What is it like to be accepted as LGBTQ in-India?

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As cricket player Syed Sharukh, who is deaf, says, “To make a difference, understand differences.’ Being accepted ‘as you are’ is the most wonderful feeling. At the same time, we run a risk here, the temptation to reveal not what we are ‘if not accepted’. Learn to live in your own terms and conditions, in your own skin as long as you bring harm to no one. 

To be accepted as an LGBT or Q in India we need to understand that the tapestry of our society is woven by multiple threads: good, biased and sometimes hard to crack. To move ahead in life one leads to see light and if you are keen you will always see the silver lining out there.  The most beautiful light comes to me from the younger generation—When I interact with them, those in their twenties and thirties, I see a lot of promising future for LGBTQs in India. These young men and women are so much more accepting of the needs of the cis. They even try to talk their parents and older members of the family out of being homophobic. These men and women warmly embrace and include their LGBTQ friends and colleagues in their groups be it at the work place or at home, clubs or parties. There appears no divide at all. 

While the scene in Urban India is improving fast , the concern still looms large in the smaller towns and among lesser exposed people—young or old. The Indian Psychiatrist Society, on 12 July 2018, declared that there is nothing abnormal in being LGBTQ. At the same time, we all are aware that it may take decades before the entire society goes with the same thoughts.

But is that a cause to worry? The simple answer is NO. Acceptance is a grace and it is lacking in many areas. Within our society. There is bias that you see against religion, caste, gender, physical disabilities and age everywhere. So you need to keep to your identity, find your space and be proud just as you are.

There are workshops, academic meetings, writings in the media, social platforms and NGOs that are working day in and out to help the LGBTQ community feel comfortable and also are educating the masses to understand the LGBTQ community better and respect and accept them. 

First of all, it is most important that you should be As you Are: Be bold enough and do not to succumb to social pressures, bullying or shaming. It is your life. Learn to live life just the way— as you are. Be proud that you know yourself and learn to protect your self-esteem, always.

You can always browse the net and read up on acceptance of the LGBTQs in India. There are blogs and forums that bring the stories of ‘coming out’ of people, their trials and finally the triumphs.

Also daily newspapers often carry interesting features on gradual acceptance. You will come across a few incidents in the media giving you gory details around non-acceptance, but don’t be cowed down with them. 

Be on the lookout for good resource groups, LGBTQ-friendly counsellors and forums. When you get to interact with like minded folks you will together be able to figure out ways to work around people close to you, to help them understand you better and accept you. One of the best and safest spaces to begin could be in a safe and confidential exclusive LGBTQ online dating app. Always remember to do a proper rain check.

Remember it is important to be firm in your stand and do not wait for approvals always. Choose a career, get financially independent, do well, be a good human being and one day you will be accepted…the day will come.

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