I’m supremely impressed by the book’s honesty, as well as the courage of the interviewees in sharing their darkest moments. This has been possible for them because they appear under assumed names. Some aren’t completely out of the closet, and those out of the closet are sharing secrets that could end up hurting them.
Ultimately, I Will Survive is a vitally important addition to the gay Singaporean bookshelf. Through its tales of troubled spirits, it gives perspectives on GLBT life here that have never been documented elsewhere. It also reminds us how far off we are from being a place where you can raise a young queer child without fear of psychological scarring.
If we are to develop as a society, these stories must be shared. As for the men and women behind them, they must be acknowledged for their bravery. Love and peace to them all.
Dr Khoo Hoon Eng, loving mother, AWARE activist & Action for AIDS volunteer counsellor
As a mother of two gay sons and a friend of many gay people, these stories resonate with me. They could be the stories of my friends, my children or my friends’ children.
These stories reveal very clearly that GLBT people are human beings with the same emotions and relationship issues that all people struggle with. However, as GLBT individuals, the issues are more fraught with pain and anguish because of the need to keep one’s sexuality hidden or “covered”, defined by Asian-American constitutional lawyer Kenji Yoshino as the “coerced hiding of crucial aspects of one’s self”
I hope that reading these stories will convince you, regardless of your sexual orientation, that we all share the same deep-seated need to seek happiness and to be respected and loved. So let us treat everyone, including all our GLBT family and friends with dignity and respect so that they do not have to suffer for being who they are, nor have to remain “covered”.
Ovidia Yu, award-winning novelist, writer & playwright
I was very touched by what I read. I would describe some of their experiences as unbelievable except that I believed them. Their candid honesty in describing difficult and sometimes painful and all too familiar Singapore experiences made me feel I not only knew them and Singapore better but knew myself better too. The unpretentious yet gripping narratives gave me a strong sense that these people are triumphant, practical survivors and I can be too.
This book will take you into the darkness. To experience the fears, terrors, losses, up-hill battles and never ending struggles with a love that dares not speak its name. Every painful page will leave you spellbound by the raw honesty that pours forth and touches us as human beings who are both broken and strong. I Will Survive shines a hopeful and unyielding light on the lives of LGBT people in Singapore showing us a world full of gravity, and levity. (Nicholas Deroose, 20 Dec 2011)
A must-have for anyone wanting to know what it is like to be LGBTQ
This book is a valuable addition to the Singaporean queer library. It contains many stories of LGBTQ people who are at various stages of the coming out process, from all walks of life. There are valuable resources, and interviews with some important people. This book tells it like it is without varnishing the truth. It’s surprisingly affordable… and it’s for a good cause!
I only wish it was available on paperback though, or at least on pdf. Otherwise, this is a must-have. (Sujith Kumar, 7 Mar 2012)
What an amazing and moving collection of stories