When I was a kid, I always used to dream of ageing quickly and becoming an adult. It always seemed the easy way to achieving my tiny dreams such as being able to go out and come home whenever I wanted to, the ability to buy whatever I wanted, staying up late nights and sleeping whenever I wished to, in short, the idea of exercising freedom in all aspects of my daily life almost thrilled me. Now when I think about it, I realize how very wrong I was. Being born a girl, growing up and becoming an adult does not necessarily guarantee one the taste of true freedom. In fact, adulthood complicates things even further. I agree such is not the situation with all families, but it definitely belongs to the culture I have grown up in.
There are some parents who exercise total control over their girl kid’s life. Result: A quiet, shy girl who lacks self esteem, OR a crazy, overconfident, loud, snobbish girl who does not believe in the idea of limits. Then there are some parents who grant a healthy amount of liberty to their daughters in living their own lives. Result: Happy, confident and smart girls who pursue their ambitions and dreams. So which parents are the winners? Naturally, the latter’s. Even so, there are still a huge number of parents in our society who belong to the former category. They are the ones who knowingly (in most cases) or unknowingly, create a gender bias within their families. I know of a certain family where the son of the house eats in expensive cutlery whereas the daughters eat in plates made of stainless steel. There are many families where the son is educated in the best of universities at the cost of the discontinuation of the daughter’s education because of a logical reasoning (DUH!) : the girl anyway has to get married and leave. She would not be supporting the parents in their golden days. I would completely support the fact, if only there would not be hundreds of old-age homes flooded with sad eyes, longing for a return home. There are also some so-called educated families who let the girls study in good universities, let them graduate and just when its time for them to fly, cut their wings and get them married to a qualified boy who does not believe in the idea of women employment (also, empowerment).
A bitter reality of life is this: freedom does not come easy. It always comes at a price. That price could either mean belittling family aspirations or demeaning society values or in many cases, both. In the end its all about making the right choice. I would not say there is one right choice. It is a predicament that has no painless solution. Someone somewhere would always be hurt. It comes down to this: would it be us or them?