By Michael Price
Founder of I Can Be Society
When I was 12 years old I realized I was different. I was a black boy that had a crush on a white girl. This wasn’t acceptable, at least that’s what certain family members told me. They said things like, “stick with your own kind” or “birds of the same feather flock together.” After feeling demonized for a feeling that I couldn’t control, I spent the rest of my childhood and teenage years hiding the white girls I was interested in or was dating from my family.
It didn’t feel right. I felt like I was living a lie. Every time I would find interest in another white girl, I told myself that it was just a phase. I convinced myself that one day I’d get over it and fall in love with a black girl. Although I was attracted to white girls, I wasn’t unattracted to black girls. However, I had a preference and as I got older, it became an issue that I could no longer deny.
At 25, I married a white girl. We were high school sweethearts and we’ve been happily married ever since.
As a heterosexual male, I’ve never faced the challenges that the LGBT community faces. However, I am intimately familiar with the level of shame and guilt that comes from being different. For those reasons, I’ve always felt a passion to advocate for those who are different. It’s not about black or white, gay or lesbian. It’s about freedom. Freedom to love who you want without the shame and guilt impressed upon you by society.
When I built my business, I Can Be Society, I made a decision that we would be advocates for the “others,” and we would stand proud and represent out loud who we were no matter if people felt uncomfortable or disagreed with our lifestyle.
This is why I’ve designed a line of motivational and LGBT products, because sometimes the first step to changing public perception is being public about your persona.