During my first Women's Nite session, I was quite nervous and excited at the same time. I was glad one of my friend was with me, or else I don't think I would have attended the session alone, as I am a very shy person. The session this month was a review of some LGBT short films and thinking that it would just be about watching movies, I was a little less nervous.
After watching the short films, Hui Yee stood up and asked our opinions on the movies we've watched. Then we started a little discussion on the issues raised in each of the films and each person's opinion of how it was played out. One of the topics that was raised was how lesbian parents could be better at parenting than straight couples. My opinion of that is, no matter what the orientation, two loving and responsible adults can raise a healthy and happy family. I myself look forward to parenting, no matter who my future partner may be, and I aspire to be a good parent. I was glad this issue was raised because it seems that there aren't many local lesbian couples who are raising a family together here. I would be glad to have some couples who can set a good example to many aspiring lesbian parents who plan to start a family here, if it is possible.
I was rather happy with the choice of films. Each had a specific theme. One of the core themes that touched me was in a film titled "Private Lives". Although the story was more light-hearted than the others, the serious issue of how during the olden times, lesbians and gays had to live such secretive and difficult lives truly touched me. It reminds me of how lucky the new generation is today. Now, we are able to be relatively open with our sexuality and not hide who we are. And we have our older generation of LGBT leaders to thank. They had courage to go against stereotypes and break some rules of society to prove that gay, lesbians, bisexuals, transsexuals, or people of any other orientations are normal and perfectly healthy. And thanks to them, groups like Women's Nite are able to flourish and hold discussions and talks so that other women can feel at ease with their sexuality and also give each other the confidence to be true to who we are. Therefore, it is always important, in my opinion, to look upon our LGBT history, and reflect upon how far we've come, be thankful for our elder generation, and also reflect upon how far yet we have to go.
I was happy to have taken part in Women's Nite. It is important for groups like these to be active and to be present in our society. It is through these group activities and discussions that LGBT leaders can influence and inspire future generations of LGBT members. Young queer people in our society must not take for granted the freedom of expression that we have right now. We must be aware and take part in building our community. We must be aware of the issues that affect women and be critical in our thinking towards these issues. I thank the everyone behind Women's Nite for their efforts in sustaining this group and hope they continue raising and questioning the issues affecting women.
Women’s Nite has been an eye opener for me. This place is where thought-provoking questions are asked, topics related to lesbianism are discussed and where you get answers from people of different backgrounds and experiences. A few months back, I made the most important step in my life – to come out to myself and coming to Women’s Nite regularly has provided me the support I needed to fully embrace who I am and to meet very interesting people. Last week’s session had a different format and was equally fruitful. We watched short films that described the various aspects of the lesbian life – from children who are exploring their same-sex attraction to elderly folks who decided to publicly come out during a family reunion. In between these there were two other movies that I appreciated. One of them described the challenges faced by lesbians raised in a Christian family; it explored how a once united family fell apart because of the belief that lesbianism is sinful. This movie really brought up the concept of LOVE – Love as it is described in the bible: 1 Cor 13 and 1 John 4 v16: “God is love, and whoever remains in love remains in God and God in him” and how the lesbian couple challenged the family’s faith and the core of their spirituality. The other one was a thought-provoking movie about the challenges that comes along as a result of the death of a partner in a family comprising two women and a child.
I think it was a very rich evening for the group. We came either out of curiosity or interest to watch the movies or simply for company and we left satisfied to have been with like-minded people and to have learnt so much. Women’s Nite should be held more often – there’s so much we could explore together and there’s definitely quality in what is shared in this group – I look forward to next year’s meeting.