My name is Dev Singh. I am a transman. I am still not out to my family. Because I have fear that they would kill me. I lived my 22 years like girl, suppress my inner me. Everyday is like I am dying. I never felt I am myself, just listening and doing what they said to me.
What is a dominant idea that affects you?
What are the small ways in which you stand up to it?
1. Clothes, because I am a girl (by body) I have to wear girl clothes (as my family says). What I did - I start giving tuition to children, and stop asking for money for clothes from them and started buying clothes of my choices, my money and I can spent it as I want.
2. Girls don't go out in the market to buy vegetables, or anything (my mom being very supportive and she forces me to go out, it was my father and brother who stops me) so, I started going out to buy vegetables, to spend some time with myself, at the gym. It was not easy because I always went outside when my father left the home for the office, but sometimes he came earlier than his usual time. So, yes I was also scolded for that so many times, and it really doesn't affect me. And if I don't feel bad for this now, because I am not doing any wrong things, and being a human I have the right to breathe in fresh air.
3. Girls don't play any games. My father stops me from playing. So, what I did was, I lied that there is some project work going on in college and I would come late as I will be competing with my friends in the hostel. And I practised after my college hours, and I won 2 medals at zonal level and one medal at the State Level. Then, I showed it to him. He was happy with it, and told his friends about this. And never supported me, it's just like you won medals and prizes but don't practise....however, my mother was very supportive in this, her only thing was not to talk or play with boys. They still don't know I identify myself as a male.
4. I want boys to be my friend. Girls should have long hair. I have long hair. And I can't get them cut off.... Still living with it. Hope, someday I get out of this house, and live my life.
What made you come up with and sustain these small ways of resisting?
I was dying. I felt like if this goes like this, one day I will die. And If I didn't take these steps they will continue to do like this. I will lose myself completely. It was like all these restrictions were killing me everyday.
What are your hopes and dreams for a future with more power over this dominant idea?
I hope for everyone to know what their rights are. They do, but it's still lacking in some areas. This is going to last longer, that men in the house are the one who takes decisions and others have to follow.
What would be your suggestions to others resisting a similar dominant idea?
I would suggest that women should understand that they are too human. Don't get weak. You are strong. Don't let others tell you what you have to do and what you do not. Have your own opinions and choices in life.
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