You Are The Real Cuplrits Of Rape Because You Can't Let Us Be Without Labels

Anonymous Anonymous in Bakkar. Chai. Sutta on 27 January, 2018

I had the opportunity to attend a housewarming party when I was in Italy. The party was small, just 10-12 friends and colleagues got together to celebrate. I knew only two girls as such, so I was talking minimally and just observing the people around me. There was only one couple, rest all were just friends. There were 5-6 girls and 4-5 guys around. I liked the way in which they were all talking to each other irrespective of their genders. For example, guys and girls were actually talking and having decent conversations. No, I am not talking about flirting or making a pass here. I am talking about a mutually respectful conversation. When the time for dinner came, I saw all the men and women helping to set up the table and arrange the food. Someone was bringing the food and another person was setting the glasses. The key point to observe here, for me, was that the men were equally involved.

If it would have been in India, guys or husbands would sit in the drawing room and women would do all the work in the kitchen.

Have you ever observed that in our Indian weddings, all the uncles sit together, and all the aunties sit together? Also, in some other functions like celebrating a birthday of a kid, the guests also sit like this, all the ladies together and all the gentlemen together. Have you ever wondered why? Why is it difficult for our culture to accept the fact that two people can have a respectful conversation about general things like weather, work, politics, sports, travelling irrespective of their genders.

We are creating a hostile environment in India where it is assumed that girls-boys and men-women are incapable of having a decent conversation and a respectful friendly relationship, other than the romantic one.

This assumption, whether intentional or unintentional, that we are not capable to coexist together in a private or public space without some defining relationship like a boyfriend, husband or brother is detrimental for the health of the society. We are all seeing its repercussions in our society in subtle or grave forms, like sexual abuse.

When I compare the situations, somehow, I begin to understand now why the some of the Indian men, not all, behave in such a way towards Indian women.

It is because they have not seen a respectable equation in an Indian man and woman, all through their life. Maybe they have seen their father being rude to their mom or just have seen all the uncles making fun of women at a wedding or something like that. Why do you think the relationship between men and women is so strained in India? Because we have not taught our kids how to interact with another gender properly. Maybe somewhere if we all start communicating more in a respectable way to each other, some problems can be solved in India. We are all baffled when something like molestation happens, but we cannot just deny the fact that the problem is deep-rooted and strong punishment is only one aspect of the solution. Another aspect might be that we must go to the root of the problem and teach our boys and girls to interact with each other in a respectful manner.

Editor's Note:

Share this story because even though we are better off than before, there certainly is a lot of room for improvement.