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Asian American students, says Jang, account for about 90 percent of the kids she sees through the district's Support Services for Sexual Minorities Youth Program. Though there are more support groups for gay youths than ever before, Virtucio said many Asian American teens find it difficult to fit in. Nor do they have any role models.

They need to see people like them. Even if it's just serving rice, they need something familiar so they could [relate] and feel like they could be part of this community," says Virtucio, who touts her four-year-old group as "a channel to come out. Though the group initially attracted mostly college-age men, most of its members today are younger, and half are female.

At a recent get-together, the girls seemed much less vocal than boys, and though several young men agreed to be interviewed, no girls did. Jang explains that girls are more likely than boys to refrain from expressing their sexuality, possibly because of the shame they think they may bring on themselves and their families. One girl, she recalled, fell in love with her godsister and wanted to tell her, but she was afraid that if she did, everyone in Chinatown would find out.

For both genders, though, coming out to family and friends is a huge issue, one that Virtucio says cannot be put off indefinitely. Mothers, she said, might ask daughters questions like, "Why to you dress that way? Wear a skirt.

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Each family member often is expected to fill an explicit role. For example, she explained, a Filipina, particularly the first-born daughter, "is supposed to take care of the family, and get married and have kids. He is supposed to extend the family name. Desmond Kwok says his parents accept his sexual orientation -- though they don't necessarily support him emotionally. He acknowledges an ongoing "starvation for love" that he blames on his parents. Both have been distant, he says, especially his father, a businessman who lives in Chicago. Kwok says he found support for coming out not from his family, but from a gang he was in two years ago.

We'll kick their asses. Now, Kwok dates "older" Asian and Asian American men -- at least 19 -- because few come out before then, he says. He admits that he has tried to find boyfriends over the Internet, at bars and cafes, "the worst places to meet a good boyfriend. A graduate of the School of the Arts, a magnet academy, Kwok said he intends to continue his work as an advocate for gay Asian and Asian American teens. Yet even now he cannot rid "the feeling of being alone -- being around people who really love you, but still knowing they are heterosexual.

They'll be with their girlfriends or boyfriends, and here I am all alone, sitting around, boo-hoo, no boyfriend. Eric Aquino never had such peer support growing up in Vallejo, Calif. He avoided his locker, where the popular kids hung out, and instead took long, circuitous paths to classes to dodge their cruel comments. Do you suck dick? I looked at the clock until it was 3 o'clock and time to go. Aquino's high school years were both the happiest and one of the most depressing times of his life.

He joined marching band and had friends for the first time, but he also started feeling that he was, in fact, gay. Aquino thought perhaps he should wait until he was 18 to come out, so that if his parents rejected him, he could run away. He also considered living in the closet and spent much of his time thinking of ways to keep his secret. Like, I'll get married and have kids, [then divorce] and be a single parent, and my parents would just think I never found love again.


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Ofie Virtucio, 21, can relate to the feeling of isolation. Of course I was lonely. She looked me in the eyes; she was worried," Virtucio said. Alex Davidson Updated: Happy Together Gay rights, and representation of gay men on screen, vary hugely from country to country, offering a rich diversity of fascinating movies.

Each of the recommendations included here is available to view in the UK. If east and south-east Asian films about gay men rarely make it to DVD, films about lesbians are rarer still. We hope that, with classic lesbian titles becoming increasingly successful, albeit at a shamefully slow rate, a future list on gay female east Asian films will appear in the future. Funeral Parade of Roses Hold on tight, as Funeral Parade of Roses takes you on an outrageous journey through sex, drugs, drag and Oedipal horror, in a weird and rather terrifying walk on the wild side.

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The bananas plot is pure camp: Eddie tries to forget harrowing memories of killing his mother — and anyone who knows their Greek tragedy will second-guess the identity of the manager of a gay bar with whom he then shacks up. Farewell My Concubine It follows the friendship of two men, brought up through the strict training of the Peking Opera School. Dieyi Leslie Cheung has been trained in female roles, and plays the concubine to the King of Chu, played by his friend Xiaolou Zhang Fengyi.

Dieyi falls in love with Xiaolou, but the latter marries a prostitute Gong Li , excellent , ushering in a complex saga of love and betrayal. Cheung is remarkable as the tragic figure of Dieyi, a damaged and abused individual who resorts to dreadful betrayal when threatened by the Red Guards. Cheung, who came out as bisexual, was a hugely successful pop star in Hong Kong as well as an acclaimed actor, starring in several films by Wong Kar-wai , including Happy Together After years of suffering from depression, he killed himself in East Palace, West Palace Power play is a major theme of this intense drama, in which a gay man is apprehended while cruising in a park and spends the night in a police station under the stern eye of the arresting officer.

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As the detainee tells the disapproving cop about his tumultuous life, it becomes clear he is subtly trying to seduce the masculine policeman. When the officer releases the gay man from custody, he refuses to leave, and things takes turn for the twisted. Jean Genet would have loved it. This is one of the coolest gay films ever made, a vivid and exhilarating depiction of two men from Hong Kong — Lai Tony Leung and Ho Leslie Cheung — in an intense on-again-off-again relationship, who travel to Argentina to visit Iguazu Falls, but end up repeating the cycle of infidelity and cruelty.

After yet another break-up, Lai meets the handsome and possibly gay Chang, whose friendship jolts Lai into facing up to his responsibilities, and offers a chance of happiness and redemption. Happy Together , which won him the best director award at Cannes, is one of his best, with a terrific central performance from Leung as a young, insecure man yearning for romance.

As so often with Wong Kar-wai, the last shot, accompanied by a brassy cover of the title song, is unforgettable. Gohatto In 19th-century Japan, a young and beautiful swordsman Ryuhei Matsuda joins a group of samurai. Although homosexuality is forbidden, he immediately arouses the attention of his fellow warriors, including the stern vice-commander Takeshi Kitano. Sexual jealousy inevitably rears its head, and violence ensues. Unorthodox erotic obsession permeates the best-known works of Nagisa Oshima , notably the ultra-controversial Ai no corrida , with its graphic scenes of unsimulated sex, and the homoerotic atmosphere of the prison camp in Merry Christmas, Mr.

Lawrence The last scene, set by a lake, is incredibly beautiful. Tokyo Godfathers Either way, Hana is a fantastic character, who dreams of bringing up a baby and shows the most kindness of the threesome.

Young, Gay, and APA : Asian-Nation :: Asian American History, Demographics, & Issues

The bond between the three is seemingly unbreakable, and together they form the tightest of units, reinventing the concept of family. For years, I deceived myself. I thought I was being honest by thinking of myself, and admitting Life Topics. Practical Mar 30, at 4: What's in a word? Name it honestly to address it honestly. Harold A. Maio, retired mental health editor.

10 great gay films from east and south-east Asia

Maybe not referring to them ask "queers" in a news article would be a good start. Get the latests events and news updates. Straight Talk: Weekly top stories the List: I may unsubscribe at any time. Spinning him as the Conservative version of Mike Harcourt? Incident between skiers on Grouse Mountain sends youth to hospital. Hold the Moment The Georgia Straight: A 50th Anniversary Celebration Book This beautifully produced coffee-table book brings together over of Georgia Straight's iconic covers, along with short essays, insider details and contributor reflections, putting each of these issues of the publication into its historical context.

Missing people from Metro Vancouver and B. Spring arts preview.

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