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Persian dating service

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"The problem is that somewhere down the road, someone finds out you are gay and then starts blackmailing you.

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These people — men like Saeed — are the lucky ones.The "passive" person can still be sentenced to death, regardless of marital status.Sexual interaction between two women is punishable by flogging.Many gays endure beatings and even sexual assaults from family members, he adds.Even if one manages to create a parallel life, it is tenuous and can be destroyed instantly.In a dimly lit mansion on the slopes of northern Tehran, the thump of an electronic bass so loud it makes the windows clatter, bounces off the walls of the vast living room and out onto the porch.

Dozens of men dance and mingle, drinking bootleg vodka out of plastic cups, and several of them are visibly high.

Thick trees surround the garden and the swimming pool, allowing the residents some privacy, but the loud music traveling downhill gives them away.

This is one of the most blatantly unsubtle parties I have been to in Iran.

The vast majority of media reports about homosexuality in Iran are based on accounts of torment and oppression from gays and lesbians who have fled the country.

And while their experiences are representative for some of Iran's homosexuals, they are hugely different from those of the people who choose to stay in the country, or don't have the opportunity to leave.

A party like this is the easiest way for young Iranians to hook up for a one-night stand. "All of us have profiles in the intelligence service, I'm sure we do," says Saeed.