The gay community knows all the love I have. When I was 16, I would hang out with a group
of gay boys.
They would say, ‘Mo’Nique, you ain’t nothing but an old fag hag.’ And I’d say, ‘Really? Thank you!’ That whole group, except for one, are all deceased. That whole group. That whole group that I used to hang out with, except for one, are gone. Those beautiful brothers, they would always make me feel so special. They were so welcoming. They never called me fat. They never said, ‘Oh, girl, you’re just too big.’ They always said, ‘Oh, Miss Mo’Nique! You in that dress! Let me fix your hair.’ They were such a welcoming, loving environment. So this is my love letter to them — to say thank you. I remember going to the Garage in New York, the Clubhouse in D.C., the Mill in D.C., going to Zanzibar’s in North New Jersey. I said to my husband Sidney, ‘They were always so welcoming.’ He said to me, ‘It was two groups, and you were both the underdogs. You both felt like you were pushed away because of how you looked or who you were, so when you came together it was nothing but love.’ So for all my babies — and I call them my babies because they are — I say, live freely with no apologies. I’ve seen too many suffer.”