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In trying to be fair to our daughters, are we being unfair to our sons? A son asks this question to his mom, who has shared it with us.
All of you will agree with me that there is nothing more rewarding or satisfying than the time spent with your child. I have always managed to have a one to one time with both my boys. Trust me, when I say that I have learnt some of life’s best lessons from these talks. Kids always amaze us, surprise us and make us realize that there is so much to learn from them. Their innocence makes them look at the world and its innumerable problems, complexities, issues, troubles etc., without any bias.
Last night, when I was having my one on one time with my younger son, he asked me, “Mummy, why do all mothers and fathers nowadays want only girls?”
I did not know what to say. I opened my mouth twice to answer but I didn’t know where to start. So I asked him why he thought it was like that. He replied, “I hear all the aunties say how lucky it is to have a girl, and that girls are so cute.”
This hit me so hard, I felt so guilty. Being a mother of two boys, I do long for a girl. When I go shopping and look at all the beautiful clothes for little girls, I wish that I had a girl. When I felt that my elder son was not understanding what I was feeling, I wished I had a daughter. When I looked at old people who were being taken care of by their daughters, I wondered who would take care of me. I thought I was only thinking all this in my mind, but I never realized I was saying it loud and my little boy was listening to me.
I took a deep breath. I started by saying “I am sorry”. I continued “I love both you and your brother a lot. I am very proud and happy that I am your mom. I would never ever exchange this for anything in the world. I never meant that I didn’t want you. But if my words have hurt you then I was wrong and it was not my intention. I do not want a girl in place of you. Boys and girls both are important.” I hugged him and kissed him. I did not want to give any explanation to him for the wrong I did, because I have taught him to accept when he is wrong. I believe in being an example for my kids.
He fell asleep but I couldn’t sleep. I was thinking and my thoughts took me back to the time when I was small. Those were the times when everyone wanted boys. The birth of a boy was celebrated. If only one child could be educated then it was always the boy who would be sent to school. We have moved from those times and how drastically.
We are not as bad as them but we are now only thinking of girls and women empowerment. We are trying to celebrate everything about women. Most of my friends, who are moms of boys, knowingly or unknowingly have said it at least once that it would have been nice to have a girl.
Why can’t we bring up our kids without any bias? Every child is born equal apart from the physical difference. How wonderful it would be if we could bring up the kids without any bias because of their gender.
Coming back to the question my son asked, it will take some time for me to get over my guilt. But I hope whoever is reading this, will learn from my experience and will not make the same mistake as I did.
Published here earlier.
Image source: pixabay
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Rajshri Deshpande, who played the fiery protagonist in Trial by Fire along with Abhay Deol speaks of her journey and her social work.
Rajshri Deshpande as the protagonist in ‘Trial by Fire’, the recent Netflix show has received raving reviews along with the show itself for its sensitive portrayal of the Uphaar Cinema Hall fire tragedy, 1997 and its aftermath.
The limited series is based on the book by the same name written by Neelam and Shekhar Krishnamoorthy, who lost both their children in the tragedy. We got an opportunity to interview Rajshri Deshpande who played Neelam Krishnamoorthy, the woman who has been relentlessly crusading in the court for holding the owners responsible for the sheer negligence.
Rajshri Deshpande is more than an actor. She is also a social warrior, the rare celebrity from the film industry who has also gone back to her roots to give to poverty struck farming villages in her native Marathwada, with her NGO Nabhangan Foundation. Of course a chance to speak with her one on one was a must!
“What is a woman’s job, Ramesh? Taking care of parents-in-law, husband, children, home and things at work—all at the same time? She isn’t God or a superhuman."
The arrays of workstations were occupied by people peering into their computer screens. The clicks of keyboard keys were punctuated by the occasional footsteps moving around to brainstorm or collaborate with colleagues in their cubicles. Most employees went about their tasks without looking at the person seated on either side of their workstation. Meenakshi was one of them.
The thirty-one-year-old marketing manager in a leading eCommerce company in India sat straight in her seat, her eyes on the screen, her fingers punching furiously into the keys. She was in a flow and wanted to finish the report while the thoughts and words were coming effortlessly into her mind.
Natu-Natu. The mellifluous ringtone interrupted her thoughts. She frowned at her mobile phone with half a mind to keep it ringing until she noticed the caller’s name on the screen, making her pick up the phone immediately.
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