Today I am so excited to welcome Rania, a writer & book blogger, who is also one of my dearest friends!! In today’s post Rania talk about ‘The Reality of Being Desi and Queer’.
*Note there isn’t a single ‘reality’ this is just the writer’s personal piece 😊💞
But, before I share with you what Rania has written for us today, I want to take a moment to highlight all the spectacular things Rania has done as a writer and book blogger. If you haven’t met Rania before today, then I am very excited for you to see the wonderful work she has done!!
Rania’s WIPs, Blog and Twitter 💞
Also, omg make sure to follow Rania’s twitter too (fun fact we became friends there 🥺💗)!!
Rania Discusses ‘The Reality of Being Desi and Queer’
Being desi is something I take immense pride in. It’s a big part of my everyday life, online as well as offline. Being a part of the LGBTQ+ community is equally as important to me. Unfortunately, it’s not something I can be as passionate about offline as I am on the internet.
I’ve noticed that there’s so much of comphet in my day to day life that it’s impossible to ignore. Inevitably, it also feeds into one’s internalized homophobia.
Everywhere I go there are discussions of who’s marrying who and if they see a single person who’s of the “marriage age” they’ll start pestering them with invasive and uncomfortable questions.
“We need to start finding a girl for him.”
“Have you looked at any boys for her, yet? you don’t have a lot of time.”
“you should try xyz.com! I found an amazing match for my niece!”
“Do you have a boyfriend yet?”
These are just some of the things you are bound to hear in a desi family discussion and it’s a completely different ballgame once you come out. Suddenly every relative and family member is looking at you like you’re something alien. like you don’t belong. They won’t say anything to your face but the stares and faces they make speak loud enough.
And when it comes to representation in the media? Well-done south asian representation is like needles in a haystack and lgbtq+ desi rep is even more so.
Coming out takes a lot of courage. especially to your family when you know that there’s a 90% chance that it might not go the way you’re expecting. You’re afraid of it looking like you’re letting them down, that by coming out, they might not love you anymore. It’s something we all go through, regardless of our culture.
And once you do come out, you have to deal with everyone telling you it’s just a phase. “gay” is treated like a dirty word and being desi, we all know how the aunties are, always nosy and whispering about you.
BUT. A fact that most people don’t know is that while South Asian ‘culture’ seems at odds with the LGBTQ+ community, it wasn’t always like that. The Kama Sutra (an ancient Indian book variously concerning marriage, sex and courtship) had a whole chapter dedicated to homosexuality. There is ancient Tamil literature too, that references gay and transgender individuals. Until India was colonised by the British, queer and non-binary people existed (reports on the extent to which they were accepted differs) but the imposition of Section 377 by the British in 1862 shamed queers. Prior to this, our identities were on temple walls and even Indian mythology contained stories of shifting genders.
So yes, being desi and queer (as well as queer regardless of culture) comes with its hardships, but in the end, you’re being your truest self and I don’t think there’s anything that brings me more happiness than that.
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Thank you so much Rania, for visiting Misty Realms and having this discussion with us!! We love and appreciate you so much 💗 HAPPY PRIDE 🏳️🌈