Now-a-days I have to travel for an hour to reach office. It is boring as hell and I have to resort to stalking people and celebrities on Instagram. While doing the same I came across a few supposedly motivating quotes some of which are as follows:
Don’t be the girl who needs a man, be the girl a man needs
I’m a female
Fe = Iron, Male = Man
Therefore I am Iron Man
Both of these quotes irked me. Now, call it a coincidence or whatever, during my journey back home I overheard a conversation between two aunties which went on something like this:
Aunty 1 (A1): Do you know Pushpa’s daughter got into some IIM, now she will get a wealthy groom.
Aunty 2 (A2): Oh that is nice. Good for her. Reena’s daughter has taken arts. She doesn’t need to study so hard. She is pretty which will make it easy for her to get a wealthy groom. Pushpa’s daughter doesn’t look so good so she has to work hard to get to the same level.
A1: I totally agree. After all a girl’s life would mean nothing if she is unable to get married. All this study would go to waste.
A2: Do you know Reena’s daughter-in-law cooks for the entire family?
A1: Really? She is a doctor right? Does she get so much time?
A2: Yes. But that does not matter. After all what matters is whether she is able to make her husband happy and cook for the family. Studies and money are secondary for a woman and that is reality.
Well, that indeed is reality, isn’t it? We constantly talk about changing the mindset of people around us. We get into debates about how society needs to transform and educate the girl child. For what purpose? To make her an alluring option in the paper’s matrimony section? To present her as a tempting alternative in front of a pool of wealthy grooms? Or is it to make her independent and help her dream and achieve her goals?
This also starts a new thread of thoughts in my mind. Do my qualifications, my achievements, my dreams, my objectives in life really matter? Even though we say that we as a society are evolving, will I always be seen as a minion alive to make her husband and his family happy, producing offspring for their family line? Is that the only “primary” identity attached to a woman’s life?
I hear a lot of my male friends telling us that girls should not crib, life is easy for them. Even if they do not earn, nobody is going to blame them. All they need to do is look groomed and take care of the family. However, a man would always be criticized and accused if he is unable to provide for the family. Well this is true, isn’t it? But why? Why should it not be seen as the primary duty of both women and men to provide for the family? So much for gender equality, eh?
All of the above instances break my heart. We are in motion but where are we going to reach when this ends? Are we just moving around in a circle where we will end up right where we started? Will all the efforts of my warrior friends, fighting for gender equality, get tossed into one big pile of don’t cares?
Is our attitude really maturing or is it just adjusting in lieu of the current circumstances waiting to renege as soon as the fire collapses into plain meaningless smoke? Will there ever be gender equality in its true sense? Think about it!