Thursday, December 31, 2015

Farewell 2015 With The Final Bow To The Heartbreaker!



To The Heartbreaker,

2015 was helluva year! I was loved and then unloved by you. Following that were days I felt betrayed and ditched and there were days I felt I had been pushed back to reality by a blessing in disguise. There were days I wanted to yell at your face so that you could see the heartbreak in my eyes and there were days I would do anything to avoid seeing you. There were days I longed to talk you one last time and there were days I felt I should not waste any more time on you because you had wasted enough of my time already. I had been living all these days-turned-months, fighting my feelings. These always seemed to win. Just one of these feelings burdened my heart enough: all of them together crushed me. 

Why did you have to lead me on for a few months only to tell me in the end that you had mistaken attraction for love? Growing up, I realised that love and loyalty are my strength and I expect the same back from the people I give them to. Why did you think it was okay to awaken the best part of me and just toss it away for your own selfish pursuits, leaving me to experience the best part as my weakness? While I was learning to accept the apology I had never got, you appeared out of nowhere and said sorry as though this unfelt word of five letters strung together, could make me forget everything you have put me through and feel better. I had a playlist of fxck-you songs ready to throw at your face when you turned back to say sorry; they would make you feel terrible about what you did to me and every time you heard the songs being played, the sense of guilt would linger around you. But…I chose not to do that. Instead I forgave you and just as I predicted, forgiving you did not fill the void in me. After all those months of trying to leave my past where it belongs and move on ahead, there you were, asking me if I wanted to start over with you (and then disappear when I risked myself for another lie?). Why did you have to come back all of a sudden and make it even worse? If you were not going to help me heal, why did you have to return and derail my recovery?

The year 2015 has been a painful one. I had walked so many lonely paths under the city lights at nights. I had sat aloof at cafes trying to find some peace of mind - a state of not thinking about you - and you just do not know how chaotic my mind had been. You forced me over a very tough set of hurdles. I had people telling me not to put myself through so much and to move on from you but it had never been easy for me. There were moments when I felt I could not take it anymore. You took me for granted- you knew I was too steadfast to leave the relationship even if you did your best to stay away from me and went for weeks on end without talking to me. The sadness I felt was sickeningly heavy. Because of you, I have trust issues now. My heart is frozen solid already, at this young age. I have turned into somebody who believes that detaching myself from people is wiser than getting attached and being hurt in the end.

But the year was a learning experience as well. I’m happy I have finally come to my senses. You will understand how painful this has been for me only if you go through the same. Now that I am nine months removed from the situation, I am glad it ended when it did. I had become comfortable in our toxic relationship but I am happy that I have been able to wise up before reaching the point of no return. I realised that ending it has given me the opportunity to put myself in a better situation that will pave my way to becoming the woman I aspire to be. I have always wondered how people could have the courage to cut somebody they love out of their lives, move on and start over with somebody new but this time, I will do the same. I will not allow you and our past to haunt me or hold me back. It's high time for me now to accept the fact that people leave. They leave, they just leave. Every fibre of my being understands that I need to let go of the past and move on, for my own stability. I have learned my worth. I believe I am better than what I had settled for and that better things are on the way. I am setting myself free off all the chains binding me. I know someday I will look back at it all and be happy about the decision I made, to let you go. I believe I will be fine.

Thank you for pushing me back to reality and reminding me that I am supposed to be focused on things that matter, at this moment in my life. I appreciate you for pretending to be somebody you thought would measure up to my expectation and I realised, I fell in love with ‘that somebody’ you tried to be and not you. We may run into each other someday in a busy lane or at a cafĂ© or anywhere we are destined to meet again but I hope the feelings I once had for you do not feel at home in me anymore. I hope my heart does not recognise yours. Let me end the story of us right where 2015 ends. I hope you grow wiser and respect women and our feelings. I hope I regain faith in love and people. I look forward for the year 2016, ready to start from the sketch with positivity, love and grace. 
In the end, you’re just a frog I mistakenly kissed believing you to be a prince.

So, there you go along with the year 2015!

Why Are You Not A Feminist?

“Gender equality is a shared vision of social justice and human rights. Women’s rights are human rights and human rights are women’s rights.” - Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, UN Women Executive Director, at the High-level Thematic Debate on advancing gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls, 6 March 2015 at UN Headquarters in New York. 

According to Wikipedia, Gender equality is based on “the view that men and women should receive equal treatment, and should not face discrimination”. 
For gender equality to prevail, both the sexes should be treated equally. There is no equality when women are less privileged or being looked down upon. Women can do what men can and if not everything, we can do some things even men cannot do. We have qualities that many men do not possess.

Women are under-privileged and have been suffering from gender inequality for centuries. This is why the feminist movement was brought into action. Feminism is the belief that women should have the same rights and opportunities as men. 
But why is feminism still a controversial topic when all it stands for is equality of men and women?
“Feminism; the radical notion that women are people” reads the T-shirt I am wearing in the picture above. Women are people and deserve the same social, economic and political rights and opportunities as men.

That women are still regarded as inferior by many in our society is clear from a number of injustices: inequality in social privileges and job opportunities, the sexual violence in and outside home, less recognition for the same work done by both the sexes, unequal ratio of men and women in politics, stereotypes of how a woman should look and act, no identity for women often regarded as the wife of xxx, not providing education for young girls, heavy household chores, body-shaming. The list goes on. Just as in many other societies in the world, there are prejudiced opinions about the way women in our society act and dress.  

Somebody once asked me why I am a feminist when I am not abused or ill-treated within my own society. Feminism is not about just one woman, but about women as one. There is no woman who has not suffered from gender-inequality in her life just as there is no man who has not enjoyed gender-bias privilege. There are celebrated feminists living in the most forward nations in the world where women are now respected and are treated as equal to men. Why do they still raise their voice for feminism? The question answers itself. 

There are men who turn defensive and even aggressive when feminism is talked about. In my opinion, the reason they show this misogynist attitude is because they feel insecure about the superior status they claim. Women’s capabilities and emotional strength threaten men. Many do not want women to be given the same opportunities and respect they get, for they know they cannot dominate if women succeed too. Some men get offended because they do not even understand what feminism stands for. They have a preconceived notion that feminists hate men and seek superiority over them.
Accepting feminism neither makes a man look feminine, nor females look masculine. You need not compromise your femininity or masculinity to support feminism. Feminism has no gender. If the cause is to change how the world perceives women, that does not mean men should not support it. Feminism is not a movement against men. It is against a patriarchal society in which women are considered and treated as inferior. In other words, men can be feminists too.

Men need to acknowledge us beyond our body. Women are compassionate, triumphant, positive, bold, passionate, strong, ambitious, hardworking, intelligent, independent, empowered, enlightening, sexy and inspiring. We are achievers. To be acknowledged for all these good traits in us, we women raise the feminism issue. We need the male gender to accept us as capable individuals and respect us the same way they want to be respected. They cannot create the stereotypes of a “beautiful woman” and a “good woman” as boxes to keep us in.

Feminism is not a trend to seek people’s attention. Feminists do not want women to be treated with actions evoking male dominance over women and our young sisters need to remember who went before us and on whose shoulders we have stood to achieve the right to share social platforms.

Because of the spread of feminism and education, the world is becoming a better place for many women and we are now respected and achieving equality with men. But everywhere there are still silenced women dominated by men. No country in the world is a women-safe place yet.
So, stand in solidarity with the women who are still being ill-treated in every home, in every region, in every corner of the world. Stand against rape with us.  Feel for us, and the pain women who are raped undergo and the after-rape life women live. Stand in solidarity with the aspiration to raise boys and girls the same way. Stand up for the socially, politically and morally just call for equal rights and opportunities for women and men.

So to those who have been misunderstanding the whole feminism thing, let's repeat: we neither claim superiority over men, nor seek attention and profit. We ask only for equality. If you still think this is too much to ask for, you just do not accept women as people. And women will not forgive you for this. We will bring the battle to you with ever more determination.

Friday, December 18, 2015

Luxury Brand Christian Louboutin Uplifts Body-Positivity Casting Plus-Size Model

After 20 long years of the very famous French luxury brand’s existence, Christian Louboutin finally casts a plus-size model, breaking the stereotype of only skinny women being beautiful and raising the confidence of women of the other shapes and sizes.

Clementine Desseaux, 27, who is now the face of Christian Louboutin’s campaign for their latest shade of red lipstick, Rouge Matte Velvet, is the first plus-size model to be featured in the brand’s ad campaign. She moved to New York to look for a full-figured model job after she failed to find one in Paris, France.

Women of all sizes and shapes are beautiful. The fashion brands hold a great responsibility and are influential in creating the stereotypes and encouraging the other gender in tagging only the skinny women as beautiful. All the sizes and shapes should be featured in every brand’s ad campaign and no women of sizes and shapes other than skinny are to be discouraged. Young people look up to the models and hence the preference of skinny over plus-size is rampant among the younger generation. 

Congratulations, Christian Louboutin for breaking the barriers with the major leap and uplifting body-positivity.