It’s Pride Month, and Indians are struggling hard (mind you, they are) to seem cool being vocal about it. It’s that time of the year when you stop to think about (if you don’t do it the rest of the year!) the LGBTQ community. Vyshnavi SR opens up about her journey in polyamory, in real and brutal honesty. There’s no sugar coating, no ‘I’m a little different from the normal.’ None of that bullshit, because well folks, this is normal. This millennial who’s finding her way through life, tells us the intricacies of finding love, falling head on into the passion it comes with and eventually settling into your space in this massive world.
You might suggest India is finally evolving and speaking about the real stuff. Though, a reality check will tell you otherwise. Try bringing up the topic of your same-sex relationship at the next family gathering, and your desi aunty will waste no time in telling you its unscrupulous. You will occasionally get the concerned ‘Oh! You’re gay.’ every once in a while. Because what’s effectively wrong with this sanskari society is that we can’t fucking imagine, in our ‘ideally defined’ worlds, a thing like homosexual being a regualar norm. So if you’re looking for the story, exactly like it is, read on. If you’d like a sugar coated version, one that is in line with your snuggly world, you could have a chat with the desi aunty.
When it all started
There’s never really a moment when you just start being gay, or discover your attraction towards the same sex. But yes, people who do find themselves having the hots for same sex, usually can think of a time, when it hit them. “It all started in 7th grade. My friends were really big on dating and back then, everyone in my friend circle had a boyfriend or at least a CRUSH on a boy. I didn't.” says Vyshnavi.
Well, she could march up to her folks and announce she didn’t feel the usual. But instead she says she wanted to fit in. “I faked liking a boy, dated him for 3 days and I just couldn't take it anymore. So I ‘broke up’ with him.” She speaks of this unhealthy pattern continuing. The cycle of date a guy-not feel the usual fluttery feelings-leave the guy.
“I kept wondering why it was so hard for me to get ‘butterflies’ or have ‘fireworks bursting’ in my head after kissing boys. It just didn't click. Back then, there weren't a lot of women who were prominent members of the LGBT+ community and I really thought that being gay or liking the same sex was only experienced by men. In 9th grade, I learnt more about the terms revolving around LGBT+ community and my journey started out by me being bi- curious.”
Is love a conflict
While millennials have their own definitions of love, they all basically revolve around love being towards the opposite sex. While love can have its variants to a certain extent, passion is solely associated with the opposite sex. A believer of polyamory, Vyshnavi tells us love isn’t a conflict of mind, when it comes to her. “Love involves communication, trust and confidence in a significant other. This is the common principle in the universe and I believe in it too, just like the rest.”
“When it comes to love or relationships, I do find the idea of ‘one person being there for life’ concept a little unsettling. I’m sure it gets difficult to expect so many things from a single person and then label them as your soulmate. I believe that there’s more than one soulmate and you might meet them at different points in your life.” She continues, while stressing on the fact that doesn’t mean one replaces the other.
“I don’t think a majority section of the society would agree to this and this is why the conversation revolving around polyamory is a difficult one to have.”
Let’s stage the stage for the subject, by telling you, people have different ways of expressing love. The minute you accept this ideology, the whole concept of loving more than one, becomes a little clearer. This should be confused with having an open relationship.
In an open relationship, it’s all sex and fun. Both parties are cool with it. A polyamorous relationship is a non-monogamous one, where it’s like having a relationship with more than one person. A primary couple can go on to engage with multiple partners, after the two consent to this. Like Vyshnavi put it, ‘more than one soul-mate’. There are no mainstream rigid rules for a polyamorous relationship. The two people involved could decide what works best. Vyshnavi is still in the process of exploring this area. She says the search goes on, as she’s unaware of many who are involved in this.
“When I found that I ‘deviate from the norm’ of heteronormativity, it was a difficult thing to accept. As a teen, you and your friends are equally new to this concept. It took me nearly 5 years to come to terms with the fact that I also like women, which evolved into liking different kinds of people apart from those who are cis-het.”
“The journey of acceptance was really hard on me because I do come from a conservative family background which increased my anxiety and depression. At one point, I just could not take it anymore and tried different ways to end my life. Currently, I’m extremely proud of my journey of polyamory and love and I can't wait to see what life has planned out for me.”
Love in lockdown
If you are stressing about keeping your long distance lockdown relationship alive, what does a polyamorous relationship demand? Definitely a whole lot of effort, we’re guessing!
“I am seeing someone and I think the only thing that is keeping the spark alive is communicating daily. Talk, talk and talk about everything under the sun. This could range from music to books to views on certain issues and expressing love in different forms. Well, so far it’s been great!”