Time changes with people, their culture customs and beliefs.
My mom tells me when she was young, she had never seen women wearing pants in her village (Nepal). When she moved to Kathmandu ‘The City’ she was thrilled to see women wearing pants. ‘They wore bold and they carried well whatever they wore, unlike girls nowdays’ my mom says. ‘But when I travelled to foreign countries, I saw women not just wearing pants but walking side to side with men, in hurry for their jobs. Western women were far more ahead of us even at that time than women on our part’ my mother continued.
Yes, a lot of changed during these times including my mom who has started wearing pants nowdays. Though some of her friends still have problems wearing them and have problems with her wearing it. Oh you think she is cool now? Nah she will lecture me 24/7 if she sees me wearing skirts even if they are knee length. But not just pant, her attitude has changed since long then. She is among one of those woman who thinks women if given a chance can work like men and are equal to men.
Anyways the thing is, women have come far and above their status in our society. Thanks to education and worldwide movement of European women for rights of gender equality. I’m not saying our society has completely changed and I don’t expect it for half a century or so but the changes that has stirred is positive and I am hopeful. It is easy to change one individual’s thought but its almost impossible to change a society bound with customs and social beliefs.
Yes the customs, culture and values, ones that require a male presence and highlights son’s importance, which is so deeprooted in our society that to this time on 21st century I still see women frowning on their labour room after knowing that she gave birth to a female child. On a society that believes one requires a son to give daagbatti (to light fire for cremation of dead body) to his family members, without which he/she will never cross the purgatory, the discussion of gender right is like putting ghee to the flames. The more you talk the more the society highlights the importance of son and men.
I am not saying culture and customs are bad. We have cultures where sisters are worshipped , women are prayed giving a respect to their womanhood. But only these does not make a woman to rise. A right to education, a right to freedom and a right to equality is what women need.
‘I wasn’t allowed to study though I could offer it’ my mom sighs. ‘We were supposed to get married and start a family when we came of age.’
And when I take a note of that statement it makes me sad to think ‘Were we always treated like a birthing machine? Did men never saw our feelings?’ Yes we do want to start a family perhaps but don’t we have a life before that? Before being a wife and a mother aren’t we someone’s daughter? Do we just have wombs and no brains? Are we not capable of logical thinking, brainstorming, doing buissness beside just labour and raising our kids? Don’t we have ambitions?
Are we just supposed to get married with whoever the guys our family, our society sees fit? Get married..since we can’t support ourselves..to just anyone we are forced to marry? Perhaps someone who works or is rich but someone we don’t like, maybe someone of our father’s or granddad’s age or an old pervert who is a wolf under a sheeps skin?
‘HeForShe’. It’s a solidarity movement against gender inequality. “ I’m a feminist. A word feminist refers to woman who thinks being treated equally as a man is her right” is what Emma Watson said. And I agree with her and I salute her for her courage. It’s a start but it was inevitable and it will not rest till it results. And as for country like ours, it will take time perhaps half a century but it will. The waves will reach here by the time the dams are ready to flood the banks. And yes it will..for the time where everyone will be treated fairly and equally and for the time ‘where mothers will smile too when they give birth to daughters knowing she is their child as much as he would have been”.
If you have a woman in your life you respect, you love and you look out for ..join us #HeForShe J