Everywhere you turn, there are magazine covers, movies, reality TV shows that portray woman in a sexual light. When was the last time that we as a society sat down and realized the effect that this is having on young girls, teens and even grown women? The portrayal of women as sexual objects in these and many other types of media have greatly affected the mindset of society. Women of all ages, ethnicities and backgrounds face the challenge of being objectified. Objectifying women is the underlying problem of all issues faced by women such as the wage gap, being cat called or rated, sexual assault, advertisements just to name a few.
As we grow older and our bodies begin to change, we start to become more conscious about the way we look or the way we dress and the way we act and I have seen this to be quite prevalent in the Indian community. But as you mature mentally and become more comfortable in your own skin you tend to care less about the way you look & pay more attention to the way you feel. But sometimes this confidence is considered as a gate way to objectification.
I received a message once from an unknown number with comments about my body in my WhatsApp DP. So, I told my mom and blocked and reported the number and thought to myself, “okay, I’ve handled this the right way and I should just go about my day”, but I just couldn’t shake the queasy feeling I had inside of me. I knew it must be someone from my college as I don’t give my number to anyone outside college but I knew for sure it wasn’t someone in my class of my friend circle. I felt unsafe for a day but then slowly got over the incident. I don’t know how but my aunts found out about what happened. When we were getting ready to go out for dinner one night, they pulled me aside to tell me to change my clothes. I was a little confused and then asked them what the issue was and they just gave me a “look”. I immediately walked out of the house, put on my shoes and sat in the car. I felt confident in the clothes I was wearing and two judgmental aunties won’t take that away from me.
You can be a victim to objectification by a man, women or even yourself