Though pride month is about to end, the love will continue to flourish against all the odds. In this time of the pandemic, we couldn’t see the famous “Pride Parade” enthusiasm in people, but the spirit remains the same. The fire of love will prevail in the end, irrespective of gender.
Meet Akanksha and Apeksha; their story will melt your heart at the same time will make you question the norms of society.
Akanksha and Apeksha met in2018 and started dating later that year after becoming friends, just like your usual couple, they shared the same interest and goals. By being friends, they fell in love and are still going strong.
They are together for more than a year; in this period, they have faced the low and high tides together.
Akanksha talks about her journey of self-discovery.
Akanksha says, “it’s always in the back of your mind, you kind of always feel it inside – the difference. However, in the society we live in, we are taught certain rules of what to be, who to love, etc. So, yes, you can say that it took time to understand and then accept ourselves as we are”.
These two beautiful humans have to constantly face indifference and ignorance from their family for their relationship, which should have been their decision alone without bothering anyone.
Though their parents are yet to accept them as they were made by God, they believe it will happen over time.
Akanksha speaks, “It takes time in our society for people to understand anything which is different from what they believe. Support would come after acceptance”.
Akanksha’s stance about how sexuality is perceived in society, Akanksha says, “We have faced all kinds of reactions, from people being supportive of being called delusional. We have been told that its just a “phase” or an illusion. Though being in same-sex relationships as women, we are mostly ignored. Prejudice is a part of a woman’s life in our society. The patriarchy makes sure that independent women, especially the ones in a same-sex relationship, are always at the receiving end of society’s scrutiny and judgment.”
Well, I can’t agree more to this, being a woman with sexuality against societal norms, in a country like India isn’t a cakewalk.
For Akanksha, she never felt like coming out was something she was bothered about. What mattered the most for her was her journey of self-discovery and accepting herself the way God made her.
Akanksha speaks, “it was never about coming out. It has been a journey of self-discovery and acceptance. I identify as gender fluid and pansexual human. I am who I am, and I never tried to hide it, neither do I carry it on my sleeve. Apeksha, on the other hand, grew up in a conservative and well-knit family. She came out to her family a few years ago. We still have a long way to go.”
Akanksha and Apeksha together have started their venture, which beliefs in the empowerment of those who are suppressed. They both have been working with the LGBT community for some time now. Their joint venture – Wayward Wayz, is aimed at creating a difference in the society for not just the LGBT+ causes but also other like Child Education, Gender Equality, and Animal rights.
They say, “We consider ourselves to be “Equalists.” Meaning, we don’t believe that we demand to be respected because we are of a specific gender/sex or orientation. We believe in building a society where everyone would respect each other for the pure sake of being human.”
Inclusivity we Need to imbibe people with…
Akanksha believes It is not hard for people to understand, but it is hard to make people understand and accept other’s sexuality.
Role of Education and awareness for the LGBT+ community
As per Akanksha, she thinks two will play a crucial role in shaping the future generation and making them more inclusive. Education from the very basic (school) level on diversity and inclusion, on gender equality, on respect can go a long way. People need to be made aware and understand that difference or diversity doesn’t necessarily mean wrong.
The message to the future generation from people of LGBT+ community
If they both decide to have a child in the future, they will give their child the message to stand with what feels right, be open to always learning and above all, respect people irrespective of one’s color, creed, race, ethnicity, sexuality or orientation.