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Women's bodies are objectified to such an extent that anyone, absolutely anyone, feels they can give 'beauty' advice to us!
Women’s bodies are objectified to such an extent that anyone, absolutely anyone, feels they can give ‘beauty’ advice to us!
Dear nothing-more-than-a-pretty-face man,
When you served me Mojito I was already high on beer and Goa sunset, hence I found you hot enough to look at for 3 seconds. But you couldn’t let me revel in your Himachali prettiness for long, could you?
You literally brought your nothing-more-than-a-pretty-face disturbingly close to my flawed profile and probed –
“Is that a beard on your face?”
Sure I felt embarrassed; but also, I am so used to feeling embarrassed by questions such as yours for the last 12 years that a patch of hard skin has now grown both on my chin and womanliness.
So I slugged down a beer-burp like a real lady and told you, “I have a health condition which causes this.”
You weren’t convinced. Your eyes were still fixed on my chin (probably to count the strands) and you opened your unsavoury mouth once again.
“But I have never seen a woman with a beard before.”
“I have PCOS. Hormonal imbalance causes the facial hair”, I told you and hoped that you will finally leave me alone.
But you are a pretty (obnoxious) waiter living inside your pea-sized world, aren’t you?
“You should shave them. Beard doesn’t look good on women”, you announced.
Oh, really? And here I’m growing a beard because I like fingering my thick, coarse chin hair when I bum around the magical meadow waiting for the nymphs to do the laser treatment. Because that’s what I need to look like a woman, right? You said so; the salon-ladies, perfume spritzers at the department store, and my ex said so. Believe you me, I have received the message loud and clear – shave/ wax/ laser/ bury my face in the pillow and wait for the curse to be removed.
But you know what? It’s my face and only I decide what stays on it. Of course, I’m not ballsy enough to pull off a Harnaam Kaur because the Indian manifesto of female beauty is imprinted on my subconscious – blister-free skin, no gummy-smile, no being rude to strangers and next-door aunties and the people who think Made in Heaven is overrated – but I don’t appreciate it when bullies like you make my abnormal facial hair growth your concern. You are not my doctor, and even they are useless when it comes to treating hirsutism in women with PCOS.
So thanks, but no thanks for your unsolicited advice. I ordered only food and drink though.
And no, I won’t shave my chin hair even if they poke at your plastic bubble. I will continue tweezing and threading them when needed and dabble with insulin resistance and sleeping disorders for the rest of my life. Because believe you me, it’s so much fun to be a woman even if I don’t look like one.
The beard-lady customer who wanted to throw some feminism at your face but she was too drunk to hold a non-violent argument.
Image source: shutterstock
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If you want to get back to work after a break, here’s the ultimate guide to return to work programs in India from tech, finance or health sectors - for women just like you!
Last week, I was having a conversation with a friend related to personal financial planning and she shared how she had had fleeting thoughts about joining work but she was apprehensive to take the plunge. She was unaware of return to work programs available in India.
She had taken a 3-year long career break due to child care and the disconnect from the job arena that she spoke about is something several women in the same situation will relate to.
More often than not, women take a break from their careers to devote time to their kids because we still do not have a strong eco-system in place that can support new mothers, even though things are gradually changing on this front.
A married woman has to wear a sari, sindoor, mangalsutra, bangles, anklets, and so much more. What do these ornaments have to do with my love, respect, and commitment to my husband?
They: Are you married?
They: But You don’t look like it
Me: (in my Mind) Why should I?
Why is being married not enough for a woman, and she needs to look married too? I am tired of such comments in the nearly four years of being married.
I believe that anything that is forced is not right. I must have a choice. I am a living human, not a puppet. And I am not stopping anyone by not following any tradition. You are free to do whatever you like to do. But do not force others. It’s depressing.