Friday, July 03, 2009

Homowives

I came across this article. Really quite sad what gay people have to go through to keep others happy. It is a delicate balance and difficult choice between your own happiness and that of others.

All of these are taken from Yawningbread.

For most gay men and lesbians in China, revealing their sexuality to their families is unimaginable. Parents expect their sons and daughters to produce heirs, an obligation that has become even more intense in a society where single-child families are the standard.
-- New York Times, 14 June 2009, Gay festival in China pushes official boundaries

The story also told about cover-up marriages like Huang Jiankun's:
To assuage his parents, he orchestrated a fake wedding to a lesbian friend, but eventually the truth came out. “The problem is when you lie, it becomes connected to another lie and you can’t keep it up,” he said.

There is a blog, in Chinese, about the predicament of wives of gay men.

Below is the translation in English.

Caring about homowife

I attended a forum that discussed the problem of “homowife”. The so-called “Homowife” (tongqi) is the wife (qi) of a homosexual (tongzi). It has been said that China has 20 million male homosexuals, of whom 80 per cent would marry a woman. These women are the “homowives”, and there would be 16 million people.

The homowife phenomenon is a phenomenon characteristic of China, seldom witnessed in other countries. In other countries, homosexuals would remain single or live together or marry other homosexuals. Very few would contract a heterosexual marriage. This difference comes about because Chinese culture places such a great emphasis on marriage and reproduction, as to make them compulsory.

During my visit to Hungary, I found out that only 10 per cent of people of marriageable age got hitched. The rest fell into three categories: single, cohabiting (living together), LAT (lovers who live apart). In this kind of society, homosexuals do not have any need at all to enter into a heterosexual marriage. People would not gossip about them and parents do not apply pressure. Unfortunately our Chinese culture is oppressive with its dictum on men and women having to get married when they reach a certain age and naming the lack of progeny as the most serious breach of filial piety – "there are three kinds of unfilial behaviour and the greatest is have no descendant". It thus forces a community of male homosexuals to marry women to have children.

The situation of the “homowife” is extremely tragic. At the seminar, there were homowives who burst into tears as they spoke, leading all of them to hug each other for a good cry. Most days, they wash their faces with tears. I heard what I considered the most shocking testimony that from a woman who told of how she even doubted her ability to attract men -- why wouldn’t her husband even want to look at her or touch her? Am I really that unworthy as a woman? She assumed that all men would treat her like that, not knowing that this is far from the truth. She did not dream that her husband would be gay. Under the circumstances, even the most beautiful and accomplished woman would not arouse him.

Homowives have started to get organized in an effort to help themselves and help others. They have started a website and a helpline to assist fellow women who have fallen into the same predicament.

Their highest priority is to prevent women from marrying homosexuals, help those who suspect the sexual orientation of their boyfriends to analyse their situation better; and in the event that the other party is a confirmed homosexual, to persuade the woman not to proceed with the marriage.

Secondly, they would like to extend a helping hand to those women who are already married to homosexuals and who would like a divorce. This includes helping them to make up their minds, relieving the pressure on them and reduce the financial and psychological damage that comes with divorce.

Thirdly, they would like to address the problems of homowives who do not want a divorce for a variety of reasons. This would include helping them to analyse the cost of keeping such a marriage going, how to communicate with their husbands and how to get along with their children.

They proposed a slogan: “Homowife ends with me”. This slogan is full of hurt and also extends concern to those who may follow in their footsteps. The slogan gives one a feeling that it is a noble cause.

I hope the majority of male homosexuals do not enter into heterosexual marriages any more and spare a thought for the feelings of the homowife.

7 comments:

William said...

Agreed! Spare the pain!

Queer Ranter said...

If not done properly, it might have a bad impact on the gay community in China I reckon.

They general public already has a bad image of us and with this homowives, might just push that up a notch.

Eeeks!

Alex said...

Yes, don't fake it and make str8 woman's life miserable! Admit you're gay and leave these str8 women to find real str8 men...
Good article.

DeluSion said...

Hmm...I read this article before.

I think we should just be honest to our feelings, whether for our own happiness or the future gay generation.

Poor ladies...

Ban said...

Kind of expected. Very unfortunate for all those poor women. :( It'd be great if they have talks on encouraging homosexual men not to marry women.

Anonymous said...

Homowives..hmmm..somehow I came across quite some guys who lost their partners because their partners were forced to marry homowives. It's become so rampant..some choose to keep quiet when you mention about losing a partner for that reason.

Anonymous said...

I am a 29 year old gay male from the US. Recently, my former boyfriend from rural China was approached by his family about marriage. My former boyfriend is an only child and is expected to get married and have children. Very tragic, I no longer remain in contact with him. I can't imagine how his future wife will deal with this situation. I felt absolutely helpless when he confronted me with the news as this has been Chinese culture for hundreds of years. No person deserves to be in this situation.