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In a society where women are supposed to be paragons of patience and pleasant smiles, what advice do they get if they get angry? Read on.
Since childhood, one is expected to be pleasant and display good temper within the family and to everyone we come in contact with.
Women in particular are often expected to display all pleasant feelings, and suppress the rest (like anger). If one at all shows anger, it is often justified as the woman being ‘hormonal’. But anger is, after all, a feeling that is expressed like any other feeling – say joy, jealousy, pride for instance.
Angry women have even been tagged ‘hysterical’ traditionally. That reminds one of Donald Trump’s epithet for Hilary Clinton calling her a “Nasty woman”.
At a presidential debate, Donald Trump closed out the evening by calling Hillary Clinton “such a nasty woman.” And, as one might expect, it didn’t go quite as he had probably intended. Women everywhere decided it was time to reclaim the “nastiness” within them 🙂
Raise your hands if you are a nasty woman.
Such expectations are amplified after one gets married – the ‘susheel bahu’ is much prized, and anger vilified.
Here is some of the advice a woman gets when they are angry – be it from friends, or family, or relatives, or just any random person one meets!
I remember how my mom often chided me saying I would not get a good job nor a good husband later in life if I was that short tempered.
From my personal experience, younger women often get to hear this: “You must be on your PMS. Check your calendar sweetie“.
Older ones have no escape from this: “Are you hitting your menopause sweetheart? I think you need a break!“
Most working women have to face this at home: “Calm down. Do not show your office frustration on me!“
I have heard this like a zillion times from my friends and peers and even some random person: “Are you venting out someone else’s anger on me. Just relax buddy.”
My grandfather often told me this: “Take a deep breath. Count from ten to one, and see how your temper will vanish!“
My boss who was very aggressive almost with everyone, compelled me to say this to her once: “You need to train the dragon within you. Why don’t you enroll yourself into an anger management course.”
Pregnancy being one of the very special moments in a woman’s life, sometimes has its downsides too. I had to bear these words a countless number of times, especially during my last trimester: “Mood swings and hormonal changes are playing the trick. You will soon get over this.“
However, surprisingly this isn’t the case with men!
Take an example of the great saint, Durvasa Muni – in Hindu mythology, he is known for his short temper. His name literally means one who is difficult to live with. Yet we accept him the way he is.
A more apt (and more relatable) example would be the movie Kabir Singh, which is certainly an unapologetic celebration of toxic masculinity. This angry and violent character is portrayed as a Hero.
If media and movies can showcase their anger as a heroic character, then why are women always laid as target and often advised to keep control of their temper?
It’s time to check how short-tempered women are actually received by families, friends, and society, v/s how angry men are not only accepted but also made heroes by the same set of people who can term and angry woman as “hysterical” or ” hormonal” or even a “bitch” sometimes!
I am basically a Software Engineer from Bangalore. I have worked in the IT industry for almost a decade - in India and Singapore. Currently, I am on a career break, rather a "career-switch" - I read more...
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I recommend reading Manjiri Indurkar's Origami Aai alongside her memoir to have a fulfilling and enriching experience of telling one's story with grace.
It’s All In Your Head, M famed author Manjiri Indurkar’s debut poetry collection, Origami Aai, is independent and yet an extension of her memoir in which she speaks with utmost grace about all forms of abuses that she has survived. In this book of intriguing and evocative poems, the poet weaves words to form images of the everyday life of her middle-class family, love found and lost, trauma, and healing.
The collection is divided into four segments, beginning with the family, slowly moving towards the world, and finally colliding them together.
We aren’t in mourning, but we are creatures of habit.
So we talk of each one who died of drowning,
and I listen to her stories with the patience
of a chronicler.
– Funereal Stories
When someone accuses you of "too much feminism", what they are really saying is, "I am uncomfortable with you challenging the status quo and disrupting my privilege".
Time and again, there is one phrase that keeps coming up in the social media discourse on feminism. Any guesses?
Ah, no prizes for guessing the infamous “itni bhi feminist” or “too much feminism” phrase, a classic eye-roller for me, and I am sure for many more of my tribe, in the realm of gender equality discussions.
Pray tell me, how can an ideology, a movement be too ‘much’? It’s not salt or the seasoning of your soup where you can go, “Oops, too much salt, only one spoon was required”. Either you stand for what feminism stands for, or you don’t.
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