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Thursday, March 8, 2012
Women, 2nd class human beings
Strangely, for the first time in my life, I find myself paying attention to this.
I was raised in a family where women are considered free and independent. I was very proud of that, when comparing my mother's life and my own to that of other women in this country.
Mum was allowed to work, she had her car, was always wearing nice fancy clothes, had friends and a social life "with dad".
That seemed for me just perfect.
Mum worked full time in the school across the street. Her day started at 6:00 am, and ended at midnight. Apart from her job, she had to do housework, cleaning, cooking, grocery shopping, children's homework, and receiving visitors. She never complained, and used to jump on her feet ready to serve my father before even listening to what he had to ask for.
At the age of 7, I was considered old enough to help. Housework was considered more important than studying. I was too small to reach the sink so I had to stand on a chair to wash the dishes. At the age of 10, I was cooking, baby sitting, serving at the table, and helping with my sisters. I could never do my homework before falling asleep, exhausted.
I used to see other kids playing and laughing while I was cleaning the windows, I used to hear my sisters arguing and having fun, while I was preparing lunch, using one hand and holding a book in the other.
I rarely complained, but when I did, the answer was:"you're a girl, and you're the eldest".
I blamed myself this morning when I mentioned that I used to criticize women requesting equality with men. I have been thinking of that all day long, but after all, it's not my fault? How would things be different, when I was raised as a 2nd class girl, and am treated now as an inferior slave? I thought this was Normal, the way it should be. I used to envy my mum for being so "free" she could ring a friend or go to bed before dad is home, without worrying about what he would do if he needs his cup of water and find her asleep?
This is not my situation alone. Unfortunately, a very large number of women in my region are treated the same. I consider myself luckier than others, because at least, I have a good job.
During the last few months, I have met many persons online, have done a lot of reading on different blogs, and have realized that being a woman is not as bad as they told us it is. I learned that being a woman is a privilege and not a punishment from God. I learned that if women have to go through a lot, it's because they are strong enough to handle it all.
I am a WOMAN, and I am PROUD.