6 Queer Couples Share Their Definition of Black Love

“Open your heart and mind to all the ways our love is the same.”

Black love is shared culture. Black love is afros under headscarves. Sometimes it’s tailor made for every couple and infinite in its meanings. And despite popular opinion, sometimes it means black love is queer love.

Typically, “black love” is a phrase passed down by every certified black auntie and never quite leaves mainstream conversation. On the surface, the term simply means black couples existing comfortably in both their culture and affection in each other. But somehow the “black love” concept often neglects the experiences of black queer couples in favor of a dominantly heteronormative narrative.

In general, queerness is often left out of most conversations about black love. There is no “L Word” exploring queer black femmes’ lives. And while there are small moments of representation in movies and television, more often than not these stories end in tragedy rather than lasting queer love.

But black queer couples do exist, and their narratives are valid in their normality. Here are just a few couples exploring how, for them, love is both queer and black.