The Brother I Lost

The Brother I Lost

Kito Diaries has been seen by someone who doesn’t bat for our team, guys. And this brother has something to say. Yes, you’re about to read KD’s first write-up written by a straight man. His pseudonym is Henry, and the real life story below is his.

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singles 25My name is Henry, and I am a straight man. I know you are wondering what I am doing here, but I came across this blog on a friend’s phone who is a regular contributor here and I begged him to help me send in this article. I implore you to keep an open mind when you read it.

Right from when we were kids, I knew something was different about my brother, Chukwuma. (Not his real name) He kept to himself mostly, even though I knew he wasn’t an introvert. He was the darling of the family and our parents indulged him in almost anything he wanted, yet it was as if he was not happy; like something was bothering him.

As we grew older, I started noticing how he walked – graceful, calculated steps, just like our two sisters, and when we walked back from mass on Sundays, you may not tell him apart from them from behind. He did not play football with us boys in the neighbourhood, neither did he play ‘police and thief’; he was content playing with our sisters’ dolls, and in those moments when he dressed up the dolls with my sisters, his animated side came alive.

The older we got, the more different we became. I started hating him. I did not understand why he loved wearing my mother’s shoes at home or why he walked like a girl, neither did I understand why his hands were always in the air like he was carrying a bag. A gulf started developing between us. We could not do things together. We could not go out together. I liked rap and hip hop, while he liked singing along to Whitney Houston and Celine Dion, matching their high notes. To me, he was less than a man, and I was ashamed of him; so I did not speak up in his defense when the boys at school called him names, I did not fight for him. I avoided Chukwuma in school; I simply could not understand why a boy would choose to be girly. I was very naïve.

Eventually the rumors started, people said he was homosexual and I refused to believe them. I remember the time I punched a boy in school who called me “homo’s brother.” The signs were there, but I refused to acknowledge them. I was better off not knowing, it gave me peace.

I eventually found out at the University of Port Harcourt where we were both admitted, him to study English and me to study Engineering. We were roommates, but we rolled in different circles, him with a few also-girly guys, mostly from his department, and me with some other guys. He always had nice things, things I knew our parents did not buy for him. A new phone, a new pair of shoes, the sound system etc. He was never broke. I smelt a rat, but I still refused to dig for it.

It was the day I was supposed to sleep over at my girlfriend’s place that I found out. My girlfriend and I fought and I had to leave her house just around midnight. I got into our house through the back door, with the generator drowning out sounds of me unlocking the door. And then, there was my brother spread-eagled on the bed with a boy I recognized from his class on top of him. I simply turned and left. I never told our parents about it, but something shattered between Chukwuma and I that day. We started avoiding each other, we never stayed home together at the same time, and we only talked when it was necessary. The tension could be cut with a knife.

After school and NYSC, he moved to Lagos and started working there, while I stayed back in Port Harcourt. We had no relationship anymore, even though at this time, I was trying to cultivate one. But he wouldn’t take my calls. I wanted my brother back, but he was gone. I drove him away for which I am ashamed of myself.

I regret all I have done. I love my brother very much, but I could not process the situation at the time. I was taught in church that homosexuality is a grave sin; I did not know how to relate with him after I found out. Looking back now, I should have reached out to him. I should have encouraged him to talk to me, to rely on me. I should have being a shoulder of comfort during those times he was depressed. I should have fought for him when the school boys called him names. I did not know how to love my brother, my gay brother; I was a coward and I now fear the damage I have done may be irreparable.

Chukwuma just gained admission to go to graduate school in the United States. In my heart, I know he is only escaping from all the negativity that threatens to choke him here. I am terrified that I may lose him forever, that he would go and never come back.

I want to believe you read this blog, my dear brother. I don’t know any other way to tell you how I feel but to write this. I love you and I will always love you. Please let me be your brother again.

Written by Henry

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49 Comments

  1. poshyydude
    August 12, 04:52 Reply

    Awwwww!!!! So touching am so happy that chukwuma brother is deeply sorry for all he has done and find a way to forgive his big bro,at least he has someone in his family he could call his own

  2. dammychoy
    August 12, 05:09 Reply

    So cool…. And it’s my first comment in here though have been a regular follower of kito diaries. So happy that his brother finally felt sorry for not always being there for him

  3. luke
    August 12, 05:10 Reply

    I do hope his brother reads this, then again take a flight, bus or whatever show up where he lives and talk to him, least you know where he stays am sure, you have the opportunity to right what you call a wrong, but then you were also afraid and am sure we all relate to your story.
    You want to be his brother then be his brother, cross that bridge, move and find him? Cause in my experience, which I am one, once lost we maybe hard to reach out too. emotional the struggle with family members drains one, so when he leaves he may lock up about too many things. I do hope you do something before he leaves tho. And thank you for being a man. Takes a lot to admit this and move forward.

  4. Arabian Princess
    August 12, 05:18 Reply

    I can totally relate to this–as the younger brother,minus the being caught eagle-spread on the bed. My brother and I have a really strained relationship especially after the recurring kitos. He’s being trying to understand it all but its not easy for me to open up to him. Going to the USA might be the best option for your brother but I hope he realizes that family might “sometimes” be important.

    ***goes back to finding my Arabian Prince***

  5. daniel
    August 12, 05:18 Reply

    Lol, is it just me or I didn’t see anything he did wrong, for a straight brother u were kind enough (at least better than a few I know). Least u can do is call him, talk to him, and trust me, he’d be grateful u did. He just feels a lil disappointed that u know about him and also scared about how u’ll take it.

    • xpressivejboy
      August 12, 07:24 Reply

      Dan just laid my exact tho’ts and words…you were very nice as a brother…just look for every way possible to contact him, be with him and talk heart-to-heart; I’m sure he’ll forgive. You’re a MAN for doing this…not all Brothers would.

  6. Deola
    August 12, 05:37 Reply

    This brought me to tears… If only all humans had such compassion and understanding.
    I sincerly hope the two of you find a way to repair the rift between you. I’ll be cheering you guys on.

  7. Dennis Macauley
    August 12, 06:28 Reply

    I can relate to this totally as I also have almost no relationship whatsoever with my two brothers. They were never there for me and now they are trying to make an effort it’s too late, too much water has passed under the bridge.
    We may forget the harsh words of our enemies, but we will not forget the silence of our friends.
    I hope this two are able to salvage their relationship and move ahead, even though I personally believe that blood is overrated!!!

    • Rapu'm
      August 12, 06:53 Reply

      “We may forget the harsh words of our enemies, but we will not forget the silence of our friends.”

      This was nice, Dennis. But, I don’t think family is overrated. Maybe I’ve had a different experience, but family has been, for me, the only place I fall back to when everybody just sort of looks away. Maybe that’s why it’s easier to come-out to a friend than to a brother: because a friend can be replaced if he chooses not to understand; but a brother? No.

      • pinkpanthertb
        August 12, 07:05 Reply

        I love my family very very much. And what I’m about to say is by no means a reflection of my relationship with them. But I don’t think anyone is irreplaceable. Not even family. If tomorrow, my folks turn on me becos of their distaste for my sexuality, I WON’T stick around and endure the negativity in the name of Blood is thicker than Water. And I happen to have a couple of friends, one of ’em a follower of this blog, who are so dear to me, they are practically family.

      • Dennis Macauley
        August 12, 07:12 Reply

        “Blood is thicker than water, however let me tell you, some blood flows thinner and some water is as thick as sludge”

        Chika Unigwe said this in her 2013 novel “Fire Dancer”

        For me that statement says it all Rapu’m

      • Rapu'm
        August 12, 07:26 Reply

        Well, that’s interesting. I get your point, Dennis and Pinky. But it would break my heart if my family turn their backs on me. But, well, life continues.

      • Chuck
        August 12, 11:51 Reply

        Pinky, the origin of “blood is thicker than water” is quite interesting. The full saying is “the blood of the covenant is thicker than the water of the womb,” meaning that the relationships and friendships you decide on are stronger than family relationships.

        • pinkpanthertb
          August 12, 12:02 Reply

          Can you imagine how neatly its been ironed out to mean the exact opposite…

  8. Rapu'm
    August 12, 06:48 Reply

    Good writing. Sentence pacing great.

    Emm, Henry, just copy this post and send it to him as a message. It was so honest, so touching, he’ll understand. I hope you guys fill the gully that has grown between you. And please we here will like to know what happens finally. Stay happy.

  9. kritzmoritz
    August 12, 06:58 Reply

    I am deeply proud of the journey you have made to reach this day. Proud of your transition and the power you dredged from within you to forgive yourself despite the fact that you barely had options in the choices you made. Your brother needs to forgive himself too and move on. You have shown yourself a man; a worthy one at that and I have no doubt you and your brother will be fine.

  10. Micky
    August 12, 07:03 Reply

    Awwww… This brought tears to my eyes. Now that’s a brother! I hope he comes around soon.

  11. trystham
    August 12, 07:13 Reply

    HATE your brother??? From the same mother??? I don’t want to believe you could feel that emotion towards him cos he made u feel awkward back in secondary school. Maybe u were just uncomfortable or just jealous….that’s my normal mind which will not believe there is evil in anybody

    As for my open mind, I am suspicious of your turn around feelings for this ur brother. I hope u r quite successful at what u do cos I think you see a potential gain u want to exploit getting back with your bro. In that case I shud b very worried for him. However, when he wants to be found, he will return. There is always that yearning for the home hearth.

    So brother Henry, ur apology is still with the jury.

      • trystham
        August 12, 08:01 Reply

        Not that. I am too trusting for my liking. I tend to take ppl’s word for it at first glance so when someone asks me to think twice, give em benefits of doubt, use ur church mind for anything, I tend to be suspicious.

    • xpressivejboy
      August 12, 07:35 Reply

      Trystham, well, we must have tho’t towards that direction…but chose to give a benefit of the doubt, he could be truly sorry for his actions and/or inactions. Let’s all just indulge him and pray he be for real and true to a brother who is left shattered somewhere in some seclusion.

    • Regal Sweetheart
      August 12, 07:54 Reply

      I’m with you on this, Trystham. First train of thoughts that ran through my mind before the sentimentality swung by. But then again, it’s easy to assume that he’s truly sorry…depending on life’s situation. If he’s come to the point of longing for someone who understands him or some form of nostalgia about growing up then…*snores on my bicycle*

      • xpressivejboy
        August 12, 07:59 Reply

        LOL! RegalSweetie, wake up! You’re about to hit the railway.

    • Dennis Macauley
      August 12, 09:24 Reply

      Trystham not everybody has an ulterior motive. Maybe he just realized what a shitty brother he had been and he wants to make amends. Maybe he just wants his brother back!

  12. sensuousensei
    August 12, 07:25 Reply

    If he takes you back, be happy. If he doesn’t, live with it. Actions always have consequences we cannot escape. Thank you for writing!

  13. Koteh
    August 12, 08:28 Reply

    Hmmmm…..Medicine after death…well I hope it works cos I fink I know how the lil bro is feeling..anyways let’s hope he sees ur msg…Thumbs up for trying to make amends….

  14. dolapo
    August 12, 09:14 Reply

    Am if d broda reads dis he would know his elder bro wants him back and Å̶̷̩̥͡•̸Ϟ sure he knows where the bro stay in Port-harcourt or he should try and pick his calls cos they say two wrongs can’t make a right

  15. Dennis Macauley
    August 12, 09:18 Reply

    I hope the two of them get to sit down and talk! Be very open with one another and finding peace.
    However I am with Sensei, there is a possibility that too much water has passed under the bridge. If that be the case, accept it and move on with your life.

  16. Khaleesi
    August 12, 09:37 Reply

    This is such a sad, sad, sad story. I read and reread it several times and each time my eyes filled with tears. Henry, you almost wrote the story of my life … i also grew up knowing from a very tender age that I was different and that I experienced the world differently; I preferred to play with my sisters while the other boys ran around kicking balls, when my sister got her first Barbie dolls, i immediately learned to weave their long flowing hair, I became introverted and reclusive, still am to an extent because i was afraid of the weirdness i sensed around me, several of my relatives frequently commented on how feminine i was including my walk and hand gestures, by the time i was in my teens and in high school, the taunts and yabbs of the other guys made forced me to “man up”, but i still knew i was different. At some point, i learned to get along with the other guys and even became somewhat popular amongst them. The only difference b/w your brother and
    i is that though my siblings and i have never discussed my sexuality, i feel quite certain that they know or at least suspect but they have dropped indirect signals to let me know that they will always love me no matter what. I know that though i havent come out to them, whenever i summon up the courage to do so, I can count on their continued support even if the rest of the world turns its back on me. This offers me some hope.
    I can feel the pain and heartbreak your brother must have gone through growing up, he must really have loved you. I am sure it must have broken his heart when you abandoned him, he went through a mourning and grieving process which may or may not be complete now. I admire you for reaching out and attempting to re-establish the bond you once shared with your brother. Please dont be discouraged, no matter what keep trying to reach out to your brother, you may think that too much water has passed under the bridge, but am a strong believer in the saying that love conquers all … It might take your brother a while to dig through the pain and hurt and find the bond you once shared, but with time and openness, it can be achieved, and you will both be the better for it …. **hugs***

  17. Smith
    August 12, 09:55 Reply

    I deeply hate DUPLICITY in human beings ….he said ” i saw my brother spread-eagled on the bed with a boy I recognized from his class on top of him. I simply turned and left “. Dis guy wuld have LYNCHED supposed it wasnt his broda wit d level of odium in his heart for queer like us! However,henry,like kitodiary said it “We’re Here. We’re Queer.We’re Fab”. I sincerely wish u GUDLUCK!!

  18. Blaq Jaqs
    August 12, 10:22 Reply

    Feels very close to home. Your relationship with your brother mirrors what I had growing up.
    My own ‘Henry’ and I were as different as we could be. While I obsessed over the Spice Girls, he learnt rapping California Luv and Gangsta’s Paradise. I remembered we would fight over everything that we could fight over. Our sisters exhibited the same characteristics but unlike us they would make up almost immediately. Ours was different however. Henry and I. It seemed beyond the normal sibling squabbles.
    Most of what I felt for him was resentment. A lot of it. For not standing up for me when his friends would laugh and taunt and say words like Fag. For not choosing other boys over me on his soccer team. I know I was no good at it but would have wanted to play just to fit. For telling Ma that I had weird friends who acted like Sissies.
    I guess the resentment drifted us apart, mostly aloofness on his part. It took form. Became a person of its own or a wall, comfortably wedged in between us. Till we became slightly more than strangers.
    We got into the University in the same year, shared classes in the same block but we would barely acknowledge each other. Perhaps a nod on some days a limp handshake. That was always about it.
    Today we are cordial with each other, talking from time to time mostly when he needs financial advice or when I have car issues. There may even joke on those rare moments. But that’s as far as it goes for now. And it seems okay.
    At least I don’t resent him anymore. I love him (I guess I came to realize this when he got really ill earlier this year). I know he doesn’t understand why I am gay and probably would always wish I was not. But I’ve learnt to accept what it is and shared a bond amongst other brothers whose ties are not blood but rather a common struggle/experience.

    I think your brother would love to share his life, experiences and world with you. But it may take a while. Just reach out to him, make a concious effort to be in his life and show interest. I believe he’ll open up to you eventually. Most of us want a family member willing to take this step you want to.

  19. Dennis Macauley
    August 12, 10:35 Reply

    A lot of people are actually hurting! Families torn apart by ignorance, by homophobia, by religion! Where is the love?

    • Khaleesi
      August 12, 12:27 Reply

      am not one to hate, but when i ponder on the damage wreaked by religion and then I examine the odious history of religion through the centuries and its status today in the very lands where it used to be an unshakeable and dominant institution, I cant help but feel a deep revulsion for it. It has done us much more harm than good. The earlier our people wake up, cast off the bonds of false religion and start to use their intellect, the earlier we can start to advance as a society …

  20. luke
    August 12, 13:37 Reply

    I read most of the comment here and it really funny that the one thing we fighting against as gay people, the one thing we say we don’t want to become, we hAve become . The dude made a post hoping to reach his brother and share with us his story, all some of you can do is mistrust, judge and condemn him for his actions, same shit we fight against the striaght world for. What happenes to leading help to being this people closer, if it by CONSTRUCTIVE advice or positive words.
    Pls let know male our comment here another Linda ikejI blog comment. Some people saying they suspect him of wantING to profit of his brother that’s why he want back, like really, what the hell is wrong with some of us, your comments don’t make you any cuter or hot, am hoping this is ground where we can all feel some brotherly love, and support toward one another.leave the negative stuff to the church, bigot plss.
    The feeling that if l have a problem I wouldn’t share, cause some one with less self confidence want bring you down along with him, will say shit or post a stupid comment is now very much a possibility. Pls admin do some to address this

    • luke
      August 12, 13:38 Reply

      Sorry for my mis spelling, autocorret doesn’t help that much either.but seriously tho

      • DeadlyDarius
        August 12, 22:40 Reply

        I get your sentiment Luke & I probably would not be the 1st to question his story….but I can understand those who have misgivings. Many hv been betrayed by those who are supposed to be ‘family’. Sad but undeniable.

        • pinkpanthertb
          August 12, 23:38 Reply

          That’s the thing. Yes, it’s good to preach forgiveness and understanding. But when a gay guy feels distrust, it is allowed.

  21. king
    August 12, 14:20 Reply

    Woooow touching!!! I feel your hurt. Pinky thumbs up!!!

  22. Lexus
    August 12, 16:32 Reply

    This is so touchy, tears literally dropd 4rm my eyes

  23. Chizzie
    August 12, 16:54 Reply

    I hope your brother finds it in his heart to forgive you, just like you have found it in yours to love him. But then again he has nothing to loose if he doesn’t, when he needed you the most you weren’t there for him…I think it’s only fair. Sometimes affection comes a little too late, when wounds have become permanent scars.

  24. Dimkpa
    August 12, 17:35 Reply

    Henry if you read this, I hope you get to talk to your brother and make up. I don’t condemn nor judge you. I am glad you have come to accept your brother for who he is. I only wish that many more people will come to the same epiphany as you.
    I have a brother, we were supposed to be close but my preference for oga, reading and singing trumped my interest in football and stuff. That coupled with the fact that he always beat me at those games meant we didn’t play together as often as we should have. He was frustrated with me and I knew it and felt it. He had some resentment for me because of that. We are human and can’t help how we feel. So I understand your reaentment and actions. You wanted a brother with whom to do exploits and got a gay one instead.
    The good thing is that you’ve come to accept him which in itself is a rarity, small miracle, in this part of the world and for that I applaud you. I hope you can help spread the gospel that we are born this way.
    I came across a similar story of a family that tried to accept a gay son the wrong way and the young man ended up committing suicide. They put the story up on a site “just because he breathes” or something like that as a warning to others. You might want to read it.
    Wishing you all the best as you search for your brother.

  25. JustJames
    August 12, 18:12 Reply

    I guess I’m quite lucky. Before they found out/confirmed I was into dudes my brothers knew I was different but they still defended me.

    Like most people here I do hope your brother forgives you. And if he doesn’t don’t give up. I repeat DO NOT GIVE UP. You are family and you do whatever it takes to keep your family.

  26. Andrevn
    August 12, 20:01 Reply

    My Story is similar but filled with violence.The taunting and ridicule while growing up. Had stitches on my head,a broken shoulder blade,on painkillers for a month. Now i’m all grown up,i do not talk to any of them (literarily) though we live under the same roof.My Pain and Hurt runs deep in my veins. I feel pity for them sometimes though…if only they would understand.

  27. Stickysly
    August 12, 22:15 Reply

    This story is one of the most emotional ones I have read on this blog.

    2 wrongs never make a right; never.
    No matter what people say, when all else is stripped off what is left is family. Of course some family members can be really nasty to deal with.
    What is most important in this stroy is that Henry has realised that family is it.

    For those who have had raw deals with friends and family, it may be necessary to make a little allowance for their ignorance in dealing with matters. I believe that those who get a moment of clarity / sanity and are remoseful deserve a shot at earning forgiveness.
    Bear in mind that our society has always frowned at “deviant sexual behavious” (whatever that means) and so many people tend to react irrationally when faced with such family members.

    I cannot claim to know the psychological trauma sum Kitodiariesians may have gone through with intolerant friends and family members. However, forgiveness, when genuinely sought is a sure way of rising above hate and repairing broken bridges.

    Scars may be huge and visible but I can assure you that African Shea butter (“orio rio”) has a way of reducing scars and making the skin more aesthitically appealing!

  28. Lothario
    August 14, 20:08 Reply

    I really hope it goes well with your brother… Certainly not the easiest thing coming to this mindset you’ve arrived at, but I applaud you!

    All the best!

  29. Dxavia
    April 07, 16:54 Reply

    So if he had died like bobby, {prayers for bobby} you come n cry him buckets eh?? *irritated* anyways ur penance is still pendin. So its alryt.

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