Liza not bothered by labels

DIRECT LINE - Boy Abunda - The Philippine Star

In all my years of involvement with the LGBT movement, I’ve noticed how people can fall into the habit of sticking labels even when they don’t fit. Like in the case of beauty queen, actress and dancer Liza Diño — whose engagement to Aiza Seguerra has been talked about, discussed, analyzed and criticized — it’s sometimes hard to make people understand that labels don’t always work.

When they first came out into the open about their relationship, Liza had some people calling her a tomboy. One even said, “Ano ka ba? Beauty queen ka pa naman. Tapos tomboy ka. Ano ba ‘yan?” Their reaction made her think until she realized that she was doing herself and their relationship a disservice by doing so. “Yung word na ‘tomboy,’ siguro ‘pag hindi ka talaga sanay, nakakagulat siya. Pero talagang tinatanong ko that time ang sarili ko, ‘Tomboy ba talaga ako?’ because I was in this relationship.”

That was when she decided it wasn’t worth it, allowing herself to be bothered by the labels people wanted to stick on her, on Aiza, or their relationship.

“Maybe because for me, I really feel very much sure of who I am,” says Liza. “I’m still a woman. Kung magkakaroon ako ng crush — of course, wala na ‘yon because I’m with Aiza — I’m still attracted to men. I’m not attracted to women. I don’t know what it’s called; I don’t know how to explain it. I’m just really attracted to Aiza as a person, and it goes beyond gender. It really does. Kaya ‘yung mga ganyang labels, I don’t really care. I want to tell people, sige, call me lesbian if you want to, I don’t care. If that’s what it means, if that would give you a better understanding of my relationship with Aiza, then so be it. But I know myself, kung ano ako bilang isang tao.”

Liza says she has absolutely no regrets about her decision to get into the relationship, or come out into the open with it. In fact, since she did that, she’s been blessed with so many good things. Aside from her role in the recently-concluded Mirabella where she got good reviews for her acting, she, Aiza and some friends recently staged High on Love, a concert that married their two interests: Aiza’s music and Liza’s dancing.

The concert did very well, which Liza feels is a sign. “Blessing talaga and (I think it’s) a sign that I’m going towards the right direction and things are going positively our way,” she says. “Feeling ko, it’s His way of saying that I’m blessing this relationship kasi lahat umaayos, eh. I’m so happy that everything has been good.”

Of course, there are still people who don’t have nice things to say. Liza instead chooses to focus on those who do.

In a recent interview, Liza revealed that between the two of them, Aiza is the man in the relationship. As expected, this announcement brought mixed reactions, although most people were approving and supportive because they know Aiza to be a good person.

“Maybe most of the people who are aware of our relationship, I think, ‘yun ang nakikita nila that’s why na-disarm sila easily about our relationship because Aiza is a good person and he has had a good reputation in this business, so people see him like that. And the way he is with his parents. So wala silang makitang masama na puwede nilang ilait kay Aiza except for his gender, which is so absurd if you really think about it.”

She is glad, though, that within her own family circle, everyone has been very accepting.

Even daughter Amara has no problems with welcoming Aiza as part of their family. “Aiza showers her with unconditional love, and their relationship has transcended from being buddies to Aiza being like a parent to her. And maybe it’s been a big help that we kept the communication open, so it transitioned to where we are right now, which I think is very, very ideal for us being a modern family.”


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