Autobiography of an Indian Gay Man from a Middle Class Family (Part 2/2)

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Read the first part here.

I was so blinded by my emotions that I couldn’t even see through his tricks of getting all these benefits out of me; he continued dating other guys as well during the course and I was thinking that I’ve met my soul mate. I would not blame this guy completely; it was my fault as well for encouraging such a behavior; wherein I would buy him clothes, perfumes, gifts, movies, lunches, dinners and what not. This was my first time in a relationship (so-called) and it was a bad experience but I loved the affection which was showered upon me by him. I loved that feeling but I realized that there was a much better feeling when you are actually loved by someone selflessly. It was through this guy that I happened to meet my real soul mate, my babu shona.

It was a musical event when we first met one and half years ago. This first meeting then turned out to be stalking on Grindr, right swipe on Tinder, chatting on WhatsApp, becoming friends on Facebook and talking on phone. After about a month, it was our first meeting at Starbucks, even though I was not so interested but something about this guy attracted me towards him, to meet him at least once and not to break his heart. This first meeting led way to many more such meetings over a period of another month and it was over this month, that I realized the true feeling of being loved by someone in a romantic way, the care that can be showered upon someone. It was during this time that I realized how people who are romantically involved would take care- whether the other person has eaten on time, took a good rest, slept well et al. During these meetings, we would discuss everything but our future together; work, families, hardships, friends, etc. At the very first night out, which was planned at his place, I expressed my feelings for him which were equally reciprocated and there began a beautiful journey of love &  belongingness.

It really is a great feeling to be with someone, beginning morning with their voice, keeping a regular tab on their activities, meeting in the evening, missing them during the moments when you are not together.

It all made sense now. I, who always considered myself very practical and non-emotional, felt every inch of my soul and my body belonging to him.

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Pic Credit: Sid Mukherjee‎/QGraphy

It was during this time when I decided to come out to my parents as it would require their approval for us to settle down together. I had a very positive feeling of acceptance at home. Who knew, that even finding a single moment of letting my feelings known to my parents would be this difficult when they are engulfed with problems of their own; finding a bride for my brother, issues with his job, bad health of both of my parents and lots more. I could not find a single moment to express my feelings to them, to open up to them; it was always about consoling them that everything would be fine and their lifetime of hard work will bear fruits and they would enjoy a happy life, if not earlier but at least in the later decades of their lives. I had to play strong so that things don’t scatter away. Things just went on with a hope of finding a right time for me to let my parents know of my sexuality. I had my guy to support me throughout this time, who kept on assuring me that the right time for this will surely come. My elder brother, from somewhere, found out about my sexuality and once confronted me on this. I surprised myself by replying strongly to him, for the very first time and declaring to him that I AM GAY. It was a melodrama after that. I knew that my brother would not accept me for this, him being a macho, a bully all his life. I was not expecting any support from him either. The matter was brushed under the carpet as he was about to get married in the same month.

Time went by and the thought of getting me married struck my parents’ minds. This happened only a month or two after my brother got married. With all the issues and problems in the family, I just kept on insisting to not get me married at all; without revealing the real reason behind that. They considered it to be a general negation which every other marriageable guy does initially. I never came to know that they were serious about getting this over with this early. Prospective brides were being looked for, all in haste, by all the relatives. I could not gather enough courage to tell my parents the truth. Photographs and biodata of girls were sent to my email id, which I conveniently ignored.  One of the families came to our home in Delhi to have a look at me, even after I told my parents not to do so; all this being arranged by my brother.  On one such unfortunate day, I got a call from my parents telling me that they would be coming down to Delhi to meet the family and the girl and I had to join them as well. I was timid enough to deny them and then the following weekend, I was taken there, and all decked up, made to meet the girl, talked to her for 5 minutes and was asked to make a decision. I was shell shocked as I was not prepared to do so; I came in there with a mindset of delaying the matter, opening up to my parents at home and then saying no to this girl’s family. Everything fell out of place at that instant. I had to gather all the courage to tell my mom about myself. I never imagined that I would be opening up and coming out to my mother in such a situation. It was then that I told my mom that I liked boys and I don’t want to marry a girl. Then, the least what I had expected happened, my mom was all furious and highly non-accepting of this fact. She herself made a decision of getting me married to this girl and my choice didn’t matter at all. I was broken to pieces.

It wasn’t me or my future which shattered there but it was my guy’s dreams which did. I could clearly see him breaking down. All the bubbles of our dreams we had woven together of our beautiful future, popping into thin air.

It wasn’t the girl I cared about, I knew I would be doing injustice to her but all I cared was for my guy. My guy; whose love I rekindled after much heartbreak, whose only support was my love and I was taking everything away from him. People can call me selfish for ruining a girl’s life but the decision was made. The engagement was sealed.

That day, after coming back home, I just cried and cried. There was no one in this world who would understand what I was going through or how I felt. The society has made being gay a big taboo where not only the gay man cannot live an honest life but if his family comes out in support of him he has to face the consequences as well. I understand what my dad was thinking when he came to know the next day. He did listen to what I told him but the main fear was of the society which I could see in his eyes. The societal pressure becomes humongous when you have a younger sister; as the parents are afraid of the fact that who would marry their daughter if the family has a bad name. But I decided not to kill my identity for my family’s reputation; I decided to fight till the end but in a subtle way. Subtle way it had to be because of the deteriorating health of both my father and mother. Any adverse decision on my end would destroy the entire family. My brother’s marriage would be on the rocks because of a single wrong decision which I would take. I was mentally being stretched on two different sides by two strong forces; on one hand I could not leave my family and let them be to face the society in such bad times while on the other hand I could not let my man break down once again all alone.

Pic Credit: Kartik Sharma/QGraphy

I tried convincing them using all means possible to annul this engagement and let me be. I promised them, in lieu of this, I would never meet my man but I would just not marry ever. They would not agree to any of this. From parents’ perspective, I totally understand that they want their children to be happy and that there is someone to take care of their children when they are gone. But they should also understand that it is not a disease or a disorder which can be cured. They took me to psychiatrist and to my amazement this lady doctor was of the opinion that one can switch their sexuality with their will power. I reasoned with her but I failed. I wanted my parents to go to another counselor or another psychiatrist but as my fate had, the psychiatrist I first met made things difficult.

I stopped talking to anyone; parents, brother, friends, colleagues. I didn’t feel like talking. I just felt like crying. I felt like I was a toy who had no emotions and is being played as per the wish of the owners. As if, the parents, who brought me into this world, owned me and had every right to decide my future without my consent to any of it.

I felt jealous of the animals, which can be with anyone they want without their parents’ interference their lives. I lost the last bit of faith I had in God because of what happened with me. I have always trusted in the fact that whatever happens; happens for a reason and happens for good but I could not see any reason or any good coming out of this. After this incident, a lot has changed in my life; I have become short tempered, absent minded and more secluded. I don’t like going out much anymore. I don’t like to interact with people anymore. I have lost a great deal of confidence. I have had numerous sleepless nights.

My man, he has supported me throughout this time. I cannot even imagine what he himself is undergoing but he still gives me hope that everything will be alright. He himself is in lot of pain but he acts as a support system for me.

It would be soon enough when they would get me married as well. I recently got to know that it is only over a month’s time that the marriage is scheduled. I don’t want to get married. I don’t want to ruin this girl’s life. I don’t want my man to live a lonely life. I don’t want this life anymore. I don’t see a way out of it. My family is not ready to listen to any of my point; what they believe is that marriage will make me fine. I know from the bottom of my heart, this marriage will be in ruins and would ruin at least three lives. I don’t want to be a part of this disaster. I would end my life before any such thing happens.

Yes. Dying is the easiest option to evade the atrocities of life but that is not what the courageous do. Brave people fight it till the end. Moreover, if I choose to die, it would just be a one-time affair for me but my man, my family would die a hundred times over and over again blaming themselves. This is not what I want to leave behind me. I have promised my man that I would not take such a step of dying. I have decided to fight against it and I will do so, with my man’s support, no matter how long it takes to bring everything on track. After all, that is what life is all about.

The End