There are millions of people out there and with them comes millions of mentalities. It’s often difficult to understand them without living in their situation and it is much easier to pass judgement, give lectures and give a dose of dos and don’ts.
Growing up and living in the city, it was easy for me to say, “I want to have an identity. So, what I am a girl? There is no way I won’t have what I want. After all girls need to be independent. They need to stand up for themselves. They deserve everything. I deserve everything. I need to support myself not because I have to but because I want to.”
It was easy to dream this, make this come true and put all my efforts to make this happen because my parents shared the same mindset as me. People around me also thought the same way, understood things on the same wavelength as me. So, when someone stood up and said, I won’t be allowed to do so or I read some backstory of some girl saying I was brilliant but I have to give up being that, to get married; the only words that came out of my mouth was, “That is absurd. “
Why should anyone give up their individuality for anyone else? Be it male or female! The thought of inequality had a very narrow meaning in my head, which is what I realise now.
It is very difficult to define the word identity. Deliberation on this particular word can only be done with people who already understand it, ironically. The difficulty arises when you try and explain it to people who don’t care about it and even though knowledgeable, wouldn’t ever want to comprehend it, often, on purpose.
Recently, I have come across such line of thought. I was asked, what is it that I want to do in life. I told them the big plan I had for myself but nowhere in that plan did I mention the word marriage, home or my future family. This threw them off a little bit.
I was told indirectly that my significant other is what will matter the most in my life and not these books or my job or my intellect. Ultimately, I was supposed to learn to stand in the kitchen and serve. I was told that today’s generation (especially girls) is afraid to face their real responsibilities and hide behind such nuisance like expecting to work and utilise themselves beyond house hold work after marriage, that we were misguided. Instead of using the word dependence, they used the word interdependence to explain to me the meaning of so called co-existence which only happens if a woman takes care of a man! To top all this off, when expected to meet a guy, I was told not to ask about unreasonable and illogical stuff like their thoughts about job or business or further education because they were a rich and a well settled family.
I was bugged. How do you explain to such people, the joy of being able to buy something on your own, to give something to a loved one because of your accomplishments or the self-satisfaction that you get on completing a task because of your own ability!
How do I tell them that I do not underestimate marriage, family or relation, that for them to exist, I don’t have to give up myself or my being! Taking care of them is as important as taking care of myself.
Everything has its time and place and things like this will happen the way they are supposed to happen. It’s not like I just get up one day, rush out on the road, catch hold of a BMW and bark at them, “Hey, you are rich. Now marry and support me!” This is how the world expects me to behave, it is as ludicrous as it sounds. This is how the world expects all the girls to behave unfortunately.
There was no way the word identity would matter them let alone a girl’s identity! I didn’t even feel the urge to explain the same to them because it would have been of no use.
I am fortunate enough to not be amongst such people permanently but with broad minded people who are susceptible to debates and accept things in an open manner. I am fortunate to be brought up the way, I have been brought up, so as to know that I need to do my part silently. I hope you know and understand your part too, so that we are can together support and pull someone who wants an out from that mindset to cross over towards the side of common sense.
I am just glad that I don’t actually have to follow their philosophy of life.