I forgive myself for being closeted again with my sexuality (and more so my secret of having the capacity to be in love with a man) but this time not to my wife, family, friends, workplace, religious community, black nationalist community, Brooklyn artist community (now they know) but to you, my three beautiful children.
I ask forgiveness for not currently showing all the way up for you as your father, and teaching you about how to navigate through the oppressive forces in the world- by maintaining on some level my own oppression. I ask your young hearts and minds to forgive me for not yet trusting your strength, your intellect, your independence, and most surely your world enough to tell you the complicated story of your father being queer and yet still being your father.
How does one know if someone truly forgives them and forgives all of it? Forgiveness is not a final destination, I think it’s more of a consequence of truth.
As your father, I want you to gain clarity from me - not confusion. I want you to be clear on choices that I made in hiding my whole sexuality, choices that resulted in you being born. In my mind, clarity and forgiveness are best friends that love each other, hang tight, and have their own complex, private handshakes. Clarity can be earned through forgiveness. I want to give you the opportunity to be clear about the parts of your family that need help being healed. I want you to one day soon have the opportunity to see your Daddy fully, by showing the parts of me that may be unforgivable- the parts that are simply the truth.
I forgive the Black men who are currrently doing any acts that could be considered DL, downlow, or foul due to a well-intentioned attempt of being a so-called “Good Black Man” while working fiercely to mask life within a heterosexual-wired body.
I am forgiving them now for living (and suffering) through a closeted, limited experience. After doing the work to get myself to a place of forgiveness for my own actions - I realize that fear and shame are enemies to our evolution as men living full, honest lives. People make choices. However, when your world informs you that a decision has been made for you (like hell), you are supplied with many reasons to run (like hell) from what you feel. You can get cut off from the experiences of your own body, and your own desires.
I ask you to forgive me because I have yet to see a temple be built (that I wish to enter) without acknowledging the opportunity to be forgiven.
Love you, always
Your Daddy, Asadullah Saed