The Joys of Living With a Gay Roommate
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“Perhaps home is not a place but simply an irrevocable condition.” —James Baldwin
Home. Is it where you pay your rent? Where your parents live? Where you take off your shoes and rest? In many ways, a home is nothing more than a space where you feel most comfortable. The place where you sleep can be home, or the bars where you laugh and play can feel like home, too. But what can help you to feel like you’re home? A good friend or two? I think so.
I’ve had many homes over the last 10 years. From living with my parents as a teen to dorming with two straight men, dorming with three straight women, dorming with one straight man, and then two straight men again. Going back down to one straight roommate, then transitioning to one queer man and two queer women.
Now I find myself living in a household full of gay men. When I look back on it, I get a bit of whiplash. But also, I see the journey and where it has taken me.
I enjoyed all my roommates before, some more than others, but there’s something special about having gay roommates and the environment I find myself in now. If home is simply an irrevocable condition, what can help foster that condition? Comfort? A free feeling? The room to dance, dress down and lay out? I think so, at least. And what better way to do that than to be surrounded by peers of a similar background.
Don’t get me wrong, living with people who challenge you and think differently than you can be great. But being in a space where others talk about gay life, love and sex is so … nice. The joy in having a gay roommate or two is being able to know that you’re not being judged for the queer life you live and breathe. Because at the end of the day, they’re living it too.
Now, all LGBTQ people are different. You’re bound to argue about some things while laughing about others. Bitch fits, side-eyes and bad days come with the territory. But there’s a certain joy in living a shared experience. It’s like, you see a spark inside of them or a note to the same tune as your own. The joy of living with a gay roommate is the joy of living where you feel you’re your truest. Your realest.
So what is this “irrevocable condition” Baldwin’s talking about? I think it’s simply being you in a space that celebrates you. A space with gay roommates gives you a chance to live that joy.