My Identity

My loss is one that has hurt me deep within. Right from when I wake up and set off for my classes to the time that I come back from work, this loss haunts me.

Every single day, at every single place.

I have lost my identity, independence, confidence, trust and sense of safety/security by just being a woman.

From the time I turned 14, life has become miserable.

I’m harassed at least ten times in a day. From whistling, singing and winking to following me on their bikes/car, men of all age try everything to get attention, and if sadly that doesn’t work then they merrily take their vehicle right in my way and try to hit me with it or extend their hand out to freak me out.

Unfortunately this isn’t just happening to me, it happens to every woman living here.

An incident is reported every single day in the newspapers regarding this ill treatment towards women. From eve teasing to the goriest rapes to murders, women are being subjected to extreme forms of sadistic control.

I have lost my sense of security, now I have cultivated in me only fear and an inability to trust.

Travelling in public transport scares me since men “accidentally” fall on, pinch and touch women; they sit on the seats assigned to women, make an issue when you ask them to get up but take their revenge by standing next to you and making you uncomfortable by peeping into your clothes. Travelling in autorikshaws or cabs also has its own risk, since they scare you by driving you off to unknown places and leer at you from the rear view mirror.

Mobile Phones which were a boon have now become a bane as they take photos and recordings of you and then feign innocence when you catch them. Walking on streets is the Indian equivalent to fear factor; men sing songs, hoot and jeer, some of them try to touch you and if they like you but fail, they come back for a round two at you.

There is no place left where a rape hasn’t yet been reported. This extreme mental urge to control women is scary and disgusting.

Women here do not have a choice to love, and if they reject your advances, these “spurned lovers’ do not think twice before throwing acid at your face. The crime – considering them not good enough for you.

I try hard to lose my identity, to think twice before shopping by picking up the blandest clothes, because if I do dress up and get raped, I was calling for it. I think twice before going out alone anywhere, it’s immaterial as to which time of the day it is, I long to be independent, to get away from this crippling society. A society where the leaders defend the rapists by calling them “Boys who make mistakes”. Where the accused are provided help and the victims are chided upon.

It’s like they don’t want women to exist, they to go to great lengths to wipe them out.

The only choices that we are given are foeticide, infanticide, child abuse or rapes. Sometimes they aren’t satisfied by treating us like crap and using our bodies to satisfy all the callous and vicious pleasures, they throw away the bodies, dump them on road sides, thrash, torture, discard, leave them to die and at times douse with acid and kerosene to leave no evidence.

I have lost my confidence, at most times I clutch at either a stone in my hand or at the knife that I have in my bag just in case I needed or keep my phone unlocked with the numerous women safety apps that I have downloaded. I take all the precautions and wait for my rape day.

Such a crime being a woman isn’t it?

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20 thoughts on “My Identity

  1. #1 Your blog is BEAUTIFUL. I love it, the colors are so calming, great, great choice. #2 Your writing, your writing is such that I can see it and feel it. Please keep honing your skill. You have a true talent. 🙂

    • Thank you for the kind words 🙂

      I loved your post! Reminded me of the numerous fairy tales that my grandmother told when I was a kid. My blog is dedicated to her too! 🙂

  2. We definitely live in a scary society, but it pains me to think you are in a situation where you are THAT frightened to go about your day. 😦

    • Unfortunately it is non-fiction, I keep having plans of relocating but there are close to a million other women like me here too.
      Will be selfish enough and get away someday but not before making an effort or doing my bit of making the lives of the other women around here safe. 🙂

  3. I can relate to your message, although in a lesser degree. The “macho” culture in Mexico constantly allowed this type of harassment and it is seen as something normal. I moved to the Netherlands and began seeing girls in mini skirts, walking around with no one bother them. When I visited my family, I was faced once more with the harassment as I walked to the convenience store a block away wearing a dress. It made me feel so uncomfortable, and scared that it took my moving away to realize how numb I had become to it. No one should have to put up with this.

    On a happier note, you write beautifully!

  4. You are so right and in many ways I echo your sentiments.Personally I have had men”Accidentally” call on me in a Bus in Delhi and seen 19 yr boys make cat calls and pinch 15 year old girls in Brindavan gardens !
    .I feel unsafe everyday and root of our problems is the Indian upbringing which places a man above all..It angers me still to see a woman pray for a boy when she is pregnant else she would face the wrath of her in-laws, to see that dowry exists and a woman is used as a commodity or a vessel for childbearing. Worse a woman is the one who restricts her daughter and turns a blind eye to a son who wanders the streets and gets involved in anti-social activity.

    • True, Indian women are also conditioned in this way. None of them think that since they have gone through this horrific trauma maybe it is time to stop this and uplift women, atleast their daughters and daughter-in-laws but no.
      They go ahead and have their revenge by traumatising their daughter-in-laws by treating them in the way they were treated by their mother-in-laws and teach their daughters to be under the thumbs of their son/ husband/ brother/ any male figure.

      • True.. instead of breaking a cycle of misogyny they promote it. These are women who have suffered but they refuse to say “Stop”. that is the reason for the failure of our culture and society- we are to blame for what is happening.

        Sadly all we do is turn a blind eye and believe in short term goal of exacting revenge and promoting violence.

  5. So sad, yet so true. This is the side of India that I dislike the most.
    I am not sure I agree with Indian Drifter. In an ideal world women could say stop. (In an ideal world this wouldn’t happen at all!) But India is not an ideal world. Women are not listened to. What I find so sad is that mothers defend their sons for these despicable acts, yet they too have suffered at the hands of men in this unequal society. There is hope, though. I am encouraged when I see men marching to say that rape is wrong. Those are the young men who will help change India.
    Dorinda

    • Many a times educated people who discuss rape(or the ones going on the marches against rapes) are also the one’s who leer/stare at women and eve tease too, just because it isn’t “as bad” as rape. However what they do not realise is that these small events itself will manifold into a catastrophe. Further despite talking about it, seldom will you find someone actually come forward to take the side of a woman when she gets eve-teased, since no one wants to get into the court/fight troubles and are happy looking at the tamasha (drama).
      Adding to this misery are the stupid reactions of the politicians who are the supposed law makers of the country saying things like – boys are boys and make mistakes, chowmein/short skirts are responsible for rapes and the latest to join the bandwagon is the comment that raping women of the opposition party is the best way to take revenge.
      Here are a few links that have shown how people react, no doubt that there are good people, the only problem being that the bad ones heavily out number the good ones.
      http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/13/social-experiment-rape-victim-india-screaming-woman_n_5492752.html
      http://www.storypick.com/actor-tried-recreate-infamous-nirbhaya-post-rape-scenes-look-people-reacted/

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