Amidst all the fight for empowerment against men, my fight is against the women!!
Women Empowerment - A different angle
People keep talking about women empowerment and gender equality. There are protests, groups, pages, etc. being carried on regular basis to make this "empowerment" successful.
As many talks I attend or as many posts I see on such topic, people, or rather women, define empowerment and equality as something where a woman is able to do what she wants to and is allowed to make her decisions as per her own choice, just as the men are allowed to do.
However, in the discussions of this important issue, there is one small point which, according to me, is missing - What about the empowerment and equality within women and not as compared to men?
If having your own choice and making your own decisions is what it is, then why are there still some women who become the victim of those mean comments and judgemental stares by other women, for living lives on their own terms?
I am one of the victims of such judgement and I would like to reach out to all those other women who are guilty and yet fight for empowerment.
All my girl friends, as so many other women, love to wear makeup, go shopping, wear heels and short dresses, eat healthy etc. and do all other things that are the commonly acceptable characteristics that are associated with a female. They party all night and say, "It is the kind of fun that I like". They buy stuff from expensive brands and say, "I am earning myself, I can spend it the way I want". They apply makeup and get all dolled up and say, "I look pretty this way". Basically, they apply the "My life, my rules" motto here and do whatever they wish to. When what they are actually doing is something which is commonly accepted as "characteristics" of a female. However, what happens when someone wishes to deviate from such characteristics?
I am not a person who likes to apply makeup or dress up "properly".
I like to wear flipflops instead of the hurtful heels,
I like to wear jeans instead of short dresses to a party,
I like to put on a lip balm instead of a lipstick,
I like to put some cream instead of foundation,
After a tiring week, I like to sit at home and watch some TV on a Saturday night instead of partying,
I like to spend my money on food and not on clothes
But somehow, I become the culprit and have to deal with those judgemental eyes and mean comments. To give an example, whenever I go to a party/ get together/ event or the like, this is how the things take place:
Step 1- The fully dressed up acquaintances will look at me from top to bottom and give "those stares".
Step 2 - A friend will come over and say "Atleast put some eyeliner"
Step 3 - My friends will take out some lipstick or eye liner from their bag and try to put it on me (there was one incident where I was actually pushed to sit in a chair and the eyeliner was forced on me and it was not funny.)
Step 4 - Throughout the party I will keep having people looking at me as I have committed some crime, making me all uncomfortable.
Step 5- Some friend will call me up after the party and say that this or that person was commenting on your footwear or clothes or whatever so dress up nicely the next time.
And always, I fail to understand that where am I going wrong? I don't party but sit at home and relax because "It is the kind of fun that I like". I spend my money on food rather on expensive brands because "I am earning myself, I can spend it the way I want". I don't apply any makeup and wear jeans and t-shirt because "I look pretty this way". So yes, "My life, my rules"!!! I am just like anybody else, yet I am the one who becomes the victim.
I don't deny the fact that gender equality is necessary and women have to fight to come at the same level as men to apply their choices. However, I also feel the empowerment should be looked at from both the angles and women should actually understand its meaning before fighting for it.
Even if I am able to match up to the privileges granted to men, I won't feel empowered because of the women around, because whenever I will go to party without applying makeup, I will be called as "under-dressed", because whenever I will choose to sit at home, I will be called as "boring", because whenever I will buy clothes from some cheap store, I will be termed as "low standard".
This may sound as an insignificant topic for most of the readers. However, for me and for all those who are like me, this is the daily struggle that we have to deal with in addition to the daily struggles that you have to deal with.
To all the women who are reading this, I would like to say that "Empowerment is not attained when you have the authority to make choices as men do. It is when you actually pay respect to the choices of other women and let them live their lives without judging them."