It’s never easy being a woman, especially in a man’s world. And, when we are further subjected to tags and labels, it doesn’t really help. When we are classified as either ladylike or a tomboy, all I can think of is – why is my personality being boxed into a type? What if I don’t relate to either of the tags?

I like the colour pink but I would rather choose oversized t-shirts. On good days, when I’m happy or have the time, I might wear make-up but on other days, I choose not to. These are choices that I make, because I’ve built an understanding of who I am and what I want. And not because I’m trying to fit in a category.

It’s not even wrong if we like to dress up a certain way or like to do things which are ladylike or not. It’s not wrong – because it’s a choice. If we like wearing heels or do not like wearing make-up that doesn’t make us any different from other women

When we put women into these so-called tags, we unknowingly build an image of what might be ‘perfect’. For instance, being a tomboy means you do not know how to ‘present’ yourself and men won’t like you for how you look. Case in point: Anjali from Kuch Kuch Hota Hai. You’re jhalli. If you’re ladylike, you’re automatically considered fragile. According to Bollywood, you’re not ‘smart’.

In this categorization, women often end up trying to be something they’re not, simply because of the image perpetuated by society and cinema. All because, they are neither of the two. While there are some people who keep telling me that I’m not-like-other-girls, which they think is a compliment (it’s not), there are others who think I’m a ‘girly girl’ because I like to colour-code things. So, who am I – ladylike or tomboyish? 

We forget that when we subject women to these categories, we force them into dismissing parts of themselves that they like. When you tell someone who they are, you’re also telling them what they’re missing. And that doesn’t sound right, right?

All I’m saying is – we know who we are, do not confuse us. In simpler words, we enjoy being women. Let’s leave it at that.