Societal norms fail bisexuals, gays

Experts say parents must support their children

Hyderabad: Lack of awareness about sexual orientations and social taboos are forcing gays and bisexuals into heterosexual marriages for the sake of societal norms, said experts, who called on parents to accept and support their children without expectations.

Experts said that many homosexuals and bisexuals are apprehensive of revealing their sexual orientations, fearing embarrassment, humiliation and disrespect.

Over the past few years, there have been several instances of unsustainable marriages coming to light, with the affected persons claiming their lives were a burden for their families.

People said that they cannot decide between “living a false life” and revealing their orientation, which is causing undue stress. “In a recent case, a woman who married a gay man in February 2020 was mentally tortured by her in-laws and blackmailed to ensure that she did not reveal the truth.

Although she came to know the truth within a few months of being married, she remained married for a year and four months. She filed a case in June 2021. It is still going on,” said Leela (name changed).

Another woman, who wished to remain anonymous, said that she found out that her husband was bisexual within two days of being married, but was not allowed by her in-laws to talk to her parents. She said that her husband confided that he had married her due to family pressure and then divorced her.

Dr Diana, a psychologist, said, “Bisexual and gay people tend to be under pressure and look for bisexual women and lesbian women so that they can lead a married life for society. Gay people face more pressure from their family and society. Some of them end up marrying a straight person of the opposite sex, which is sad. In some cases, they don’t want to disclose their sexuality to their partner. It’s high time we move on from being a society that forces people to get married. Society should start accepting them and people should be aware of LGBTs.”

She said that many a time, gay people get married, but continue to have relationships with others, to maintain their status in society. She said that such instances end up spoiling the lives of both partners.

Diana called on the government to create awareness among citizens. “Everyone has a right to live a happy life and not be forced to get married. They also deserve equal respect and acceptance from society,” she said.

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