Every so often, I get into discussions with friends on matters like stereotyping, gender inequities, feminism and the like. More often than not, I end up feeling like I live in a very antiquated world far removed from the ones that my friends inhabit. Perhaps I do. So, when throwing anecdotes and examples to prove my case, it falls short.
My world view is shaped by the messages that were hammered into my brain at an impressionable age. I try to keep those feelings of worthlessness and powerlessness at bay. It seeps out at times like these when my arguments seem weak and full of insecurities. It brings back memories of sitting at the edge of the seat of the auto in the wee hours of the morning memorizing the street lanes and the landmarks that pass by just in case something happened. It reminds me of holding my folder as a shield when braving the crowds that swill around me as I try to board a bus. It reminds me of times when my ears were primed to hear footfalls behind me even as my eyes resolutely looked ahead and I marched on conquering the distance between wherever I was an my destination.
So, yes my world is lopsided. It is full of unvoiced messages and pointed innuendo of what could have been instead of what is. So when someone in the family drawls “ponnaa?” I read it as angst and disapproval at the child not being a boy not a disinterested observers comment. So, yes. My world is made of gender inequities and implied stereotyping. It is because of what I grew up with and what I was exposed to. My truth may not be yours but that does not make it any less valid. No?