When I was born, there were some who smirked at my soft-gender. Some suggested my mother should appropriate only a portion of love for me that’s rightful for a traveler staying only until its time for the final destination – marriage. Some might also have asked her to apportion her finances and attachments to a meager extent only, for no return could be expected of me. Perhaps in our society, being a daughter and giving birth to one is still a curse.
I presume my mother had lent only a superficial ear to such resonations. She gave me all the love; in fact more of it, that a child deserves, expended all her fiscal and physical reservoirs that one does for an only child. Yes, her world centers around me.
I’m sure all mothers out there, who raise their daughters love them equally well and give as much of themselves as they to their sons. Isn’t it ironic then, when its time for daughters to stay strong for parents, support them morally and financially, and most importantly- be there for them, society pokes at them with a queer eye.
There are still people who express subtle and strong reservations against parents living with daughters, or daughter financially supporting their parents. It is yet ironic how they expect a woman to work for pooling up sum to run her household and yet look at it critically when they share a part of their sum with the aging parents.
Where it’s expected of daughter-in-laws to live and devote themselves selflessly towards their in-laws, son-in law is exempted from all of this. Let alone son in law, even the daughter is now expected to dedicate her complete loyalties, time and energies to the in-laws and less to her birth family. If she still does, it’s considered cunningness on her part or perhaps lameness on the part of husband.
This means there’s no hope for parents who only have their daughters for their children, or for those who lavish their indiscriminate love and affection on their daughters. Their entire life may be a waste when their daughters get married. And they’ll be reduced to wait for their occasional visits and gifts or perhaps needed only when they have to baby-sit their children.
After struggling hard with this question, I can’t still understand how is this right? Has God discriminated between the daughter and son, their rights and their respective obligations? Is it written anywhere that a son has more duty towards his parents than daughter? Will Allah forgive a daughter for not taking care of her parents while hold the son accountable for the same? I believe not. Then why such crooked ideals based on nothing but marshes, are still allowed to flourish?
Where our modern society often brags about gender equality, our mashed up cultural values collide with our moral and religious ideals with equal frequencies. With their pre-concieved notions, prisming only our primitive past, upheld so fast, it’s no wonder our society is hopelessly biased against women and on the whole, only degenerating to its very core.
How long our daughters would be made to eclipse their obligations fearing some regressive member of the society would point fingers at them, or would earn their husband’s anger if they do otherwise. Where I’m sure there’s justice in His law for people who break tender hearts and encumber daughters in discharging their social and religious obligations towards their parents, I’m not sure how long will it take our society to break free of its shallow, miserable ideals that keep haunting our women still.