A Gozitan youth who once felt like an outsider in his religious community due to his sexuality has opened up about becoming comfortable with himself – and even becoming President of a group aimed at supporting anyone who wants to come out on the sister island.
“When I was 17, I realised what my sexuality was, and I recognised that it was valid,” Eman Borg said in a new video released by St George’s Basilica.
Speaking to the religious organisation, Borg explained that when he realised he was gay at first, he didn’t feel comfortable enough to speak to any members, and began losing touch with the religious community.
“When I first came out, I realised that the communities that I was a part of, the support systems I had my whole life, weren’t there anymore,” he said. “I was an outsider in communities I had always been a part of… and it was painful. I didn’t want to have anything to do with them since I had no one to speak to.”
Soon after, Eman said he began to lose his spirituality, and learnt some hard “lessons” during this period. However, he says this time was important for him to find his own sexuality and spirituality.
After coming out, his mother thought Eman would change totally, and begin dressing different and hanging out with different people.
However, he looks back with a smile on his face, laughing about how many would say he didn’t exactly look like he fits in the LGBT+ community either.
Unsure whether he fit in the Catholic community or the LGBT+ community after all of this, he was left wondering: “So, where should I stay?”
Today, Eman has learnt to love himself, and the duality in his personality; his different “sides” have come together to form one beautiful being. He has also become the president of LGBT+ Gozo, a group offering support to youths who are coming to terms with their sexual identity but have no one to speak to.
Gozo being such a small island where everyone knows everyone, isn’t a bad thing, Eman said, since the chances of you lowkey knowing someone else gay, whether it’s your neighbour’s son or someone the street over – is massively increased.
And when it comes to feeling accepted within the church, he feels safe – otherwise, he wouldn’t even be holding the interview with the church’s media, he pointed out.
“Today, I am at peace,” Eman ended. “Because I am who I am. It’s a beautiful thing to find yourself, and accept yourself for who you are – it’s one of the greatest things in life.”