Having to “omit” bits and pieces of oneself. Pretending to be someone else. Living a life of lies and never receiving the respect all human beings deserve. These are among the thoughts that often come to mind when one is faced with accepting their authentic sexuality and gender identities. My case was no different. At age 16, I decided to fight my inner demons and accept myself for who I am: A gay man. While I hadn’t given up on living a fearless life, I accepted that it was going to be full of challenges and difficulties. But my personal journey was something out of my very own fairy tale.
At 17, I came out to my close friends and family. In return, I received an abundance of love, acceptance, and respect. This acceptance gave me the confidence to come out to the world as a proud gay man.
I joined Wipro as a shy 20-year-old in 2017. I knew the LGBTQIA+ community existed in the corporate world, but I wasn’t sure it would be enough to make me feel secure. While I never announced my sexuality, I never hid it, either. Soon after joining my team, I was true to myself and received overwhelming acceptance. All anyone really wants is not to be treated differently. Today, after nine projects, three countries, and numerous stakeholders, I can very proudly say that everywhere I went, I got nothing but respect and acceptance. This allowed me to focus on my work and do what I do best – train my fellow Wiproites to maximize their contribution to our success.
Wipro, and the atmosphere it has created, gave me the confidence to be myself, my true self. I know firsthand that coming out at work can be stressful, and all the uncertainty and challenges are nerve-wracking. But the Talent Skilling team and Wipro have been extraordinary in creating a space that is not only safe but also supportive. With great pride, I say Wipro has taught me how I deserve to be treated in the workplace. In turn, I strive to create the same environment for everyone around me.
Pride month brings with it marches and rainbow filters that many share on social media. But the true essence of Pride is to treat everyone with dignity. Pride in some countries is a celebration of everyone in our community freely being who we are; however, there are many in our community who are still fighting and struggling just to be themselves. I feel blessed to be showered with love and support from my fellow Wiproites who are on this journey with me.