“Every gay guy is not necessarily effeminate neither a fashion designer nor stylist.“
FSoG meets Tejeshwar Sandhoo, an openly gay Indian, a brand manager and an aspiring pilot.
As early as Class II, since his first crush on one of his classmates, Tejeshawar knew he was gay. He never made a big fuss about it though, neither did his friends. At 16, he decided to ‘come out’ and let his parents and the world know too.
Although even today, his parents aren’t exactly supportive of his sexuality, they aren’t exactly hostile either. They seem to have passively come to terms with it. Something even Tejeshwar has accepted graciously. But his one constant, major pillar of strength throughout his life has been his sister. She took time to accept the fact that someone in her family could be gay, but eventually came around. She is today Tej’s greatest supporter and closest confidante.
Luckily, for Tej he had relatively smooth sailing through his school life. While there was the occasional incidence of hazing fortunately nothing life altering or scarring. Not something many LGBTQ people are fortunate enough to get away with; so a normal childhood, Tej counts as one of his many blessings.
Also read here about Splitsville Celeb Gaurav Arora’s successful transition to Gauri Arora.
Career And Beyond
A happy childhood is probably one of the reasons that Tej’s career choices never depended or got influenced by his being gay. Today he works as a digital marketeer for top notch brands and is also a fashion influencer through his Instagram handle.
He however, has set his sights on flying high in the sky as a commercial pilot, someday very soon.
Tejeshwar isn’t into Drag but greatly respects those who immerse themselves in this art form. He acknowledges the hardship, effort and grace in their performances that look and feel so “phenomenal”.
In his words,”It ain’t that easy and not all can successfully pull it off.”
Sage Words From Tej
His advice to people on the brink of coming out is simple and practical.
“Honestly, if you don’t feel the need to come out, don’t. But if you think it’s needed and your parents don’t accept that side of you, it’s fine.
Don’t be a rebel in your formative years at least. It’s important to build a career, be independent and then think things through.
Once your parents see you safe and settled, your sexuality won’t matter much. It’s who you are, embrace it and just grow as a person.”
On asked whether he has seen society evolve over time with regards to the LGBTQIA community, he says “Yes, change has happened for the better. There’s much more positive visibility off late and people are viewing us in a more ‘normal’ and ‘compassionate’ light.”
All in all Tej feels very strongly about the stereotypical depiction of gays in movies or society’s general perception.
Says he, “Not all of us are effeminate, not all effeminate men are gay. We have normal professions like all of you do, not all of us need be fashion designers or stylists.
We’re humans first and foremost, and that’s what I choose to emphasise and communicate through my life.”
Written by: Delshad Master