Creative Writing





The Perception of Women in Pakistani Culture.

You need to learn to cook.’
So you can cook for your husband.

The Pakistani culture declares that women exist for the purpose of men; to take care of them, to please them, to be their slaves. Women are perceived as the weaker sex and thus less desirable. A prime example of this is when a woman gives birth. People are overjoyed if she has a son but a daughter is perceived as a consolation prize. Things such as ‘it’s such a shame that she only has daughters’ are reiterated as if females are a burden. This is rooted so deeply within the Pakistani culture that women are happy to subdue themselves and accept their position as subordinates.

Our lives become marriage CVs and everything that we do works towards and contributes to our levels of marriageability. If a woman remains unmarried by the age of 30, she is considered to be ‘past her sell-by date’ and is believed to have something wrong with her. Maybe she cannot have children, or is depressed, or too educated, or not pretty enough? We may as well be made to stand in front of a police line-up wall and be pointed at from behind the glass. We are sold, bartered for. We are not entitled to live our lives to their fullest capacity because we are reined by the hands of men.

We repress everything whilst men are able to live openly, honestly, abundantly. We must hide a huge fragment of ourselves and thus split our own souls into pieces. 

Our existence is nothing but the ode of men. 

I did not endure countless years of education for men to put words into my mouth, to be ‘chosen’ by a man and be scrutinised by his mother, to waste away my potential from behind the stove.

We are taught to iron, to cook, to do whatever will please our husbands because we do not exist for ourselves. Our lives do not count unless there is a man beside us, to validate us, give us meaning, to be our voice. These things are indoctrinated within men
 and thus they treat us as being inferior. We become their property because we are taught to be nothing else. 

We don't know how to grow or heal or be a person.

I am not compatible with the culture that I was raised in. I do not agree with patriarchy and I do not intend on being a part of this misogynistic system. My mother was born and raised in Pakistan and has therefore carried a predominant amount of these customs. It has taken years of persistence for her to finally accept why I must reject them. 

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