Valentine’s week is over, and if you are not sweeping the empty chocolate wrappers and confetti off the floor, you are probably dusting off the pieces of your lonely, broken heart (in which case you must go read the Guysexual’s guide to every heartbreaker in the world). What can I say; it’s a tough world.
If you are a single gay man such as myself, how do you find love? More importantly, how do you find love that cannot be bought in a bottle, or prescribed over-the-counter?
That’s where #GalentinesDay comes in — it celebrates the truest, most fairytale form of love there is — the love between a gay man and his girlfriend(s). After all, every one knows that the Girlfriend is the essential crown of every gay man’s crew, and the love they share is as real as Kim Cattrall and Sarah Jessica Parker’s online feud. So why not celebrate that instead?
This Valentine’s Day, I decided to ask 20 different women what the gay men in their lives meant to them. The answers poured in through texts, emails and voice notes. One even sent a rap.
Here’s what the goddesses had to say:
Having a gay best friend has been one of the most empowering relationships I’ve ever had. Whether it’s been about shedding my insecurities, approvals I’ve needed for the length of my skirts or the boys that I date, or more importantly, conversations which have helped me decide which course I should study moving forward, the decisions made by my friend have always been spot on.
Just like him.
And when you’ve got razor sharp wit on a principled, loyal friend who’s always up for fun, who would want more?
PS: Did I mention he’s also handsome?
— Prakritee Yonzon, Law professor
What does having a gay man as your best friend do to your life?
Firstly, you get answers to ALL your homocurious questions (with the right amount of sass, of course). Plus, you get to have a partner-in-crime for all your voyeuristic ventures. Because, here’s the best thing about Galentine’s Day: with them, there’s no such thing as judging (or being judged). If THAT doesn’t make your life easier, there’s isn’t much scope for anything else to do so. Here, there’s never a monochrome scare; because having a gay best friend means having limitless colour in your life.
And we could all do with some colour in our life.
— Reema Mukherjee, journalist
And I wouldn’t have it any other way.
— Richa Raut, architect
In a world where romantic love is celebrated and revered above all else, there exists this bond of platonic love between friends, which finds its best representation between a girl and her gay best friend!
He is the guy who gets rip roaring drunk with you at brunch, hits on the same boys as you do, encourages you to unleash your inner Goddess, and battles the hangover with you the very next day. He is the guy who is always a phone call away. He gives you pointers on sex. He tells you when you’re being a b*tch and when you’ve got to be a b*tch. He binge eats ice cream with you. He isn’t afraid to tell you the outfit makes you look fat/desperate/old. He sings along to Beyoncé with you. He lets you blast Adele when you need it. He reads the same books, and likes the same cocktails. He makes you laugh and he makes you shake your head with exasperation.
In short, he is the brother who is the soul sister you never knew you needed before you met him. He makes you find space in your life for him because you’d be crazy not to want him around. If I could sum up all of this in one sentence?
He is the realest and truest form of love.
— Ramya Dharmaraaj, lawyer
Love is four-letter word that can be interpreted and used in so many different ways. But for me, each time someone says the word ‘love’, I can only picture a few people in front of my eyes. My friend here is one of my lifelines.
I’ve had a number of straight guy friends and girlfriends but none can compare to this man. He comes up with unadulterated, impartial advice — something that you can trust even with seven blindfolds on. I bet God smiled when he made this beautiful human being and whispered chants as he poured in the purest of a soul into his ears. He made me believe in platonic love and having no expectations out of a bond. A bond of pure love, a friendship that comes with a smile each time he utters a word. I am not exaggerating when I say that I’d trade all my straight friends for this one. As long as promises me that he’ll always be there.
Just like he always has been.
— Akriti Sheth, artist
The only thing that changed when I found out that my handsome friend was gay was the slightest crushing of my heart, and that’s only because it was unfair that I would never be able to date such an amazing soul.
It’s endearing to find someone who gets excited about my life more than I do — which is why I think he’s my official power source, on bad days and otherwise.
He lights me up. Pun intended.
— Komal Balani, brand strategist
Having a gay best friend is basically discovering a level of comfort you didn’t know could exist — they aren’t just the best fun you’ll ever have, they will be close to you in a way nobody else can even touch.
And that’s as uplifting as it can be.
— Saumyaa Vohra, editor
I love my friend for his sass and honesty, and his unbridled positivity in life, a combination that most men lack — especially cute men such as him. Having him as a friend in my life is like a three-tier chocolate cake — because I’d never be able to have enough of him.
Only, his sexual orientation is the icing on top!
— Sakshi, photographer
First things first, I’m a realist. Ok Iggy Azalea song reference aside, I am a realist which means I know exactly how difficult it is to connect with somebody on multiple levels, and to always succeed in having a conversation where you feel an instant match of wavelength.
Thank the heavens I got that with my friend. We might not talk for weeks, but when we actually do, it’s like we never stopped. The best part is that our core beliefs and principles are the same. And our candour gets me, every time! Nothing is out-of-bounds for us; we can literally talk about everything outrageous under the sun without having to be politically correct with each other. From talking about all the boys who broke our hearts (because we have the same lives) to talking about pop culture references that broke the Internet (because we have the same tastes), it’s been one epic journey.
Someday we will travel the world together, living the good life and checking out cute guys but until then, I’ll just show him off to Mumbai as my hot and charming gay friend. Because #IGotMyOwn!
— Amrita Hom Ray, PR professional
Having a gay man as your best friend is nothing like the stereotypes that people talk about — instead, it gives you true perspective of how life can be the same and yet so different for the community. It allows you to step back, and look at your own prejudices, your own self and your relationships — my friend here helps me become a better person and a better member of the community.
And that’s half the battle won.
— Devika Mehta, movement therapist
I’ve known my GBF for all of three years, but it’s like they say — in true connections, the amount of time you’ve known each other is completely irrelevant. He has taken up so many roles in this timeline: confidante, bridesmaid, partner-in-crime, and a true inspiration in the way he lives his life!
His resilience, the character progress he’s shown, his utter and complete honesty are all things I value deeply. He’s never shied away from living his truth, which is a difficult thing to do for anybody, but probably more so for him. I know that we’ll continue to grow together as time goes by — as we already have — from being at constantly drunken social situations to sober-planning our future shenanigans!
— Zara Ahmed, psychologist
The best thing about having him as one of my best friends? Having someone who’s there to support and back me up no matter how ridiculous I’m being, and always having someone I can share my dreams and views of an idealistic future with — just because I know he wants the same things in life.
My life wouldn’t be half as awesome as it is without him, because he’s the Betty to my Veronica! The only difference?
We don’t have any Archie to fight over.
— Shivani Singh, B-school student
This is what I have to say to my friend: For all the laughter you bring to my life and for all the madness, I want to thank you for being you.
PS: Just know one thing, when the snow falls and the wind blows, I’ll never let you be that lone wolf.
— Madhuli Thakker, public health researcher
Imagine befriending a man whose sole interest in you doesn’t depend on the size of your breasts or the width of your hips — that’s a gay best friend right there. As men, they are genuinely interested in YOU as a person and THAT makes all the difference.
Can you imagine getting that kind of attention from the opposite sex (without any expectations) and having fun at the same time?
That’s exactly how refreshing it is.
— Ankita Thadani, interior designer
Who doesn’t love a bundle of delight that’s always ready to give you advice from the male perspective? It’s the fun bit of mansplaining!
— Reema Paranjpey, student of health policy and administration
Having a gay friend opened up unheard of avenues in my life. I might have come from a background where the word ‘gay’ was taboo (and I blame society for that), but my friend sprung into my life, opening it up — and made me realise that no man can be a better friend than your gay best friend.
Especially one that makes you his priority.
— Shreea Kadam, film producer
Look! Up in the sky!
It’s a Bird! It’s a Plane!
It’s your Gay Best Friend!
That guy who’s still dancing when the party ends.
He never cans on spontaneous holiday plans,
But somehow has time for your failed romance!
With sassy comebacks and heartfelt words,
He knows just what to say when it hurts.
I’d exchange 10 girl friends for my GBF, honey,
Especially when this one’s worth more than all the money.
— Ila D’Cruz, architect and rapper
I can’t speak for all the ladies with gay besties, but mine sure does add a whole lot of sparkle (and glam) to my being. He’s got his cheeky comebacks down pat, death stares to kill and a sassy style to match. He’s got a way with words and a way with the world.
Yes, he might be really cool, but that’s not the only reason I love him. He’s there for me in times of need, is all ears when I talk about life and whine about love endlessly. And, most importantly, when my life feels grey and glum — he appears like a rainbow in the sky.
Here’s hoping that come rain or not, he’ll always be there to make my life more colourful.
— Namrata Kedar, fashion writer
I frankly don’t know how my life would be without him, because a life with a sassy partner/friend is just endless hours of laughs and eye rolls and more laughs (there’s a lot more, but I was told to keep it short).
A gay best friend might have started off as a season’s must-have accessory a few years ago, but now he’s so much more. Which is why I think that having a close gay friend is a perennial must-have/indispensable/can’t-do-without necessity of life.
I frankly don’t know how my life would be without my Gay Best Man — a life with a sassy partner/friend is just endless hours of laughs and eye rolls and more laughs (there’s a lot more, but I was told to keep it short). I miss my GBM, now that we are in different countries. But our love and friendship is just as strong, if not stronger. After all, distance does make the heart grow fonder. Supporting his right to live and love is just about the basic most thing I or anyone could do for such a man (men) who does so much and brings so much warmth and radiance in my (our) life(s). Happy Galentine’s day to my GBM, who’s no longer just my gay best friend, he’s my family. For now and forever to come. I love you and I pray your light shines even brighter with the years to come.
— Shamika Haldipurkar, marketing executive
Having my best friend is undoubtedly the most ‘awesomesauce’ part of my life – I use this word only because it encapsulates our entire relationship. It’s that delightful.
There are times when we don’t talk or meet for days on end but when we finally do, it’s as if we never stopped. Every time we meet, I feel happier and lighter! I could go on and on, but that’ll never do him justice. I truly admire him, and wouldn’t want him to be any other way (i.e. straight).
— Sshruti Barrve, stylist