Disclaimer : This is a controversial post. I expect trolls, I expect angry rejoinders, protests etc. I will publish the printable ones. The downright abusive ones I will trash. I may lose friends but c’est la vie …
I’ll admit that I am scarred … in ways that I cant even bring myself to relive, but these are wounds that many of us carry within us. And my wounds were inflicted by women, women I trusted, whom I expected to help and support me, nurture me. This is why, I have problems, issues that do not allow me to bond too well with other women.
This is what I call the twisted sisterhood. Some women, actually a lot of women are judgmental, they are hostile and they actively go out of their way to undermine other womenfolk’s desire for self respect and independence. And these, mind you, are not uneducated slum dwellers who can be excused on the grounds that they don’t know any better. These are educated and “apparently” open minded women. The harm they do to other women is incalculable.
I thought that I had overcome these feelings. I had proved myself, I was self confident, cool and at peace with myself. After all, did I not actively encourage my own daughter in law to be the career woman she is born to be?
Look at the depths we have sunk to! Even a simple act of encouraging our own kind is supposed to be lauded and praised. Such an act should be absolutely normal and matter of course. After all, women should support their own sex. Step back and consider … do they?
It is these feelings that resurfaced when I read Sangeeta’s comment on my previous blog post …
She asked … The point is …how do you assert the right kind of human values in the minds of those women whose minds are skewed . That is the bigger hurdle i believe. If a mother thinks the daughter should behave in a certain manner , how ‘the mother’ should be ‘educated’ ….. an educated thinking woman’s idea of feminism is quite different with a ‘society conditioned’ woman’s idea of feminism…
We are our own worst enemy
How often have many of us encountered this attitude from other women :
1. You must have done something to deserve it … (if you encounter domestic violence)
2. Men are like that, they are polygamous by nature (if you discover your partner is cheating)
3. Stop whining, men don’t like women who complain (As though we like to whine ….)
4. She is like that, she is such a tease, she brought it on to herself (if a woman gets raped)
5. She must have slept with a lot of men to get where she is (if a woman gets promoted)
6. She is a slut (if a girl is more popular than others in her peer group)
Men are competitive with each other, but they bond to get certain things done, and are supportive … the male bonding rocks. Women are deeply suspicious of each other. Women do not like other women in positions of power, and would not like to groom other women to take over from them. It would take away attention from their own achievements you see.
We are deeply hostile and resent other women’s success. You know … this is why a mother in law does not like a daughter in law to excel. This is why your disapproving neighbor is so openly hostile about your life style.
We are judgmental. We judge each other on basis of housekeeping skills, parenting skills, cooking skills and even fashion sense. What is worse, we expect other ladies to judge us and find us fall short. It leads to much heart burn and stress.
We bitch about other women, we weep when they bitch about us … but we accept it too. What is more, we take it to heart and agonize about it. But do we think of changing our behavior or confronting such negative things?
But we drop the friend. Our own inherent insecurity, jealousy and negativity costs us the friendship
Or go through life behind a mask of frozen smiles and nursing grudges
C’est la vie ….
Does it have to be like this?
Men find allies, we view other women as competition, and when a man is involved as in the case of a mother in law vs daughter in law equation, the results are devastating, either costing a marriage or life time worth of distrust and resentment. If two women fight over a boyfriend, the results can be bloody.
Women excel at silent war. And we have over active antennas that comprehend silent waves of dislike and disapproval.
It does not have to be like this.
Men have the upper hand on us, because they bond and form alliances. A woman at the top is lonely. Did Indira Gandhi nominate another woman to her position or even groom another woman to become a political power? No! We are lonely and dis empowered because we do not encourage our sisters and weaken our own position.
We have to learn to do encourage other women. You know, men have the dominated us, ruled over us using our own weakness. We keep fighting and resenting each other and throwing roadblocks in each other’s path.
We have to come out more vocally in support of other women if they are suppressed and abused – not just lend a tissue and then bitch and giggle behind the poor abused woman’s back.
Leaving you with the song, “We are family, I got all my sisters with me”