A couple of days back, I was participating in a National level Seminar and one of the young woman participants suddenly suggested that we must legalize female foeticide. The statement came as a surprise for all of us. She justified that a girl after her birth has to face so much of physical and mental trauma. Instead of making her go through it, better would be taking her life before the birth. None of us would perhaps agree with her.
I personally owe a lot to men in my life. I don’t doubt at all that in a country like India and even in developed countries around the world, women face challenges. I have also encountered meager of them. Fortunately, I am born in a family and environment where equality among genders is a reality. This story is an attribute to those men in my life who have strengthened the power within me.
To start with my father , who has raised his children quite effectively. I am a daughter of working parents. I appreciate and salute all working mothers. It requires more than ordinary courage to balance work life and the kids simultaneously. My father supported my mother. Being employed with the Telecom Department of Government of India , way back in 1980s proved a blessing for him and his kids. The advantage that he grasped was to do night shifts , and take care of his kids during the day , while my mother was at work. I am thankful to present BSNL and formed Department of Post and Telegraphs. So he is the first man who made me understand the concept of equality and sharing of parenting responsibilities.
Next in my life comes my elder brother, who is just one year elder to me. We share a very comfortable equation. I have seen girls having sister as their sibling boost of the fact that they are lucky. I can challenge them that growing up with a brother is altogether a different enriching experience. For both of us, since the age difference is very less, the comfort level has always been great. I have seen how our parents have divided the responsibilities at home between use, quite equally. In none of the instances, I could not remember that he has been treated superior to me. I can magnify anytime that I am privileged that even at the age of 30 years, if I feel like my food would be served on my bed and even I need to keep my plate in the kitchen myself. Thanks to such a brother, who has not just pampered me but helped me grow better as an individual.
The next man in my life who has influenced my thinking entered my life only few years back. It has been only around 3 years that we know each other. He is my best friend – let me repeat friend, not boy friend. He has told me in the beginning of our friendship that gender does not matter between the friends. He has an example for each of us to live our lives gracefully and successfully. He tries to make me believe that women are that much important that they do not need only one day to commemorate them as Women. They are full of strength and must be respected in all situations. He inspires me to excel in all aspects of my life. He is the one who treats women unequally- yes unequally. He knows that women need special treatment – not because they are weak but because they are special in the lives of men.
Lastly, there have been many men as my classmates, friends, colleagues, mentors, teachers, acquaintances and even the strangers who have empowered me as a woman. I thank all of them as they gave me respect, love and affection.