China Girls Abroad

Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence


Stroked by sunshine and breeze on this beautiful Easter sunday, we cycled to Golden Gate Park for a glimpse of the famous Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence who are hosting their 36th Easter celebrations.




For many years, homosexuality has been under ground in China. Only after 2001, being gay was officially erased from the “mental illness” list. But look at the situation now, there are many grass-root LGBT organizations or committees in Beijing, Guangdong and other big cities. In March 2012, during the National People’s Congress, the female sociologist Yinhe Li asked support from people’s representatives to promote the marriage bill draft. Though she suffered a cold reaction, it was a breakthrough.



Our love

Have you ever seen Chinese people dressing like this on the street celebrating before? How many homosexual Chinese do you know? How often do you hear “gay” this word in China, or even “lesbian”, “bisexual”, “transgender”?

In Britain, I’d like to quote a Russian friend’s words: “Here every other guy could be gay”. Well, maybe not that many, but 10% is very likely. “Because it’s too cold, people need to hold each other for warmth!” This is the answer from an Italian boy, and another Italian girl very seriously said to me that “it’s because of the food, really, you think about it.” …??? Until now I still can’t figure out the logic behind this, but I know I was quite amused and the British food and weather were flattered.

Girls at Gay Pride in Glasgow, 2012I was born and raised in the West, but my parents are Chinese. And I am gay. I guess you can see the contradictory picture…

Despite my friends being very supportive and accepting of who I am, both my parents found it quite hard (and they still do) to accept my sexual identity. Having being brought up in small towns and villages, they both make a negative association to what is gay.

The afternoon I came out to my mom, we were driving home from school, and were having one of those heated arguments that a teenager has with a parent, where your parent never seems to understand you enough. When I said (or screamed): “I AM GAY!” the heat in the air suddenly vanished, the war atmosphere cleared out and pure silence took over for about 10 minutes. Yeah… She needed some time to process it… Those three words together must have been hard to understand, especially for a Chinese mother! Then, just when I thought that I’d finally got peace, she started asking a million questions about this gay friend I had, how he knew he was gay, how his mother reacted, but nothing – not a word – about my sexuality. I guess she couldn’t take it! She basically ignored my statement because she didn’t want to accept it. She tried to erase that sentence from her memory – and she sure tried very hard! – But she never managed. And even today, she either jokes about it in a slightly mean way or she provokes me. She once made me cry because I defended who I am, and she still thinks that being gay is wrong.