Patriarchy is a lifestyle with deep roots in many parts of the world. All of us get to hear and talk about the effects and consequences of patriarchy on women every other day. We call out the guilty on social media and demand justice with candles in our hands.
While each of it is an extreme need, today on the blog, I’ll throw some light and share my thoughts that reflect upon the cruel adversity of patriarchy for the men in our society too.
Hi, everyone. Welcome back!!!
I am no feminist but I do believe in the need for equality. And when we talk about equality – that does not mean degrading the men of our society. It is about uplifting women. It is nowhere okay to generalize the same traits as those of an entire gender, race, sex, caste, or religion.
Without even realizing, patriarchy has been the very foundation of life around me. Not just the women and girls, I see the boys around me as its victim too.
As a child, we don’t really feel it. But, growing up and observing instances around me – I have concluded that as much as women, patriarchy affects men too. The thin line of difference which creates all the difference is that women are suppressed under patriarchy and men are empowered above it, not to mention, in all the wrong ways.
Here are 5 of my observations over the years that will make my opinion stronger.
The Blues of Patriarchy
If anybody could, I would really want an intellectual to come up to me and educate me on the following:
- How pink is feminine and blue is masculine?
- How dolls are for girls and cars are for boys?
I cordially invite anybody who can answer the above questions logically.
Because I truly feel this is where the problem begins. Who associated colors and toys with genders? And, why? What was the need?
Gone were the days when girls were nurtured to be the women for another house and boys were brought up to be “the man” of the family.
If you have babies in your house, do not, I repeat here, please do not divide and restrict their happiness to your choice of color or toy. Let them choose it for themselves and embrace their choices.
I have seen men around me who hesitate to wear pink because it’s a “feminine” color. Boys, it is not. Just because Barbie wears those pink dresses that don’t mean she has a patent right on it.
Go ahead and choose what makes you feel beautiful. Yes, not just handsome, but beautiful. Boys are beautiful too.
The boys don’t cry
The next time you find somebody calling out a boy or a man for expressing his emotions, stop them then and there.
Little boys who barely know the difference between genders are tutored to “not cry like girls”.
Is he born without a heart? Or, does his senses don’t respond to the reflexes?
Or, are girls given something extra to receive this validation to cry and express themselves?
Babies are babies, let them be one. Don’t teach them such socially driven sorceries of life.
Don’t stop your boys from crying while they are a child. They will only end up becoming frustrated and self-sabotaged men in the future.
Don’t teach your daughters to bow down in front of a man. They will only end up becoming dependent and self-suppressed women in the future.
Patriarchy says men pay the bill
It is the 21st century and I still see these money talks happening around me that solely compel men to be accountable for the money matters.
Women, today, are not becoming independent for anybody else. More than the society, they are doing it for themselves.
Hence, men should not be seen as the money-making machine only because that is how it has been for years. When both are working and earning today, why do the spending has to be associated with the man’s pocket?
I have had instances around (not with) me, where men feel ashamed if the woman initiated to pay the bill. Why? Patriarchy is the answer.
Young boys in society are brought up to be men with good hearts but ego so fragile that a mirror seems strong to it. If you are the same man reading this, do not associate your gender with money. It won’t make you any less of a man if a woman pays off the bill.
When both can earn, both can spend too. It is as simple as that.
Men should lead and be responsible
More often than not, I have seen the ‘head of the family’ doing it all for the entire family every time and never thinking about himself for once. This includes my own family too.
I remember my father instantly agreeing to the needs of all of us. Clothes? Education? Thousand other necessary expenses? Mostly, a yes.
At times, I never see him spending his own money on himself. We literally have to forcefully ask him to order or buy what he likes. In fact, there have been times we do it without even telling him because he won’t let us otherwise.
The reason is not a lack of money. The reason is simply keeping the needs of their family before themselves.
No, I am not against the selfless nature of our fathers. But, keeping themselves at the very last in their priority list does break my heart.
There is nothing wrong with being responsible but that inbound feeling to fulfill expectations of the family all the time, it is not always needed.
They should be strong
The patriarchal society expects men to be emotionally strong. Why? It subjects women to be emotionally expressive. Why?
The past few years have been very emotionally exhaustive for my family. Death is an inevitable part of life. None can escape it. Time and again, owing to different health issues, we lost a few members of our family.
In between all the crisis and mourning, there is this one thing that I notice every time when I am in a similar situation.
While women were free to cry and express their grief of the departed soul, I saw the men and boys of my family control their tears and comfort their daughter and sisters.
I happened to notice this many times and could not ignore to not write about it. That was the day I truly felt the need to let as many people know as I could through my blog, that crying and expressing your sadness doesn’t make you any less of a man.
You do not have to be “strong” to justify your manhood. Before being a man or a woman, we all are humans. Humans with the same emotional systems inside us.
Expression of feelings and emotions is not something to be related and justified by a human’s gender.
As a woman, I totally agree to accept and feel the need for women empowerment.
While we speak of empowering women, we must also inculcate the right values and thoughts in our child, be it a boy or girl.
Teaching our boys to respect and value other genders is equally important to that of asking our girls to be independent.
I am not trying to layer feminism here. The only purpose is to reveal the other aspect of patriarchy that we rarely talk about otherwise.
I hope you’ll understand the thought, need, and purpose behind it.
Thanking you once again for making it to the end.
As always, you can find me here.
See you on some other topic on Wednesday.
Happy Reading and keep smashing the patriarchy in every way you can.