Tujhe paalne mein koi kami rehgayi kya?

Karan Kariappa


Entrepreneurplantasmile and work in the KPO industry


Karan [Pic credits Sadat]

I used to gawk at men since I was young however I never accepted myself for a long time. I am born to a Kodava Community, in Kodagu called the Scotland of India. We are more of a tribal people and men are often called the warriors and women are the beautiful ones. It’s an orthodox and close minded community out there. I understand it will take time for them come around to the fact that their child is not straight. I am no warrior ha-ha, I was never interested in motorcycles and sports like the rest of the boys. My interests were more into cooking and gardening. My father always used to say that I behaved like a women all the time. I never accepted myself for a long time. I never knew about the LGBT culture in Bangalore. All I knew is being on PR [a dating site for men] and finding people. I was forced to live in a straight life for a long time. I did not have the courage to come out or in the first place, accept myself. I have dated women too and never had a sexual relationship with any as I knew that it would never work. At 25, I fell in love with a guy from Bhutan and that’s when I realized that I had never got the same feeling for a women in my life. I realized staying with my family wouldn’t allow me to be the person who I am. So, I left my parents and started an independent life.

So I came out to my aunt on New Year’s Eve. Oh yes! I was drunk that night. I couldn’t have got the balls to tell her otherwise. I also told her that I was abused as a child when I was just four. She couldn’t take it at all. The only question she asked was “Tujhe paalne mein koi kami rehgayi kya?” [Was there any shortcoming in your upbringing?]. I also told her not to expect me to get married because they were expecting to get me married sometime this year however it dint happen. She took a week to digest the fact that her son is gay (she considers me as her son after my mom’s death) and called me back. She just told that if you don’t want to get married I understand however you can’t love a man. I still remember my aunt and her daughter (my sweet cousin) did not speak to me for months and now we hardly have any conversations.

I really didn’t have to do anything about coming out to my dad. My aunt spoke to dad about me. All he had to say was that I was mentally ill. I needed a psychiatrist. Just because I did not find a girl for myself I turned into for men. Ha-ha that’s hilarious though. He also said that I am a disgrace born to Kodava Family.

Over the period of time there has been a lot of pressure from family about me being queer. End of the day it’s me who have to live my life and I want to be happy in life on my own terms. Yes, I am gay and I am proud of myself, of who I am today. It’s been almost a year being in the community and a lot of people have supported me over this time.

I also run a Queer dating site called Amour  for the LGBTQIA+.