Anupama writes a letter to her 18-year old daughter. Read what she has to say.
As the skeletons come tumbling out with all the #MeToo posts, what is so beautiful to see is the sisterhood that women are showing to other women, even strangers, as they hold each other up.
It is deeply saddening and frustrating to see so many respected male celebrities, artists, journalists etc. being called out for sexual harassment. When my editor informed me about Kiran Nagarkar being named as one of the accused, I shuddered at the news. ‘Can no man be trusted?’ I thought.
But after my intital shock, I realized something positive. You know, these men have always been like this. The only difference is that earlier, women were scared to name them. But the more such men are named and shamed, the more fear will it instill in the current and future crop of such men.
They’ll think twice before sending women their dick pics or before hugging or touching someone against their will. They’d fear that everytime they pass a lewd comment or offer an indecent proposal, someone, somewhere, might expose them someday.
Also, what this naming and shaming is doing, is helping more and more women speak up and support each other. Patriarchy, which for so long, tried to feed us the narrative that women tear each other down, is right now shitting in its pants seeing the rise of sisterhood. Because when we unite, we are a force to reckon with.
We are giving each other the courage to tell our stories. We are opening our hearts to embrace our sisters while our tears mingle and we whisper into each other’s ears, ‘Me too, sister, me too.’
As a result, somewhere, the young intern is a little less hesitant in protesting against her boss’s overtures. Somewhere else, a wife is speaking up against a sexist joke her husband and his friends crack.
Young people everywhere are getting this message loud and clear that consent matters and if someone doesn’t respect that, they might have to pay dearly later on.
And hence, slowly we are building that equal world we’d been dreaming for so long.
Yes, I know that it’ll take a long time.
No, I’m not naive enough to think that every man will suddenly start respecting women from now on.
But this is a start, no? And what a brave and impactful start it is.
Let us keep the flame glowing. Let us keep carrying it forward. Each and every one of us in our own capacities. It is as easy and as difficult as that.
A version of this was first published here.
Image source: shutterstock
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