We asked performer, filmmaker and writer of My Life As A Unicorn, Amrou Al-Kadhi what reassuring words of wisdom they would write to little them.
Dear little Amrou,
It’s Glamrou here, your drag queen alter-ego. Remember how you used to dream of dressing up in your mother’s clothes, wearing her make-up, strutting on stages in heels and flowing costumes – well, you’re doing it! You made your dreams come true. So hold on to that my angel.
Because I know how tough things are going to get. Everyone around you is going to try to stop you being yourself. You’ll be punished for expressing the truth of who you are, and you’ll be made to feel responsible for your family’s disappointment. But I want you to remember this – it is not your fault. None of it is.
I know it’s hard, but please try not to blame yourself. An easier task said than done when it feels like being true to yourself will hurt your mother and father; but the thing is – you are perfect the way you are. In a world full of horses, you are a unicorn.
I know how hard you work, because you feel like you have something to prove – that you are worthy of love, that you will amount to something, despite what you’ve been told. But know that you have nothing to prove to anyone – being queer is your gift, not your weakness. So hold onto that as things get scary. People will respond to your authenticity with fear, jealousy or prejudice; but it’s because you have a power that they do not. And when you’re grown up, it is that power that will bring you joy and triumph. I cannot wait for you to immerse yourself in the magical world we’ve built together.
I am always with you,
Amrou's book My Life As A Unicorn is out now in hardback and paperback. (And it's wonderful.)
This article was originally published as part of our partnership with with akt, the charity that supports LGBTQ+ young people aged 16-25 in the UK who are experiencing homelessness or living in a hostile environment.