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Cultural context

  • Participants feel that ‘Mothers’ are hugely important figures to be respected and made time for
  • There is often a strong societal influence from religion (Muslim or Christian)
  • There is peer pressure amongst parents for their child to be seen to be super-successful and achieve the traditional life milestones
  • Participants believe that they can’t argue with their parents. It is not OK to tell them how things are as it’s a sign of disrespect
  • There are few Black LGBTQ+ role models (either celebrities or in their own circles)

Key quote from participant

“Clear it with God and then it’s cool”

Generation gap

  • Participants feel that Black people are expected to be tough. The older generation had to fight for everything and withstand racial discrimination. That generation questions why their children now need counselling or so much support around them
  • They feel that Black parents find it harder to accept that their child is queer and the main response is denial or anger. They are often OK with the abstract concept, but can’t accept it for their own child
  • Participants find it may take longer for Black families to adjust to having an LGBTQ+ family member

Racial trauma and discrimination

  • Participants experience continuous racial micro-aggressions → racial trauma
  • Participants feel discriminated against more for being Black than for their gender and sexual orientations
    • Participants can feel like a ‘celebrity commodity’ or the token Black person even in friendship groups
    • They hear frequent racial clichés around Black people being good dancers or cooler than White people; people touching their hair and making comments
    • Feel like they don’t belong in some places due to their combined racial and LGBTQ+ identities

Distrust

  • Some mistrust council services. Confidentiality is crucial so they can ask for help without their family finding out. Fear of being ridiculed for needing counselling or feeling depressed
  • Thinking about public services, some participants are wary of Black people within a white-dominated system discriminating against their own people – “All skinfolk ain’t kinfolk” (quote from participant)
  • Some feel guilt that they might need a ‘double portion’ of help with the emotional baggage of their racial identity and being LGBTQ+