Gender Equality has always been a debatable topic across all platforms. We all speak about it as per our benefits. This post is somewhat a contradiction to the other two posts that I wrote a couple of months back called-
In the article, I had mentioned a few prejudices that a woman in India as well as across the globe face in some or the other way. I am a feminist, by all means. However, having said that, I mentioned in my post earlier that there are two very important aspects to Feminism like the two sides of a coin. The other aspect being, FEMINISM mistaken as MAN-HATING. Being a Feminist doesn’t mean that you make yourself powerful as women and demean a man.
As much as the fact is true that the Indian, as well as global societal norms, are a little cruel towards women; it’s a tad bit unfair to men as well. In India, things function differently. Here, to some at least, what feminism really means is equality with special privileges. For instance- A man needs to open the door or carry a girl’s shopping bags just because she is a woman, he is human too not a puppet. You wouldn’t do that for him, so why expect out of him?
As Mary Lambert said, “Treat others as you would like to be treated.”
In India, nobody has really been taught the concept of self-independence. Everyone is dependent on someone in some or the other way. The man of the house is dependent on the woman for food, laundry, cleaning etc. whereas the woman is dependent on the man for finances. The division of responsibilities when it comes to the making of a family is an uneven one. It is quite unfair for both the genders. The house and the family belong to both, the children belong to both and hence does the responsibilities.
Every six out of ten families in India somewhat function like this- the man of the house is wholly and solely responsible for earning the bread and butter for the family, whereas the woman is responsible for the house, giving birth to their children, looking after them and bringing them up. The fathers very rarely spend time with their children or family as they are so busy working all the time. The parents often keep arguing and fighting with each other about every possible thing that is wrong with each other. The woman is not allowed to help out with earning the finances and just forget about men helping at home.
A sad incident that I recall here is, a cousin of mine was denied admission in a school as, in his interview when he was asked why his father didn’t accompany him for his interview, he answered saying that he is busy working. Admission Denied! Had there been an equal division of rights and responsibilities and a little less pressure then maybe his father could have been present with him that day. A child needs his/her father as much as he/she needs their mother.
Equality in both genders will only come when the societal norms and patterns change. A woman seems to have forgotten her place in the society if she chooses to work post her marriage, like her man and earn an equal pay or sometimes even more. A man is called feminine if he chooses to help his mother, sister, girlfriend or wife with the household chores or if he cooks. A woman is no less a woman if she is at par with her husband and a man is no less a man if he helps with his own household chores.
Many a time, it so happens that women wrongly play the victim card. We as a society have been so brain wired to believe that it’s always the men who are at fault whereas the women are always at the victim end. That again might not be the case for all men. There are women who cheat, who lie, who manipulate and who end marriages. We should always consider both sides of the story before judging a man for his wrong-doings.
It amuses me to see how it’s completely okay for a woman to go to a salon and keep herself well-groomed, whereas, if a man wants to keep himself well-groomed he is labelled as heterosexual. It is completely okay for a woman to speak up and show her sadness, her feelings and emotions but when a man does that he is called sissy or considered less macho.
Women often complain that men do not understand their emotions, how will they? They’ve always taught to suppress their emotions and think practically. It is a proven fact that men are more prone to depression as compared to women as they do not talk about their state of mind be it happy or sad. It’s true that even men do not have the benefits of equality either.
Gender Equality is not a woman’s issue or a man’s issue it’s a human issue and it can only be eradicated when both genders come together and uplift each other, where men do not perceive and treat women as weak and where women do not wish to be like men but as equal as them.