Gay forced to marry girl

  • sensible

    Posts: 40

    Dec 03, 2009 8:50 AM GMT
    Hey everyone,

    I am new here, so I am not sure if I am posting it in the right section but I am pretty scared about one thing.

    Let me give you a background. I currently live in India and I am gay. Being a conservative society, there is absolutely no way I can divulge this fact to anyone, not even the closest and most understanding of friends. The consequences of people finding out that I am gay could range from violence to being ostracized. There is also no way that I can be given the liberty of not marrying, as being unmarried is also a great stigma here and automatically leads to being ostracized. Since there are much older and much experienced people here, I would love some advice on how I should lead my life, so that I can keep people around me and myself happy.

    Please do advice as maybe it can make my life better!

    Tschuss
  • drypin

    Posts: 1798

    Dec 03, 2009 10:56 AM GMT
    sensible,

    I have had the opportunity to interact with a number of Indian people sent here to Frankfurt for work or to gain international experience. During that time, I had the privilege of hearing about their lives, their backgrounds, their stories. I don't think many of us can truly appreciate what life is like there, where arranged marriages are commonplace and where the family is put first in any and all decisions and makes up the majority, if not the entirety, of your social circle.

    About all I can tell you is that there ARE gay people in India who decide that they can't be true to their families unless they are true to themselves, and that includes who they are attracted to. I hope sites like this give you the opportunity to come into contact with them and you can support each other in your decisions. I'll be thinking about you and hoping there's a solution that doesn't involve living a lie or turning your back on your family and friends.

    -Jim
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 03, 2009 11:36 AM GMT
    This is sad.

    I know how you feel.

    There might not be away out.....

    One idea you have is to be gay on the side.....until they find out.

    Only you can come to terms with this all.....

    NOT EASY!
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 03, 2009 11:38 AM GMT
    If you can leave India, leave.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 03, 2009 1:41 PM GMT
    I wish I had a magic answer for you.... I'm sorry that I don't.
    You're in my thoughts and prayers in the meantime.
    We're on your side, bud... don't forget it.
  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Dec 03, 2009 1:54 PM GMT
    Drypin's comments above help some of us understand the problem, but
    clearly there isn't a solution thats very easy.

    Do you have any capability to work outside of India? Don't know your education or work background, but it seems, for you to realize who you are in a reasonable way, leaving the country might be the best bet.
    I have a gay client whos from India. Lets say he isn't very inhibited... LOL
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 03, 2009 1:55 PM GMT
    Dear Tschuss,

    I hope I could give you a way out. It's sad that there are still places on earth with such deep traditions that greatly affect people like us. Unfortunately there's no easy answer to your problem. Don't lose hope. Your safety should be your primary concern. For the meantime, try to find a way to leave that place. I know, things are easier said than done. Wishing you the best.

    BTW, I was able to leave for the United States through my field of work (healthcare), maybe ask around and then gear towards working on that. I know the fields of healthcare and education might be your best bets.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 03, 2009 2:02 PM GMT
    As others have said, there is no easy answer. I don't know your education or work background and what I will suggest is going to be difficult but I hope it will inspire you to brainstorm some better alternatives: have you entertained going to the Arabian Gulf countries temporarily to get money and work on a more permanent solution far away from your community?

    Countries like Kuwait and UAE are notorious for not being nice to their foreign workers, but there is an underground gay life in places like Kuwait City and Dubai (a VERY active one, contrary to what you read in the media). It will also get you away from the people who will stigmatize you and ostracize you, and even if it takes a few years, you can work and save enough money to pay off debts and eventually move on elsewhere.

    Not an easy solution, but in your situation unfortunately, there is no easy answer. I am just making a suggestion so you can open your mind to different options since you know your situation better than the rest of us.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 03, 2009 2:05 PM GMT
    Flee
  • MikemikeMike

    Posts: 6932

    Dec 03, 2009 2:09 PM GMT
    Hi,

    sorry to hear of this, and I'm not sure what to say. I'm sure men is this country have no idea how hard this must be for you. I do have a friend who is from a small country/town in Africa where her marriage was to be arranged by her parents if she was allowed to marry at all. She did not want this, and on top of this situation she had 2 older sisters who were to marry first. Her culture believed if one of the younger sisters was to marry in a family before one of her older sisters it becomes the older sister's job to care for the parents and grandparents and to never marry. Or the youngest sister should take care of the family and not marry if her 2 older sisters marry first. It could have been her job in the family to never marry and be a caregiver and not have children of her own. She made a very very tough decision. She left her country and now she is never allowed to return, and in doing so she caused her older sister a possible marriage of her own. She felt very guilty and lonely for years and she was so sad because her family was shamed and they disowned her. More recently her brother also left and came to live in the US and found her! She lives in Florida with him and she is getting married soon to a great guy she met he is originally from England. I understand your pain and anguish of what you must decide, BUT You cannot be the only man this is affecting in India! There must be some other men who feel as you do!! I hope you can somehow reach out to them.

    Good Luck on whatever you decide.

    mike3
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 03, 2009 2:26 PM GMT
    I bet Mumbai has an awesome gay club....I mean c'mon, look at this...

    107154_512x288_generated__29nNeGC5S0qxy4

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 03, 2009 2:47 PM GMT
    You may try to connect with fellow RJ member HECTORJACK
  • sensible

    Posts: 40

    Dec 03, 2009 2:49 PM GMT
    It fells good to know that so many people can sympathize with me, if not empathize, and I thank you all for it. The thing is, I can leave the country if I make some effort, but that would definitely take me away from my family.

    I am not angry with my family for their not being able to understand my being gay (if I ever come out of the closet and tell them that I am gay), because it is the way they have been brought up. I am sure my mom is not even clear as to what a gay is! Its just that they were never taught that a man can like a man. So in no way can I make them sad by abandoning them, and leaving for another country.

    I hope you people can understand my dilemma of keeping my parents happy and also making myself happy. Its no fault of theirs that I am gay, and I don't want to punish them by coming out to the public and putting them in a bad spot.

    Also, after marriage, I am sure I will control myself and not seek out men sexually, as I am sure my wife deserves that much commitment from me. I am sure I would be sad this way but I guess there is no way out.

    The only light I see at the end of the tunnel is if the society progresses as a whole. Wish I was born in a developed nation where people are more accepting icon_sad.gif

    Meanwhile, sites like these are a great help, because they let me talk to great people like you all. I love being gay and would not change it even if it is meant to keep in misery. Just that being born gay in a developed nation would have been good icon_smile.gif
  • maverik

    Posts: 47

    Dec 03, 2009 2:51 PM GMT
    I am very sorry for you and have little to offer other than to say that I hope you can be careful, patient and still brave enough to enjoy life. I read recently that both draconian British Laws and attitudes are changing (http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/feedarticle/8588263). During my travels I have met many out gay Indian men (all very hot, btw) who have created their own families and support networks. You may have to move city location but you can hopefully find like minded people?

    Perhaps there is hope too. Take the slowly improving situation in China. Recently China officially acknowledged that there around 12 million gay people in their country. Homosexuality is, by all accounts, still not accepted, but increasingly more tolerated in part to fight an explosion in HIV. I know Indian society is a long way behind but I hope change will begin happen little by little.

    Perhaps keep us posted on what you find and experience?

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 03, 2009 3:57 PM GMT
    I agree that there is no easy answer to this, and I don't envy your position. It's just something that most westerners don't understand & that they take for granted. However, in it's most basic form, it comes down to this: Are you prepared to sacrefice your own happiness FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE simply to live up to other people's expectations? Based on what you don't say in your remarks, your parents are neither infirm nor are they financially dependant on you. As such, you are entitled to live your own life, and you are entitled to find honest romantic love.

    While I know this will sound very "western" in thinking, arranged marriages and the whole "our needs are more important than your's" is bordering on a form of emotional abuse, and like all abuse it runs in cycles -- your grandparents, your parents and now you (and any siblings you might have). Someone has to end the cycle of abuse, and in this case it falls to you. Otherwise, you may grow to resent your family, your wife, and possibly any children that come of the union. You may end up suffering from depression, substance abuse, or worst of all, simple loneliness.

    And please, PLEASE don't delude yourself into thinking that once you get married you'll no longer be tempted to pursue men -- as I'm sure countless men on here can tell you, that's just not the case. Even here in North America, there are men who come from cultures that don't accept homosexuality, and while they pursue women because it's expected of them, they see men on the side (known in black culture as "being on the downlow") . This could end up in potentially dangerous situations if & when you "cave in" to your true desires (ie. anonymous sex with people who may rob you, assault you or potentially pass on an STI to you, which in turn you might pass on to your wife) .

    If you come from a close family, I can understand the separation anxiety from relocating, but this is for your own well-being on many levels. I also agree with the others who say relocate to a country that is more accepting. if you ever want to have a life with true happiness, this may be your only solution. Best of luck and big hugs.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 03, 2009 4:20 PM GMT
    No easy answer here. Will keep you in my prayers.
    Leaving your family and friends would be hard, but not being who you are; would not be fair for you.
  • sensible

    Posts: 40

    Dec 03, 2009 4:20 PM GMT
    @xanadude... Your post really does force me to think differently and question some notions that I have about my future life (like trying to control myself and not seek men when in marriage). I still have a good 5-6 years before I will be pestered to marry a girl. Life can definitely change for the better during this time.

    You do give me some courage to be open to alternate solutions, but it would be a lie if I tell you that I will definitely act on your advice and break the cycle of arranged marriages.

    Any support and encouragement from you guys is a great help though icon_smile.gif
  • metta

    Posts: 39167

    Dec 03, 2009 4:37 PM GMT
    There are an estimated 5 to 50 million gay people in Inida. I have a friend that is near Mubai (old name: Bombay) right now helping his mother. His entire family knows that he is gay, love and respect him and his partner. He only spends part of the year there though. He spends the rest of it in California, Belgium and France, where he and his partner have properties.

    It sounds like you are in a very conservative part of India. Not all of India is like that. I realize that Inida just recently decriminalized gay sex this year.
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/07/02/india-decriminalizes-gay_n_224656.html


    Gay & Lesbian Support Groups in India:

    http://www.indiandost.com/gay_group.php

    http://overtea.blogspot.com/2006/04/gay-association-in-chennai-reflection.html

    Places:
    http://www.utopia-asia.com/tipsindi.htm

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 03, 2009 4:46 PM GMT
    List of support groups in India (categorized by city)

    http://www.indiandost.com/gay_group.php

    I have heard good things about the NAZ foundation, so I would recommend contacting them. I don't know anything about the others.

    Hang in there.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 03, 2009 4:53 PM GMT
    sensible saidIt fells good to know that so many people can sympathize with me, if not empathize, and I thank you all for it. The thing is, I can leave the country if I make some effort, but that would definitely take me away from my family.

    I am not angry with my family for their not being able to understand my being gay (if I ever come out of the closet and tell them that I am gay), because it is the way they have been brought up. I am sure my mom is not even clear as to what a gay is! Its just that they were never taught that a man can like a man. So in no way can I make them sad by abandoning them, and leaving for another country.

    I hope you people can understand my dilemma of keeping my parents happy and also making myself happy. Its no fault of theirs that I am gay, and I don't want to punish them by coming out to the public and putting them in a bad spot.

    Also, after marriage, I am sure I will control myself and not seek out men sexually, as I am sure my wife deserves that much commitment from me. I am sure I would be sad this way but I guess there is no way out.

    The only light I see at the end of the tunnel is if the society progresses as a whole. Wish I was born in a developed nation where people are more accepting icon_sad.gif

    Meanwhile, sites like these are a great help, because they let me talk to great people like you all. I love being gay and would not change it even if it is meant to keep in misery. Just that being born gay in a developed nation would have been good icon_smile.gif


    Dr. Mr. Sensible,

    Well it sounds like your priority right now is your family. Their happiness and contentment is more important to you than yours. I had the same dilemma but not to the extent of yours. I wanted to make my parents proud (especially my dad) and have a wife, a family some day, and carry our family's name. But I reached a point where when I finished school and started a career. I got more independent and it made me think... I began to realize that I will live this life for me. How I want it and that my happiness should come first. I will not live my life for anybody else but myself.

    I was in a LTR with a girl. Everything was set for us to get married... soon. Our parents, families and friends knew both of us very well and were so happy for us. And then I made the most daring most difficult decision I have made in my life. I finally decided to be honest not only to everybody else but most importantly to myself. I could never let this person who I cared for to be my wife and then have beautiful kids with suffer the consequences of me hiding what I truly am. I would have been fooling ourselves for a long time. Because I knew that being gay is a part of who I am, I AM GAY. And that will forever be me. It will come out no matter how hard I try to suppress it.

    So think very hard 'sensible.' You will make a life altering decision either way.

    Make everybody else happy, but be miserable all your life.

    or

    Make yourself happy, your parents _________ (who knows how they will feel?) and spare your future wife's and children's dysfunctional family life.

    We all hope for the best (if there is one.) icon_smile.gif
  • hdurdinr

    Posts: 699

    Dec 03, 2009 5:16 PM GMT
    It sounds like you are very close to your family and are more scared about losing that closeness and to have things irreversably changed, and it must seem too much to ever tell them. Do you have any siblings? perhaps you might try telling a compassionate sister or cousin. I know in India there is a terrible stigma attached to being gay because people only think of stereotypes. What about moving for a time to a bigger town for work? What about trying to do a diploma or something in England (I know it would be expensive though) - There's a huge Indian population in England and many of them come over for educational purposes. Perhaps some time away will help you see your situation with more clarity and give you the chance to build the first blocks of your OWN life, not what others want of you. All the best.
  • metta

    Posts: 39167

    Dec 03, 2009 5:53 PM GMT
    So you would rather be dishonest to your family that you love, and live a lie by marrying a woman that you don't love. That is not fair to the woman, your family, or you.

    It sounds like you can move away. If you don't want to tell them the truth now, move away for a little while and keeping in contact with your family to give yourself time to develop some emotional strength to live an honest life.

    You are not being forced to marry a girl. You have other choices. You are choosing to marry someone that you don't love and are not even physically attracted to in order to keep the ignorance and dishonesty going.
  • Sebastian18

    Posts: 255

    Dec 03, 2009 6:10 PM GMT
    Not sure how much this link will help considering that it's from a primarily American perspective, however you may consider getting in contact with other men and women who might have had similar experiences and could better answer your questions in a culturally sensitive manner.

    http://www.trikone.org/index.shtml

    Alternately, if it is economically feasible, you may consider getting a grant to study abroad either in Europe or America and nationalizing as a citizen of one of the different countries there. It would mean, of course, that your relationship with your family may be severed if/when they find out however it would enable you to live your life as you see fit.

    शान्तिः