When it comes to how we women take up space in this world, obviously our environments impact it greatly. Especially how we’ve been raised and what thought processes have been ingrained in our minds by our caretakers. And this is what social scientist Dr. Deepa Narayan spoke about in a brilliant Ted Talk of hers.
The author and UN advisor talked about how women are conditioned to shrink themselves from a young age. Ever since they’re born, actually. Especially in a country like India, where women are seen as the honour keepers of their households. Dr. Narayan says that too many young girls are restrained from being themselves, so much so that they grow up being more susceptible to abuse by romantic partners, friends and associates.
She also mentions examples of women who she’s spoken to over the years for the research of her book Chup: Breaking the Silence About India’s Women. In it, she speaks about the 7 ways in which women are silenced, or basically taught to shuffle to the sidelines in order make space for men in this world.
And one big word that Dr. Deepa Narayan says that has impacted thousands of women everywhere is ‘adjust.’ In this Ted Talk she talks about how women are constantly told to adjust by compromising their happiness, sanity or safety for the sake of society’s, and more importantly, men’s comfort.
And the greatest problem she points is how we all expect women to change, bend or dilute themselves for everyone around them. But no one expects the same flexibility from men!
You can watch a glimpse this session here.
it’s truly time we start asking men to change, and adjust.