I am dating a muslim man and have a gay dad. I was raised as an Ally and can’t see myself ever turning my back to the people who raised me. Nor would my boyfriend want me too. However, he could also never turn his back to his family, which would mean he could not marry me unless I converted.
For quite some time now I have looked into Islam and I truly fell in love with it, but I cannot seem to be able to make my love for Islam and my loyalty to the queer community work together. Is there any Imam out there that I could contact to find answers to my questions?
Thank you for writing to us here at Alterheros, we appreciate your question and will do our best at helping you.
You are faced with a conflict between your feelings towards Islam and your Ally status for the queer community. Having been raised by a gay parent, you feel strongly about keeping loyal ties to him and the queer community but at the same time, you cannot marry your boyfriend without first converting to Islam, which does not condone homosexuality. As you are trying to find a way to reconcile the conflicting feelings, you are searching for an Imam who may be able to offer help.
I would first like to acknowledge your process of deciding to convert to the Islamic faith as a sign of your commitment to both your boyfriend and the religion. For some people, religion is a fundamental aspect of their life and it is highly revered. Finding a way to reconcile the differences between your upbringing and your prospective religion may not be an easy task, but I hope that this will offer you some ways to help.
My research on this topic yielded little results in terms of finding a particular Islamic leader for you to directly contact, but I was able to find articles and groups for LGBT Muslims and their allies. I recognize that some resources are a bit dated; I hope that some of the information is still relevant for you.
One article, coming from the alterheros.com site, talks about Salaam Canada and Al-Fatiha Foundation conducting an LGBTA Muslim conference held in Toronto in 2003. It also mentions other Salaam groups in Canada that are located in Toronto, Vancouver and Halifax. I realize that these groups may not be easily accessible for you, but perhaps there have been new chapters created in your area, or at the very least, they may have mailing lists or online communication.
Another organization called, Muslims for Progressive Values, offers an alternative view towards homosexuality (compared to some other Muslim groups). In this case, they show support for the LGBTQ community. They provide their own ideas and support for the LGBTQ Muslim community as well as outside links to other groups with the same values. I encourage you to explore their site and their partner sites in order to find a leader you can contact. Again, they are not local, but they do offer a Contact Us link that you might be able to use to ask them about any local resources for you.
I wish you the very best with finding the answers you are searching for. Should you have any further questions, don't hesitate to write again to Alterheros.