Do you remember when you were a kid how everyone used to pull your cheeks and say “Awwww how cute 🙂 he/she is” or how everyone used to play with you like you are nothing more than a living stuffed teddy bear for them. And when this cute Girl/ Boy grows up and reaches a particular age , same people refuse to even identify them ! She/He is no more ‘lovely’ or ‘cute’ rather they will be called as ‘charcoal’ , ‘Fat ass’ or ‘Elephant’ and what not (list isn’t exhaustive) .
Do you ever imagine why same people change and start to give you cautions and politely ask you to mind your business (because they can’t say fuck off at this point of time). You will find in every class of every school , a fat kid sitting in one corner and one not so fair girl will be sitting in other . Trust me this is just beginning . Now these kids grow up a bit more and step into adolescence and voila nothing changes . They still don’t have friends (usually) and now they will get treated more rudely . Well now we have two cases
a) If that kid is good with studies and other co-curricular activities .
b) If that kid is neither good in studies nor in co-curricular activities .
Well in first case you will find that kid will be surrounded by some mean people representing them as his/her friends and in second case the situation worsens , as to be honest no one gives a double thought if that kid exists or not .
well till this time a kid experiences a lot of things like
- Feeling of Love/ Discovering their sexuality: Mostly while growing up they start to develop attraction towards a person of opposite gender or same gender (in certain cases) . Now as because varied no. of reasons that kid is afraid to admit the feeling as they are afraid of getting rejected by the one they love, by their parents and if the case is about sexuality then at times even by society e.g. if a fat kid walks upto a good looking girl and tells her that he loves her the reply in most cases will be “go and see yourself in the mirror ! Look at yourself first!” or if that kid dares to tell his or her parents that he isn’t straight then their reactions (specially in conservative societies like India) so he keeps mum and doesn’t speaks a word about his feelings .
- After 10th Class : Well in certain societies because of peers or parents decide the career for that kid . In India the famous lines are “look at Sharma ji’s / Verma ji’s Son” ! well “why should I look at him is my first question! i have my life Sharma Uncle isn’t my father and neither I am his son” these lines that kid screams inside his head now as there are no friends to talk to and no body to go to he can’t discuss all these and keeps mum again and doesn’t speaks a word about it again. And goes to Kota for preparing for IIT’s or AIIMS’s as because “Sharma ji ka beta is there in one of the reputed coaching classes.”
- In and After 12th Class (Last year of school) : Now that kid is managing his coaching , school , family and feelings simultaneously . Now as they say “95% is minimum we expect from you after spending so much on you” . And I would like to remind you till this point of time he has no friends , has been bullied and never told this to anyone , sexually and verbally assaulted by many , has spent 2 years in places like KOTA (it’s a freaking jail instead of sending your kids to that city send them to correction homes they are still better.) , was under peer pressure and parents were like the cherry on cake . He has been body shamed , called by many names like slut , whore or prostitute but never replied to any person and kept mum . Parents taunted that kid for not bringing same or equivalent marks to Sharma ji ka beta or beti and then did not talk to their kid.
- After results : Well now again 2 cases , either that kid qualifies or that kid will fail in his first attempt to qualify for good college. if the former happens at least, parents remain satisfied with their kid. but if he will not qualify in first attempt it breaks him to the core but he will still keep mum and wont utter a word as he is afraid that his parents will tag that as an excuse and it will further break him.
Now amid all this that kid is now an adult , highly unsatisfied with his life , he feels like a failure , he stops socialising and cuts out people from his life . He stops to trust people and the society and develops disrespect for even his own parents. But he is still silent.
The problem is his silence . That kid is frustrated and will still keep smiling and hiding those scars of self harm which he inflicted on himself . And this is very dangerous for that grown up kid. He will change and change a lot , he will change mentally, physically and emotionally . Now as he will change and it is very much foreseeable that he will not be of sane mind or rational thinking after going through this much in his life until now. Which makes that kid vulnerable to all sorts of wrong influence in this world. He can even turn into a terrorist and can be used against this society very easily or he will might lose his will power to live and will commit suicide and end his life as he wasn’t able to take more of it from this very society.
Well you must be thinking why am I telling you all this , well the season of suicide is near now , result of many competitions will be out soon and you will see this news on a very daily basis in the papers and knowingly or unknowingly if you are parent you will say something or other which might be nothing but start of all this for your kid or if you are a kid you will think of doing something like this .
I would like to tell to the society that – YES I DO KNOW THAT I AM OVERWEIGHT or I AM PHYSICALLY/MENTALLY/EMOTIONALLY DISABLED or I AM NOT BEAUTIFUL OR INTELLIGENT AS YOU ARE but I never chose this for me. All this happened to me and it might happen with you too someday , as there’s always scope for something better . If you think you are good at something , out there somewhere there is a better person than you which exists so stop being proud of who you are.
It’s high time that we as society should address this problem while we discuss so called larger issues like gender inequality or LGBTQ+ rights. It all starts from birth and then piles up. We live in a society where no one bothers about things such as mental wellness and if someone comes forward we give them names which are highly derogatory in nature and we start to boycott them or make fun of such people. We talk about society which is anti discrimination and stands for equality but lately we are acting as hypocrites. We see the mistakes of others but not which we commit . Ghalib rightly said “Umra bhar Ghalib yahi Bhool Karta raha, Dhool Chehre pe thi, aur Aina saaf karta raha” (I used to clean the mirror but i never noticed my own dirty face ) . Well lately people are getting aware of such issues but there are a lot of people living in very conservative societies like ours who still consider these issues as taboo and hence are needed to be educated properly or otherwise we will end up losing a lot of kids who will succumb to the pressure and will give up in absence of support from us. So don’t taunt them or tease them for a momentarily fun or joy that you derive from it . you don’t know what that kid is facing right ? The only request is if you can’t help him don’t make situation worse please .
Furthermore , Parents should also understand that they are the life guards for their kids and kids look upto them for anything and get inspired from their acts. Stop being negligent towards the feelings of your kids. Talk to them and befriend them. Teach them what is wrong and what is right by not beating them after they commit a mistake but by talking to them. Stop abusing them as it lasts an imprint on their mind which might last forever and will effect the upcoming generations too. And trust me you wont be able to repay once this happen because this is something irreparable after a certain stage. I am not saying that give your kids freedom for everything , no it will definitely lead them to wrong path. Be strict but you should draw a line and try not over step it as there is very thin line difference between what is called as telling something and imposing something . Let them choose whatever they want to do ! let them decide their career it will be the first step and they will learn to stand on their own legs and yes , now I also know the counter argument of your generation “But not in every field they will have a sure shot chances of being successful”. Well yes I agree to this proposition of yours but whats the fun in life without risk and a little bit of adventure .
Now, I just want to tell those kids that I know it’s easy said then done , but you at any point of time in your life should not think of killing yourself , you should rather take all of this in a positive manner and challenge yourself to prove others wrong . Try hard ! yes i agree losing or winning are two sides of a coin and definitely there is a 50% chance of you failing at first instance but that doesn’t means , you should stop trying or working hard for it. Never lose hope my dear friend you will find your way out of your issues someday if not immediately but you sure will someday. Also, you should not keep these things to yourself rather you should talk it out all in open . Talk to people whom you think will understand you and if its not possible you can always mail me or call me 🙂 (Post a comment and i will try to contact you myself 🙂 ) . If not others then I will listen to you and trust me you will feel relaxed after that as the silence and tolerating all this will keep on building pressure and all of us can collapse because of that and the difference being different levels of pressure that we can tolerate.