14 Mar 2017
Who is today’s global indian women?
Is she the daughter in law who is always there for her family? Is she the mother who is always there for her children? Is she the daughter who always listens to her parents? Is she the career woman who goes out there and invests in her career like her earlier generation couldn’t? or Is she the spouse who always supports her husband?
Growing up in modern India, I was always told that we are going to be the children of the 21st century. That our generation were going to have the opportunities that our parents and grandparents never did. That we were going to be part of an India, of excess and not of scarcity. I grew up believing that the women of our generation could do just about anything the men could. That there was absolutely no difference between the two sex’s and if there was, it was confined to the thinking of the earlier generations. We were taught in co-ed schools, had boys as friends, went abroad for university and even traveled or worked in global companies. The women of our times and backgrounds, were going to be the women who had it all, who had gone out of their homes to aspire to become a woman entrepreneur or a successful business woman, and achieve what their former generations couldn’t, and would be the path-breakers for the next generation of women to come.
We are more educated than our men, but if we push as hard as them in our careers we are branded as aggressive or intimidating. We are made to believe that we are the financially independent women that our mothers couldn’t be, only to be made to feel guilty and become a bad mother, if we prioritise our own career along with our child; or to be made to feel guilty if we choose to start a family or get married later than we are expected to.
We have been exposed to the world, lead independent lifestyles, only to be told that when it comes to traveling for work, our husband’s travels are more important than our own. After all, a man has, to build his career while, a woman has a choice.
But does she actually have a choice or is it a mere illusion of a choice?
Does she really have a choice, when she gets branded as a rebel if she decides to pursue her own path rather than follow the norms of society? Does she have a real choice when no-one steps up to support her if she wants to follow her dreams or pursue her ambitions along with wanting to have a family?
There are many female business entrepreneurs like myself who come from very supportive families, friends and spouses, and can pursue their ambitions along with choosing to have a family or take time off and take care of our families or pursue career or professions that we have a calling for or become entrepreneurs or social workers, but we do have a choice and that choice is ours.
However, for those of us that are out there, there are many more that lead unfulfilled lives, either because they do not get the kind of support they deserve or because they fear being the rebel, the outcast. I question the society that first made them educated, progressive and independent, only to then take it all away. Why give them an illusion of having a choice, which they never had?
And more than that, I question the women, who judge women who decide to take the path not pursued. If we as women don’t support each other, who would be role models for our daughters or sons?
My question on who is today’s young Indian woman is much deeper than just this one point. But my first question to discovering an answer to that, is that do all our women of today who come from the most progressive and privileged part of society actually have a choice? or have we been brought up with the illusion that we do