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It was after 30 years of my life that I was able to forge a beautiful friendship with my father.

I was never academically gifted. I only realized the real need to study and keep a family afloat when my family was going through a financially difficult phase. Before COVID, I had my own interior design studio that I ran with my business partner. It was a good experience for me since I got the chance to interact with many industry professionals, but I was not able to make it a lucrative business.

My business partner then convinced me to explore teaching. I got accepted into a college as soon as I applied for a job, where I had to teach a huge batch of around 70-90 students. Although that was challenging, I loved every second of it. Teaching came naturally to me, and I was always confident because I knew I was knowledgeable about interior design. In fact, I was even awarded the Best Faculty Award, with a faculty rating of 9.9/10! Teaching was a blessing; I was able to earn even during the pandemic. My professional life does not get affected by my identity, and neither do I let it. My colleagues and students are both very supportive of me.

I’ve been teaching since 2018, and now I teach in three colleges at once, along with special batches on the weekends for senior students who might be interested in the subjects. This means around four lectures of at least three hours every day, but I find it a lot of fun. I get to interact with people from 18 to 58 years of age, and I learn something new every single day. Whenever I do get time off work, I plan my day in such a way that I still stay productive because I don’t like staying idle.

My family has been through so much difficulty over the years. My mom had been battling depression and schizophrenia. We had to make her undergo medical treatment for several years, but the doctors finally realized that I needed to move out of my home at least until she could gain some independence and take control of her own life since I was managing the entire household by myself. Eventually, she did get back on her feet again, and she is in the healing process.

My father was always away and working, which did not allow us to build a fruitful relationship until about 3-4 years ago when an accident made him observe how hard I worked professionally and took care of my family simultaneously. It was after 30 years of my life that I was able to forge a beautiful friendship with my father.

I have seen my parents struggle since my childhood, and now I want to give them the luxurious life they deserve. My parents join me in going to parties every month now.

I came out to both my parents through a reality TV show where my sexual identity was presented evidently. After mentally preparing to be thrown out of my house, coming up with a whole speech and delivering it to them, they surprisingly accepted me with open arms, saying, “We are proud of you for the courage it took. We love you, and you will always be our son no matter what.”

Since then, I haven't cared about what people say. When my family is with me, I do not give a damn about the others.

I was in a long-term relationship with my boyfriend, whom I met in the first year, for eight years. We eventually parted ways, and that was another emotional challenge for me. Despite what had transpired between us, I was able to maintain a cordial bond with him. I yearn to rediscover the capacity to find love again and reach a position where I can find a partner for myself.

The queer community has always been extremely loving and supportive towards me, and I am so proud and happy to be a part of it. If there is one thing I have learned from life, it is that we always need to move on and take a step forward even if we are pushed to the ground. Be independent, think rationally, understand your abilities, and essentially, live life on your own terms without being selfish.


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