GLOSS Volume 1, Issue 6 - 2018 - Page 48

O P I N I O N "Are you having a boy or a girl?" asks my enthusiastic neighbour. "My doctor doesn't reveal the sex of the baby," I reply, hoping she would stop pestering me. "You are probably having a boy since you're hiding the sex," she replies. Casual sexism is ruining my life! Text And Illustrations By Aroma Shahid My failure to find appropriate words to respond to her absurd notions was probably evident on my face because she took advantage of it and reiterated her opinion for the next 5 months. I could have explained to her that my husband and I are only concerned with the baby's health but there's only little energy left in me after facing similar encounters of sexism throughout my life. "You are a big girl now. You should wear a dupatta when you step outside the house," said my mother to the 12-yr-old me. I am lazy by birth, so I eventually stopped going out unless accompanied by my parents because finding a matching dupatta for every time I step outside our building in Sharjah seemed too demanding. "She's a pretty girl. Your daughter must receive a lot of marriage proposals," said a distant and loud relative as she pinched my cheeks. "How old is she?" the woman asks. "Thirteen!" my mother replied after recovering from a minor shock. These comments seem harmless but they have shaped who I am over the years. I am 25 years old and still can't go out alone, dislike talking to adults over 40 years of age, and slouch my shoulder ́ݑ•Έ$έ…±¬ΝΌ$‘½ΈΠ…ΡΡΙ…ΠΥΉέ…ΉΡ•…ΡΡ•ΉΡ₯½Έ)ΡΌ΅εΝ•±˜Έ)%Έ„‘½ΥΝ”‰•±½Ή₯ΉœΡΌ„΅₯‘‘±”΅±…Ν́™…΅₯±δ½˜™½Υȁ…‘Υ±ΡΜ°)Ρ‘”ε½ΥΉœ½ΥΑ±”₯́‰ΥΝδέ½Ι­₯ΉœΈ ½Ρ …Ι”•΅Α±½ε•…ΉΙΥΈ)Ρ‘”™₯Ή…Ή•Μ½˜Ρ‘”‘½ΥΝ•‘½±ΈQ‘”΅½Ρ‘•Θ΅₯Έ΅±…܁͕•ΜΡ‘•΄)½ΥΑ₯•έ₯Ρ έ½Ι¬‰ΥЁ…±±Μ½ΥЁё”‘…՝‘Ρ•Θ΅₯Έ΅±…܁™½Θ‘•±ΐ)₯ΈΡ‘”­₯э‘•ΈΈ