Stop “being a girl” !?

Why is someone who is “being a girl” mocked at ?

I don’t know how many of us know it, but there is a difference between “sex” and “gender”. While Sex refers to biological differences; gender describes the characteristics that a society or culture delineates as masculine or feminine.

So, your sex constitutes of being a female or a male, while being a – girl , boy, woman or a man would be your gender. Worldwide, a female is expected to act like a  girl or a woman (as per her age), and a male is expected to act as a boy or a man (as per his age).

Since the females hold a secondary status in the society, so any male who acts like a girl is mocked at ! Whereas, a female who exercises dominance is tagged as being a man ! why? Because that is what men are expected to do (to dominate). In discussion with a friend, she told me about a news article wherein dominating a.k.a “masculine” women in the jail were found raping the submissive a.k.a “feminine” women. Another thing we pondered upon was as to why the eunuchs ( who are neither men nor women) dress up as women in our country ? This may be because eunuchs ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hijra_(South_Asia)) occupy a derogatory status in our society, which is obviously closer to that of women.

Is this justified ? These differences in social roles of females and males aren’t even due to biological attributes ! Among the Chambri People – women are the bread-earners whereas men look after household work and spend time in combing hair, wearing different kinds of beads and other kinds of beautification, among the Mundugumor Tribe – women and men are equally aggressive and in some tribes, the father gives training to the son in dancing !

I know that females and males have only themselves and their own acts to blame for such characterisation, but it is time now to do away with it. It may not be possible to erase the words – girl, boy, woman and man from our vocabulary. But at the least, the concept of ‘sex’ and ‘gender’ should be segregated.

While one can not determine ones sex, one should have the freedom to embody any gender. I do not take this as being unnatural in any way, in fact it would be more natural than imposing upon someone the pressure to act in a certain way because of her/his belonging to a particular sex !

Kisiki Amaanat?

vivah

The title of this post, literally translated would mean – Whose trust / custody / safekeeping ?

In a typical wedding scene in  Indian cinema , one would find either of these 2 scenarios –

1. The father of the bride telling the father-in-law that ” Aap ki Amaanat aaj aapko saump raha hoon”. Meaning – I’m today giving the custody of the bride to you, who was  with me for safekeeping , but belonged to you all this time.

2. The father of the bride telling the father-in-law that ” Meri amaanat ka khayaal rakhiyega”. Meaning – Please take care of my daughter whose custody I’m now giving to you.

One might believe that the first dialogue might merely be said to please the father-in-law. But actually, that is not entirely true. From the moment a girl is born, the parents start dreaming of her marriage. She is groomed all through, told not to play in the sun so that she makes a ‘fair’ bride someday, taught not to talk in a disrespective manner, given lessons of cooking, sewing etc. (Not that any of this is wrong, but the fact that none such training is given to the deity sons).

So, basically she is brought up by her birth parents, with the thinking that she doesn’t really belong to them, as they’ll have to hand her over to her in-laws someday, and they only have her custody until then.

As regards the second dialogue, it only reflects the concern of the father of the bride, which is indeed pleasing to know. But, the repercussions are felt by the girl in her matrimonial home, where her in-laws considering her to be the belonging of another house, which is in their custody, might take her to be a liability.

There are many disturbing aspects of this, I shall proceed in ascending order.

The first question obviously is – akhir kiski amaanat ?.. , After all, whose trust is she ? .. Secondly, why is she considered merely as a trust ?  and, if the contradictions of the first two dialogues happen to prevail from both sides, she might end up without a sense of belongingness at all ! Also,  If we look at the bigger picture, the fact that she is equated with movable property, or if human considered to be of the same mental capacity as a child (Custody in divorce cases) is also very disturbing. From times immemorial, women have been considered to be a part of the spoils of war just like cattle . This must end, and by “this” I mean the sense of “ownership” over women which is prevalent so much so that her own parents consider her a property. I will not limit myself to telling what must end, and therefore, go on to say that what must prevail instead is independence for women with a sense of belongingness .

I’ve got the power !!

I just got into a little clash with someone I love dearly. What happens with us always is that, when I get upset about something related to us, he instead of trying to mend it, either simply ignores it or himself gets angry in return. As a result, it only gets worse.  

So, most of the times I try and get over it myself. But, instead of even acknowledging that, today, he asked me to prioritize his situation over my anger. Trust me, I  do that all the time. but clearly, it hasn’t been to any avail. Suppressing my anger.

I mean, why am I even supposed to  do that ?? ..because I am a girl ?? and am supposed to take it all quietly ? .. Do I not have the right to get upset and be cheered up by someone ?? .. Am I to consider myself so lowly ? 

NO, is the answer.