Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Hostname: page-component-77c89778f8-vsgnj Total loading time: 0 Render date: 2024-07-25T04:05:57.036Z Has data issue: false hasContentIssue false

9 - Survival of an older Bangladeshi lesbian experiencing intersectional vulnerability

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  16 June 2023

Mark Henrickson
Affiliation:
Massey University, Auckland
Casey Charles
Affiliation:
University of Montana
Shiv Ganesh
Affiliation:
University of Texas, Austin
Sulaimon Giwa
Affiliation:
Memorial University of Newfoundland
Kan Diana Kwok
Affiliation:
The University of Hong Kong
Tetyana Semigina
Affiliation:
Academy of Labour, Social Relations and Tourism, Ukraine
Get access

Summary

Introduction

Living as an older gender or sexually diverse person in a society that stigmatises and oppresses gender and sexually diverse communities is challenging. Many gender and sexually diverse people in Bangladesh live by hiding their identities to avoid social stigma and exclusion. The patriarchy and male-dominant values play a significant role in the experiences of gender and sexually diverse populations, especially lesbians. This chapter focuses on the case of an older lesbian, referred to here as Didi. Older people are disadvantaged in many parts of the world due to inadequate financial support and lack of health provisions and social care (Kneale et al, 2021). Didi’s experience of what it is like to live as an older lesbian is used here as a lens to tell us what it is like to live a diverse identity while also needing to get access to health and social care and having social relationships. This chapter also investigates the role of religion in Didi’s life as well as implications for mental health, resilience and support for people living with HIV, based on her lived experiences.

Didi’s experience gives us insight into how stigma can be intersectional for an older woman who also identifies as a lesbian in postcolonial Bangladesh. The stigma older lesbians experience in Bangladesh sits at the intersection of oppression by men, prejudice related to sexual diversity and ageism. While there are challenges in using one person’s experience to explore issues for wider populations, Didi’s experience – due to the nature of her work – is a useful lens. This chapter conveys her multifarious insights about living at the intersection of multiple stigmas and how this impacts her mental health. Didi’s experience in providing support for people living with HIV is discussed in order to reflect how the government regulates health provision for people living with HIV.

Background

This chapter is based on findings from doctoral research that investigated healthcare experiences of gender and sexually diverse communities in Bangladesh. A phenomenological approach was taken to examine the lived experiences of the participant in order to understand what it is like to be a gender or sexually diverse person, an ageing person or a person living with HIV in a society that is culturally conservative.

Type
Chapter
Information
Publisher: Bristol University Press
Print publication year: 2022

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

Save book to Kindle

To save this book to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Available formats
×

Save book to Dropbox

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

Available formats
×

Save book to Google Drive

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

Available formats
×