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Pride Interview with Mehak

Interviewer: Shubhangi Rajawat Interviewee: Mehak Gupta

Shubhangi:

A very warm welcome to you, Mehek. I'm Shubhangi Rajawat, and my pronouns are she/her/they/them. Could you just give a brief introduction about yourself?


Mehak:

I'm Mehak Gupta. I'm currently pursuing Engineering at Jaypee Institute of Information Technology, Noida. My pronouns are she/her though I do not use these pronouns, I go with they/them. I identify as abrosexual for my sexuality.


Shubhangi:

Alright. So, abrosexual is a very new term to me and I would be glad if you can elaborate a little more about abrosexuality in general.


Mehak:

So basically, abrosexuality is sexual fluidity. It does not pertain to a certain sexuality. It gradually changes over time. It's just how you feel yourself. To put it in simple terms, that actually means I might be lesbian one day and I might be straight one day.


Shubhangi:

Yes, that clears it, thank you. So, have you come out to your family and friends as of yet?


Mehak:

In general, I'm very open about my sexuality. Not my parents, though, have tried to tell them but then again, the social, social norms and moralities — they just do not allow them to really understand that, and they're very resistant to the idea. Generally, they say that they support me, but I don't really feel like that.


Shubhangi:

So, how do your friends perceive you? Are they respectful of your sexuality, or do you face stereotypes sometimes?


Mehak:

I have known that I wasn't straight since I was in class 11. It's been many years, and it's amazing how whoever I meet and whoever I come out to has supported me. People today are really welcoming of the LGBT community, and I didn't realize that homophobia is as real as it is until I joined college. I see a lot of people here who are homophobic, and it overwhelms me at times. Back in school, most of my friends knew about my sexuality, and I was open on social media as well, but that changed when I saw people commenting on people of the Pride community. I don't even know how I would react if someone commented about my sexuality.


Shubhangi:

Even now, there is so much homophobia in society, despite the awareness about sexualities and genders. We hope to see a positive change in the future. So, Mehak, as you said, you knew since the 11th grade that you weren't straight. For example, at first, I did not even realize what my sexuality was. I thought I was pansexual panromantic, who also happens to be a sapiosexual. There was even a phase when I felt like I was asexual. What was the point of realization when you defined yourself as abrosexual, just changing phases of sexuality, which I'm sure many people question at some point in their lives? How has your journey been since?


Mehak:

Even now, I'm not confining myself to one label, but to many people, sexuality is an abstract idea. Not many connect with it. In summary, the whole journey has been really chaotic. In the beginning, I thought I was bisexual since I had a crush on a girl for the first time and it was really overwhelming. Then there was a time I thought I was pansexual. I've felt like I was straight at times, too. There were times I thought I just don't want to be sexual at all!

Many people question their sexuality, but for me, it was very frequent. Someday, I'm telling my friends I'm bisexual, and someday, I'm telling them I'm lesbian. In turn they're telling me I'm just so confused! This made me realize that I was actually abrosexual. This, again, is not something I'm confining myself to, but it is the one that makes the most sense to me.


Shubhangi:

Okay, so let's talk about society in general. What are some of the positive responses that you've received? What are the changes in society that you've noticed so far that are like welcoming to the Pride community?


Mehak:

Society as a whole is so much more welcoming now. People are very comfortable understanding it, reading about it, and being okay with different genders and sexualities. Like I had said before, I was confused about my sexuality, and while they did laugh about it, they told me to take my time. They said to not take any pressure and put labels on me. That was very empowering for me.


There is still much work to do since we need to change the rigid ideologies many people still have, but we are on the right path!


Shubhangi:

Have you met people from the community in your college? And if yes, I remember there was this one time when somebody from the community, I was still exploring and questioning at that point. And there was someone from the community itself who called me a fake wannabe bisexual, or something like that. I was very hurt after that. Have you ever faced something like that from within the community itself?


Mehak:

No, actually. I know a lot of people from the community. Somehow, a lot of my friends identified themselves as on the spectrum. Maybe, that's the reason I haven't faced anything like this, but I have heard a lot about such cases before.


Shubhangi:

That's great, I hope no one ever faces something like that. So, what does Pride mean to you, and you do you celebrate it?


Mehak:

Pride to me means that I can go up to anybody and just tell them who I am. Pride to me means acceptance of myself because that took me a lot of time, too. Then pride month is some, okay, since my feelings don't know about this and they do not really appreciate this whole thing. Pride month — my parents don't know about it, so they don't really appreciate this. But, I do celebrate it in my own way. I'll sometimes go to a Pride march. I'll go out for the movies, and connect with people in the community.







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