexts. In some contexts, some identities are paramount and others irrelevant. The highly self-aware person is conscious of the various identities but manages them wisely, recognizing each one is a part of the whole but never rejecting such a significant facet of who they are.

Personally, I’m proud to be a homosexual. No more shame, denial or secrecy.

The shame and self-rejection have been washed away by self-acceptance. Self-love replaced self-hatred.

No matter what identity or identities I’m expressing, I’ll always be GAY. Always have been, always will be. And I love that…………. now.

If anyone has a problem with that, it must be theirs, because it certainly ain’t mine.”


Anthony Venn-Brown
Author of #ALifeOfUnlearning– a preacher’s struggle with his homosexuality, church and faith #truestory #bestseller