I was scared to death while entering into CCD, My dad was walking beside me and was asking me usual questions like – “How is your work going, what are your future plans?” I was answering in very limited words, as far as I remember I was so nervous that I only said everything was going well, I didn’t reply to him in a detail.
You all know, how is a relation between a father and son, limited conversation, no emotional talks, no talks with full sentences. A bond so strong in roots but the emotional attachment is rarely visible to the outside world!
Like any other son, I was always afraid to speak in front of my dad. It was not like he was cruel, but I was always a bit scared to him. But that was the day that I gathered the courage to talk to him about me and my life. I rehearsed the conversation in my mind like 100 times earlier and I came up with more ‘full sentences’ rather than my half stammering words!
Earlier that day I told my mom that, I’m taking dad out for evening coffee and dad will surely like this place and also it would be great for me to spend time with him. My mom was very happy about it. Being a mother she never let out ‘conversational bond’ to stop. It was the talking and sharing of thoughts which was binding our family more tightly.
My parents had visited me here after 7 months, so my mom wanted for me and my dad to get along more as with my dad’s busy schedule I barely get to talk to him for more than few minutes.
It was a perfect ‘Father-Son’ evening!
Twenty minutes passed in silence. The only thing we spoke was the order we gave for coffee. I was fidgeting because I was so damn nervous to start the main conversation.
Finally, I broke the silence and said, “Dad, there is something I want to tell you, it is very personal and related to my life”
Dad responded quickly “Yes son, say what is it?”
Me – “I don’t know how to say and from where to start”
My dad took a sip of his coffee and while holding his cup in his hand he said, “Whatever it is, just tell me, I’m here to listen.”
I still was very nervous, the curiosity on my dad’s face made me more nervous; I smiled and started talking something else. My dad sensed that I was diverting my mind from the thing that I was going to say, so he said very softly “Son, stop beating around the bush and say directly what is inside your head, I’m here for you”. And in no minute I dropped the bomb, “Dad, I’m gay”
<the actual conversation happened in Hindi, some excerpts from it>
Dad: hein. .. kya? [What ?]
Me: Daddy “I’m Gay”
Dad: Hindi mei bolo, kya kehna cahh: re ho.[Tell me in Hindi, what are you trying to say?]
Me: Daddy aapko samlanging pata h..? [Dad, you know about ‘homosexuality’?]
Dad: Haan..kya hua?[Yes, why?]
Me: Daddy mai wahi hu.[I am that]
Dad – “With whom?”
Me – “Dad, with no one, it’s just I always had interest in towards my same gender, I never developed any interest or feelings towards any girl”
I saw the seriousness growing on my dad’s face. He started saying “Son, who is stuffing all this nonsense in your head? I bet, someone is luring you in some kind of trap! Son, there is no such thing. These all are brought up by west people! These things are suitable for foreigners. They don’t have any specific culture or traditions; they don’t have any rules and regulations so they do whatever they want to do. They even eat human flesh. Son, these all things are practiced by western people and our culture is very far away from these westerns air!
Me – “No, dad it is not like that. I was born as a gay! It took me years to finally understand it.
Dad – “Son, is this about something else? I mean is it because some girl left you or love failure or something?”
Me – “No, dad it is not like that. You are not getting me. When I was in school I always thought of making boys as my friends rather than girls. While growing up I thought that there was something wrong with me. I couldn’t cope with all these feelings. There was no one I could talk to; I was getting depressed day by day. I started hating myself. I finally gave up and decided to commit suicide, I failed in that too! Yes dad, the real reason behind my suicide was this, not ‘lacking in studies’ reason. I was going insane thinking about it. That’s why I started to stay silent most of the time; this is why I was always irritated and angry. At that time all I could think was, ‘what is wrong with me? Why am I different? What mom will think about me if she will know this’. Every day in the house was a struggle because; relatives used to tease me and used to call me names, which always made me to irritate more. I used to think this and the only solution I came up with every time was suicide. But finally, I completed my studies and came here. After coming here I researched a lot! I researched on the internet that what is happening to me. Then finally I was exposed to the word of ‘LGBT’. I researched more and more and I came to know that, there is nothing wrong with me, I’m not defective, there are many other people like me living here in this world. I gathered courage and talked to them, met with them a few times. They are just like me; it took time for them also to understand their situation and to accept what they are. Dad, it took me 6 years to accept myself. I finally am dealing with myself rather than running away.”
While I was speaking, I realized my dad was listening very calmly and carefully. The moment I stopped speaking he asked me numerous questions in one breath. It was like a rapid fire between us.
Dad – “Have you befriended the people you met?”
Me – “Yes dad and they are very nice people”
Dad – “What about their parents and family, have they told them?”
Me – “Yes dad, they have told their families and they are supporting them in every manner.”
Dad – “Okay son, it is all in your head. Later, once you will get married everything will be okay”
Me – “Marriage? That too, with a girl? No, dad. Never! Dad life is not all about getting married and having kids!
Dad – “Everything will be changed after you get married. You will not get time to think about all these!”
Me – “No dad, you are not getting it, I like boys! If I ever will get married, then I don’t think my marriage will last for more than four or five years. I don’t want to ruin any girl’s life. I can’t do it.
Dad – “Most of the people starts thinking like this because of fear of getting married. I have lots of friends who are older than me in age; they also never got married and dedicated their life to social works and good deeds. You have also started doing social works, you visit orphanages and help the kids there. If you are keeping your mind in these things then it is not bad.”
Me – “Dad, you are not getting this. I’m not saying all these because I have fear of getting married or I want to dedicate my whole life in social works. It is simple because I’m what, I said to you! And being gay is not wrong.
Dad – “Hmm, Okay it’s okay. Just give me some time to understand all these. But son, you don’t worry I’m with you. I will never let anything wrong happen to you. It is a very new thing for me; I have to take more information on this. Marriage thing, it is secondary. No one will force you.”
Dad – “Your mom, does she knows?”
Me – “God no. I don’t have that courage to tell her this. I told you because I knew you would understand.”
When we came out, my dad kept his hands on my shoulder. He said nothing but his gesture made me feel relieved. I was feeling very relaxed that I finally got this secret out of my chest. I was relaxed. I was happy. I was everything.