“A positive change will only set in, the day society stops viewing its single women as failures in life. I say this since no matter how much a lady has gone on to accomplish, her value is ultimately judged based on whether she has a male partner or not.
And this is sad on multiple levels, for it clearly undermines everything that a girl could’ve worked for, whilst simultaneously fuelling the regressive outlook that the end goal should always be to get married and settle down. Personally, having been at the receiving end of these opinions, right from my twenties, it’s taken me quite a while to understand myself and the things that trulymatter!
You see, as a shy little girl hailing from a village near Uppiliappan temple, my whole childhood was focused on excelling academically. Adding to that, a bunch of body image issues right from the start ensured that I overcompensated for what I ‘thought’ I lacked by going on to become the best in every activity I attempted. Now, this go-getter attitude did, of course, help me to come out of my comfort zones, both literally and figuratively! I slowly made my way to Chennai, and eventually to the US in fierce pursuit of my dreams. But to everyone around me, barring the closest of family, the only concern was that I wasn’t married yet!
Adding to that, people went on randomly, advising me to lighten my skin, straighten my hair and lose weight, for those were apparently the staples to bag a man. Some even had the audacity to tell me that I wasn’t worthy of being with their sons if I didn’t ‘look’ fit.
And all this did initially have a huge impact on my confidence! But the unfortunate part was that life decided to throw in a few more obstacles before truly making me realize my value. While I was slowly in the process of healing, the unexpected loss of my father and diagnosis of an autoimmune disorder ensured to pull me down back to where I started. Those were indeed some painful phases that got me deep into the rabbithole of self-doubt!
Nevertheless, true to the saying, ‘once you hit rock bottom, the only way is up’, I saw things inching up for the better once I was in complete acceptance of my state and decided to take charge of my mental health, going forward. And as a part of that I also started using social media to voice out my opinions and share my learnings! It was definitely new, but with time, I realized the positive attention my content had garnered. So many young women started looking up to me, and, in fact, began reaching out for perspectives and guidance. So from a just happy 38-year-old, I quickly transitioned into a content 38-year-old, now that I was able to make a difference in people’s lives as well. And I guess, that’s how I’d want to envision my journey, henceforth- to feel and make others feel fulfilled!”