It’s 2020, and women are still considered ‘lucky’ for things that men take for granted. Time that men took responsibility for their privilege.
“We couldn’t be in front of men or elders without ‘ghoonghat’, and now, you don’t even have to wear saree. I’m an open-minded mother-in-law! You’re fortunate to live in this era!”
“You’re so lucky! Your in-laws ‘allow’ you to work, ‘permit’ you to go out with your friends occasionally, take care of your child (their grandchild) when you go to work!”
”Your mother-in-law wears kurtis and suits, not saree. She’s ‘open-minded’! You must have done some good karma! She would ‘allow’ you to wear jeans!”
“Your husband (helps you) in some of the household chores, you don’t have anything to complain about! You’re privileged to have such a husband!”
And the familiar list of ‘luckiness’ goes on…
Do any of these ever happen?!
”You’re so lucky, bro! You can wear shorts in front of your in-laws! They ‘allow’ you!”
”Wow, man! Your in-laws are kind and generous, they took care of your pregnant wife, paid bills and helped her to raise your child (their grandchild)! You’re privileged one!”
“I feel so jealous of you man! Your in-laws treat so special when you visit them!”
”Your wife gifted you a luxury watch as soon as she got promoted! You must have done good karma to have such a wife!”
Does any of these sound familiar or is commonly used for, or said to a man in any generation? Have you ever heard a man called ‘lucky’ for his ‘khatiradari’ (royal treatment) by his in-laws even in this century?
There is no doubt that I (or my generation in general) have better rights to equality and more privileges than my mother (her generation) and she had more than the previous one and so on.
And yet, a woman has reason to complain about unequal and unfair treatment than a man in any generation. Because a woman is ‘luckier’, ‘better treated’, ‘more privileged’ than only her previous generations. Her freedom, respect, and rights of equality are constantly compared with previous generations, not with the freedom, respect and rights given to men in the on-going generation.
Women have been treated unequally for generations, despite positive changes over time. Expectations vs. Rights of women, especially for married women, were, are, and will be (don’t know till when) unfair compared to that of men in any generation.
Patriarchy has caused negative effects on men too which should be discussed separately.
A woman sees, listens to, experiences the privileges given to men, and the discrimination she faces routinely. For this, she feels agony and agitation, remains confused, overwhelmed, and low on self-esteem and often finds herself dependent.
When she complains about the unfair treatment, she’s often lectured to and shunned by others in power above her, who explain to her how ‘lucky’ she is as compared to previous generations! These ‘others’ include men as well as women.
As a result of this (gaslighting) she also starts to believe in her ‘good fortune’ and passes on the same ‘fortune’ to her peers as well as to the next generation.
A woman certainly wants to feel ‘lucky’ or ‘privileged’ as gratitude for the love, respect, security, and the EQUAL rights she should receive, like a human being, in her present times. And it has to be irrespective of any generation or gender.
So the next time when someone tells you that you’re luckier than your mom, tell them that they’re lucky to live in such an unequal society; otherwise they would have been slammed in an equal rights society!
First published here.
Image source: a still from Masaba Masaba
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