A trans woman has become a mum to eight orphans, as she’s determined that they should never have a life of suffering as she has had.
Manisha, who lives in the Indian town of Pakhanjur in Chhattisgarh, has taken in seven girls and one boy, who have become orphans. Despite struggling to make ends meet, she is determined that they have a loving home which she was denied as a child.
She told Gaon Connection: “I can understand the pain of not being loved and cared for. So, whenever I come across an orphan, I take that child home with me.”
From a young age, Manisha always knew that she was different from her peers and cruelly, she was ostracised for it.
The other children at school would chase her away and her situation was no better at home, as her parents would lock her indoors so that she wouldn’t ruin their reputation.
When she was just five-years-old, her parents decided to leave her and let her starve.
She said: “My mother and father abandoned me at a very young age.
“I had a tough childhood and I spent many days without food. I vowed to myself that when I grew up, I would take care of other children who did not have a family.”
Thankfully, a fellow trans woman took in Manisha and now she has decided to do the same. Children that would otherwise be left abandoned on the streets, without food, shelter or medicine now have a family to call their own.
For most of the girls that Manisha has welcomed, they’ve had parents who’ve been unable to take care of them or simply have been unwilling to. Shockingly, one of these mums tried to commit infanticide.
Like Manisha, one of the children is transgendered and the youngest is just seven-months-old.
By singing and dancing at weddings and the births of children – this is a traditional occupation for transgendered people in Indian culture – Manisha makes a poor living. But times have been made even more difficult due to the pandemic, which means that she’s had to rear livestock in order for her family to survive.
Ultimately, Manisha dreams of building an orphanage of her own. She wants to give as many children as possible a safe and loving home.
She told Brut: “I never had my mother’s love, or my father’s. I don’t remember getting any affection from them.
“There are kids like this abandoned, kicked out of their homes. Some talk about killing their child. The way I have been hurt, if I see an orphan or a child that has been abandoned, I will be a mother for them and raise them.”