How It Is To Be A Sports Woman In This Country: This Is My Story
It all started when I got selected in a sports academy about two years ago. Girls are always brushed off because "Ladki hai, ghar se bahar jakar kya kar legi!" But my parents have always supported me. Even then, people in the neighbourhood used to taunt me a lot when they got to know that I got selected. I was selected under the boarding scheme, so I shifted to the hostel.
In the initial days, settling down was a difficult task, but I did it. I started going to practices regularly. At first, I had a budding interest in this sport, but very soon I started loving it. I bagged two silver medals in my first state championship. Gradually, I started performing better than my seniors.
Don't forget! This is a sports field. These men... boys rather, can't see girls doing better than them. So they went to my coach and made up stories about how I was just passing time here talking to random guys and partying. And as I had a wealthy family background, they had a problem with that as well because I had things they didn't have (another reason to get jealous).
There was a roommate of mine who joined the academy with me. She knew everything about what was going on because I shared everything with her. After a month of this drama, my coach came to me and asked me what was going on. I clearly explained everything and I told her to ask my roommate as well, so she could understand the real scenario. At this point, everything was sorted out.
But then, a day later, I finished my practice at 8 pm. It was quite late and nobody was there in visible range. Suddenly, some of my seniors whom I used to call 'bhaiya' showed up and started abusing me. I don't exactly know what happened to me, but I threw things over them and ran away crying. I didn't go to practice for three days after that. I was really afraid.
I told my roommate everything that had happened and she told me to complain to our coach. I was continuously getting calls from unknown numbers, in which they threatened me to ruin my entire career if I opened my mouth. My world was ending even before I had lived in it and I felt trapped.Share this quote
I went back home. I told my parents that I won't be playing for some weeks. They asked me if something had happened but I didn't tell them anything because I was really afraid. I loved my sport and I didn't wanted them to ruin my career. I was lost. After some weeks of spending time at home and discussing this matter with my best friend, I realized that it was just the starting of my career. I had to face many problems in life ahead and if I get afraid of these things, then I will not be able to grow up and fulfill my dreams. I decided to go back to the academy.
I told my coach about everything that had happened but it was too late, these guys had already made up stories about me and had fed lies to my coach. I wasn't trusted anymore. Again, I asked my roommate to vouch for me. But this time, she didn't say a word because she was also threatened into silence.Share this quote
My coach didn't believe me at all. And what was the worth of my word against those of international players? They were so much more senior to me, and so much more valuable. It was a hard time for me but I started ignoring the stuff people were talking behind my back. These guys had already circulated some shitty rumours about me. But it never bothered me because my parents kept supporting me and motivating me from time to time.
Today, almost a year after all this happened, I am still doing what I've always loved- playing my sport. People still make assumptions about me but I am strong enough to let go and move ahead in my life.
Today, I am still performing better than my seniors and I am ranked under top 10 in India in my sport.Share this quote
It is a note for every girl who wants to fulfill her dreams that our society will always judge us no matter if we are right or wrong, but it is us who has to decide whether we have to move forward and achieve our goals or to get afraid of these male chauvinist pigs.
We have to break these chains and stereotypes. We have to prove that no matter how horrible the situation gets we'll still move forward and fight back.
Share this story to support the women who are struggling in 'male dominated fields' even in the 21st century!