Recently, I saw a Tamil movie called ‘Raakshasi’. The woman protagonist in the movie decides to change the culture and structure of a government run school. She faces a lot of issues in the process and because of her lack of smile and her strict rules, she is called a Raakshasi (a demoness).
If she had actually smiled at everybody, she would have been called ‘easy’.
I have personally faced both, as would have most of our women readers. When I used to have a serious demeanor, I faced comments like ‘I think too much of myself’. When I started laughing along with colleagues and clients, I started getting indecent proposals all the time.All women, even if some of them don’t face harassment in the common sense of the word, do face awkward moments with men around them at work.
And these men exist everywhere with very few exceptions. In every office and in every home. In some form or the other. A man, who sits around after work, waiting for his wife to come home from office and take care of the house, is also in this list. So I have a message for all the men out there.
Pointers for Work:
- If a woman smiles at you, it just means that she is acknowledging you. It does not mean that she likes you.
- If a woman laughs in a conversation with you, unless you are extremely funny, she is just being polite. It does not mean she is propositioning you.
- If a woman wants to get ahead or get a promotion, it does not mean she is willing to compromise anything.
- If a woman works late in office, that means she is dedicated to her job. It does not mean she is hanging out to spend time with you.
- If a woman is serious about her job, it does not mean she is uptight or aggressive. It just means she means business.
- For every woman colleague who rushes out of office on time, there is a wife at home who is expected to keep dinner hot and ready for the family.
- If a woman has a drink and smoke with you, it is her personal choice. It does not mean that she is promiscuous. For that matter, promiscuity is a personal choice. Being promiscuous does not mean she will be attracted to you.
- Your office assistant/secretary is not your plaything. Remember, working for you is a job for her and she deserves her dignity just as much as the women in your family do.
- A woman saying ‘no’ is not playing hard to get. She means no.
- A woman has her own choices and attractions. You may not necessarily fit the bill.
- Hire a woman based on her caliber and not her ability to satisfy you, remember your female family members can also face the same heat.
Pointers for Home:
- If you want your wife to dress up and maintain herself attractively, she might have similar expectations from you.
- If you think a woman’s place is in the kitchen and she should cook according to your tastes, then your place is in the office where you earn as much money as she wants, to spend and to save.
- If you think children’s food and behavior is your wife’s responsibility, then their homework and play is yours.
- If you want your wife to be the primary caregiver for your parents, then the least you can do is be the primary caregiver for her parents.
- If you want your wife to support your dreams, remember she has dreams too.
- If you think deciding to have a child is equally your decision, then their upbringing is equally your responsibility.
- If you want your mother to be treated well, your children would also want the same thing. Treat their mother equally well.
- If you want your wife to involve you in all her decisions, learn to involve her in all of yours too.
- For all the men who want their wives to be loyal to them, can you be loyal to her?
- Stop saying ‘I am unhappy in my marriage’ to other women. There is no such thing. If you are unhappy, talk to your wife, not to others. Because happy or not, you owe some respect to the woman you chose to marry.
- Your house maid is not your plaything. Remember, working in your house is a job for her and she deserves her dignity just as much as your wife does.