The thought of this article came to me while I was lying on my bed, recovering from viral fever for a week :/ I felt weak and was bored and thought to myself what should my next article be about and it came to me very easy. I wanted to write about things women shy away from, not because they don’t have the guts but because they really want to forget about it, for the better(they think so) . I will be talking about sexual harassment. I am using the term sexual harassment in the physically and psychologically sense.
When a women walks down the street and some men think its okay to say something lewd and people call it eve teasing where as it is sexual harassment , when someone uses the term “eve teasing” they are suggesting the power of eve as the one who tempted Adam into eating the apple; implying that the lady has half the part in being harassed because she was being her usual sensual “eve” self.
It is very easy for people to part with half the problem to a girl. My personal experience differs from these rants of people telling women that they “asked for it”. I was a very bubbly and chirpy kid , in a convent institution with only girls around me. When I was 10 years old our school took us all on a trip to Bangalore and I was addressed with the “accident” a group of 30 girls was with me in the accident , we were touched at the wrong places and we barely knew what was happening. I was 10 years old ! how did I ask for it ? how did all the other 10 year olds ask for it ?
The damage was done, I was scared of men since I was 10 years old , while growing up I hated them because I felt all would do the same thing , then I grew up, forgot about it. Then it happened again and this time it was the worst thing that has happened to me since , I wont say it here (to disgusting) but the result was that I could not go in a crowded place or outside at night because I felt something bad might happen and I always needed some male to go with me. I still remember that I went to Goa in 2008 and I refused to go outside at night because I was scared , I only went because my male friends said they would accompany me.
The real issue is not behind what men do but why do they do it ? do they feel they can get away with it ? do they not feel any punishment will be served or they just feel this is the course of the society? the answer is all of the above. The men who eve tease have no psychology problem but they have seen it happen while growing up thus they don’t see anything wrong with It, its like second nature to them. I am not justifying their negative actions, I am just explaining why they do what they do. For these men the act is of empowering, they think they can show women where they really belong but what ends up happening to a girl is not just that but a much deeper bruise.
Women who have been harassed sexually as a child or an adult do not talk about their problems because they feel like there will be no result generating from it. Sigmund Freud who was the founder of psychoanalysis now known as psychology felt that due to these issue being repressed in a women’s deep psyche a women tends to become “hysteric” which leads to the stereotype of women being “moody , guided by their want and not need” . Although feminists today do not like Freud’s analysis of the female mind (okay okay I lied, they hate him: P) , they feel like he makes women seem mental and have no control over our bodies because of the abuse we suffer . The reality is we do suffer sexual abuse every day, be it straightforward or indirect but that does not mean we can not make
decisions for our self .
That being said, do not assume that men do not go through sexual harassment, its just that we do not hear about it much . Men too suffer sexual abuse and it is as difficult for them to talk about it because its not just the man’s sexual abuse but also his helplessness which is shown. His ability to protect his own dignity or body is questioned . There have been so many issues in which an elder man has sexually assaulted young men ( case in point the vice principal of Ramjas college was suspended because there were charges against him of sexually assaulting male students ) . I do not really think men have the issue of women sexually assaulting them by name calling but this is just my opinion you never know if that might happen to some men .
We have to raise awareness against this , say something when a girl is being stared at or being indecently treated . We have to also educate men about the equal status of women, stop teasing your 5 year old nephew or son about how many pretty girlfriends he has , he will start thinking of them not as friends but some “thing” different , something which has to be “pretty” and “cute”. He will start thinking of girls as the “other” and that is the real seed of Satan.
For the women who have suffered sexual harassment or are suffering please You have to TALK ABOUT IT, you can talk about it to your mother , sister , father , shrink and anybody but talk about it. Let someone know that something happened to you , you will feel less depressed try to fight it , fight the feeling of being scared . I did I can walk alone in a crowded place now because I have realized I am stronger than those stupid guys staring at me. I won’t let them destroy me and my life that’s what they can never be. Like me and never be WITH a woman like me or you
If you are in Delhi and feel harassed in any manner please contact the Delhi police at- 1091 & 011-24121234
If you are in Mumbai and feel like sharing your story please visit this blog http://mumbai.ihollaback.org/
P.S- This is just my personal opinion which is definitely biased because of my personal politics so please don’t feel offended .