LOVE ME For What I am

Ever been admired or loved? Isn’t it a magical feeling when someone treats you like a princess and says you are the most beautiful girl in this world. When it is so easy to love others , why is it so difficult to fall in love with yourself?

  • I wish I could look like her
  • I wish I was that thin
  • I wish I had her flawless skin

Why do we keep comparing ourselves with others? Why try to be like someone else ? Isn’t original better than a copy? If you grew up hearing you aren’t good enough, it becomes difficult to believe in yourself. Why are we so cold hearted when it comes to ourselves? Forgive yourself and move on. Isn’t Self acceptance better than self resentment?

Being overweight during my teen years, I have always fantasized myself having a Victoria secret model body someday. I may not look drop dead gorgeous, I may not be an A grade student, but I am empathetic and kind hearted. I have compassion and integrity. I am humble and grounded, but unfortunately all of this doesn’t hold much value in today’s society.

I am tired and sick of being someone else all the time. I won’t lie and say that I am in love with myself, but I am trying to, and that’s a start. Why should I give others a chance to hurt me? Whatever happened, good or bad, Reliving it won’t do me any good. I am not going to allow myself to be controlled by my past or others opinions. Unfortunately, I am my biggest critic. So from now onwards I am going to avoid all the unnecessary negative self talk. I am going to look in the mirror and repeat everyday before going to sleep…… I LOVE YOU. It’s time I start loving myself.

I came across few lines by Joybell C and would like to share it with all of you.

“The only person who can pull me down is myself and I’m not going to let myself pull me down anymore. You may be the most beautiful person in the world and everybody sees light and rainbows when they look at you, but if you yourself don’t know it, all of that doesn’t even matter. Every second that you spend on doubting your worth, every moment you use to criticize yourself is a moment of your life wasted and thrown away. “

It took me a lot of time to understand that there is nothing You cannot achieve if you believe in yourself. Do you agree that believing in yourself increases your potentiality? Do you truly love yourself?

Need for Criminalising Marital Rape

While we applaud Supreme court’s landmark judgement in case of Triple Talaq, it is disheartening to know that, in our country, something as heinous as Marital rape is brushed under the carpet. It isn’t even considered an offence. A rape is a rape irrespective of age, gender or marital status. Intercourse with consent is sex and without consent is Rape.

Last month, a 25 year old school teacher tried killing herself after she was brutally raped by her husband. In 2015, a woman was hospitalized due to severe injuries but her husband was not prosecuted because unfortunately the law does not consider Marital Rape an offence. These are just a few cases which hit the newspapers. Most of them do not even get reported. Does Marraige give a man permanent license to have sex with his wife, without her CONSENT? Should the wife always be willing to establish physical relationship on any day or time, just because he wants to? Among 106 countries, 32 consider Marital Rape as a Special Criminal Offence while the remaining include it in general Rape provision. There are only 36 countries where it is not even considered a crime and sadly, India is one among them .The mental agony and trauma that a woman faces after being Raped is Unbearable. Just imagine, she has to live with the rapist forever with NO Laws to protect her. Marital Rape is monstrous, humiliating and leaves an everlasting scar.

Section 375 of the Indian Penal Code states an exception to the definition of Rape,”Intercourse or sexual act by a man with his wife (the wife not being under 15) is not rape”. This was recently modified as according to POSCO (Protection of children from sexual offences), the age of consent is 18. That means if a married woman is above 18 years of age and is raped by her husband, it won’t be considered a Rape. Does that mean laws are only meant to protect minors ? What if a woman above 18 is raped? The male is liable to be prosecuted for Rape even if two individuals below 18 have consensual sex, but if the wife is above 18 and the man forces himself on her without her consent, it’s NOT a crime according to the Law !

The Justice Verma Committee in 2013, suggested the removal of the exception under Section 375 and to make Marital Rape an offence regardless of wife’s age but the committee’s recommendation was not accepted. Though the law was modified and the Criminal Law Amendment Act 2013 raised the age to 18 but Marital rape is still not considered a crime. According to National Family Health survey, 31% of women are subjected to emotional or sexual abuse by their spouse . Whenever we raise this issue, it is brushed aside by the government, as they feel criminalising marital rape will destabilise the institution of marriage. Why are we not ready to accept Marital Rape as a crime? Is it because we believe that it will destroy the sanctity of arranged marriages? Well, the so called sanctity is destroyed the moment the man forces himself on his wife. Marraige is based on trust and mutual respect. Neither the wife “belongs” to her husband, nor is she a “commodity” .

If you are wondering, when we have laws for domestic violence, then why is another needed for Marital Rape? Well, the Domestic Violence Act 2005 is inadequate for a crime as monstrous as Marital Rape. If someone rapes you, don’t you want him to be punished?Dont you want him to be held responsible for the trauma that you have undergone? Whether the abuser is one’s husband or a stranger makes no difference because the only thing that differentiates Sex from Rape is CONSENT.

I remember a few years back, one of my friend confided in me regarding feeling violated. Her husband used to violate her when she was asleep and she used to wake up feeling abused. Despite her refusal, he continued. Here the man is not a stranger. He is not thrashing her or holding a knife. Is this marital rape?Unfortunately, YES, it is, though it’s not what we think of normally as rape. Being married doesn’t change the fact that consent is crucial. If a woman is asleep or intoxicated, obviously she can’t give consent. Despite telling him innumerable times that she felt violated, he still continued because according to him, he wasn’t doing anything wrong as her body belonged to him. Well, a wife isn’t a commodity purchased by her husband, Her decision needs to be respected. There is a need to create awareness and educate men that CONSENT is CRUCIAL for sex.

Marital rape should be recognized as an offence and the punishment should be similar to that of rape. If you are wondering how can it be proved, Timely medical examination, forensic evidence and sexual abuse history can help. Just because a crime is difficult to prove, it cannot be brushed off. Moreover, the argument that law can be misused is absurd. We cannot NOT implement a law just because we are scared that some vengeful woman in future may falsely accuse her innocent husband someday. Laws do get misused but that doesn’t mean we don’t recognize a crime as a crime. Let’s have some checks and measures in place.

It’s high time we come forward and fight for our rights. Agree? Disagree? Have something to add? Drop in your comments.

ITS MY CHOICE!!

Finally have started my blog after a lot of contemplation and if you are anything like me, Confused and Indecisive, you would have also pondered a lot regarding what your first post should be. Well, a chance encounter of 20-20 biscuit advertisement in TV the other day, gave me enough fodder to contemplate and the impetus I needed. A girl was trying out a few dresses in a mall when her father asks, “Isn’t it a little short” and the mother exclaims , “Dress choti nahi Hoti, soch Hoti hai”.

No dress is indecent. Wearing clothes is a personal choice. Stop shaming our body and clothing choices. Why should people assume “Short dress= girl wants men to stare at her” ? The length of my dress is NOT a measure of my consent to have sex with you or even want you to ogle at me.

How am I responsible for the action of some “potential creep” who is going to stare at me for wearing a short dress? Please DO NOT teach your daughters to wear “Decent” clothes. When you tell us to cover ourselves and dress decently, you are damaging us and a million other girls by SHAMING us.

Instead of teaching your daughters to not wear short dresses, please teach your sons to not objectify women. Why are we constantly asked to “Cover” ourselves?

Instead, teach us that CLOTHES are NOT RESPONSIBLE for Rape, molestation and other abuse. Anyone can be sexually assaulted under any circumstances irrespective of wearing a saree or a bikini.

I remember an incident in school , when my friend’s mother was called regarding uniform’s length. The teacher tried justifying her irrational demand by stating she wanted to protect her from “Unwanted attention”. Instead of teaching boys to not view girls as sexual objects, my friend was shamed and “taught” to wear a long skirt to prevent men from staring at her. Moral Policing young girls and women has become a norm in our society! People say “Men will be men” and it’s upto us to protect ourselves by dressing “decently”. All I can say is , such regressive thinking is ingrained in our society which strips our freedom to dress as we please.

So Dear Family, Society, Well wishers , Moral Police Brigade and other Interfering busy bodies,

Next time if you tell me to dress up “Decently”, I am going to ask you to shove your Moral Policing up your **** !

Till then Goodbye friends,
Adios Amigos

The Journey Begins : Introduction

 

 

Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter.

— Izaak Walton

Welcome to SNEHA’s EXPRESSION- India’s feminist and personal development blog.

 

I am 1990 born and have completed MBA (HR) in 2012 . I have taught in a college for 16 months and also worked with Convergys in Gurgaon and IBM India in Noida. An introvert but self-inspired, I like to pen articles close to my heart that are women centric and affect the young generation.

 

I was always soft-spoken and introvert since my childhood and couldn’t speak two sentences coherently without feeling scared or anxious. As a result, very early in life, I had resorted to writing a diary to express myself and vent out my thoughts.
There were certain issues that were percolating in my mind and which had become  need of the hour. Hence, I wanted to voice my perspective regarding the same. That’s why I ventured into blogging, as blogs are an effective medium to share thoughts.

I want to change people’s mindset. I always tell my mother that when I have children someday, I will never teach my daughters to dress ‘decently’, instead I will teach my son to not objectify women and respect them. My blog is a Feminist and Self- Acceptance blog that calls out on subjects like slut shaming, fat shaming, marital rape, Periods taboo etc. and urge everyone to come forward and not stay quiet.
Being overweight during my teen years, I have always felt ugly, under-confident and ended up with low self-esteem. It took me a lot of time to learn to love myself and accept the way I am. Hence, Self Acceptance also forms a crucial part of my blog.


Currently writing my first novel, Love is a lie, I aspire to become an author.
Thanks for joining me! Let’s join hands and embark on this journey together.

Twitter @snehaexpression