Janelle Monae Comes Out As Gender Non-Binary, Fans React

Janelle Monae, superstar artist and owner of Wondaland Arts Society, recently came out on Twitter as gender non-binary. This follows their 2018 announcement in Rolling Stone that they also identify as pansexual. The singer and songwriter has long been an activist for LGBTQ+ rights and representation, and it seems they are once again fearlessly opening themself up to the world. 

Janelle Monae came out as pansexual in 2018 

Janelle Monae
Janelle Monae | Tommaso Boddi/WireImage

In 2018, Janelle Monae made a bold move. During an interview with Rolling Stone, Monae took a leap and revealed their sexuality to the world. They came out as pansexual to the outlet. 

At the time, Monae told Rolling Stone, “Being a queer black woman in America, someone who has been in relationships with both men and women – I consider myself to be a free-a** motherf*cker.”

Monae went on to tell the outlet that while they initially thought they were bisexual, their research into pansexuality helped them realize their own truth. “…[B]ut then later I read about pansexuality and was like, ‘Oh, these are things that I identify with too.’ I’m open to learning more about who I am,” explained Monae. 

When Monae’s album Dirty Computer came out, the artist told Rolling Stone that the album is out there to help people come to terms with themselves “I want young girls, young boys, nonbinary, gay, straight, queer people who are having a hard time dealing with their sexuality, dealing with feeling ostracized or bullied for just being their unique selves, to know that I see you. This album is for you. Be proud,” said Monae.

Janelle Monae comes out as nonbinary 

Since coming out as pansexual, Janelle Monae has revealed that they identify as gender non-binary as well. 

Monae retweeted a post that read, There is absolutely nothing better than living outside the gender binary. #IAmNonbinary.” While Monae didn’t add any additional details, it seemed clear to fans that this was Monae coming out as nonbinary. 

Gender non-binary refers to people who do not define themselves as exclusively male or female — their personal feelings about their own gender do not fall into the otherwise limiting binary options that many ascribe to. It’s helpful to think of nonbinary individuals as existing on a gender spectrum, as opposed to the “a” or “b” that comes with exclusively masculine and feminine identification.

Fans react to the news

Janelle Monae
Janelle Monae | Marcus Ingram/Getty Images for Belvedere Vodka

Fans have been supportive and thrilled to hear Janelle Monae come out as gender non-binary. Reactions were swift on Twitter, with many users asking Monae to specify their pronouns so they can refer to Monae properly. 

One user wrote, “ALEXA PLAY DIRTY COMPUTER AT 100% VOLUME WHILE I HAPPY CRY A LIL BIT.”

Another fan added, “[You] are a true inspiration and I adore u for living ur life exactly how ur meant to.”

Alphonso David of the Human Right Campaign tweeted, “[Y]our visibility could not be more important. Thank you for your courage and honesty. We support you!!!”

“Because you spoke up today, some person out there was lifted from the darkness of being afraid, unseen, and uncertain of their identity in a society that hates LGBTQ+ people. Thank you for being a voice to those finding their own, and for publicly sharing something intimate,” added another Twitter user.