This post has been self-published on Youth Ki Awaaz by Manvi Singh. Just like them, anyone can publish on Youth Ki Awaaz.

Dear Parents, Embrace Your Child’s Uniqueness Instead Of Demanding Perfection

More from Manvi Singh

While Stuti Khandwala cracks her future through NEET, AIIMS, JIPMER, JEE Main and also lands on the floors of MIT, I hold heartfelt respect and awe for her impeccable talent in the field of knowledge, and I’m also loaded with appreciation for the mastery she holds over her future.

But, that’s that, a girl and her future, a state which is proud today but will forget all about her tomorrow, as the news grows old with every passing day. Though there’s something which will stay, there’s something which will turn into a leech, and undeniable leech which will suck the youth out of the youth.

Dear parents,

As you come across this news, or if you’ve come across this news, do not, I repeat do not turn to your child. I’d not only request this, but I’d really hope you do not turn and tell them how this one girl has done it all, achieved it all, how she has done the right thing, while your own child is worthless. Do not, even on a blue moon night, try to sabotage this moment, because that changes everything.

The moment you point your finger towards the Sharma-ji-ki-ladki, or in this matter Khandwala-ji-ki-ladki, you’re destroying the essence of your child being unique and true in their own self, because not every child is born with an aptitude of scoring 99.9% in the boards. Every child works up to their own potential and pushes it through as and when needed and in their own capacity.

The line of comparison drawn between your own child and someone else’s not only hurts their bleak hope of faith in themselves, but it may also scar them for life. A child, a growing, coming-to-age child, seeks appreciation and acceptance from their parents for every little thing they do, and as you tamper with this idea of their perfection by always being critical and demanding of your child, you hamper their idea of self-worth right then and there.

Your child may hold their own set of talents, be it being a good writer, or an amazing dancer, something Stuti might not be able to achieve, but your kid excels at it. Please embrace that, please embrace the uniqueness which lives right there in their heart, because that’s what really makes or breaks them.

You might have been a scholar all your life, but if it isn’t your calling then multiple trophies at school and multiple degrees won’t matter, because they might bring in a humongous six-figure salary, but it won’t buy you the happiness you need. If you find yourself comparing your child to someone else’s, remember, there are times when you go wrong too, dear parent, and at those times, your kids do not turn on you and tell you how Rahul’s father has always been better than you.

Stop kids from running in the same monotonous race. Let them explore themselves and their surroundings because then, they’ll build their own race, they’ll be the pioneers of a legacy the world follows. Let there be multiple race tracks and races; let children bloom in their habitat; don’t force them to enter someone else’s.

Let your child be their own self, and if that is not satisfying enough, find another way of running the race to nowhere.

Yours truly,
A girl chasing her dreams

Featured image source: Bollywood Buffet/YouTube.
You must be to comment.
  1. Regula Ram

    Right you are. By the way, it is certainly not India’s fault that India has an educational system similar to the British system.
    For those who want to study law, engineering, etc, after class 12, the system is fine.
    It’s sad that those who chose a training on the more practical/vocational side hardly ever get encouraged by anybody.
    It is obvious that families with considerable income hope that their son will earn at least as much as the father earned. You will find the same in many other countries. Talking about daughters, of course I am happy when a girl performs like Stuti Khandwala. (Many girls! The more, the better!) The reality for millions of girls is that even if they convince their parents to let them go up to 12th, they might not be brilliant, but they have dreams like you. I hope your dreams come true. I am sure you are really talented. Many girls will benefit if you publish dozens of reports on young women being employed somewhere, full-time or part-time, “even after marriage”.
    I love India but it makes me sad that traditions prevent so many young women from actually going to work. Instead of contributing to a prospering India, they are told to become housewifes, and they have no other options.

    1. Manvi Singh

      There’s nothing wrong in being a housewife unless it is a choice. I have my mother who is a housewife and earns sitting right at home while I’ve been working in the corporate sector. Things change massively over a period of time the only need be that dreams are supported just like mine were by my mother.

More from Manvi Singh

Similar Posts

By Submitted anonymously

By Amya Roy

By Shipra Gupta

Wondering what to write about?

Here are some topics to get you started

Share your details to download the report.

We promise not to spam or send irrelevant information.

Share your details to download the report.

We promise not to spam or send irrelevant information.

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.

Share your details to download the report.

We promise not to spam or send irrelevant information.

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, demanding that the Government of Assam install
biodegradable sanitary pad vending machines in all government schools across the state. Her petition on has already gathered support from over 90000 people and continues to grow.

Bidisha was selected in’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.

Sign up for the Youth Ki Awaaz Prime Ministerial Brief below