Of Labels and Branding..

Started to write a comment on IHM’s latest post, when it turned into this post I just love to rant about the labels that get assigned to all of us – not just women. Our society has so many of those ‘labels’ and expectations that IHM talks about in her post.

When I was young, I used to be under a lot of pressure from my mother to behave like a ‘lady’. Thankfully, my dad was wonderful – he just let me be. So I never learnt to cook(there is a big question mark on that even now) until much, much later, but that never really mattered. The only thing that my dad demanded of me was excellance in whatever I did and this is what I would want for my daughter as well. However, all around me, I used to see instances of girls being taught to cook, sew and knit – so that they do not face problems later – when they were married! Of course, even if you are a top performer at school, you need to learn how to be a ‘good girl’ too. And the rules were all different for boys – they ‘need’ to concentrate on studies – why should they be distracted by any household activity? After all, they would finally get a ready made maid in the form of a ‘bride’??????

Even today, it absolutely gets my goat, when I hear women ask men to eat ‘garam garam rotis‘, and what about us women? Well we will just eat after they have – so that they get to eat it hot!!! At our place, we always try to eat together – but I come across this all the time. One time, we had a get together with my husband’s colleagues, all of whose wives were stay-at-home mums and I used to be working at that time. The women decided that the men should eat first because ‘ they must be tired after all their hard work’!!! Hello??? I am working too – and I was pregnant too at that time! Nobody even bothered – because as a women – I probably don’t count! While, I am not saying that I wanted special treatment – why do we women try to treat men as extra-special!!!
And most importantly ‘Why do they deride their own work, their own contribution? Isn’t what they do hard work????’
All through that dinner, my poor husband did not know what to do – he knew that I was close to blowing up 🙂 And these were all educated, well aware women, who did not think twice before re-inforcing such traditions. What will their daughters and sons learn? More and more as I see all this, I am convinced that women are women’s worst enemies!

The most regressive family dramas on Indian Television has been the brain child of a woman – Ekta Kapoor!

One of our maids, did not feed her daughter for the first 2 weeks after her birth – because she wanted a boy!

Don’t women play and equal and powerful role in dowry deaths and female foeticides?

And have you been to parties where the men, sit in one room, and the women in another? Why? Why can’t we all socialise?

There used to be a senior of mine at school. Her family were also friends of mine. Now, this girl was brilliant, she was great at studies, she topped nearly every exam she took, but her father made her marry a guy who was far less educated, didnot even have a job that could take care of a family, not her equal in any way – just because he was worried that if she gets too old, it would be difficult to get her ‘married’. Last I heard, she stays with her in-laws, and he works somewhere else. They can’t live together , because he does not have a good enough job, to be able to support her and their child! Is this worth it? Could she, not have had, a chance of a better, more fulfilling life, if it had not been for her father’s narrowminded views? And how, could a girl like her go along with it?

The other day, I read somewhere that women who love their husbands do the ‘Karva Chauth Puja‘! And this was a woman’s words, mind you! I do not do fasts, of any kind! – does that mean that I love my husband any less? Here, again, I think, we have Ekta Kapoor to blame, who has glamourised every single regressive tradition!

And the labelling is not just limited to women. I know of parents who get upset if their little boy shows more interest in dolls than in cars. I had always believed that the toys we give the children make the difference to what the child takes to. Unfortunately, my daughter made me eat my words. I had always tried to give her a balanced mix of toys, until she got a little toy baby for her first birthday. The label said it was for children aged 3+ , so I was putting it away for later, when my daughter grabbed it and has never given it up since. She takes better care of her ‘baby’ than I suspect, I do of her 🙂 Guess, that’s her personality, and if that’s what she is like, then that’s what she should be ! I will not make her change one way or the other – she should be allowed to be ‘her’ – whatever that may be!

I’ve been ranting, but this is something that always got me going.. Also, on a last note – I just read that Russell Crowe knits!!! Now thats what we need 🙂 As somebody said, ‘When a men do something its an art and when women do the same, it gets relegated to a craft’

37 thoughts on “Of Labels and Branding..

  1. Smitha, I agree with all the points you have made. Sadly, Indian society does still have different rules for men and women. But when I talk with my children and their friends, I feel that things are changing for the better-slowly, but definitely.

    Just a point- When we talk of gender inequality, most of our examples are from the middle or upper income classes. The problems of poor women are somewhat different. The question of to work-or not, to do housework-or not, these are not their pressing questions.

    Of course they suffer from inequal treatment, too. Just differently.

  2. You have made some great points Smitha. Society needs to change and discrimination needs to end. Stereotypes have also be be shed, in a hurry, as you have mentioned.

    But, if a woman loves to give “garam garam roti” to her husband and kids without any compulsion, straight or oblique, then we should not snatch her joy by being judgmental in a superior sort of way. It is not what you do but why you do what you do that is important.

    I know I am running the risk of sounding regressive, but I know of highly successful, independent women who do what I mentioned above without demeaning themselves in any manner. At the same time, there are unsuccessful and ‘un-independent’ women who will not do anything that will make them look less than equal in any manner, just to live up to their conditioning of what constitutes equality and modernity, sometimes to the near destruction of their own happiness…

    No easy answers here I guess…

    For the poor, of course, the dynamics are entirely different, as Manju has mentioned.

  3. You have raised so many points and I agree with everything.

    One problem is we have this obsession with getting our daughters married at any cost, they are so conditioned that they
    live (and die) to save their marriages.

    Upper middle class doesn’t face it much, the rest of the nation has to live with such accepted biases.

    Also I notice the younger generation of men is way more enlightened and unbiased. And our kids will be like them 🙂 Be proud of this Smitha, you and I are making a difference.

  4. By the way I come from a background where my mom made garam garam chappaties and fed us brats, and dad ofcourse. I thought that was how it was and should be, it made her happy. I never even wondered why doesn’t she get hot hot chappaties, doesn’t she deserve to be pampered.
    When I got married the one thing my husband put his foot down was about him eating before me. My mom was horrified.
    I was horrified too.. I really thought it made us both look bad, me irresponsible, he a joru ka gulaam and us a a very weird couple!
    He thought it would be really weird that he sits and eats while I am in the kitchen!

    Today I can’t even imagine my kids and their spouses not showing equal concern for each other … hardly any of my friends stand in the kitchen while meals are being eaten, eating together is more of a norm now.
    All these little issues symbolize a great change.

    Amongst the poor classes I have seen in attached servant’s quarters while the maids work for us, very often their husbands do the cooking. I was surprised but this is something I saw many times – they drink, beat, fight, cook, work, want only boys – every thing, but cooking is not a big issue … this was mostly in Bombay. And in nuclear families since, we only allowed two adults and three kids in one quarter.

    Many times men learnt to cook very well when they stay alone and if they continue to stay alone with their wives, they are very cool with being partners, not guardians.

  5. @IHM, I think you answered Vinod’s question far better than I could have ever done! I incidently had the exact opposite experience, of being brought up in a family, where we used to eat together, but I got married to a family, where the women, cook for everybody and eat at the end.. So that was a huge culture shock for me – and very very difficult for me to accept. Thankfully, for me, my husband, despite being brought up in that culture, understood what I meant, and we have always eaten together. And the funny thing is, IHM, I have seen this still happenning among some of our common friends – they are all in their late twenties or at the very most – early 30’s – and as you mentioned, nobody thinks there is anything wrong with it! But yes, things are definitely changing, albeit slowly..

    @Vinod,You say ‘if a woman loves to give “garam garam roti” to her husband and kids without any compulsion, straight or oblique, then we should not snatch her joy by being judgmental in a superior sort of way’, but the sad fact is that most women who do this are conditoned by family, society that this is the ‘correct’ way. It has more to do with what women have seen their mothers and grandmothers doing and for most women, its not a matter of choice. And I really admire the men who put their foot down and say that they will not go ahead with this! After all, don’t they say that the family that eats together stays together 🙂

    @Manju, Yes, you are right, society is changing, slowly but definitely.. And you are right, when you say that the problems faced by poor women are a world apart.. I just happenned to write down things which I have affected me and I felt strongly about..
    And they definitely suffer from inequal treatment.. I used to have a maid who used to struggle to earn and somehow educate her children, and her husband used to come once in a while, beat her up, and then getaway with whatever money he could lay his hands on.. Everytime this happenned – I used to feel so helpless, not knowing what to do to protect her..

  6. @Vinod, Just one more thing that I wanted to point out. You mentioned ‘there are unsuccessful and ‘un-independent’ women who will not do anything that will make them look less than equal in any manner, just to live up to their conditioning of what constitutes equality and modernity’

    How do you define ‘unsuccessful and un-independant’ – is it the same as someone who is not working outside her house – some one who may not be financially independant? If so, then isn’t her work at home important enough? Are you saying that just because a woman decides to stay at home, she has to bury herself in any archaic tradition. And if she decides that she does not want to do this – what is wrong? Why is it so difficult for the Indian society to accept assertiveness in a woman? What is wrong if she demands equality by saying that she wants the whole family to eat together? Is it such a bad or disgraceful thing to do? I think this is the social conditioning that I have been talking about!

  7. Smitha, I knew I was getting into very dangerous territory! Did I say there is anything wrong in the whole family eating together? It is something to be cherished…but if someone follows a different way, without compulsion, we should not be judgmental and disturb the harmony that exists. At the same time, positive education is needed to ensure that discrimination based on gender, that which is in the mind, is eradicated. Frankly, I feel that this thing about “equality” is being stretched too far in some cases. Why should it mean only doing what men do?

    I know of real women, brought up with this sort of conditioning, who are actually annoyed that men do not have to undergo labour pains and go through nine months of pregnancy…why should the woman alone suffer, is the argument. I know you will find it silly, but try telling that to them and they will say that this discrimination exists because God is a male!

  8. I agree with all your points Smitha…I too can’t understand why modern educated women (including my friends) keep the Karva Chauth fast…The only good point is that their husbands also fast that day…But still…

    I am a stay at home mom and am looked down upon when I tell people that…”Oh, you don’t work” is the usual reponse…I absolutely hate this because they say it in a way that makes me feel inferior and brainless…

  9. @Bones, I know, I hear it all the time! IHM has posted a brilliant post on this! Its linked to mine.. I just have the hope that with more of us, things will change slowly but surely!

  10. @Vinod, IHM’s latest post has all the answers that I would have liked to make.. Yes, it is indeed dangerous territory 🙂

  11. "women are women's worst enemies" – too true. Sometimes, I get the feeling that they are shackled as much by traditions as their own minds. Its almost as if they have been programmed to function that way, to be subservient, to hold the "greater good" over there own aspirations. So much so, any comment to the contrary invites labels like "sexist" among others. Of course, there is the other end of the equation wherein, women seem to devote their life into male bashing, which is equally ridiculous. This whole case of gender inequality/warfare smacks of a puerile outlook. We got worse problems to deal with, and a good start might be to acknowledge that yin & yang are complementary, not adversaries. It was an engaging read.

  12. "This whole case of gender inequality/warfare smacks of a puerile outlook… a good start might be to acknowledge that yin & yang are complementary, not adversaries." There is a lot of forgotten ancient eastern wisdom in those two sentences of Hatikvah. The natures of yin and yang have to be understood and their differences acknowledged to make the one complete unit that they are designed to be. Once that is done, harmony will prevail as it naturally should with all the elements harmoniously balanced.

    In the West generated adversarial mode that we have got into to resolve 'inequalities' and injustices, we are not likely to achieve the balance and harmony that must be the aim of all change in any relationship. On the contrary, 50 years down the line we may well find that just the reverse has happened and men and women are breaking apart more frequently than they are coming together…

    It is dangerous territory, but I have taken the risk of entering it not to run down women who are bringing about required changes in the disturbed dynamics of yin-yang, but to present a detached and different view that, hopefully, is not skewed too much by the forces of immediacy.

    A dip into the vast ocean of yin-yang and its equivalent in other eastern traditions can be taken at wiki… http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yin_and_yang

  13. @Vinod, I will respond to your comment in detail – have to say though that I donot agree with you 🙂 In a bit of a hurry today.

  14. @Hatikvah, Welcome. I agree. Yes, there are women who simply do senseless men bashing – but they are a small minority. Most of us, have come across really really senseible men. Most of my closest friends have been man 🙂 Having said that – it is not just men, but society on the whole which is responsible for this state of affairs..

  15. Smitha, since this discussion has now entered the realm of higher philosophy- it is beyond my intellectual capacities.

    I want to assure you, though, that I am on YOUR SIDE! 🙂

  16. Smitha I agree with you here again.

    It was my husband who refused to accept this system, so I see no Yin yang hassles here, it is more of problem of some traditions/habits/customs/systems we have got used to and now we are taking our own sweet time changing them …

    This sort of rigid attitude that makes us refuse to see injustice that is right in front of us every day, in every next house hold, is one of the main reasons why the archaic, one sided and biased joint family system is failing so fast. (And that’s a good thing, high time …)

    How can this nation be truly happy if half the population, and a huge amount of revered mothers in this country are treated like second class citizens???
    All in the name of balance and harmony!!!
    If it was harmonious we won’t have such a huge number of Indian married women committing suicide or being burnt alive.

    How can unhappiness, suppression and control ever be harmonious??!

    All I can say is I am so glad things are changing.

    Thank God for the new generation of men and women who are contributing in this change.

  17. “And have you been to parties where the men, sit in one room, and the women in another? Why? Why can’t we all socialise?”

    is one of my pet peeve and a reason I stopped socializing with certain groups. You know the kinds where men talk about politics and women talk about cooking and kids. Once a while is fine but not always because irrespective of gender people have different things to share but not always.

    Having said that there are some things where the equality rules doesn’t apply. Will get into detail. Now in a hurry.

  18. for me this is a difficult subject to talk about as I have not given much thought to this…. but yes from my limited experience I can say that:

    In my family:
    1. Dad cooks lunch and mom takes care of dinner and breakfast as she also works (teacher).
    2. We absolutely make it a point to eat our dinner together.. it is a ritual in our house….
    No two ways about it….. Very often we wait so that everyone is free…..

    My views tend to run along the same lines…….
    good article……..

  19. The discussion has indeed turned cerebral and philosophical here and elsewhere. I am afraid I am not as intellectually blessed as some of us clearly are, to be able to sustain a limitless spat just to prove my lame point or counter the intellectually exhilarating ones being made by others in the blogosphere to tear mine down, point by point, to a cheering audience.

    Since I do not have it in me to rise to such lofty levels of debating abilities, I rest my case. Let those who pass by these pages pick up nuggets, if any, that might help them in increasing levels of harmony in their domestic lives…

  20. Smitha, I agree with your points. As I mentioned in IHM’s post also this is the way the society has been conditioned. For all my liberal views and modern upbringing, I never gave this issue a thought till the time I read IHM’s post and subsequently yours. In my family this kind of thing never happened for we all ate together and at times when we were hungry we ate earlier than mom. But in my parents-in law’s house things are different. The SIL eats alone, after serving everyone but that’s how all the women in their family have done so far. My MIL keeps saying how her son must be tired after working the entire day so he needs to be fed hot food. And nobody has ever questioned it. I have a nice MIL but even she has been conditioned to think like this and she never thinks that there is any injustuce in the whole situation. her logic is “your husband is working for the family, so if he is healthy and happy so will the family be.” She says one person has to do some amount of sacrifice and there shouldn’t be any competition. Thankfully, my husband shares my views and is called a JKG (jooru ka gulam) by his bro.

  21. @ Mr Vinod Sharma I am sorry if I have offended you, that was not the intention. The views you expressed are not unusual, a lot of people, men and women believe the same – my own mother did, so did I for a long time. I just wanted to explain why and how such thinking is (perhaps unintentionally) unjust, harmful, cruel and inharmonious.

    I have not linked the two posts. Please do not think of this as a spat.I was just expressing my point of view. My sincere apologies if I offended you.

  22. @IHM, I agree with you.. ‘How can this nation be truly happy if half the population, and a huge amount of revered mothers in this country are treated like second class citizens??? ‘ Lets just hope things change.

  23. @Sscribbles, That was exactly my experience too.. Thankfully, we donot follow this now. We eat together, when we can. I think the most important thing is the importance given to the woman. My dad always puts his foot down, if he finds my mother slaving away in the kitchen. He is very strong about the fact that, he prefers my mother to dine with us than slave away at the kitchen while he eats. SO I guess I have been brought up to look at things that way too.. Again that is just an example.. As a result of this mutual respect, I have seen, my parents having a rare and happy bond even after nearly 30 years of marriage. At the same time, my MIL, does all this and more for my FIL, but her resentment simmers away and they do not share much of a bond with each other – thanks to the lack of mutual respect.. So I guess the lack of mutual respect is what I was trying to bring out in my post.

  24. @Ajit, It is a nice way to be.. Having seen both ways of living – I would any time prefer to see everybody at home being accorded the same treatment 🙂

  25. This chapati thing takes place in my home as well . As a kid, there were many a times when I used to wonder why . And wanted it to change . But it never did . And then I accepted it as a fact . A very sad fact .

  26. These stereotypes have to break down. Not through education but through reaslisation born out of commonsense. I have seen women themselves denigrating their own worth, much less spoken about the men’s deeds the better. Of course there are exceptions, not to forget.

  27. Vinod, Sorry for the delay in responding to your comments – I had been a little caught up for the last couple of days..

    1. ‘but if someone follows a different way, without compulsion, we should not be judgmental and disturb the harmony that exists’ In my experience, most people follow such practises as they have been indoctrined in them. A girl, from her childhood is taught that she is being ‘trained’ to be a good ‘bahu’. This is what I object to. What I feel is that both girls and boys need to be given equal oportunities to grow and decide what is best for them. For instance, if a boy wants to be a chef and a girl a builder – well so be it! Let them decide! When I joined Mechanical Eng, I had so many people asking why? Did I not get anything better??? The thing is that I always wanted to be a Mech engg – prob being a Daddy’s girl and wanting to follow in his footsteps.. I just feel that even today in India, girls do not have the choice – they do what they do out of compulsion and soicetal expectations.

    2. ‘we should not be judgmental and disturb the harmony that exists’ – I feel that the ‘harmony’ is just in the imagination! I have seen so many women totally unhappy with their lives, but go on with it – simply because there is no option! Infact, a lot of MILs ill-treating their DILs is also thanks to their own dissatisfaction. They feel that since they have lived such a life – is it fair that their DILs get a better life? So the ‘harmony’ is more often than not non-existent. In order for true harmony – you need mutual respect – which is sadly missing in our traditional families. Again there are exceptions, but they really are exceptions.

    3. ‘Frankly, I feel that this thing about “equality” is being stretched too far in some cases. Why should it mean only doing what men do?’ There is nothing about ‘doing only what men do’. Already women are doing all that and more! There is no question in anybody’s mind that a woman does much much more than a man does even if she is a homemaker! The question is again of respect and consideration. A woman is taken for granted. It is assumed that she makes sacrifices as they give her joy! She is taught that she needs to ‘fast’ for a good husband! That she needs to be married for her life to be ‘fulfilled’. This is all I am talking about.
    I have been a working woman and a homemaker – and you can take it from me that being a homemaker is a 24*7, full time job with no breaks- much more difficult. And if you are balancing both – it is no cakewalk! One of the best insights into a working woman’s life, that I read about was in Barack Obama’s The Audacity of Hope’. It is a must read for all Indian men.

    4. ‘who are actually annoyed that men do not have to undergo labour pains and go through nine months of pregnancy…why should the woman alone suffer’ – This is a mere reaction to men’s callous attitude. I never had reason to say this, because my husband was amazingly supportive! Not just my husband, my colleagues, my boss, all men by the way- my respect for those men have increased manifold. At the same time, I have come across some idiots who think that women ‘should undergo such pain’!

    As for God being male – I have never heard of it!

    5. I totally agree about ‘Yin and Yang’ – yes they are meant to be complimentary to each other. How can we justify that a woman’s position in today’s India is ‘complementary’? Isn’t she more of a glorified servant with no voice of her own? Things can be complem ent and balance each other only if there is an equal amount of respect for each other! Let me give you an example. My Dad and Mom. She has always been a homemaker, but she is treated like an equal. My dad will not tolerate her slaving away in the kitchen with us eating at the table! They are take all financial decisions together. He is always around to help her, take care of her and she does the same! There is such a strong bond between them! I have always seen them take decisions together and we have never been able to play one against the other! Take another example of another couple I know, of my parents’ generation. She is again a homemaker. She always serves her husband and children ‘garam garam rotis’ makes her husband lunch,dinner whenever he wants. She has no say in financial decisions, she eats after her whole family – sometimes there isn’t enough – but she adjusts. At the end of all this selfless living, she is very very unhappy. She feels that her husband does not care for her! She is running her husband down in front of her kids. What was the point? They must be married for 30 + years or so… Is this harmony? Maybe the man thinks it is – because she doesnot voice her thoughts to him!

    6. The west and the east have their own set of problems and strong points. I do not think the lack of divorces or the increase in divorce is indicative of ‘harmony’. The reason we do not see as many divorces here in India is thanks to the society where a woman could get killed in her marital home, but cannot walk out of it! The Indian woman cannot take such a drastic step as easily thanks to the societal pressures. While I am not advocating divorces, I strongly feel that if a relationship is so difficult to manage -it might be a much better thing to walk out of it , than stay in it and suffocate. I would like to stress that nobody takes the decision to divorce lightly. I have met several very happily married families in the west – some of them are proud grandmas and you can see that their bonding is very strong! Its not just an ‘Indian’ asset! We often glorify what we have, while ignoring and covering up the ‘rot’ inside.

  28. @Solilio, Sorry – missed out responding to you. Yes, obviously, equality does not apply to somethings – clearly we women can do much more than men – no questions about it 🙂 Now I am going to be adjudged a total feminist 🙂 But seriously, It is not equality in terms of doing things, that I am talking about. I am talking about, ‘equality’, in terms of respect! Once, the society starts treating women as equal human beings, who have the right to have aspirations, dreams and needs, things will start to change.

  29. @Kislay, I think its a BIG start that you thought that it was not right! More men like you will defintely be making the difference. After all, if we women harp about it, we just get branded ‘feminists’ 🙂

  30. @Pradeep, Absolutely – ‘ Not through education but through reaslisation born out of commonsense.’ Spot on! Of course there are exceptions! Loads of them – we just need more to make a difference!

  31. Smitha, it’s so good to hear from you. You know, both you and I are actually saying the same thing. There is no doubt whatsoever that respect for and treatment of your wife as an equal partner has to be the base on which a happy relationship can be built.

    We need to teach girls from childhood what that means. When I spoke of ‘garam garam roti’, it was not to encourage that education in kids but about not ruining the already existing harmony in some families…anything by compulsion of any sort cannot be harmonious. If a lady who has been brought up like that and has been doing it happily for years because of a ‘conditioning’, and is respected and happy, then we should not tell her that what she is doing is demeaning etc. In most unhappy marriages, the causes are not so superficial.

    I am surrounded by working women…but I do not want to make my comments personal and subjective. Like their mothers in most cases, of course girls of today will and should grow up to be the best in whatever they do. Of course they are not going to serve rotis in a submissive discriminated sort of manner – how many do in our kind of society even today – of course they are hardly going to be in the kitchen, thanks to servants available easily in India at least and the lifestyle that makes different demands in the West, of course they are going to live independently with their husbands as equal partners. All that is in our society…I was not limiting myself to it and was talking about other sections of the society too, where the levels of development and exposure are very different…so our handling has to be different too.

    That “God being male” part is not an expression of my value system ; I was only mentioning about a few women who feel that their having to conceive and carry for 9 months while men have a good time is “discrimination” done to women by a God who must be a male.

    You have yourself answered what the yin-yang balance is. I don’t know if I even implied that if a women is dis-empowered and not treated as an equal and is unhappy, that amounts to a harmonious yin yang balance. If you study the nature of yin and yang energies, they are in many ways opposite and therefore compliment and complete each other. Two yangs cannot do that, nor can two yins. Even in gay relationships that last, this is true. I think that is the one elementary point we miss.

    If a marriage is a misery for either man or woman then it must be terminated. In our section of the society, women can and do walk out, as do men, and they must. In those underprivileged sections where women, and sometimes even men, are trapped in suffocating relationships, the awareness needs to be spread.

  32. @Vinod, Thats great then 🙂 Yes, the balance between yin and yang needs to be there. The key is ‘balance’ 🙂 You are right, even in gay relationships – this balance is defintely visible.

    Yes, we have totally different issues, in the various sections of the society.. Guess that could be the topic of another post! I have a vacation coming up and we are travelling to a couple of villages – where I have never been – let me see what I get to see and if I get something ‘blogworthy’ 🙂

  33. This subject has been dissected and discussed threadbare.

    Amazing tenacity I must say.

    I plead complete inability to add a new perspective.

    Let me say that the chapatis are cold and the better half has finished her last meal for the day before I set foot in. Weekends mealtimes are together.

    The yin and yang, labelling and harmony, spats and vehement defence are presently beyond me.

    Good Post Smitha and you have initiated a fiery debate.

  34. Mavin, Guess, we have analysed it a bit too much 🙂 For some reason, your latest posts don’t open up from my reader.. I saw that you have a new post – but have been unable to read it yet 😦

  35. Oh My God! I just came here, and i find our posts pretty similair isn’t it? I love the bit about your daughter liking the doll, my friend’s daughter loves them too, while my son won’t even touch his soft toys after all my persuasion. I think it is the natural instinct in the female to nurture, and the man to aggressively protect. But every person is different and has their own likes and dislikes, and we should do as we choose, irrespective our gender. A man should be proudly able to follow fashion if he wants, and woman sports. That is respecting individuality. Isn’t it?

  36. @Goofy Mumma, Welcome! I know – thats exactly what I thought too 🙂 Guess there’s some bug about – a lot of poeple have been writing about women’s issues – in the last few days 🙂 And I agree with you – every person should be allowed to do what he/she wants – that would be respecting individuality. By the way – since you mentioned sports – in my house – I am more of a sports fan that my husband – he doesn’t even follow cricket! He is majorly into technology – so each to his own, I guess 🙂 Keep visiting!

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