Me and my boyfriend picked up this greeting from Sweden a couple of years back. We liked it because it is short, sprightly and friendly. We still use it every now and then. “HEY!”
This blog is about creating more visibility of British Asian lesbian, gay and bisexual communities. Yes, we really do exist. I’m a gay British Asian man, born in 75, now 37; in a relationship with an ‘Indian – Indian’, from India, Bangalore in fact, born in 80, now 32. My Asian-ness is in fact Indian, Punjabi, brought up in a Sikh home in Wolverhampton.
Last August, on our first trip to India together my partner and I met a gay men’s group in Bangalore. This was kind of mind-blowing for us both…being in a room full of Indian gay men. It was a new reality that neither of us had been part of before. The best thing was that many were out and living their lives, in relationships and still close to their parents. It really was quite special… There was an energy, a solidarity, an optimism for the future. And of course this was within the context of a globalizing India, one which is also fighting for justice, fairness and equality.
Upon returning home, it got me thinking about my own experience… and that of my (Brit-Asian) peers many of whom are still hidden, often leading double lives, still facing much stigma and homophobia, especially from other Asians. I found this contrast between the two places interesting and started to wonder what could be done about it…the concept.