Monday, December 13, 2010

WOman, lucky to be in the US

Honor killings. Forced marriage vs. arranged marriage. 

These are things I didn't totally realize the truth about until recently.

imgres.jpgIn 2008, I first journeyed to India where I learned first hand from friends and people I met. They taught me about arranged marriage, why people make it work, and if it's better or worse than love marriages.
In 2010, I read an amazing book titled "Daughters of Shame" written by Jasvinder Sanghera. This book changed my outlook on everything and made me really open my eyes to the culture and life around me. Do yourself a favor, and read it. Educate yourself. Educate yourself about this. Order it, even if it's the only book you read this year

I went back to India this year and talked more with my friends about marriage. 

I've learned that although some families say that the woman always has some part in the decision-making or choice of a marriage, it's a total crap shoot. If a woman doesn't "choose" the same thing her family does, she'll often be disowned from the family, hurt, or killed.  Maybe the divorce rate on forced marriages is so low because women are totally screwed if they leave- safety wise and financially - for the rest of their lives.

Why is it that women have learned that it's better to stay in an abusive home than to be disowned by the family that hurts them? 

Why is it ok for men in these situations to live however they want, to do whatever they want- but women are expected to remain virgins until the day they are married?

How is it fair that a woman abroad who gets picked to be the wife of an American basically has to become a sex slave to someone they don't like in exchange for US citizenship and papers?

I also recently saw a news clip about a girl from Afghanistan who was brutally hurt by the men in her life. This type of action happens every day. 

I'm not saying that these cultural 'norms' will ever change. I just wish there could be a bigger women's empowerment movement to at least education women about their other options, sustainable ways out, and a chance to learn what they're really capable of.

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