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Telling Your Daughter To ‘Cover Up’ Will Not Change The Dirty Minded Men Outside

Here's your average teen feminist trying to voice the day-to-day prejudices that she has to face at home but her brother doesn't. Please scroll ahead to read some rage pouring out on an unjust society.

Here’s your average teen feminist trying to voice the day-to-day prejudices that she has to face at home but her brother doesn’t. Please scroll ahead to read some rage pouring out on an unjust society.

Isn’t this toxic? The family that should encourage their girl child to confidently wear whatever she likes, instead, teaches her to either hide inside closed doors or cover herself with clothes. Will doing so make the dirty-minded people good? What’s the point of making laws banning jeans in Haryana?

Even after calling India modern, about 75% of girls face such challenges in every desi family.

India must have advanced technologically but her mind is still orthodox and filled with stereotypes. Every day while going out at night, a girl is asked by her mother, “Did you take red chilli with yourself. And what about pepper spray?”

#YesAllMen

Agreed, a girl needs to prepare herself for her safety, but then the only question that arises is why only girls? Why does she need to be cautious of the society where she lives in? What’s the meaning of calling it a society, then? Shouldn’t we rather call it a forest? A forest the voices are echoing. Creepy, wild animals in disguise of men.

Tagging all men because of few dirty-minded do wrong to all those ‘innocent and concerned ones’. But what is one supposed to do after hearing a new rape case every day? And the matter becomes worse when we get to hear that even women are involved in such cases. Even believing other women has become difficult in today’s world.

Women too uphold patriarchy

No matter how small the matter, discomfort and injustice remain the same. I remember, a few days back when I went for walk with my mom, I met a lady who was gossiping with my mom. When I heard her talk, I was dumbstruck! She was talking about how a daughter of their family friends who studies in a foreign country wears shorts clothes and uploads them on social sites. Hawwwww.

We are used to hearing such comments but how to react when a woman in her 30s comments on a women of somewhat the same age group as mine? It feels like society has filled such bad thoughts in people minds. And even more, the times when old judgy aunties, who themselves wears saree with exposing midriffs and still be commenting on young girls and working women over their crop tops and off-shoulder tops.

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It started becoming unfair the day we started giving designated roles to a particular gender while calling it a society of free will. Free will is when people are allowed to do what suits them regarding their own lives.

Women should not have to deal with third-person opinions on what they wear, what they do, or how they do it. Now this repeated shaming women have endured throughout their lives has been engraved in a girls mind to get shy while doing anything utterly normal. But this has to be changed, you do not need to get shy while wearing something that flaunts your body nor do you need to cover up. Enjoy what you want and what you have without feeling shameful about it.

Why should girls follow your diktats?

A few reminders that would do good to a woman are never to stop speaking when cut off by someone else – it doesn’t show respect; it shows injustice. And never apologize for disagreeing with someone. Do not start opposing statements with, “I’m sorry but I disagree”; rather, start them with, “I’m afraid I have a different opinion.” 

Hearing teachers comment on the length of your skirt in front of a bunch of people has to be very embarrassing. A woman making another girl feel bad about something so minor is making women each other’s enemies, which in turn, pits generations more against each other. This has been now imprinted in our minds by cowardly men who need to show authority to taste just a bit of importance. 

But I would like to think there is more hope in humanity and our country. We should have trust in women and all of the people, in general, to set things right, give back the rights women have a birthright to. To this day, we have done a good job at recognizing the significance of women in our society and we should all contribute to that cause.

Image source: a still from the film Masaan

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