…if men want to work on balancing their emotional and social quotient than they got to bond like women and support like women….
This past Monday I woke up to a barrage of messages. Completely taken aback by the sheer amount of attention, I first checked if it was my birthday. It wasn’t. I opened the first text, which read loud and clear, “Be the woman who fixes other woman’s crown without telling the world that it was crooked”.
Happy women’s day
Maybe not the kind of special day that gives you an excuse to bake, dress up and step out, but still special enough and worth all the love coming my way.
Growing up, I was surrounded by women. Even schooling from an all girls’ wing. Girls have always been an integral part of my life. Therefore, it was not a surprise that I grew up to be someone who appreciated having women around especially when I needed to express myself fully. They were there to listen to my emotional rants, which also more often than not were about women.
For graduation and higher studies, I went to a co-ed institute and it was then that as a person I felt emotions for both girls and boys alike (not like that!). Whether it was a technical presentation where I had an argument with a boy in a question rebuttal or a pang of jealousy for a girl classmate who scored more than me in a particular subject. I believed I expressed fairly healthy competitive streak of emotions under the exposure of both the genders.
Years later when I entered the workplace, a small start-up, I noticed a different competitive ambience. I was told under a particular team of ten members, the ratio of female to male was 1:5. I innocuously attributed this skewed ratio to comparatively less women members in the company on the whole. However, with time I came to know that the ones at the higher position felt that too many women lead to negative competition. They believed women often pit against each other for reasons more personal than professional and it slows the progress of the project unnecessarily. That was odd and unsettling!
I feel the need to delve a little deeper by taking these points one at a time:
- Female Rivalry
For so long we have been made to believe that no two girls can be best friends. The media harps on the clichéd idea of the tiffs between girls. Whether it is a regular fights of the mother in-law and the daughter in-law or two teenage girls pining for the same guy in their chawl (society), it is believed it benefits the TRP game.
Beyond this typical portrayal, there is a side of female bonding that is less spoken of. It is the diligent effort of the females in the family that make the house livable and loveable. I was once told by a daadi from the village about a strict rule that females were supposed to eat only after serving the men. All in the name of not coming in front of the elders (surprisingly males only), this resulted in girls finding refuge in each other. The kitchen banters, similar cleaning woes, like-mindedness to deal with husband’s tantrums led to creating a strong bond between the girls.
- Girls are competitive
Girls most of the time are taught to consider their female counterparts competitors. The reason for this could be the lack of options to prove our worth are not as much as there are for the boys.
Haven’t we all heard a stereotype that “Girl HRs are malicious while men in the same role are easier to get along with”.
Pitting against each other is a human trait. Women are fierce warriors and take on challenges at home and work equally well.
- We support each other
A woman alone is power and together we are an impact. Shelley from ForbesWomen could not have said it any better. As a new mother some years ago, my mental health went for a toss, it was then that my set of close mom girlfriends guided and helped me sail through.
Women communities that work to uplift fellow women work on this very idea. My Instagram handle is filled with women entrepreneurs promoting each other right. It only shows our mental roadmaps are equally aligned.
From my writing experience when I decided to start my blog, I had my own doubts. Some ten blogs later I had created a strong fan base of women who agreed with my experiences and till date motivate me to keep going.
- We are together in this
As women we are emphatic to each other’s journey. I remember back in school if a girl spotted a period stain on another girl’s skirt she silently came to her and helped her. She didn’t mock at her with her friends. We are this close.
I once had a wardrobe malfunction while trekking with a group of friends, I accidently got my skirt torn. A girl on the same trek offered me her shrug and saved me from the embarrassment.
In another incident at our girls hostel, our warden summoned the girls and directed us to avoid wearing shorts in the mess as it was a culture shock to the cooks and the helps. One of us argued that those ten men cannot lower their gaze but we are expected to cover our self for our dignity. Needless to say there was a loud cheer from all the girls, vociferously expressing their disgust at the new rule.
As girls we stand up for each other.
In a world where we are taught if you want to succeed you got to walk like a man, talk like a man and dress like a man. I can only add if men want to work on balancing their emotional and social quotient than they got to bond like a woman and support like a woman.
As a woman I cannot emphasize more on the idea of togetherness.
“behind every successful woman is a tribe of successful women who have her back”