From times immemorial, much before you and I were even born, the worth of a woman, her value, has been attached to her ability to give birth. Her standing in society, in her family, has always been linked to things like her being married or not and then if she's a mother or not.
This rot is so deep seeded that even if a woman ends up inventing the cure of Cancer or discovering life on Mars, her worth would still depend on her being a mother. Yes, that's how this society thinks and perceives women. But what's even more unfortunate is many women end up believing the same as well.
If you are fed a lie at every step, there'll come a moment when that'll start being true for you.
A few weeks ago I was tagged on Facebook by some of my friends to take part in the Motherhood Dare. It was a harmless thing going on in social media actually. Women were sharing pictures of themselves with their kids, sharing with friends basically, just like you and I share photos of a holiday, graduation or a wedding. Harmless really without any conniving subtext. At least, I'd like to think so.
Everything has two sides. Sometimes more.
There was another side to this too, just like everything else. Some chose to take offence. Something along the lines of, isn't being a woman daring enough? Or, why flash your happiness around when other women might be going through some really hard times? Again, something which is not unwarranted.
But if both sides were right in feeling what they were, why were the sides so different? In fact, why were there two sides at all in the first place?
I'll tell you.
I actually thought about this a lot. I thought about why women sharing pictures with their children was being construed as mean and hurtful. The answer, my friends, wasn't really surprising.
The answer, my friends, lay in an entity responsible for a lot of our troubles.
It is the
society which has pitted one woman against another. It has created a gap on the ludicrous ground of haves and
have-nots. It has created a demarcation which in reality shouldn't exist and doesn't exist.
Stop seeing your worth in the eyes of others unless it is through a mirror.
I have seen friends break down from the pressure of becoming mothers. Not only that, I have seen them have physiological issues because somewhere our mental and emotional state is linked to our physical health too.
Somewhere they have been made to believe that being a mother is everything there is to a woman.
I just want to tell them that's not true.
Don't let society tell you what your worth depends on. First of all, motherhood has nothing to do with being a complete woman. Not marriage, not motherhood or any other condition that the society might lay down upon you.
Every woman is complete and her essence has got nothing to do with her reproductive abilities.
Be a mother if you want to be a mother, when you want to be a mother.
I have also had friends who wanted to become parents but it wasn't working out. While that can be painful and tough, the pain was multiplied a thousand times by the people around with their incessant questions and raised eyebrows. A personal battle was made a spectacle because respecting privacy isn't our second nature.
I think motherhood is beautiful. Tough, tough, tough through and through but certainly beautiful. But as a woman you need to decide if it is for you.
If the answer is yes, then there are many ways to be a mother. I'm not trying to patronise here. I'm just sad to see so many beautiful and great women putting so much pressure on themselves. I just want to say let it be only about you and not what people say or think.
And those who don't want to be mothers, don't let the whys make you feel bad. You don't need to prove anything to anyone. Neither of us
Being a woman ain't easy. Don't let the society's parameters determine your
self-worth. Be responsible for your own happiness. I know I try to work on it
Actually, feel what you want to not what others want you to. Be happy or sad, cry or sing at your own will. Life's hard as it is why get boggled down by borrowed weight?
And yes, don't let social media be the judge of how happy or perfect someone's life is as opposed to yours. Actually, just don't compare. You never know what goes on in their lives for everyone has their own battles. So,
definitely, don't let something on social media make you feel bad. It ain't easy but like my husband says, it ain't hard either.
From one Woman to another.