Sexolve is equal rights activist Harish Iyer’s Q&A space on The Quint.
If you have any problems, doubts or queries regarding sex, sexuality or your relationships, which you can’t seem to deal with, or need some advice, answers or just someone to hear you out – write in to Harish Iyer, and he’ll try and ‘sexolve’ it for you. Drop in a mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
This week’s Q&As below:
'I Don't Want to Elope, but My Parents Are Stubbornly Against My Guy'
I’m a 25-year-old girl. I am in love with a guy who I have known for the last 10 years. My family came to know about our love, and they threatened me to leave him or they would put an end to my studies. I lied to my family that I have left him because I wanted to study. I joined college but kept on talking to him like always. Now after I completed post graduation, my family has started talking about my marriage. They were about to search for a groom for me, so I had to tell them that I’m still in love with the same guy. They put an end to my studies and I’m at home for the last three years suffering. My parents tried all the ways to convince me, but I can’t even think of leaving him.
My parents are bothered about his past. My mom says she has seen the guy with a girl in his home and she suspects that they have were physically involved as well, but I know every bit of his past and I’m not worried about it. They feel that he is not a virgin. My parents are bothered because he earns only Rs 15,000 and that he is greying. But I want to marry him. It’s been three years. I don’t want to elope, I want to convince my parents and then get married to him, but they are stubborn. Should I leave him to make my parents happy or should I make myself happy and marry my guy? Both are important to me. What do I do?
To love and to be loved is one of the greatest joys in life. I am so glad that you have experienced the feeling. I am happy that you have found someone who you call – your soulmate. Love is not a mild feeling, it is strong and fierce. And it is so fierce that it is often met with equal and unprecedented opposition. But not all of love should be blind.
Your parents are worried because they know that when poverty walks inside the door, love flies off the windows. They are worried that he, with his feeble income, would not be able to support you. Their concern may seem genuine to many. However, I personally find the idea of a woman being supported by a man (or a man burdened with the responsibility of supporting a woman) quite misogynistic. Their focus should be on ensuring that you get the right education to an extent that you are capable of taking your own decisions.
You may falter, you may fall, you may get hurt too, but love is a force that propels people to greater heights as much as dreadful lows. You need to understand though, that as an adult, you will be responsible for the decisions you make.
Are you willing to live with a person who earns a feeble sum and is not ambitious to earn more? Are you educated enough to support your family, and him? Have you done enough investigation into his life to understand that he is not a crook? If the answers for these are a ‘yes’. Then proceed with your love life. But if you have an iota of doubt, leave him.
Follow your love. But remove the blindfold.
'My Wife Has a Moustache'
I am really embarrassed to share this, I have not shared with anyone but you. My wife has a moustache. She is struggling everyday with it. I don’t want to burden her with my doubts. But is my wife turning into a man. Like literally?
I appreciate your love for your wife and all the concern you have for her.
To answer your question, no one can change to the other populous gender like that. She will not become a man.
She is most possibly going through some physiological challenges that could be related to hormones. I am not a doctor. Please go with her to a doctor.
'I Want to Divorce My Wife. Do I Accuse Her of Flirting With Other Men?'
I am a 37-year-old gay man from Gurugram. I was initially bisexual. When I was bisexual, I married a woman. She is doing all her duties nicely till now and doesn’t shout back when I complain about the food. She is well behaved, does all her work nicely. But now I have realised that I am gay and not bisexual. I want to divorce her and start a life with my boyfriend. My problem is how do I ensure that she doesn’t claim my property? One of my lawyer friends suggested that I prove that she is flirtatious with other men and that she was caught red-handed. Will that help? I have no support from anyone. You are the only gay person I know and are like god to me. Please help me?
The World’s Best Husband, Gurugram
Dear World’s best husband,
Thank you for putting me on a pedestal, I am happy on earth with we lesser mortals. Now coming to the point you shared - amazing. Just AMAZING.
What do you think you are wedded to? A furniture or a robot? I almost wished that your mother had an abortion when she was pregnant with you. Is this what you think of women? That she needs to be “well-behaved” and “does all her duties”? What do you mean by that? Are you trying to say that she does the dishes and doesn’t answer back when you abuse her? Who do you think you are, who gave you the right to hit/overpower another living being and expect that the being’s only work in life is to satisfy you? You need some quick reality check.
I really wish that your wife divorces you. With complete alimony.
No one “is bisexual, now turned gay”. Sexualities are not interchangeable. But that’s not the point. The point is that you married someone possibly without telling her about your sexuality and now you want to throw her out because you suddenly discovered your sexuality. I would have helped you if you were genuinely concerned. But just reading your question scares me.
This is a classic example of how gay people could also be misogynists. Let me mince no words when I tell you this - you are a misogynist.
That said. I believe your wife needs all the support she can get. I am with her and not with you. And getting out of this relationship is one of the best things that can happen to her life. Grow some b*lls. Speak to her and try settling it with her financially without never ending visits to the police station and courts. If you have not allowed her to grow professionally because of your patriarchal mindset, you owe her money to pursue her education and life. I wish she gets what she deserves now – a life of her choice.
(The copy of the text and the location has been edited to protect the identity of the person. You can send in your questions to email@example.com)
(Harish Iyer is an equal rights activist working for the rights of the LGBT community, women, children and animals.)