When you think of this in the Indian context where ‘what will people say’ has historically trumped an individual’s mental and social well-being, it is unsurprising that even after the article 377 judgement, conversion therapy camps, familial abuse, and individual and couple suicides in the queer community are very much a reality.
For a community that struggles to be recognised as valid by external actors, more often that not, queer relationships feel the pressure to be portrayed as perfect, in order to increase that claim for validity.
I am a pansexual woman and I am in a relationship with a straight cis-man for the past two years. He is an amazing person, and he accepts and embraces my identity. However, people no longer see me as a queer person anymore, I have become another straight woman to them.
I wasn't good
You weren't all bad
But that wasn't love
And that I understood.
You were like the grill of a window and me, a mere droplet of water trying to hold on but ultimately falling to the cold hard ground. Letting go was better, lest we should have amalgamated into one rusted being.
I know this is anonymous, I know this might never reach you, but just to throw this out in the universe, I am saying this, I saw you crying in the corner on the day of our cultural festival, and I hope whatever is troubling you, ease up soon.
The hope through education is to consistently allow each child the opportunity to be free to learn about and make space for identity markers that speak to one’s authentic truth. This is where I really appreciate how simply these two books with Ms Kuriyan’s playful illustrations drive home the need to see and accept oneself and other children (and everyone!) as unique individuals.
She wants to weave a sentence with her feelings. Wants to use it as the thread, the needle, and the cloth. She wants to make it into ink and write it with the pen of her heart, spilled onto Jun’s paper. She wants her feelings to become not words but fact–unnecessary to be read or spoken, simply known without much thought.
Everyone was in their dormitory but loud whispers in the dark carried out through the hostel corridors. The warden had just retired to her room, and from there she bellowed out names, calling for silence. And I? I was there watching you. I was perched on the bathroom slab; of marble, cold and flat. I remember that. I sat on it unflinching still because I couldn’t allow myself to seem fragile. You had just finished washing your undergarments, and were slowly clipping them up to dry at the other end of the washroom.
I’m not at all unsure, I look at her and I know.
She’s the kind of girl
I want to wrap myself around,
Press my lips against, and slam into the door.
Coming to dates, that’s exactly what I was watching – a Netflix series called “love on the spectrum” showcasing Autistic people dating other Autistics. It was definitely a revealing look into a world unseen by most but too uncomfortably familiar to the Autistics.
Min adamantly hooked his fingers in Kim’s belt loops and led them away. His nudging was gentle at first, but his insistence grew when the other made no move to follow. There was a lot of courage to be mustered just so a man could follow.
In 2018, I came across an ad of an agency on Facebook. They claimed to help find partners for the homosexual community in India. Their impressive portfolio of a year and golden words made me believe that there is actually something like this and it is possible.
Nagarkirtan is a story about two characters, Puti, a trans-woman stuck in a man’s body living in a ghetto for hijras in Kolkata with her Gurumaa and her chosen family, and Madhu, a cis-gender man who is a flutist with a kirtan group and a part-time delivery boy from the rural heartlands of Bengal.
I got really tired of being a woman who had to be “perfect” at every turn. I could not have a many days where I could sit and do nothing because I was depressed. It was frowned upon. Depression is frowned upon.
I can't kiss my love on the street, because she might notice the bruises on my heart from beating too loud,
might notice I tremble too much,
night notice I'm bringing an earthquake on the pavement.
As someone who had been the new kid too many times and didn’t have a close group of friends, I longed to fit in somewhere. I desperately wanted to be a part of the queer community. I took so many “Am I Gay?” and “Where are you on the Kinsey Scale” quizzes, modifying my answers to get the result I wanted.
When I was 16 or 17, just starting to realise that I was trans (though FAR from accepting it), I was also in the early stages of identifying as asexual. I always felt like my attraction to girls was different than people around me. Obviously, I later realised it’s partly because it was gay attraction and not straight attraction, but at that point I figured that the sexual component was missing for me.
I know I'm living a lie, but it's only because the truth is uglier. I cannot go a day without talking to you, I lose sleep even at the thought of fighting with you. The idea of you not being okay with something in my life makes me wonder if it really is worth it.
As cis women, trans and non-binary persons’ home with and without parents, physical environment, alone spaces are different and are dealt differently but what happens when sexuality never appears as a question out of fear. Is it a privilege that the question appeared much later in my life and I still do not have to bear the brunt of it because I look no different than a cis-heterosexual woman?