Dear Young Girl,
When you were 10 years old, we filled your impressionable mind with the filth, horror and disgust it is to be you. We taught you; you were not enough and you would never be. How could you anyway? You’re just a bit too short, too tall, too fat, too skinny, too dark and full of pimples.
We fed you with the image of the ideal girl and the ideal body airbrushed on Photoshop. Your hair is too kinky, too straight, too black, too curly to be ideal. It could never come close to the airbrushed girl.
We forgot you were you. You couldn’t be added to or removed from. You didn’t need a complete makeover to look like the reality star on TV or dress like the cover girl on your favorite magazine. You were simply perfect, created in the image and likeness of God.
When you were 16 years old, we told you virginity was for losers and weirdoes. Losing your virginity and experimenting is what a typical 16 year old girl living in this era ought to do. Oh, don’t forget to pack some ecstasy, two blunts and some whiskey with that. Make sure you sniff some of that white lady in a party until you can’t feel your face and overdose. We promise to stand around your grave and murmur how teenagers of these days are junkie heads.
When you turned 22, we defined you as “the youth of today” “a lost generation” . The immoral ones, confused ones, get rich quick fast, lazy and apathetic ones. You just want things fast, quick and cheap. No hard work is welcome. It didn’t matter you were an individidual. That’s what you and your generation do.
When you turned 25, we told you how loud your biological clock was ticking. Didn’t you hear it? It didn’t matter you wanted to have your masters or PHD before commuting to a life long journey. It didn’t matter you didn’t feel ready for marriage or rising to the peak of your career. You had to and so you did like many times before.
28 came close and so did the rumours of your infertility. Having children is a decision a couple makes but in our eyes, it’s our decision to make not you or your man, honey. We decide when is the appropriate time to get children.
We, of course, will not help you raise them financially but we promise to offer consistent, uncalled for advice in how you should raise your children better. Forget that our children haven’t become men and women of honour- we know best.
And, the cycle will continue until you lay to rest and we will speak of how you were a sweetheart. A woman of the people. A woman of honour in society’s eyes. Loved by all and obedient to all your elders despite the faulty advice.
The epitome of womanhood and wifehood in marriage. It won’t matter that you were beaten through 30 years, cheated on and deceived more than the numbers of your annicersary- You were a great wife. A loving wife any man would have wished to have.
Love, do you notice how we always have something to say? Do you notice how we will always show you the direction you are to walk in yet we haven’t walked in it ourselves? Do you notice how we will always make you feel you have to measure up to a standard set by us and never by you? Do you realize how the illusion of choice seems to be prevalent in your life?
We say we want you to become the best yet we tear you down the moment you begin to rise. We oppress and fill your mind with outdated norms and standards and try to make them work in the present. We preach milk and drink whiskey.
The question is- aren’t you tired ,child, of living in society’s confines of what should and shouldn’t be in your life?
When will you rise, defy the norms and become the woman you have always desired to be?