Feminism (No Name)

Written by Jigna Rathod.

Today when I look at the younger generation I see how much courage they show and how they talk about their own problems and issues without much hesitation and it makes me really admire them and it also encourages me to talk about my own ordeals. I belong to the hinterlands, the mining badlands of the country - Dhanbad known more for its mining mafia than the minerals that the city has been blessed with. So, for a fair skinned girl - like me, to grow up in such a city always meant an extra layer of protection, especially during her formative years, which led to her inheriting a lot of fear.

I was barred from going to the edge of the terrace which opened into the residential lane, would have to sit in the car inside the garage of the house which took me to school (school, thank God for big mercies), and would be escorted to the friend’s house in neighbourhood, who stayed just two houses away, because ‘home’ was a safe heaven.

And it was this very home which employed servants from whom ‘safety’ was my own struggle, the kind of struggle I could never talk about, because I couldn’t talk about of being seen through ventilators while bathing, being brushed past carelessly at every occasion, or being asked for strange things.. because all hell will break loose for 'inviting' trouble.

By conforming to the environment, your parents pat themselves for having raised their little girl without any hurtful incidents and you lead a life gently by fooling yourself to believe that you are courageous. Then they marry you off at the earliest to the first eligible boy coming their way to get rid of the 'raatoN-ki-neend-udane-wali-beti" and go to all the temples paying gratitude for having disposed of a 'responsibility' so well. Knowing the willingness of their daughter, for her own marriage, doesn't even occur to them.

For all the safety provided to me, the courage to tell my parents about my discomforts was not provided. I have a bigger more painful history, which I couldn't bring myself to talk about. This is what I could write. Try as much as you would to outgrow it, it brings out its ugly side just when you can’t afford it

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