Growing up Gay

I have known that I like guys for 8 years now. I came out of the closet 2 years ago to everyone, except to my own family. The irony is that my parents are well aware of my queer friends, but god forbid the day when they know that their own son is gay.

Growing up is particularly difficult for a queer guy like me. I was constantly called terms like "chakka", "hijra", "chamiya" etc for the way I was in school. My teachers in school were well aware of every kind of bullying and abuse that I was going through on a regular basis because of my "difference", and yet none of them ever made any effort to improve my life. Besides, I myself knew so little about my own self.

For an outgoing and fun-loving person like me. I was too lonely and the trauma had made me anxious and depressed. I remember talking to people on dating sites to find out more about everything ranging from the meaning of words to expressing my own emotions. By the time I began accepting myself, I was already in college. I began talking to a lot of people who helped me and understood me. Their help made me deal with my emotions and find places where I could just be myself. I truly am fortunate to have them in life today.

But there are also a lot of homophobic people I came across. Most people don’t understand what being gay means. Some of them recommended that I should get my sex changed just because I was into men. I don't want a vagina, I am happy being a man.

I wonder what would my life have been, had I been taught about it in school - if there was some conversation around it or a conscious effort was made to aware us about the LGBTQ community, like there was about women empowerment or Child Sexual Abuse, or maybe some events like flash mobs, or pride parades. Also, I am not alone, there are hundreds like me who grow up with oppressed sexualities, and self-hatred. And I believe that the only solution to this is a renovation of the school education system.

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