Actress Patricia Mok is no stranger to Pink Dot, having supported the movement and seeing the ‘dot’ grow since its inaugural event in 2009.
“We (my friends and I) were excited to go to the rst Pink Dot event in 2009. We actually didn’t really know what it was all about – all we knew was that we needed to support our LGBT friends, we were asked to wear pink tops!” she said.
Patricia’s introduction to the LGBT community began when she rst got to know two men, both of whom would later become very good friends.
“Back then, I didn’t know what else ‘gay’ meant – to me it meant ‘happy’, which was what it said in the dictionary. But after I saw my two friends getting excited when they see other cute guys in the streets, I eventually realised that they like guys; they were gay.
“To me it was ne – more, it was fun!”
Patricia also related a transgender friend’s story: “I felt she was very courageous to have decided to go ahead with her gender reassignment surgery. Think about it – this was about thirty, forty years ago, and acceptance for transgender people is even less than it is now. It was a very dif cult decision to make on her part, but in the end she realised, ‘This is what I am and I want to be happy with myself.’”
As a favourite among the older Chinese- speaking audiences – who recognise her from her roles in the popular Comedy Nite series on Channel 8 – Patricia acknowledges the challenges in reaching out to this quiet, relatively conservative group. Her message to them is one of love and acceptance, and an invitation to join their LGBT children at Pink Dot this year.
“I hope that the older generation aunties and uncles, mothers and fathers, will come to Pink Dot to understand what it means to be LGBT. And if their children happen to be LGBT, they can use the event day itself to express to their children that they don’t think it’s a problem that their children are gay or lesbian, and that they are still their children and they still love them very much.”