10 Things Desi Aunties Will Never Tell Their Raja Betas

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If we think of our patriarchal society as a jail then some older women have definitely taken up the role of subordinate jailers. The extent of policing, controlling, shaming they exercise on young women is atrocious. There would be hardly any young, married woman who hasn’t been told to hide her bra strap by some random aunty or been told to “sit properly” because apparently ” girls can’t sit like boys.” Just when a woman starts to become herself, there is always someone trying to label her as “characterless” and whatnot. What is really frustrating is the fact that most men being the lovely faultless sons-aka Raja Betas-of their mothers never face such treatment. Turns out all the nagging, poking and nosy aunties are reserved for women only. Here are 10 most annoying things are hardly ever directed to Raja Betas:

“Ye sab sasural me kaise chalega?”

Being a girl I have been asked this question a gazillion number of times yet I have never seen a man being asked the same. Why do aunties think that the sense of entitlement in their Raja Betas will be appreciated by their in-laws? Moreover, am I supposed to regulate my actions thinking about my imaginary in-laws who might not approve? That’s bizarre.

“Got a job? Now its time to settle”

Yes of course, after all the whole purpose of my good grades and my job is to secure a husband, right? Because in your head, I have already achieved everything I am capable as a girl and my career prospects do not mean anything to you. If I were a man, you wouldn’t say the same to me.

“Why the gym? Do yoga you won’t build manly muscles”

You are wrong on so many levels. First of all, muscles are not manly everyone can have them. Secondly, you can make build muscles with yoga and lastly gymming doesn’t mean building muscles. It’s amusing to see how you get excited to make Raja Beta’s post-workout meal and discourage me to even think of that.

Also readDear Women, Untangle The Cultural Knots and Call Out Pain, Shame & Gender Inequality

“Kamane kya lagi paise ka ghamand hogya hai”

When men start earning they hear praises of how responsible they have become and apparently the same money makes women arrogant. Aunty, please tell us what part of it you don’t like. Us women getting economically independent or the fact that we stop living at the mercy of our parents?

“You have been given too much freedom”

I deserve freedom, it is my right to live as a free individual.  It is annoying to see how your Raja Beta doesn’t get to hear such things. Moreover, what is too much freedom? Is it really freedom if you are deciding how much to give?

“You’re an adult, still don’t know how to cook?”

So I am an adult who can’t cook and your 21-year-old son is still a child who needs you to make his meals? Such hypocrisy, much wow. As far as I understand, everyone should know the basic skills of cooking and cleaning because it is about survival. Just because I am a woman doesn’t mean I was born with those skills. Help me learn, don’t shame me.

“No hanky-panky with your classmates, haan?”

Why do you say this to me when you giggle about your son’s female friend whom you have assumed to be his girlfriend? It is bizarre how some parents give totally opposite reactions to their sons and daughter hanging with friends of the opposite gender. Girls should also be allowed to socialise like boys are.

“It’s too unsafe in big cities. Why don’t you find a college nearby?”

And it’s fine if your son goes abroad to study? Every time newspapers report a crime on women (which happens every day) some relatives and parents find one more excuse to control the women in their family. Dear aunty, thank you for your concern, but I will not let my education and career be affected by bad men. They are the ones who need to stay home and not commit those crimes.

“At least offer to make some tea”

First of all, you should have asked. Secondly, why only me? Your unquenchable thirst for tea every time you walk in my house can also be attended by my brother. Just because I am a girl doesn’t mean that hospitality is my responsibility.

“Lose some weight, dear. Shaadi me kaise hogi”

Dear aunty, if someone rejects me for my weight then good riddance. It is already very difficult for women to feel good about their bodies because of how the idea of “perfect figure” has ruined our perceptions about real bodies and comments like these make it worse.

Views expressed are author’s own