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[Y]ral: ‘I Am Not That Girl’ – For Every Woman Who Refuses To Be ‘That Girl’

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By Sanskriti Pandey:

I’ve never been ‘that girl’.

How many women wake up every day and find themselves under pressure to head out, feel great, look great, and be admired, loved, and gushed about? How many women feel constantly needful of a dynamic personality who is adequately feminine, who can put her makeup on flawlessly, and garner male attention every step of her way? How many of them give up at the end of every day and are reduced to an insecure question that sums up their lives – “What’s wrong with me?”

Maybe you were never destined to be “that girl”. Maybe you weren’t meant to define your femininity using the amount of attention you managed to attract. And maybe, you were meant to take your insecurities in your stride and live life on your own terms. In this video, a girl challenges social pressures in a fight to be just the way she is. She decides that she wants to be that girl. Watch!

To know more about what I think of this video, follow me on Twitter at @im_sanskriti.

You must be to comment.
  1. MissPurpur

    Just because you don’t get as much attention from guys as those girls and aren’t as pretty as them, doesn’t mean you gotta put them down like they’re superficial boy chasers to make yourself feel like you’re meant to be more than them. You aren’t destined to be more. You’re destined to be you. And so are they, that’s just what they’re doing. Let them. This is just another way you’re telling girls to one-up each other. Everyone is incomparable. But I get the message. Appreciate yourself for who you are, even if you’re not pitch perfect and glamorous like the media tells you to be and don’t try to be something you’re not. Believe in yourself. I just don’t like how the message was worded.

  2. B

    Girls compete with each other for male attention, and that is why they wear revealing attire. Show skin, lure men, have consensual sex, and then accuse innocent men of rape.

    1. swati

      So do you really care for men but I don’t see you doing anything for men other than shaming women. Where were you when Yka post article about 20 year boy who was raped.I doesn’t see any single comment. OH Yes, You have a problem with women and you don’t care how many men die as long as you get to see women shamed and blamed and harass.

    2. B

      I don’t see you doing anything except shaming men. It is an old, pathetic, cheap, tactic of feminists to silence men.

    3. swati

      Why I do anything for men. I am a women and I am not a feminist so I am not going to do anything for men. But i am also not going to be a hurdle in their path. They can do whatever they want to do as long as they are not hurting anyone else. But if anyone (men, women or animal) try to hurt other I am not going to shut up. And I doesn’t shame men. No where in my comment I have written that men are bad or only men rape. But it was waste to try to reason with you. So keep doing these things and it will lead you to nowhere.

  3. Batman

    Looking at the girl who made this video, I am sure many people would not want to be ‘that’ girl.

  4. NotedAmadeus

    I find it ironic that the video talks about not being ‘that girl’ who shapes her life around getting attention from others but still uses as the display pic for the video, the scene from the video which shows maximum skin just to get the attention from viewers!!! So isnt she still That Girl?!?!

  5. ItsJustMe

    Wow, this video tells the real story. What exactly women must do with their lives than to chase “that guy”, sexually and mentally manipulate “that guy”. What an amazing story told in 2 minutes. And it shows exactly what is wrong with most females these days (irrespective of how attractive they are). Living your life and loving yourself is what makes you a grown up. Not having a boyfriend who looks like Brad Pitt. That just makes you his girlfriend (and him your boyfriend if chasing women is all he does). Being independent in a relationship is not only about having a job and being able to support oneself, its about being able to love yourself and do just as well when you are out of the relationship as well.

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An ambassador and trained facilitator under Eco Femme (a social enterprise working towards menstrual health in south India), Sanjina is also an active member of the MHM Collective- India and Menstrual Health Alliance- India. She has conducted Menstrual Health sessions in multiple government schools adopted by Rotary District 3240 as part of their WinS project in rural Bengal. She has also delivered training of trainers on SRHR, gender, sexuality and Menstruation for Tomorrow’s Foundation, Vikramshila Education Resource Society, Nirdhan trust and Micro Finance, Tollygunj Women In Need, Paint It Red in Kolkata.

Now as an MH Fellow with YKA, she’s expanding her impressive scope of work further by launching a campaign to facilitate the process of ensuring better menstrual health and SRH services for women residing in correctional homes in West Bengal. The campaign will entail an independent study to take stalk of the present conditions of MHM in correctional homes across the state and use its findings to build public support and political will to take the necessary action.

Saurabh has been associated with YKA as a user and has consistently been writing on the issue MHM and its intersectionality with other issues in the society. Now as an MHM Fellow with YKA, he’s launched the Right to Period campaign, which aims to ensure proper execution of MHM guidelines in Delhi’s schools.

The long-term aim of the campaign is to develop an open culture where menstruation is not treated as a taboo. The campaign also seeks to hold the schools accountable for their responsibilities as an important component in the implementation of MHM policies by making adequate sanitation infrastructure and knowledge of MHM available in school premises.

Read more about his campaign.

Harshita is a psychologist and works to support people with mental health issues, particularly adolescents who are survivors of violence. Associated with the Azadi Foundation in UP, Harshita became an MHM Fellow with YKA, with the aim of promoting better menstrual health.

Her campaign #MeriMarzi aims to promote menstrual health and wellness, hygiene and facilities for female sex workers in UP. She says, “Knowledge about natural body processes is a very basic human right. And for individuals whose occupation is providing sexual services, it becomes even more important.”

Meri Marzi aims to ensure sensitised, non-discriminatory health workers for the needs of female sex workers in the Suraksha Clinics under the UPSACS (Uttar Pradesh State AIDS Control Society) program by creating more dialogues and garnering public support for the cause of sex workers’ menstrual rights. The campaign will also ensure interventions with sex workers to clear misconceptions around overall hygiene management to ensure that results flow both ways.

Read more about her campaign.

MH Fellow Sabna comes with significant experience working with a range of development issues. A co-founder of Project Sakhi Saheli, which aims to combat period poverty and break menstrual taboos, Sabna has, in the past, worked on the issue of menstruation in urban slums of Delhi with women and adolescent girls. She and her team also released MenstraBook, with menstrastories and organised Menstra Tlk in the Delhi School of Social Work to create more conversations on menstruation.

With YKA MHM Fellow Vineet, Sabna launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society. As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Read more about her campaign. 

A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Find out more about the campaign here.

A native of Bhagalpur district – Bihar, Shalini Jha believes in equal rights for all genders and wants to work for a gender-equal and just society. In the past she’s had a year-long association as a community leader with Haiyya: Organise for Action’s Health Over Stigma campaign. She’s pursuing a Master’s in Literature with Ambedkar University, Delhi and as an MHM Fellow with YKA, recently launched ‘Project अल्हड़ (Alharh)’.

She says, “Bihar is ranked the lowest in India’s SDG Index 2019 for India. Hygienic and comfortable menstruation is a basic human right and sustainable development cannot be ensured if menstruators are deprived of their basic rights.” Project अल्हड़ (Alharh) aims to create a robust sensitised community in Bhagalpur to collectively spread awareness, break the taboo, debunk myths and initiate fearless conversations around menstruation. The campaign aims to reach at least 6000 adolescent girls from government and private schools in Baghalpur district in 2020.

Read more about the campaign here.

A psychologist and co-founder of a mental health NGO called Customize Cognition, Ritika forayed into the space of menstrual health and hygiene, sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights and gender equality as an MHM Fellow with YKA. She says, “The experience of working on MHM/SRHR and gender equality has been an enriching and eye-opening experience. I have learned what’s beneath the surface of the issue, be it awareness, lack of resources or disregard for trans men, who also menstruate.”

The Transmen-ses campaign aims to tackle the issue of silence and disregard for trans men’s menstruation needs, by mobilising gender sensitive health professionals and gender neutral restrooms in Lucknow.

Read more about the campaign here.

A Computer Science engineer by education, Nitisha started her career in the corporate sector, before realising she wanted to work in the development and social justice space. Since then, she has worked with Teach For India and Care India and is from the founding batch of Indian School of Development Management (ISDM), a one of its kind organisation creating leaders for the development sector through its experiential learning post graduate program.

As a Youth Ki Awaaz Menstrual Health Fellow, Nitisha has started Let’s Talk Period, a campaign to mobilise young people to switch to sustainable period products. She says, “80 lakh women in Delhi use non-biodegradable sanitary products, generate 3000 tonnes of menstrual waste, that takes 500-800 years to decompose; which in turn contributes to the health issues of all menstruators, increased burden of waste management on the city and harmful living environment for all citizens.

Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

Find out more about her campaign here.

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A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

A Gender Rights Activist working with the tribal and marginalized communities in india, Srilekha is a PhD scholar working on understanding body and sexuality among tribal girls, to fill the gaps in research around indigenous women and their stories. Srilekha has worked extensively at the grassroots level with community based organisations, through several advocacy initiatives around Gender, Mental Health, Menstrual Hygiene and Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) for the indigenous in Jharkhand, over the last 6 years.

Srilekha has also contributed to sustainable livelihood projects and legal aid programs for survivors of sex trafficking. She has been conducting research based programs on maternal health, mental health, gender based violence, sex and sexuality. Her interest lies in conducting workshops for young people on life skills, feminism, gender and sexuality, trauma, resilience and interpersonal relationships.

A Guwahati-based college student pursuing her Masters in Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bidisha started the #BleedwithDignity campaign on the technology platform Change.org, demanding that the Government of Assam install
biodegradable sanitary pad vending machines in all government schools across the state. Her petition on Change.org has already gathered support from over 90000 people and continues to grow.

Bidisha was selected in Change.org’s flagship program ‘She Creates Change’ having run successful online advocacy
campaigns, which were widely recognised. Through the #BleedwithDignity campaign; she organised and celebrated World Menstrual Hygiene Day, 2019 in Guwahati, Assam by hosting a wall mural by collaborating with local organisations. The initiative was widely covered by national and local media, and the mural was later inaugurated by the event’s chief guest Commissioner of Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) Debeswar Malakar, IAS.

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