I use to read books about this burning issue “Women Empowerment” and women rights. Those books did acknowledge me, or a woman, with mighty respect, self-worth and equality and elaborated the actions they should do for a better and egalitarian life.
Although it modernized our rituals, to me and the girls, hedged with society, it didn’t actually help. There is still a huge ladder that I need to climb to minimize the gap between my knowledge and social conscience.
As soon as I came across adulthood phase, I realized I was living in a fictitious world. I’m happy that the grim rituals have now been modernized and have made our lives easier. But the bitter thoughts, the bold statements of my books being a failure, never left my mind. I will tell you why:
I’m closely connected to society and also, strictly answerable. I can’t be like, ‘I give a damn’. Because I was brought-up in the same the same society, with same values. More than me, my family is concerned and they feel the need to be accepted and are answerable to society.
The deal here is they educated me with the best of knowledge, in their capability. But the age-old values have somewhere tied me to explore it and the ideologies of women empowerment.
Like the ‘equality’ I have been enduring so far.
‘Feed your brother’, they said. And I did it happily because I have seen this lore from years and now that I’m capable, I do it.
But the point here is a guy should know how to cook, not because we could cook alternately but for times when things get hard for me and I’m not able to make time or pull myself up to the kitchen, he can at least feed himself. We have a beautiful bond, and I’m sure my dearest brother will surely come up with some creative moves, when time demands it.
Another most common line I have heard is, ‘It’s not safe to travel late at night, be home on the time.’ Literally, I have been growing listening to this and I find it apt somewhere.
How, you ask?
Rarely, after several arguments with my parents for permission to stay late somewhere. And when I come home late that night my thoughts go from ‘Am I going to be kidnapped’ to ‘What if someone slams me from back’ and ‘What if I have to face a gang’ or I doubt if the driver is taking the longer route?
I start have heck lot of questions and my head starts hurting. I can only relax when I get home safely. So much for women empowerment. But coming home early means I safe and I get my mental peace. Which is more important for me than the idea of women empowerment.
Two context but the major ones, and the whole women empowerment circles here but didn’t help me. Things were never hard and it’s getting better. I’m sure at some point my life I will give justice to those bold statements. I have a lot to complain about but I’m not upset because things have been better and I believe it will be even better for my generation.
– Jyoti Lalwani
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