There may be as many as 16 million women who are married to homosexual men, a leading expert has estimated.
Professor Zhang Bei-chuan at
"But their wives are struggling to cope and their plight should be recognized," he said on Thursday.
Xiao Yao, a 29-year-old magazine editor in
"Most gay men's wives I've known are silently suffering at the hands of husbands who could never love them, and like me, some even got abused by husbands who were also under great pressure," she said.
Xiao now runs a website called "Homeland of gays'--wholesale caps wives", which has 1,200 registered users and provides support and advice.
"The website makes them feel they're not alone and empowers them to make the right choices," she said.
Wang Zi (not his real name), a 27-year-old gay man, said he did not want a heterosexual marriage, but maybe one day he would be forced into it because he did not want to hurt the feelings of his parents.
Wang, a graduate student majoring in Chinese, said he would never tell his parents the truth. They still worked on the land at his hometown village .
"I may marry a lesbian and we can keep going with our own lifestyle more honestly," he said.
He claimed that online matchmaking services were available to help homosexuals marry.
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