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    Idols judge Somizi Mhlongo says he is blessed to have parents that support him – regardless of his sexuality.

    Speaking to Sunday World, Somizi Mhlongo said it was difficult for him to come out as gay, and there was a time when he was puzzled. However, he has praised his parents for being so caring.

    "I am blessed. I am one of the few. We never even talk about my sexuality with my parents and my family. My parents are a true example of what unconditional love is. They've let me be who I am," Somizi said.

    "When I was personally puzzled and terrified, not of the world but as I was still finding out how to handle some of the complicated situations I would be in, my family supported me as I prepared myself for what was to come. Trust me, your parents know from day one, they know from your behaviour what your sexual preference is," he added.

    Mhlongo added that he still has a hard time in the entertainment industry because of his sexuality.

    "The minute I came out and expressed my sexuality, I was put in a box. I no longer got cast for straight roles and that is the reason I refuse to play gay roles even to this day," he said.

    On being gay and fathering a child, he said: "When I fathered a child I already knew I was not a straight guy. I did everything knowing very well I was gay. I could have been bisexual but definitely not straight."

    Mhlongo added that the annual Gay pride event should be a commemoration of gay life and a remembrance of gay people who were neglected by society.

    "The pride is about who I am and we must rejoice who we are. When we march on the streets, we should think of all the people who have suffered and were raped and killed because of their sexuality. We must think of all gays and lesbians who died of HIV and Aids-related illnesses and could not get assistance because they were gay. Let's fight to end the discrimination because some gay people want to donate blood but cannot because of the stigma attached to homosexuality. Some have lost their jobs because of their sexual preferences," he concluded.

    Picture credit: now.co.za

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