The demonstrations against stigma and endless petitions carried out worldwide by homosexuals for their rights have prompted a somewhat carefree attitude for the youth of Botswana when exploring their sexuality.
In a random interview carried out by The Sunday Standard in the streets of Gaborone’s Block 8, Daisy Sediba, a second-year student at the University of Botswana, says the youth, particularly girls in their 20s, are always eager and willing to experiment with almost everything concerning issues of sexuality.
Sediba, who is defined by her carefree attitude and loud manner, claims to know about half of the girls living in the nation’s capital, Gaborone, and is willing to bet that 1 in every 15 girls living in the city has kissed a member of the same sex.
This, according to her, doesn’t make them lesbians as most have permanent boyfriends that they are courting. It’s becoming a popular trend amongst those in boarding schools as well. Not much surprise is expressed nowadays when one learns that close girl friends have kissed at one point in their friendship.
She, of course, hasn’t done it because she hasn’t found a girl she would like to kiss, but given a chance she wouldn’t resist.
“If I was in America, I would definitely make out with Alicia Keys, she is all woman.”
Keletso Dipebe, a 22-year-old attractive unemployed second-year student, but who never lacks for money because of her enormous trust fund, readily admits to kissing girls although she is straight.
“I am not a lesbian; as a matter of fact, I am so into boys, but kissing girls is fun.”
The majority of those girls who have kissed members of the same sex claim that kisses with each other are more fulfilling and fun for them because women are considerate and they like pleasing one another.
Dipebe says it’s rare to find a girl who hasn’t mastered the art of kissing well. It’s considered as part of women’s nature to take their time to make sure that the other person receives double the pleasure as themselves, while boys just shove their tongues down someone’s throat without consideration.
This is not to say that she would date a girl but she too wouldn’t hesitate to kiss one even if she has a boyfriend, because she wouldn’t consider it as cheating.
Asked about his take on girls who kissed each other, Amos Madima, a 19-year-old undergraduate at Ba Isago College, enthusiastically reveals that he wouldn’t mind if his current girlfriend kissed a female just as long as he was part of the action.
“When it’s girls just kissing its okay, tolerable, but when it comes to boys it’s a different story.”
Jenna Harris, a Form 5 student, holds a different view to Dipebe.
She says that she’s been told quiet often by boys that she was not attractive.
She also admits to have never had her first kiss or a boyfriend but to her that doesn’t make it acceptable to switch to girls. Harris says she would never dare kiss a girl because she even finds the thought revolting.
“I would rather wait for my prince charming for many years than to lose my dignity.”
While the heterosexuals, otherwise known as straight girls, might consider this as just an entertaining game, lesbians are furious at the intrusions on their territory.
Gladys Ndiko, a 25-year-old hard core lesbian who has never kissed a boy in her life, reveals that straight girls who cross the line are undermining their stand as lesbians and demeaning the position they are forever fighting for.
She says they make light of their struggles to gain acceptance in a closed society.
Ndiko says that it took her years to gain her parents’ support after she came out of the closet and is upset to see young girls flaunting their sexuality around, confusing the society even further.
Ndiko, who is also a stagnant gay activist, says she would never kiss a girl she wasn’t attracted to because that would only cause her to be termed as heartbreak. She knows her loyalties lie with courting females, therefore, she would not kiss a boy; she wonders why straight women cannot do the same.
Another lesbian, Katso Kereng, who is known for her crazy party antics, says she gets heartbroken by straight girls who use them, especially during the night at clubs and parties.
She claims that they lead them on by dancing suggestively with them on the dance floor after which a kiss is likely to follow.
Later on, the girl’s boyfriend would arrive; the girl would then leave with him, much to Kereng’s dismay and she would be left alone stranded the whole night.
“It happens at every club I visit, especially Ozone. Straight girls use us the same way boys do them. It’s just a game to them; they don’t consider other people’s feelings and I really do wish they would make their stand clear from the start.”
Upon proof-reading the findings of the research, my grandfather summed it up by saying, “What is this world coming to? Yesterday there were gays and lesbians; today everyone kisses anything.”