To Daughters of Pakistan

When we talk about the background, we talk about any persistent belief that is strong enough to dictate our behaviour, to affect our emotions and to change our perceptions about the way we react to the information. Such environmental stimuli could cause many physical or emotional changes in our psychological or physical lives. Among these factors or beliefs, one is the ‘COVID-19’. People are taking it seriously enough to apply all precautions on their lives. Mainly they are staying at home, shopping for basic necessities, resisting going out to see friends and family, just postponing all parties and picnics; are using hand sanitizers often, wearing masks on faces, and keeping the social distance at all times. People have changed their view of the world around them and that is ultimately changing their behaviour in return. All this is happening consciously or unconsciously; however, it is powerful enough to pave the way to follow the guidelines given by their health officials or governments. This is the reality of life. 

Similarly in our traditional domestic life, we, being girls follow some beliefs collectively that ultimately design our lives, dictate us a certain type of behaviour and similarly guide us that we cannot resist. Among these beliefs, one is the ‘rukhsati’. Rukhsati dictates our parents to up-bring their daughters under the influence of their destiny (rukhsati). It helps people to understand the status of women in our society; it helps us to feel like we are having a different status from our siblings (brothers), and it sets our pathways accordingly. We lose our confidence in decision making, we leave striving for a powerful career, we think about marriage stuff as our ultimate reality, we miss our parents while being with them, we make our minds ready to sacrifice for our parents, for our husbands and then for our sons. Not only we accept such thoughts for ourselves rather we donate them to our daughters proudly and happily. We simply ignore reality as we are the most satisfying souls in the world. This is not true sadly. 

We deserve something more than we get from our parents. We need unconditional love from them; we need real support from people around us, and we need social security to protect us in times of need. We need real care and equal rights from our partners when we are in a relationship; we need equal help as men retain from our family and parents, and we do not need to sacrifice for anyone! We can dream big, we can earn respect like men too, we can hold decisions too to follow, we can run a house too to support the family and we can live a fulfilling life too with dignity, respect, success and challenges. We are not physical things to keep us inside the home or to protect us from others; rather we can enjoy outside life too with courage, determination and power- just like men! Our destiny should feel proud of us rather we cry under the umbrella of destiny! 

Again it is important to note that we cannot change our behaviour unless we change our thoughts, beliefs, perceptions, and even emotions. We need to change how we think first. And this is called ‘background’ information. This unconscious belief system could determine a new ‘us’ if triggered with new beliefs, thoughts and emotions. Then the behaviours will take place. In the end, the traditions will die, cultures will revive and new values will take place. The incredible change will not take place suddenly; however, the first step is always a little ‘nod’ that something somewhere went wrong in our lives for which we are still paying the price. This little uncomfortable feeling will change the world at last!  

How can we discriminate between men and women on the basis of gender?

Courtesy to Google Images

 

Gender roles have been described as society’s shared beliefs that apply to individuals on the basis of their socially identified sex. Stereotypes can be conceptualized as the descriptive aspects of gender roles, as they depict the attributes that an individual ascribes to a group of people. Agency is often cited as the defining characteristic of the male stereotype, and communality as the defining characteristic of the female stereotype Whereas men are thought to be more agentic (i.e., independent, assertive, decisive), women are thought to be more communal (i.e., unselfish, friendly, concerned with others). Values (Halstead & Reiss, 2003) as, “ the principles and fundamental convictions which act as general guides to behavior, enduring beliefs about what is worthwhile; ideals for which one strives; broad standards by which particular beliefs and actions are judged to be good, right, desirable or worthy of respect”. Taken together the concepts of gender roles, stereotypes, and values, we can synthesise the concept of gender stereotypes, especially in Muslim, Latin American, and Black African societies, as being the product of religious and cultural patterns often are transferred from one generation to another through values and beliefs which underlie attitudes, behaviors, and norms

 

PAKISTAN was placed at 148thout of 149 countries in gender inequality index, as per the World Economic Forum report, 2018. Gender role discrimination is quite evident in the pictorial form of textbooks assigned to primary schools in Pakistan in which women are seen as helpers to men while doing various house hold chores, field works, or supporting their men while working at home (Agha, Syed, & Mirani, 2018). The main thing is that they are not doing something out of their will and desire rather give service to the men in their family. ALSO, a wide gap in general mobility between genders where women are half as mobile as men has been observed by the researchers (Adeel & Zhang, 2017). Additionally a severe gender disparity has been observed in children enrolment rates that are not significantly related to household income which implies that overall boys are preferred for higher education than girls irrespective of the economic status of parents (Quayes & Ramsey, 2015). In the same context, women are not generally encouraged to pursue a career, and their income related needs are hardly met by their own efforts ( Shah, & Baporikar, 2013).

 

Pakistan is a country where we celebrate sorrow feelings (like the custom of rukhsati in marriages), pains, and sufferings of the other vulnerable people. Pakistan is a country where we enjoy taking part in others helplessness, selflessness, and dependency. We provide opportunities to feel embarrassed (by teasing them physically in supermarkets), we provide sentiments to feel shame, to feel guilty and to feel harassed. Pakistan is a country where we love to kiss someone even at the cost of her dignity, willingness and approval. We are basically pathetic minded people and we don’t react upon others emotions appropriately- a kind of schizophrenic or in other words mentally sick people!

Usually, parents show the way to their kids and tell them, say

         Don’t don it, it is not appropriate to your sex

          Girls should stay at home

Boys should play with boys

Girls should know how to do house chores

Boys should look strong and resilient

Girls should help their mother in the kitchen

Boys don’t need to learn knitting or sewing

Boys don’t shout

Girls should behave nicely

Boys don’t play with dolls

Girls don’t play outside

Girls don’t complain

daughters are guest in their parental home

and much more alike

It is so simple! when something is not appropriate due to gender identity – it is not appropriate actually. Our way to analyse it should be appropriate. We should tell our kids a different reason to do something or not to do something. We should not focus on gender in any way.

When we see the broad picture, societal pressures, parental attitudes, religious themes, and overall cultural settings combine to depict the sorry picture of gender discrimination in the society of Pakistan. It is not one single person’s fault, or duty to bring a change. It is each one of us if we are live, and if we can think, we are liable for thinking so. We need to be punished for thinking so- when we go for it by choice!

I request the parents of our society to deal with your kids fairly and equally. You are not allowed to discriminate among them on the basis of their sex except choosing color blue for boys and pink for girls. You can still choose various outfits to identify your daughter and son distinctively; you can still choose a haircut for girls and another for boys; however you should not go beyond it. Gender discrimination is not harmful in any way– but according to UNO guidelines of human rights it will become harmful when it will limit them from gaining personal abilities, restrict them from pursuing professional careers, limits the access of equality education and health, prevents them from making choices about their lives, results in violation of human rights, restricts them from enjoying fundamental freedom of movement with peace and security, and when these discriminatory beliefs underlie sorrow and grief in day to day family life.

Freedom, independence, powerful acts of decision making, free mobility, and strong ego could also be the ornaments of the women, as well as men. Women can exert their true will and make choices based on their own desire rather than to the sake of the family, culture, honor or any other fake idea or belief. In other words, women can decide what they want to do in their life, till how long they want to stay with their parents, when they want to get married, to whom they want to get married, to whom they want to get married a second or third time. In total, they can decide about their life freely and without having any social pressure in an ideal situation.

Traditions and customs should not be practised on someone’s freedom and right to live fairly. When you say, someone, to be quiet on having pain, to be patient and do sacrifice, you are not follower/preserver of a tradition (nice women sacrifice for their family), you are not making her a true legend; rather you are a perpetrator and exercising a devil. In other words, you are making their life miserable and torturous- that is a crime in itself.  

For the women who usually feel guilty, and miserable, it is not easy to make them understand that they need to change their reaction from feeling guilty to feeling aggressive, annoyed on the apparent mis justification and mistreatment. Though it is unlikely that we change our mindset in an hour or so; however, we need to speak, think and reflect until neurons in our brains start working on such communicatory pathways and take information at the conscious level to act physically. This is the first step and it is the most crucial one in certain cultures like PAKISTAN.

Harmful gender stereotypes, rigid constructions of femininity and masculinity and stereotyped gender roles are a root cause of gender-based violence against women and put them at risk for various kinds of psychological and mental disorders like anxiety, depression, and stress. To eliminate gender-based violence against women, it would be crucial to transforming discriminatory gender norms and stereotypes into fair and equity-based traditions and norms that promote non-violent, respectful and equal gender relations between men, women.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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References

Rhoodie, Eschel, M. (1989). Discrimination against women a global survey of the economic, educational, social, and political status of women. North Carolina: McFarland & Company, Inc.

Mirza, I., & Jenkins, R. (2004). Risk factors, prevalence, and treatment of anxiety and depressive disorders in Pakistan: Systematic review. British Medical Journal, 328(7443), 794. https://www.bmj.com/content/328/7443/794.full

Khan, M. M., & Reza, H. (2010). Gender differences in nonfatal suicidal behavior in Pakistan: Significance of sociocultural factors. Suicide and Life-Threatening Behavior, 28(1), 62–68. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1943-278X.1998.tb00626.x

Ali, N. S., Azam, I. S., Ali, B. S., Tabbusum, G., Moin, S. S. (2012). Frequency and associated factors for anxiety and depression in pregnant women: A hospital-based cross-sectional study. The Scientific World Journal, 2012. https://www.hindawi.com/journals/tswj/2012/653098/abs/

Khan K.S., Rafique G., Bawani S.A.A., Hasan F., Haroon A. (2015). Social and Societal Context of Women’s Mental Health, What Women Want, What They Get: Gap Analysis in Pakistan of Mental Health Services, Polices and Research. In: Khanlou N., Pilkington F. (eds) Women’s Mental Health. Advances in Mental Health and Addiction. Springer, Cham

Agha, N., Syed, G. K., Mirani, D.A. (2018). Women’s Studies International Forum. 66. Pp. 17-24. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.wsif.2017.11.009

Quayes, S., & Ramsey, R. D. (2015). Gender disparity in education enrolment in pakistan. Asian Economic and Financial Review, 5(3), 407-417. Retrieved from https://search.proquest.com/docview/1678797188?accountid=14116

Halstead, J Mark & Reiss, Michael J. (2003). Values in sex education. London and N.Y. : Routledge Falmer.

Shah, I. A., & Baporikar, N. (2013). Gender Discrimination: Who is Responsible? Evidence from Pakistan. Women’s Studies, 42(1), 78–95. https://doi.org/10.1080/00497878.2013.736284

Tazeen S. Ali, Gunilla Krantz, Raisa Gul, Nargis Asad, Eva Johansson & Ingrid Mogren (2011) Gender roles and their influence on life prospects for women in urban Karachi, Pak0istan: a qualitative study, Global Health Action, 4:1,DOI10.3402/gha.v4i0.7448

Pakistan second worst in gender equality: WEF. (2018, December 19). United News of India (UNI) [New Delhi, India]. Retrieved from http://link.galegroup.com/apps/doc/A566261610/STND?u=ustrath&sid=STND&xid=e61f3084

Eagly,A.H.(2009). The his and hers of prosocial behavior: An examination of the social psychology of gender. American Psychologist, 64(8), 644-658. 

http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/0003-066X.64.8.644

Eagly, A. H., & Mladinic, A. (1989). Gender Stereotypes and Attitudes Toward Women and Men. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 15(4), 543–558. https://doi.org/10.1177/0146167289154008

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Change Your Religion!

god-or-karma-what-to-believe-in-1090x613

Are you feeling dejected, lonely, segregated, unfulfilled, depressed, overwhelm, stressed, anxious, low in energy, low in mood, low self-esteem,  and unhappy overall! Change your religion!

You are not on right track. Your belief system is not supporting you rather destroying your spirits a. nd energies. You need to change it. You need to check what are the thought patterns you are holding- positive or negative. You must change the following :

A . your God.

B. your holy book of beliefs

C. your love

  1. D. your Name
  2. E. your address
  3. F. your Death

 

Your God :

please check if you worship the right God. You might be worshipping some people and thinking they are your All. you need to see if you are pleasing your fellows just like you please your God. Your God should not be anybody around you. When we give human beings a status of God, they become our gods and realize us that we are wrong. So please change your God if you have anybody around you to please all the time!

Your holly book of beliefs:

Please check what are your beliefs in the first stage. There might be something that is stopping you from taking a step. Your beliefs must not be updated if you are feeling trouble in managing your day to day problems. Your thought patterns need to be edited from time to time. If you are having old thought systems, you cant survive in the new modern world of today.

Your love:

you need to accept that your ‘love’ is your ‘enemy’. You can be exploited by that. You can be challenged by that. You can be threatened and victimized on that. Pl don’t love something – don’t be mad for something. Love everybody and every little thing but not somebody or something.  The more specific you are in your love, the more danger you are inviting in your life.

Your Name:

This is very important as your name is your identity. Here I mean your best face to other people. Do you look like a creep, monster, gentleman, sincere type, obsessed, crazy, depressed, active, lazy, determined, or what? Change it if it is not working for you. Change your look first from outside and then you will see you are changing from inside too.

Your address: 

See, what you accept and what you reject in others. If someone wants to become your friend what are the attributes you are looking for in him/her? I think you need to change it if you are experiencing some relationship issues. Not all people are suitable to your kind but sometimes you have to change your criteria of goodness. Sometimes some obviously bad people help you in your struggle to find good people! Through interacting with people opposite to your personality might create some traits in you that you need or otherwise lacking in you.  Think it and do it!

Your Death:

you cannot change your death time and death destiny as well. But you can change your mindset for your upset mood and depressed brain. When you are in anger or in a depression, you are dead as you cannot move further. You cannot help yourself-you are dead! So pl don’t be dead on trivial matters of life. Raise your standard of being dead. Do not take care of others so much that they play with your emotions and make you dead often. If you want to die, die for a great cause so that you should be respected and honoured by the whole wide world.

Thanks