“I identify as a trans man,” Tiq Milan said sitting next to his wife, Kim Milan, a woman who identifies as queer.
NBC BLK interviewed Tiq, tell stories of how they met, what love is to them and how they overcome adversity.
"I think loving a trans person outwardly, openly is definitely a revolutionary act,” Milan said.
The couples speak to the daily experience of living at the crossroads of being black and identifying as LGBT. Together or separate, these two groups carry the burden of societal implications that stem from ignorance and assumptions. Milan shares that his mother was fearful that he would not find love -- a common concern among loved ones of those in the trans community, he said.
When trans people do find love, as he Milan did, "it is a revolutionary act. It's countering this dominant narrative that there's a pathology with transgender people. It shows we are happy and healthy and deserving of love," he said. These couples prove that trans love exists and thrives in the black community despite the concerns and criticisms they often face.
“I think for a lot of queer people, we can lose access to our family because bigotry, because different kinds of violence so I think it can feel really hard when you’re making a family new and people have these specific ideas of what a family is supposed to look like,” Kim said.
More than three-quarters of Americans believe that transgender people face negative judgment, according to an NBC News survey. However, two-thirds of the same respondents believe that attitudes will begin to shift in a positive direction.
“We are happy and deserving of love,” Milan said.