As kids we were told to never lie, cheat or steal because someone is constantly watching us. That Someone at that time was God. We believed the Almighty is watching over us protecting us and guarding us from doing something wrong. However, what the adults do not let the innocent tabula rasa minds of the children register is that as one grows up, not only God but someone terrifying is gazing at us. And those are humans themselves.
Sometimes, we do things not because we are willing to but because we want to please the people who surround us. The society is scrutinising our every move. It is like we are always under an invisible scanner. The situation is worse for women.
Some worship women, some condescend. Some admire them, some objectify them. Whichever way people look at women, one thing is definite- everyone has a set of notions to be followed by the weaker sex. We have certain norms to follow otherwise we will be defamed. “Laugh like a lady,” “write like a woman” et cetera. Such restrictions close us in a shell.
What is worse is that this constant ogling is not sly. People especially men are bold enough to stare at a woman without shame. There is no purpose in their eyes but just a long stare and a look from up to down as if it is their right. The woman has no other way out except to ignore or bow her head down and walk away.
No woman in this country has ever had the fortune to claim that she has not been leered at by men on the streets. The eve teasers have an involuntary tongue that starts singing songs the minute a girl passes by. They are just whiling away their time by the roadside waiting to make a cheerful girl’s day go bad.
It will be hypocritical to accuse only men of doing so. Many older women especially neighbourhood aunties consider it their responsibility to gossip about all the daughters in that society. They will sneer at you if you talk to a boy. They will check out your legs if they are exposed. And they will critique every life decision made by you.
An even more sensitive topic is that of stalkers. Stalkers whether they are strangers or someone who knows the victim from before, are the worst kinds of gazers. They believe a girl is an object. Just because they have laid their eyes on her, she is theirs. They want her to like them back. They do not care whether she is interested or not. It would hurt their ego if she rejects him. Then the harassments would begin. Incessant phone calls and following. They could be silent about it or physically harm her. They are not considerate about the girl, it is all about them.
Matters become worse when the stalker is a psychopath. They take stalking to an entirely different level. It is not just harassing for a few days and then moving on to someone else. They pester till the girl gives up. They say it is for ‘love’ and they expect her to reciprocate it.
It is high time that we young girls in our teens or twenties went about defying the rules. Every girl has a right to laugh loudly when she feels like. If a girl does not have neat hand writing, her gender is not to be blamed. Why should some eve teasers get to make or break our day?
If you are a man and reading this, admire women. They are graceful and beautiful the way they are. Look at them with pleasing eyes and compliment them. You could end up spoiling her mood by your unwanted remarks. If you love her and are waiting for your love to be requited, woo her only if she invites you. Do not make her life miserable by existing in her nightmares, unwanted.
If you are a boy and reading this, this is your age to flirt with girls and have a string of them fall for you but do not disrespect them. Value them. It is not worth getting your ego shattered if she rejects you. It is her life and she has a right to make her own decisions, respect them. Probably, she is not the right one for you.
If you are a grown up woman and reading this, please let young girls breathe. They are in their own world of fashion and entertainment, advise them but do not judge. They may have consecutive make up and break up relationships, do not interfere. Their hair might go wrong or a pimple might pop but let them have their share of experiences and mistakes to learn from.
If you are a young girl and reading this, I am definite you could relate with it because this reality is no secret. The society might make a mountain of a tiny issue but it hardly matters. Old ladies chatter because they have no other work to do. Do not be dejected by eve teasers and stalkers, instead fight back. Live your life the way you want to so that one day when you become a mother and if you have a daughter, hopefully she will experience a free world void of constant eyes judging her.