Stop! #BangaloreMolestation

 

Yesterday, I turned an observer.

I observed myself.

I dressed up to meet a friend and as I did I realised that I looked at myself from every angle ensuring that the kurta I was wearing wasn’t too well fitted and my flowing hair stylishly, and cleverly, covered my chest. I even stood in the light of the balcony to ensure that my Patiala salwar wouldn’t turn transparent in the sunlight. As I walked to the mall I realised how tense I was, with elbows sticking out slightly to push away men who manage to ‘accidentally’ brush against you. My eyes were alert, looking for a look or a gesture that could spell trouble.

And do you know what saddened me the most? This is what most women do every single day, and they don’t even realise it.

Then I wondered if men, from strangers to the men we live with, our brothers, husbands, fathers, uncles and the like, even realise what it feels like to be a woman? Being guarded all the time, in real life and online. Thinking twice before you say or write something. Being trolled if you speak your mind.

As a Social Experiment, Women around the world should be allowed to behave and act out all they have seen, heard and experienced in their day to day lives as Women. Irrespective of their age and backgrounds women everywhere should behave like men do towards them, towards and with the men.
No this is not revenge, nor is is an eye for an eye. Sometimes people only understand what you go through only when it happens to them, and this is the only way to make Men realise what some of their fellow men put women through.
No, not all Men are bad. But almost all women have had an experience which was not pleasant.

The ever increasing news of injustice towards women is terrible. And what is even worse are the platitudes, cliches, snide remarks and the verbal post mortem that follows.

Let us develop empathy , and a backbone, to support someone when they need it.
Create a world where our sisters and daughters feel confident, feel safe and thrive. Don’t let your ‘It’s ok. It happens to everyone’ attitude encourage perpetrators and leave behind a world where all they can do is cringe and have to fight.

Because it may have happened to everyone, but that still doesn’t make it okay for it to continue.