By the time you finish reading this, you will be left with mixed feelings, maybe and hopefully some realizations, some of you will comment just the foulest things and some of you might type comments of sorry and sadness, some will joke about it, but without further ado here is my story.
“I am just a regular guy, with only a few but lovely friends and typical life. I have to worry too much about studies. For the most part, I am just like you! Except for this one huge ass secret, Nobody knows I am Gay (Love Simon). I have been Gay my entire life. There was no damn day in my life when I decided “straight is boring let’s be gay” NO! It didn’t happen overnight. I first realized it when I heard the word Gay for the first time, I looked it up on the internet and realized what it meant and that I am different and not attracted to girls, I didn’t realize the consequences of these feelings until later, the burden I carry due to something I had no control over. I learned that it would be better for my safety, the honor of my family and the friendship of my few friends if I act straight, and laugh at all the “Gay Jokes”(jokes about gays) students and teachers made even though they were extremely fucking offensive and really hurt me.
Being Gay in Pakistan is really hard and hurtful because it makes you feel painfully lonely. It’s like every day when you wake up you have to take a huge breath which you can’t exhale, not until you are alone behind the keyboard. Every time you see your crush, it hits you like a cricket bat to the head that you can’t do anything to be with them, you can’t ask them out or tell them about your feelings, you cannot look at them and they probably can’t see you the same way, all your dreams to be with them are just that, dreams.
To this day I haven’t revealed myself to anyone, and each day I want to tell someone, all that comes to mind when I want to hit the button ‘Send’ are the typical replies:
“Pray the gay away.”
“You are sick in the head.”
“Does your family know? it would be shameful.”
“Have some shame.” “Musalmaan ho ker bhi!”
“Tv made you like this” “khusra” “ghaleez” “besharam” “napaak” “you gay you no muslim“
“Don’t try to normalize this.”
“It is against nature“…….aaaand I remove my thumb from the send button to the backspace button and delete all of my messages. Even if I know that this person will be welcoming, all I can think of is how my friendship with that person will change forever, their avoidance of me and them despising me or maybe they will tell someone else, we are all humans at the end. I think some people can welcome you only behind the keyboard and as long as you don’t meet them in real life or have no knowledge about each other.
Once you come out, for all you know the last shop you visit could be the last place you ever breathe, whether it would be an angry mob at school or a veiled person slitting your throat the second you step out of your home, being gay and known is seriously dangerous, and if you get killed, your killer would emerge as a ‘hero of Islam’ and ‘protecting Pakistan from Western ideas’.
These people and I have but one thing in common. I never chose to be gay and they never chose a religion for themselves. They are just following what their priests and their forefathers have told, not any different from the Kuffar of Makkah. And many people will comment on this saying “you didn’t pray enough” “how can you be Muslim and gay?” I pray five times a day daily, I have prayed for my conversion to heterosexuality even in the Tak Raats of Ramadan, I have also kept all fasts that I could, I have never had a single dose of any Drug. I don’t hurt anyone on purpose. I watched one of Dr. Zakir Niak’s videos on “Why people are gay”…..If you have not, go and watch it. I admired the man, whenever I had questions about religion I would simply watch one of his videos, now what he says raises my questions about his credibility, he says that “a person becomes a homosexual when he has multiple partners and has so much sex that he tries unnatural things”…….I could not understand, then, why am I the way I am??
How can you possibly tell your parents? How do you gather the words to say it? How do you tell them, that you like guys….sexually? How can you convince them that your feelings are true and not Satan’s work? when all they ever talk about is your marriage? And what can you possibly do with coming out? You can achieve absolutely nothing. Everyone knows how big our extended families are in Pakistan.
Your parents, even if they accept you, can’t protect you from the relative’s questions.
Questions like when you are gonna get married, and if they come to know about your sexuality they will ask the same questions and statements I mentioned earlier. In the end, you are always left alone with these thoughts. There were so many times when I wanted to jump off the top roof or to cut myself. There were so many times when I lost myself entirely and was on the verge of mental impairment. It is not fair! And don’t tell me, that is life! It isn’t like this.
There are still many aspects of being gay I didn’t mention. The feelings are deep, I am not particularly a good writer. And one of the reasons for my writing this is to tell Gays of Pakistan and the world “You are not alone” in the hope that they don’t feel as lonely as I do.
“I am someone else around my friends. Maybe you have no idea of who I am, maybe you know me personally. Yes, I may not show it, but I am gay. I am your friend and nothing has changed about me, I am the same me who made you laugh, the same me who paid for your burger, the same me who asked for treats, the same me who made excuses, the same me who didn’t do homework and you helped me lie, the same me who walked with you, the same me who talked with you on phone for no particular reason, I am the same me. I am your friend.”