Recently a friend of mine told me that she is undergoing a lot of emotional stress. On asking her repeatedly about the matter she told me that her ex-boyfriend is threatening that he will morph her images and will post it on Facebook. He even called her parents and told them this. His demand was that she should come back in his life. I asked her what she intends to do, and there came her shocking reply – Nothing!! I persuaded her to make a police complaint but she refused. She told me that she and her parents feared that if it becomes a case, then nobody will marry her. She kept on crying, and her parents kept on scolding her! Result was that her ex posted the pictures online, and removed them only after his friends scolded him. As far as the girl is concerned, she lost her freedom. Her parents still scold her and now the restrictions are but many!
What was the fault of this girl? She had to suffer for no fault of hers! And that boy is free of any guilt; he may be spoiling someone else’s life now. Isn’t it the fault of our society that we look down upon the victim, and not the culprit?! I so much wish that her parents had supported her and filed a case. Nevertheless, a man who rejects a girl due to reason such as this, is not worthy of being married at all!
This is not the only case that I’ve seen. Two girls who I know closely suffered sexual harassment and that too within the safe confines of their home from their relatives! Unfortunately they also decided to ignore this issue and preferred to keep mum as it would lead to break down of the family. They just ignored the whole thing because they thought their family would get a bad name and her sister’s marriage (which was in due course) will break off!
What the hell! Why are we tolerating all this? Why we are always afraid of what people would say? Why are we afraid of so called “society”?! In many families, the boy gets to do all the things, but the girl is left out. There are numerous restrictions for the girls that they can’t go out, can’t talk on phones, can’t go for further studies, married off at an early age and so on. Why are these restrictions only for girls? Women in Indian society are still much suppressed. The thing they mostly fear is, the society, the relatives, everything. They will prefer to remain silent because it does not look good if they raise their voice against something in society! They can go out and take part in a rally supporting their rights but they will not raise a voice against this discrimination at home. If their parents or relatives will tell them not to go out with boys, not to talk to boys, not to go out with friends, not to go out after dark, etc, they will do it but will not raise their voice against it, they will not protest. Maybe just because they fear that what the society will think, what if it creates a bad image of them, what if……
Crimes on women are not done by men who are attracted to women, they are done by men who think that women is their toy and their motive is to suppress women, to boost their ego! Some men have a habit of treating their wives/sisters/daughters as lesser mortals and suppress them. It is these men only that go on to become rapists, because they were not stopped when they were doing a small thing!
The whole point is that, the day women will start raising their voice against this, life will be much better for them. What use is this society, this culture, these relatives if they snatch away your freedom from you? It is important to raise your voice against even a small issue. Admit it; most men do not treat women as equal, so you girls need to teach them a lesson! Do not neglect sexual harassment, even if it is from your family member, even if it is on a small scale. Do not blindly agree to whatever orders your parents give. Question them! If what they are saying does not make sense, then protest. Parents are not always right! Most of the elders have grown up seeing this environment only, so it’s not entirely their fault if they differentiate between you and your brother, but you need to change this very mentality. And only you girls can change this. You will not want your daughters to suffer the same fate, so stop this before our next generation takes over from us. Please raise your voices, and see the world change. Just do not suffer in silence!
PS: All of us may not be able to connect with this article as some of us are blessed with such parents who do not differentiate between boys and girls. But this is a sad reality in India. Most of the families look down upon their female members and don’t give them their rights. Also, I do not have a sister at my home, all the inputs and frustration is accumulated by seeing and observing many of my friends’ plight. Kindly correct me if I am wrong somewhere. Do support every woman and encourage her to gain her freedom. It is WE who have to change. 🙂