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When Manju Warrier came in a white shirt and short black skirt for the Chathurmukham press meet, at least one man wrote a viral post about how it was about men's schoolgirl fetishes. Should we care?
When Manju Warrier came in a white shirt and short black skirt for the Chathurmukham press meet, at least one man wrote a viral post about how it was about men’s schoolgirl fetishes. Should we care?
I saw a viral post (by a man) and several supporting comments criticizing actress Manju Warrier for coming for a press meet wearing a white shirt tucked into a knee length black skirt and white sneakers.
The criticism basically was that she dressed as a teenage school girl and should dress and look her age, which is now 42.
Who the F decided how women should look and dress at specific ages?
I am now 43 years old, one year older than her. When I think back to how my mother looked when she was 43 (I was then about 17 years old), I can see she never looked like how I look now. She always had a graceful, mature, serious, ‘mother’ look to her.
She would only wear sarees and salwar kameezes outside and nighties in the house. Even now.
Me? I have worn sarees only on a handful of occasions in my life, only for functions. I have worn a nightie only for a few days after my delivery.
Rest of the time, at home, I am in shorts or three-fourths/tracks with a camisole or t-shirt. When I go out, I only wear jeans and tops, and very rarely leggings with kurtas. I have dresses and skirts too.
When I was 25, I dreaded turning 30 in 5 years. I thought at 30, I would look and feel officially ‘old’.
Then I turned 30 and didn’t feel any different in my head. So I thought I would feel and look officially ‘old’ when I turned 40.
Then I turned 40 and still didn’t feel ‘old’.
Ironically, I started liking the way I looked at 40 even more than when I was 20. Even though I was much slimmer in my 20s, I was always insecure and self conscious about my body shape back then because I was never “slim” the way they showed in movies and advertisements.
But at 40, I finally started accepting my body shape for what it was, and actually loving myself fully, even my nose, which was previously the bane of my existence!
I also came out of my marriage when I was 37, got a divorce when I was 42, and that contributed, ironically, to my self confidence even more!
Why? Because I didn’t have listen to stupid comments about how I should lose weight. I didn’t have to hear how good I would look if only my tummy was a little flatter or my hips were a little narrower. I didn’t have to feel self conscious and guilty about wolfing down an entire slice of black forest cake.
I never felt liked just as I was in my marriage, either by my husband or by my in laws, even though it was an arranged marriage.
I didn’t leave because of that though. There were so many other reasons.
But after I left, I found that the voices in my head started reducing from many people to just one. Me.
I never lost the weight by more than 5 kg. But I started enjoying eating whatever I wanted without any guilt. I started going for yoga classes. I started buying and wearing clothes that I really liked, not what my mother would like or what my father would approve of.
I noticed that people, especially younger men, would admire and compliment me, even ask me out, and frankly I liked it, but would also be so surprised!
Then I just stopped even being surprised. It didn’t matter anymore what people, even men, thought about me, what even my family thought about me.
It didn’t matter what my weight was. I put down people who commented on it. I even stopped asking people close to me how I looked.
I was happy when I got toned after months of yoga, but even that was a pleasant side effect.
Now, at 43, and soon to be 44 next month, I have far more confidence in how I look. I have more clarity in what I want to wear.
You know what the biggest irony is? I take care of my skin, hair, and body much more now, in an enjoyable way, since I don’t care what people say about me than when I used to care.
Earlier, I would mindlessly eat all kinds of sweet, cheesy, fatty foods to feel better when I felt low. Now that I feel better about myself, I don’t even have those cravings except when I am PMSing!
So when I look at Manju Warrier, I see a woman who, beyond her talent and beauty and wealth, is just like me. A woman in her 40s, divorced, creating her own identity, wealth, and name in a deeply F-ed up patriarchal world.
Wearing what she likes, revelling in her freedom, shining with confidence, and happy with the relief of having escaped from the patriarchal system of a less than happy marriage, for whatever reasons, that so many women don’t have the courage or privilege to escape from.
Such a woman is always a threat to the custodians of patriarchy.
Such men are afraid she will inspire other women to follow suit…what a frightening world it is where women just do what they want and no longer care for their approval, isn’t it? They aren’t prepared for that.
So they spin a yarn about how such women are a danger to society and are damaging its moral and social fabric.
Yes, you bet we will damage the fabric woven by the patriarchy and weave a brave new world.
One yarn, one woman at a time.
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Karishma has been writing short stories since she was 8 and poetry since she was 12. She ended up studying Zoology, then Montessori, and then psychology, always feeling ‘’something was missing’. She worked in the read more...
Women's Web is an open platform that publishes a diversity of views, individual posts do not necessarily represent the platform's views and opinions at all times.
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Honestly, I made the mistake of judging a book by its cover by considering Janhvi Kapoor to be a stereotypical star, but she's worked hard on this one!
I started watching Good Luck Jerry (2022) with extremely low expectations of what the film would offer. In all honesty, I made the mistake of judging a book by its cover by considering Janhvi Kapoor to be a stereotypical star kid, much like her cousin Sonam Kapoor.
However, I was proved wrong and can say without a doubt that I am in awe of the actor’s hard work and growth. Keeping all of that in mind, here are a few reasons why I believe the film works.
A less explored genre in Indian cinema is that of dark comedies, maybe because of how difficult it is to write a comical script for a film when it promises to deal with serious and heavy themes.
Believe me I was shocked, aghast, disgusted to be watching such bizarre, mindless activities day in and day out.
Recently I happened to read a remarkable post The Potential Dangers Of Phallus-Worshipping A Toddler on this forum itself. The ideas and practices described therein were revolting to say the least.
But would you believe that I had a sense of deja vu after reading it? I was once upon a time a mute witness to certain similar (yet not so similar) activities. Read on to find out.
It was sheer misfortune that I got married into an ultra orthodox house where ‘men’ were premium while women were no better than pair ki juttis/doormats.