There is a common belief in Indian society that if a woman is harassed or assaulted or raped, it could be because of her — maybe because of her behaviour or attitude or probably the dress she was wearing or the very obvious ‘raat me akeli bhatak rahi hogi!’
There, of course, would be no way that a man suddenly gets horny in the middle of something and decides to rape a woman. Our bhartiya samaj does not trouble the devis unless they don’t ask for it.
I wonder then how an infant or kids face the same fate? Do they not wear an appropriate dress, or do they not respect the ‘men’ of our society? Or wait! Is it because they are born with a vagina?
This is a never-ending discussion — and I know it will not stop ever!
But why is it that we women are also blamed for something that we have not done? Why do we women, as someone’s wife/ girlfriend/ mother, are blamed for the deeds that our men do?
When my long distant cousin’s wife decided to break her marriage, nobody really talked about the husband’s extramarital affair. All they really did was blame the wife as she couldn’t bear a child. She was one of the most generous ladies I ever met. When the cousin married another woman, she was subjected to inadequateness as her post-graduate degree didn’t teach her to make delicious food.
Another incident I recall is from my friend’s brother’s marriage. Apparently, she was not sundar enough for their average-looking beta and high profile gharana. And the family wouldn’t have agreed for the wedding if the son wouldn’t have chosen her himself and she wouldn’t have brought shagun ka dahej.
Overall, it’s almost the same everywhere! No matter who you are — an actor’s girlfriend or a common housewife or some teenager’s girlfriend — who will always be blamed for what your man does/ has done.
The irony is, it’s the woman who criticizes her own clan! The saas to her bahu and the mother to her son’s girlfriend and the sister to her bhai ki biwi — it is mostly the woman who blames other women for what men do, and this is what empowers the men of our society to degrade us further.
Is this some kind of revenge or the only benefit of matriarchy?
As I am raising this question, I’m also raising my concern towards the fact of how biased our society has become!
If a woman smokes cigarettes, she is objectified and criticized, but if a woman’s husband is addicted to smoking, it is probably because the wife couldn’t take care of him properly. Why?
For something that one woman does, the whole womenfolk is subjected to a tirade on the dismal state of the society.
While growing up, I’ve been continuously witnessing how girls have been threatened in the names of their dreams in our society!
“Padhai ache se karo, warna shaadi kar dege!”
“Achaa job dekho, warna shaadi kar dege!”
“Iss saal exams crack nhi huye toh shaadi kar dege!”
Our girls have always been threatened in the name of marriage, and on the other hand, boys are defended in the name of marriage. Who needs to know cooking/ house cleaning or the basic samaj ki sanskriti when, eventually, they would be handed their prized possession!
And even after all the efforts, if something goes wrong, the man doesn’t need to worry because his prized possession would be present to take all the blames.
And while I’m writing this, I know I’ll face the same wrath again as earlier. But that shows how much these words carry bluntness.
Women are labelled as the guardians of the culture, social morals, and traditions of society and then the same society pays off its guardians with tons of blames, disrespect, vulgar comments and lewd stares.