‘Meet the wonder woman’ is the subject line of a mail I received today. It was from a women only initiative started in our office. It was reffering to our company CIO with whom the meeting was arranged. The things mentioned about her are :
And Of Course a Loving mother and a responsible Life partner
Just take a look at it. Now, let us alter the gender. It will look something like this:
Meet the Wonder man
( That really sounds weird. It is Women who are supposed to handle all the tasks at a time with a smile of course!)
(Won’t it be translated to the most dreaded Ghar Jamai or Joru Ka Ghulam?)
And Of Course a Loving father and a responsible Life partner
(Who cares about what kind of a family man he is? He is a successful MAN after all!!)
Note that It is not important that a woman is CIO. It is necessary that she should be a good wife, mother and daughter-in-law first. What makes me sad is that it is a women initiative.. Women here mean Mother, daughter, sister, wife, daughter-in-law. It never means an individual. Our CEO is never introduced to us as ‘Loving father, devoted husband,…’ etc. He is a man.
But, Alas!! I will never get to see this!! A man is an individual after all. His success will not be measured with how much time he spends with his family.
A similar thing was said on a radio station- ‘Sakhi Saheli’ on Vividh Bharathi‘. It was for women and girls all across India. They discussed issues like girl education, careers, house hold tips, cooking, poetry etc. A girl had sent them a letter saying that she doesn’t want to get married soon as it might come in the way of her career. The RJs (They must be ambitious ladies I am sure) said that it was not necessary that you will face difficulties after marriage in pursuing a career. You can always hold a job unless it doesn’t interfere in your role as a mother. It is heart breaking that the first and foremost duty of a woman is considered to be ‘a mother’. And, it is the women that girls will look up to, suggesting this.
When this is the thinking of people upholding women’s rights, a common man would be worse. The people in my family and who are close to me think that a woman is born to have children and to nurture them. They go on and on about various benefits of being a mother (Of course in after life). Tell them anything different about what a woman can achieve, it falls on deaf ears.
Kalpana Chawla was first Indian-American astronaut and first Indian woman in space.
So what ? She flew to the space and died. What is the use?…. (Laugh)
So, you gave birth to two or three kids. You will die someday too. You might not even get a chance to fly in an aeroplane before you die. What is the use?
I won so-and-so prize in so-and-so competition
So what is the use of all this?
Right!! Unless I have, like a hundred children you will not understand ‘What is the use?’
There is no use how successful I become. People will always look at me sympathetically – Ohh.. She doesn’t have a husband or a child.. Actually, my friends do that already. Ohh.. you have no boyfriend… I do not need a boy friend or a husband or babies to determine my worth. I am an individual. I deserve success without sympathy. I would hate to be the wonder woman! But yes.. I would very much like to meet the wonder man. Someone who thinks of me as an equal and more importantly respects me as an individual. Some one who is a doting son-in-law, loving father and a responsible life partner!