Sikh and dating
I must be someone who is extremely “religious” (a term that carries a lot of baggage), someone who is very “serious,” probably not “fun,” and certainly not attractive in the romantic sense.Of course I wouldn’t want to date anyone who is so quick to judge in this way either, but the reality is nevertheless frustrating.I have certainly observed Sikh women who see turban-wearing Singhs as more like brothers and less like someone to date, but is this really becoming the norm?Desire is a complicated thing, something that is deeply shaped by the society we live in.Of course it goes the other way too, with keshdhari and even amritdhari Sikh men having no interest in Sikh women who don’t shave or otherwise remove their body hair.(A friend has been doing some fascinating research on the subject, which I hope she’ll share on TLH some time).So naturally I assumed it was highly unlikely that any of my female classmates would ever be interested in dating someone like me.The combination of a dirty face plus a patka was enough to cause a whole lot of anxiety and insecurity for this angsty teenage Singh.
While other websites may cater solely for single Sikhs, their services can be clunky and difficult to use, resulting in a tougher time for you as you make your merry way down the path of love.
I recommend checking out Nihal’s discussion on the BBC especially starting at around into the show if you don’t have time to listen to the whole thing.
One caller named Jasminder asserts that when Param came down, it became more like a comedy show and less like a dating show given how the women and audience reacted.Â He continues that turban-wearing men often feel invisible to women, not literally, but “when it comes to actually going out with someone.” I was inundated with the voices of young women in my school casually referring to facial hair as gross or unattractive (with no intention to hurt my feelings I’m sure) and their preference for guys who were “clean-shaven.” CLEAN-shaven. These are the messages we get from our peers and from the media every day.
It’s clear that people in North America and the UK are not exactly socialized to find Sikh men attractive, so I’m sure that plays a role in who Sikh women in the diaspora find attractive.
But as paghs and untrimmed/unshaved dharis become less fashionable in Punjab (and India in general), perhaps our own community is also socializing heterosexual women away from being attracted to keshdhari Sikh men.