Pose star Indya Moore opens up about their conservative, religious upbringing and being gaslit ‘every day’ as a Black American

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Non-binary actor Indya Moore at World Pride in New York, 2019. (Erin Lefevre/NurPhoto via Getty)

Pose star Indya Moore has opened up about their conservative, religious upbringing – and how they’re using the extra time during the pandemic to try to heal.

In an wide-ranging interview with Vogue India, the 25-year-old explained how they balance sharing their personal life with their activism, and reminded readers that it’s not just white people who grow up in conservative, religious families.

“I find myself in a position where I have to always be vulnerable and share parts of myself. That makes people have too much access to me in a way that doesn’t feel safe. There’s so much that I am trying to learn and figure out, and in such a small amount of time,” they explained.

Moore opened up about how at 14 they went into foster care because of their parents’ transphobia, and are still “figuring out” their life.

“From living in survival mode, I have a set of experiences that I think are helpful to share on behalf of my community with the world, that form the way that I advocate for myself and people like me. But I still feel like I don’t have the grace to be human,” they said.

Trans non-binary model Indya Moore. (Rodin Eckenroth/FilmMagic)Trans non-binary model Indya Moore. (Rodin Eckenroth/FilmMagic)

The American actor and model is best known for playing Angel on Pose. This year, despite receiving widespread acclaim from viewers and critics alike, Pose‘s trans stars were shut out of almost all major acting, directing, and writing categories at the Emmys– a bitter blow for a show about the marginalisation of the trans community.

But it’s not just in their professional life that they’ve been shut out for being trans, as Moore told Vogue.

Indya Moore grew up in a Jehovah’s Witness household.

Describing the transphobia they faced growing up, they explained that their mum was a follower of the Jehovah’s Witness faith.

“Contrary to popular belief that only white families can be conservative,” they said.

“Practising being a part of this religion I faced some difficulties around being seen at home where I was. The moments where I was seen, I was criminalised.”

The actor has also been driving conversations about Black Trans Lives Matter.

“I think that this happening [the Black Lives Matter movement] has been affirming at a magnitude,” they said.

“It’s so large, but it’s still not enough for us to get liberated and get free. It’s still affirming nevertheless, because to be Black in America is to be gaslit everyday of your life and to gaslight yourself sometimes, to just get by.

“I kind of have access to myself so that I can explore more ways to have fun and to be happy, even when I am not doing anything, and to be OK with that. I want to lean into that a little more.

“These days I feel like I’ve been enjoying playing video games. It’s very low energy, and very low energy activities help me to unlayer some of the s**t that I carry every day. I am really working very hard to heal.”

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