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Layers of intimacy


14.30 - 15:30

Shyam Pillai & Sanjay Kumar



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Most of us probably have been raised with only examples of heterosexual intimacy from our primary care givers, from the fairy tales and stories we were told as children, images and messages right through our lives from movies, TV, adverts, other forms of media and from witnessing straight relationships all around us.
For many of us our discoveries and journeys in intimacy perhaps began much later than our heterosexual counterparts. These experiences and experimentation may have been clandestine, in secret, for some completely impossible, for others prohibited through societal, legal and faith systems.
We are literally first generation in living memory to be legally free to be who we are and love without the fear of being tormented for it. We are only beginning to discover what queer intimacy is like for ourselves! All we have to go by it so far it seems, is the heteronormative model which with all the historical affirmation and support systems it has had, is in itself not fool proof and far from perfect.
Intimacy! What does it even mean? Can Queer men really have truly meaningful, intimate, fulfilling relationships?
What is the essence of Queer Male Intimacy? What are the expectations? What are the rules? What are the boundaries? Are all of these questions even necessary? What does having intimacy mean for us as individuals and as a community? We will be making a small attempt at dialoguing about these questions using a model called Layers Of Personality and contextualise it to our own individual experiences in the hope of gaining some insight into how we engage with ourselves and others.

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Shyam Pillai & Sanjay Kumar

J Sanjay Kumar BSc.MA.PgDip.MBACP
Sanjay is a psychotherapist and group work facilitator who has been working with LDBTQIA+ folk exploring with them their journeys of self discovery, growth and intimacy. Sanjay is an integrative Gestalt practitioner including mindfulness and meditation practice. Sanjay currently only offers online sessions and works with clients living in the UK, Europe, USA and India.

Shyam Pillai MA.MSc(A).RP
Shyam is a psychotherapist and drama therapist working with individuals, couples and families both in Canada and India. His experience includes working with issues like minority stress within the LGBTQIA+ Communities. He uses an Integrative approach informed by Systemic, CBT-based and anti- oppressive theories. He currently only works online.

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