When you offer her respect,

When you offer her respect,

She can read the fine print.

She is delighted to know you respect her.

[Thank you, she respects you too 🙄 ]

She values the respect she has for herself more.

She won’t trade her Freedom or Happiness for this Respect.

* * *

Try offering Respect for Respect?

Not Respect for Compliance, Femininity, Conformity, Frailty, Weakness, Meekness, Conventionality, Obedience, Diffidence, and Ignorance …

(I realise it’s harsh, and even bitter. But thought I’d share this because it reminded me of our Talibanising values.)
Edited to add: Indians Respect Women. Conditions Apply.


34 thoughts on “When you offer her respect,

  1. I am in the middle of reading Richard Bach’s “Curious Lives”, which in this context draws some amazing parallels. It is a sort of fantasy tale, though not entirely, an allegory or analogy if you like too, about ferrets, gentle creatures, who had the gumption and the idealism to turn away from violence and live to their own highest right. Some parts of the books gave me goosebumps, really. So much did I want it to happen.

    Like our Constitution they speak of the Courtesies..the first of them being respect!

    Coincidences have meaning, IHM, and I am glad really glad to read it here! The harshness of it all does need to be confronted, so it is ok!

    If you can get the book, it would make for really interesting reading 🙂


  2. IHM…

    I cannot say it better than what you have…

    women are becoming more and more empowered and this is sending shivers down the spines of those people who want to keep us as underdogs..

    This happens in every community..Remember Taslim Narin atatcked(i hate her,but i am against attcking people for some crap reaons) We will continue to see this,unless men itself starts talking for us..It is glad to see that many men in blogospheer are talking for the better lot..

    I have a different perspective on this incident..Pls come to my blog and read and comment when you get time..


  3. ”She values the respect she has for herself ”
    And that says it all….:)

    No,this is not harsh and bitter….but a very straightforward ‘our’ answer in response to some questions with pathetic answers that were written for ‘us’.

    I loved the way you have written this.
    From the heart.:)

    As Janis Joplin said,”Don’t compromise yourself. You are all you’ve got. ”

    I dont need another’s approval of my identity and all that I am.
    I am ME and that’s enough.
    And so it should be for every woman.


  4. phew!! i did not understand it..;-)!! But, that means it is something damn nice..;-)!!

    Where do i see your new blog ‘Indian Women’?Lemme know how do i find it, or put a link somewhere on this blog.


  5. Chikki It means that women should not need to be told that they are respected. Do we ever tell men “We respect you.”
    This respect is a trap. It means only women (not men) have to behave in a certain way to to deserve that respect (uphold cultural values, be submissive, obey, accommodate etc.)
    Men get this respect without any such conditions attach.
    And what is worse is this respect can become honor and if she is dishonored she can even be killed in honor crimes.

    The truth is when somebody has to SAY that women are respected in India -it means they probably are NOT respected. You saw that respect in Mangalore. We see it in the eyes of roadside sex offenders and molesters everyday.
    Basically, why do we need to say “We respect women.” We should simply say, ‘We respect all humans.’


  6. @Usha Pisharody Thanks 🙂 It means a lot to me that you think The harshness of it all does need to be confronted, so it is ok!
    And I am definitely going to look for this book!!! I am amazed at the coincidences that happen in the blogosphere …

    @Indyeah Thanks!! I love those words, ‘Don’t compromise yourself. You are all you’ve got.’
    And glad you like the words. I mean the words… I am rather bitter and unhappy these days.

    @Sahaja Thanks 🙂

    @Nimmy I have read Taslima Nasreen’s Lajja. She has only written against how minorities are discriminated against in Bangla Desh, exactly what is happening in India today. There is nothing in it except an appeal that all citizens -irrespective of their religion be treated the same way, in every country.
    The book is a list of Newspaper articles which show how their government is just like our right wing her.
    I wish it was available online.

    @Ajit You didn’t think it was kind of bitter?


  7. oh.Now i get it.

    I guess thats something which is true, but somehow I never noticed it.
    Only after reading this, when i think retrospectively, I guess I am able to relate to it.

    Wonderful.I guess people take time to change!


  8. I commented on one other article about the same topic, where the author was mentioning how biologically, women are made to be more compassionate, motherly and soft hearted.

    The article was Altruistic Paradox

    It says ” These behavior trends that are found human society has its root origin in another phenomenon called social conditioning. Human mind is subjected to rhetoric conditioning by the society. Cognitive development of personality of individuals have so much bearing on the environment that he has been brought up that you can make a man most willingly carry out suicide bombing. Similarly, men can be conditioned to pity and piety, altruistic behavior patterns like sacrificing oneself for nation, for ones religion, for ones society, family and so and so forth.

    all females have tendency to protect and care offsprings “

    My comment was–
    I would like to mention a certain characteristic of almost all societies and cultures. All socio-culture teachings projects women as mother, sisters, divine respectable.
    Social norms say that a person should respect every woman, every girl. In girl, there is a mother, and mother should be respected, because that represents life. Such norms provide the required incentive for an Individual girl to accept the social limits. In accepting these social lmits, she feels safe, protected and dignified. Her acceptance of such social norms is also inspired by the sense of selfishness. Her self is safe if she accepts the norms of the society, if she won’t accept, she will be demonized, she will be termed WYTCH, and will be burnt. She will be tortured she may face rapes and molestation and harassment. Such social limits decide the further freedom. that is why there are different degrees of freedom for women in different societies. For the usual incentive of respect, safety and care, girl accepts the culture, dress codes and norms of a society. It becomes her selfish reason. We all need social relations nobody supports solipsism, neither it is possible. Yet, accepting the enforced limits does not make a girl safe. She remains under threat and control. Moreover, that makes her accept that prostitution is wrong, immoral, pornography is wrong, lesbianism is wrong, she also accepts that Burqa/ghoonghat is right and is for her safety, that being a woman she is second sex, that man should lead the society. She accepts it as a price for safety, not as a sign of selflessness. She accept this sacrifice for the greater importance of safety and existence, dignity and respect. She sacrifices her freedom, to protect herself and her procreational responsibility. It is simple “selfishness”, yet society denies it, it declares that such is the nature of woman, woman is the epitome of sacrifice, selflessness. But all this doesn’t saves her. She still gets killed, raped, harassed. She still suffer forced abortions, she still suffers dowry deaths, she still gets burnt in fire being claimed as a wytch, she still is killed on the name of Honor.
    That is the reason people say Mothers love is selfless.
    Basically it is just a selfish trap of the collectivist chauvinists to keep individual woman under control. To limit an individual woman under the realms of societal beliefs. no matters those beliefs are right or wrong.

    Woman Is not for Procreation Alone. She is not a machine under the hands of program of evolution. it is her freedom to decide if she want to procreate or not.

    Sex is not a duty of human to procreate. Sex is the Cherish of life. Sex is the gift and expression and projection of one’s most loved values. Yet the collectivists denies this simple fact. They stress that woman is made to procreate, that it is genetical/natural or whatever.
    yes it is genetical, but above genetical compulsions, there resides the MIND. its she who will decide what to do with her ability to procreate she is Free!


  9. i really liked this one.. it was short and it got the pt across effectively.. especially liked the edited to add part!!:D


  10. I am not sure, which is more sad. The hypocritical nature of it all or the fact that women in India, still dream (or rather hope) that someone or something is going to change. This is the same as with attacks on the nation. Either you do something about it or nothing is going to change.

    On the other hand, I am sick and tired of people defining my freedoms for me..especially the media..why is going to a pub and having a drink all of a sudden the biggest freedom I want to have? Why doesn’t the media, just shove it and have the balls to put the truth on the table and open a debate?



  11. What can a few women do about changing things? I want to change things- so what do I do? Have protests? hold “dharnas” , discuss it online? Where is the support? The government will declare “pub culture is bad” ( as they are doing now) or maybe institute fines( eve-teasing is against the law)- and with our corrupt system it will get back to square one. And of course no one in the patriarchy will support me. Because I do not fit into the norms- of wife, sister, mother. As for the media- do you think they are incorruptible? Chage has to come from top down in this case. In some cases it has to be forced down- with political power- I do not see that happening in the near future- do you? I only see a lot of frustration- physical harm- so why would I not want to leave.


  12. Cool IHM, sent this to my…
    Also I am sue you’ve heard She by Elvis I love his lyrics too…

    May be the reason I survive
    The why and wherefore I’m alive
    The one I’ll care for through the rough in ready years
    I’ll take her laughter and her tears
    And make them all my souvenirs
    For where she goes I’ve got to be
    The meaning of my life is

    She, oh she


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  14. Conditions apply huh – Its only full of conditions, na !!!!

    Simple yet strong lines !!!

    But why is it considered natural and compulsory to respect men, whatever they do ???

    And women have to earn it, with falling in line with conditions, formed by men ???? IRONY !!!


  15. Crisp and concise…words that we should have ringing in our ears all the time.

    IHM, I think this should also apply to children…if kids grow up without being respected (not elevated and spoiled, I mean just respected as human beings), then how can parents suddenly start respecting them when they grow up? And in most parents’ eyes, their kids never grow up 😦


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  17. Wow! Thought provoking actually…
    Why are women always spoken about? And really whatever said and done we’re the lesser sex in the eyes of the world. Among some women also infact.


  18. Very nicely put in words IHM! Simple yet hard hitting!!
    Loved the line ‘She values the respect she has for herself more’. Women must learn to think in these terms and act for themselves, rather than conform to get the respect from others!


    • True Priya and this respect is always hanging like a sword on her head. “Do this or else we won’t be able to respect you.” How come we never say hear this said to the rest of the population?


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