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Was My Mom Worried About My Safety, Or Just About ‘What Will People Say’?

It was at that moment that it struck me so hard that maybe I, as a person have never been important to them. All that they cared about was "what would the relatives think if they knew I had a male friend."

Let me start this with my details, because it plays an important role here. I am a medical student, my mom a Hindi major, and my dad an engineer.

My parents have always been supportive of me in tough situations, in a way they think would be best for me. And that includes using harsh words to scold me, and make me question myself at times when I need the maximum support. But when we are out of any tough situations, they’ll act like they are the most supportive parents of all times. They’ll pour out so much of encouragement that I might even think myself as a superhero.

The incident I am going to share is one among the problems I mentioned above.

An unfortunate and ill timed accident

It was early in the morning like 6 or 6:30am. My friends (two girls and a boy) and I had gone out, and we did not inform our parents as we thought it was going to be a short ride of ten minutes, that we’d be back to our hostels in time to attend our daily lectures. But things did not go as planned.

My friends – the two girls – met with an accident, and I was riding with the guy. Thankfully, two doctors went by that way. They assured us that nothing was serious and offered to take them to the hospital where we were studying. Thankful for the help, we agreed.

Since this accident had taken place when we were staying at hostel, the facilities asked us to inform our parents and fined us for being careless. We did, and the parents of those injured came and took them home.

The worst part starts here. I told my mom what had happened right after we admitted our friends in the hospital. The first sentence that cane out of her mouth was, “why did you go with a boy? I would have felt proud of you if you had gone with the other girls and met with the accident.”

“What will people say?”

It was at that moment that it struck me so hard that maybe I, as a person have never been important to them. All that they cared about was “what would the relatives think if they knew I had a male friend.”

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Like, seriously? Is that really the problem? That I have a ‘male’ friend?! Because boys and girls cannot stay friends forever and pleasing relatives is more important that my mental health? Not only did she say this, she also went ahead to call me a “call girl” because apparently I had “developed the guts to roam about the roads.” So since I have the guts to move about freely, I would “even go if someone asked me to come sleep with them.”

I was dumbfounded on listening to all this. I was three years younger and I had no idea words like this would come out from someone I trusted the most. This has left a permanent scar on me. I can no longer trust her. And in that case, I don’t think I can trust any other person, because if my mom can hurt me in such a disgusting way, then anyone can. It is all a matter of time and a matter of situations.

And my parents are ‘educated’ – is this what is learnt?

So even now, I make sure I take every step of mine with caution, because I have no strength to tolerate such words again. This has become so much, that I even refuse bike rides even if I am getting late for lectures. Anyways, a few words of scolding from professors is way better than my birth-giver questioning my integrity.

Both my parents are well educated. But if education makes someone civilised and well spoken, where did my parents go wrong? Or does education have nothing to do with how someone behaves rather than teaching us mitochondria is the power house of cells?

This is only one of the incidents that had taken place. It has taken me almost three complete years to talk about this. But has the wound healed? I would rather say no, because even now when I feel low, all the memories rush into my mind making me feel all the more vulnerable. So when will I be able to break out of this? No idea either!

And as for the friends, I swear, I have never had anyone support me more than the three of them. I do feel bad when I cannot bring myself to open up to them and trust them completely, because a scar is still a scar. I hope it would heal with time.

Image source: a still from the film Listen, Amaya!

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