Women open letter Opinion feminism patriarchy Kargil war Lipstick Under My Burkha Gurmehar Kaur Indian Society

Dear Woman: Please HIDE Your Real Self, They Won't Be Able To Handle It

( words)
*For representational purpose only.

Dear Woman,

You can go to any part of the world and be anything. Be a pole dancer, a belly dancer, an activist or just live a little; but don't you dare try to pull those stunts off in India.

Remember our "culture". We're a holy place, yoga originated here. No, not the one with sports bras and leggings sticking to your bum but the one in white uniform. In a society where men judge women, and women judge women judged by their men.

So in the end, if you're doing what you want and living the way you want to, remember: It's your fault. It's your fault that you were born here. It's your fault that your parents were born here. And it's definitely your fault that your parents' parents were born in this great country. Now you have to pay for your sins. Don't call that unfair, you had it coming.

If you want your voice to stand out in the largest democracy of the world, please grow a pair and a moustache. Don't fight like a girl. Because you'll lose. Male ego is a thing, and it's not just a thing here, it's currency. The strongest there is. And majority of our men and women love trading in it.

Why? Because it gives them power — to the men who can control women, and the women who can use men to control other women. So you see, don't cry foul, it's nothing personal. It's just patriarchy. A glorious phenomenon where a man feels the need to control a woman because he wants to be sure that when you give birth to a child, it's his. He can trust you with child-birth, but can he trust you with raising the child without his consent? No, honey he can't. And that's how patriarchy works. And it works bloody well.

Is it really that alarming to wake up to the news of Lipstick Under My Burkha being banned?

A country that has given a super duper hit like Highway, where a woman gets beaten up repeatedly by her kidnapper but still can't help falling in love with him, with a hidden secret that's her stockholm syndrome. A country that roots for a film like Angry Indian Goddesses with the most typical stories based on women-related issues. Now you expect it to celebrate the thought of real, stronger more complex women in their movies. Shame on you.

If we start seeing women as people, just like men, what then will happen to our power structure? In a country like this, you want to one day wake up and talk about real women with the real points of view? How dare you? How dare you stand out in an industry that runs on mediocrity?

Raise your voice, but please stay in your limits. Don't forget what gender you come from and what role you have to play. Being a martyr's daughter fighting for peace means nothing to a public that has been conditioned to outrage in life. And you dear woman, have been conditioned to care about your home, children and what comes out of your mouth.

Gurmehar Kaur and Alankrita Shrivastava are bad, bad women. One tried to change the way you look at our neighbouring country and another hurt some huge male egos. It’s a big no-no to make 'lady-oriented' movies exhibiting a woman’s need to pleasure herself is a whole different story. And a bigger no for a 20-something WOMAN calling a spade a spade with sensible arguments. 

Bollywood has influenced many, many men in our country to pinch, eve tease other women who don't follow the 'status quo'. And sadly, many of the women from your sex too, will say it's your fault. That's the price you pay for challenging the status quo in this society. Men and women both suffer at the hands of a society that refuses to see them as cogs of the same wheel. The more masculine cogs we support, the more feminine cogs we crush. And now look at our great machinery, rusted on the inside out.

So don't try to fix it, you're not a goddess, you're a suppressed little cog. Stay there.

So let me put that straight into your head — the rules of how to live a problem free life here. Men can talk openly about cheating on their women or their one-night stands or their tinder dates, they are entitled. They are entitled to fantasize about other women while in bed with their partners and talk about it. You are not, you were never, but if you try to change the future for your daughter, you will be attacked. That’s a given! Don’t be so surprised. And don't cry foul. And definitely don't expect support from your fellow female counterparts.

This is your battle and yours alone. You were born to be submissive and if you try and take one step towards gender equality, you will be dragged by your hair, ten feet back.

Sleep with a man and don’t call him the next day and pay for it. Date a man and don’t fall in love, pay for it. Do nothing and a man still falls in love, pay for it. Say No to a man for marriage, pay for it. Beat a man in a debate, pay for it. Love a man, pay for it. Basically, pay for it. And don't expect your aunts, mothers and girlfriends to go dutch with you. This is your party, and patriarchy is here to make you pay.

So, stop it, stop dreaming for a brighter future. They cannot handle it. They can’t handle your idea of independence, they can’t handle your openness, they can’t handle you being emotionally distant. They just can’t handle the real you and that’s the harsh truth of your existence. #PatriachyWins

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