Life throws various ups and downs at us, what matters is how we deal with them and become one step closer to a stronger, more confident self. It is very important to embrace ourselves before expecting the same from the world. Once we are comfortable in our own skin and truly love ourselves, what the world thinks doesn’t really matter.
Ankita, 24, a resident of Bengaluru was aware that something is different about her from the beginning when she was just in the second standard. But the little kid couldn’t understand that until one day when her sister said the word ‘lesbian’. Her sister told her that the way she talks about her teacher prompts her to be lesbian. Ankita now understood the term and finally learned about her feelings that she is attracted to the same sex.
As she grew up, she fell in love with a girl. She felt good and said it was like a home for her, she embraced it and felt good about being loved. However, after some time, she had to be separated from the first love as her girlfriend said that she would never be able to accept her truth in front of her parents and ended the relationship.
Initially, it was difficult for Ankita to ignore and move on. She was not able to cope up with the pace of life. A day came when she decided to finally move on and focussed on preparing for Roadies, a youth-based reality show that airs on MTV India. She chose this platform to speak up about her true self which she doesn't want to hide from the world, rather she is proud of it.
She achieved that, her story was in front of everyone on national television and that inspired a lot of people. However, not everyone was happy about her decision of coming out on national television before coming out to her family and she decided to tell her family everything before the show aired. It wasn’t easy for her to come out to her family but she didn’t want them to feel betrayed and thus decided to go on with it.
Ankita said, “I wrote a letter to the only man I have ever loved and that is my dad. I came out to him a day before Pride Month and as it was rather poetic that he was proud of me. He told me I will be his kid no matter what and who I choose to love, it won't change his love towards me. That was the most special moment of my life .”
Ankita felt like she was the luckiest kid, she had the support of her family and what the rest of the world would think wouldn’t really matter now. Now she can look into the mirror and smile confidently because she has nothing to hide.
After coming out as a lesbian, she had hard time to fit in. She was accepted by her family and friends but not by everyone. She continued to work and joined a call centre, where she had to face an issue with HR who was making it difficult for her to use the washroom. It was something that Ankita has already seen that there is a need for Women, LGBTQ+, veterans, and disability inclusion. This was the time when the founder of Equiv, a Bengaluru-based job portal focussing on diversity in workspaces reached out to Ankita. She got the opportunity from where she can sensitise the corporations.
Until now, she has done more than 17+ career fairs for women pan India which successfully provided jobs to many women. Apart from this, she also hosted an LGBTQ+ job fair firstly done in Delhi. This fair was witnessed by 700+ LGBTQ job seekers who applied for jobs in the inclusive organisation. Ankita is not only fighting for one community but also did a personal career fair for disabled people as well. She is the same girl who was rejected once and now has successfully consulted more than 409+ Indian organisations to open the doors to hiring inclusive talent. Ankita once fought for herself and now fights for many. Your identity is not a lie so just accept it, come out and face the world.