Despite being born in a conservative city with a tribal impression, I grew up in a somewhat open-minded family. My childhood was
quite unhappy as a result of the endless problems and conflict between my parents that sometimes would have me asking why they were happening. At the time, I could not answer the question. Now,
it seems like those problems had drifted me away from my father and had prompted me to hate him, which to this day I still do.
In primary school, I started to realize that I was different from the rest of my peers. I had a tendency to be attracted to some of my schoolmates. I could not tell what these attractions were and what things were causing them. Although during that period schools were mixed (co-educational), my attractions were towards males only. My relationship with my childhood girl friends were innocent ones that nothing could devastate and lasted up until I started college.
During my middle school and high school days, my attraction towards males intensified and I started to question myself as to why I was different from the rest of the guys; since all of my friends, especially during high school stage, were attracted to girls. I, on the other hand seemed to be different so I decided to start looking for the reason. I consulted nobody but instead I headed towards a public library to discover and read about the causes of my sexuality. I decided to borrow one of the books about sex and I started going to the library on a daily bases to wander through more psychological books. Eventually, after several months’ worth of research and reading, I discovered that my sexual orientation was “alien” and that it would stay like that for the rest of my life. In the beginning, I did not accept myself very much. This impelled me to seclude myself from people and I told no one about my sexual orientation. I spent much time being sad and lonely. I was troubled by an internal conflict with myself especially after finishing college, since I was the only guy who refrained from all the activities happening in the university. I was asked by several friends who were girls to enter relationships and my response would always be that I did not like to have problems with girls and that I saw them as friends only.
College went by without me having a relationship with any girl. And here started the big dilemma; being pressured by my family into marriage. All of those who were my age had gotten married and had kids. My only response to my family was that it was not the right time for me to get married; without revealing my sexual orientation and my lack of desire to from romantic relationships with women. I had very good relationships with women that some of which have persisted to this day and have developed into family relationships. I was well beloved by my friends who were girls, so much that some of them would tell me that they felt like I had been the only man that did not seek sex in his relationships with them.
Things progressed and having finished my university education, my family’s pressure on me was more than ever. Consequently, I decided to leave everything behind: my family, my work, my city and to go live in a different city far from family pressure. Things were decided and I left home leaving my family with no knowledge about me. I left them a short note of a quote I remembered from Jean-Jacques Rousseau: “one who can’t perform the duty of parenthood doesn’t have the right to get married and conceive children”.
I cannot live leading a double life as it happens with some gay men who have no choice but to get married under the pressure of their families. They live in an unresolved internal conflict especially that some of them have children. Some of those men have told me that they forcefully got married to throw away their “alien” sexual orientation. They had thought that by getting married their sexual orientation would change but their marriages ended up in vain.
I resided in the new city I moved to and it has been a year far from my family, my friends and my city. I know nothing about my family and I have no contact with them. I thought moving to a new city would make me happy especially being away from family pressure. Then I realized the reality that I live in society that sees me as a nobody and thinks my sexuality is under my control. I realized that it is difficult to have a healthy relationship in a society where sex is seen only as a means to satisfying a lust, then the relationship ends there when the lust is satisfied. For that reason, I have decided to refrain from everyone, as I cannot enter a relationship with somebody who does not understand me and sees me as inferior.
Despite all the difficulty I face in the society, I am rejected by my family and the community. I am threatened by a religion that has no mercy for homosexuals and describes them by the ugliest of attributes. On top of that, are the threats of the militias that practice homosexuality in the dark but deny doing so in public. Even though many members of these militias are sexually attracted to men, they constantly try to kill homosexuals in the most inhumane ways.
In view of all these reasons, I decided to become a gay rights activist and to offer everything I am capable of doing to the community. I decided to take their voices to those who can lend them a hand and take them to the shores of safety.
I have a modest spark of hope that the days to come will smile for me.