#Opinion

Indian Families Utter These Homophobic Comments Casually And They Need To Stop

Homophobic comments, Five LGBTQ Films On OTT:
Even as the fight to normalise homosexuality is going on in our country, the hostility toward the queer community remains largely unchanged. Despite the law having decriminalised homosexuality, many Indian households hold to homophobia firmly. While some families went through the long and exhaustive process of unlearning and learning, many others choose to remain ignorant.

The ignorance and unwillingness to unlearn the stereotypes and stigma about homosexuality are one of the reasons that the progress has been happening at a snail’s pace. If we don’t nip the bud of homophobia in Indian families, it will continue to pass on like religious and family legacies. So in this article, we are going to list a few homophobic comments that float undisturbed in Indian households so that we reflect and change.

Homophobic Comments

1. Homosexuality is a genetic disorder, black magic or a disease

Many families believe homosexuality is an abnormality. They either reach out to doctors or godmen to rid their children of the ‘obsession’ with people of the same gender. Some even go as far as putting their children through conversion therapy. All of this eventually damages a child’s self-esteem and traumatises them. It may trigger a host of mental health issues.

2. Homosexuality is nothing but a way to escape marriage

Many people who come out as gay are mocked for finding excuses to escape from marriage and its responsibilities. This idea indirectly also points out the fact that if a person comes out as gay, families won’t accept them as eligible for marriage.

3. Homosexuals are those who are perverts and need a lot of sex

Homosexuality has nothing to do with libido! Homosexuality is about one person feeling attracted to another who is of the same sex as theirs.


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4. Homosexuality is a western idea destroying our traditional culture.

Many of us would have heard this at our houses. Any new idea to change the societal norms is always dismissed as western ideas that won’t fit into our traditions. We dismiss any new ideas because we believe in sticking to arbitrary traditions of which we know nothing.

5. A person becomes homosexual because of having a lot of friends of the same gender or studying in a gender-specific institution.

Being gay has no relation to the gender of friends or classmates. A person is gay by birth. They are not influenced by the gender of the people they are surrounded with.

6. Homosexuality is a sin. God doesn’t approve of it because sex and marriage are for progeny, not pleasure.

Many religious texts are believed to have dismissed homosexuality as a sin. The archaic idea that God designed sex and marriage to reproduce and not for pleasure is etched into the minds of people and they immune themselves from change.

7. Dismissing homosexuality by implying it’s a choice or opinion.

Society doesn’t understand the biological root of homosexuality; it is not a thought process that can change with time. Being gay is also seen as a reaction to a failed heterosexual relationship. You don’t “become” gay; sexual orientation is not a choice which can be influenced by life events.

8. Homosexuality is acceptable in rich families. Poor families cannot afford or understand such western ideas.

If you would have noticed, most of the defiant steps are taken by people who are rich. They either take the stand because they are rich or they become rich because they took a stand. This division of rich and poor in exercising rights is very common in our society. Not only sexuality but basic rights like education, equality and employment are taken away because of a person’s poverty.

9. You are homosexual? Certainly, your parents didn’t give you the right parvarish.

You must be familiar with the term ‘Ma Ka Laadla Bigad Gaya’. This is used mostly to refer to the child who comes out as gay. Being gay is equivalent to flouting norms and hence inviting social criticism. And when a family faces social criticism because of their kids, the family honour and the parvarish are automatically questioned.

10. You are gay? I shouldn’t have slept beside you. What if you find me attractive?

I saw this recently in the movie Badhai Do. The female family members of Shardul were disgusted with Sumi because of her sexuality and found themselves as victims for being too close to her. But dear families, homosexuality is not something contagious nor does a homosexual person hit on everyone.

There are still many homophobic comments that we hear at our houses in India. But the point is that what are we doing to change the dynamics? Are we letting the comments pass away or are we questioning them right away?

It is not easy to change the homophobic mindsets of families. It requires a lot of hard work and might cost us huge. But with the outside world embracing the different colours of love, this struggle can become easier. Law normalising gay sex, Bollywood portraying homosexuality and many inspirational stories of gay couples fighting stigmas and marrying are strong weapons for us to fight the homophobia at home.

The views expressed are the author’s own.