Peek-A-Boo With Patriarchy: How I Learned To Stop Getting Too Comfortable

By Tara Vidisha Ghose:

While I was still in school, I remember telling my mother “I don’t understand why women cry so much about inequality. We can vote now and they reserve seats for us in the parliament. We are equal.” Sure, back then, it seemed that way to me, because it seemed perfectly normal that every boy in the boys’ football team in school was a hero while the girls’ team had spent years and years fighting just to be allowed to take part in inter-school competitions. There was nothing strange about how one of my friends who had had lots of boyfriends was systematically alienated from our group and was slut-shamed by everyone, including the boys who had been involved with her. I barely thought twice before starving myself for days on end to bring my waist size down to 23 inches, because to me, more than being a good student, being beautiful was what gave me value. 

Ladki ki galti, sexual harassment in public spaces and parental control: deconstructing the narratives

The YP Foundation as part of its Know Your Body, Know Your Rights programme transacts in community based comprehensive sexuality education (CSE) sessions with girls and young women in partnership with field based organizations. At the end of this year’s phase of work, girls from one of the centres (Samarpan organization in Kishangarh, Delhi) ran a facilitated campaign on sexual harassment in public spaces to engage with their mothers and other community members on the issue. During the CSE sessions, many of them at different junctures brought in their experiences of sexual harassment and the difficulty in talking about it with their mothers. Many of them also shared their experiences of fighting with their parents to come to the centre as their parents weren’t allowing them to attend the sessions for reasons like, it is unsafe to go out for them, why would they want to know about “these things” at such a young age and school education is more important than “these things”.

Putting the 'C' in CSE: A Glossary of Important Terms

Comprehensive Sexuality Education has evolved from sex education, to sexuality education, and finally into its present form. CSE, like we have said before, covers a vast array of issues and topics within sexual and reproductive health. Across the world, however, there is considerable push to limit the scope of CSE and omit certain ‘controversial’ issues. Problem is, different countries find different topics controversial; some consider abortion contentious, while others have a problem with the word ‘sex’ itself! This selective acceptance of sexuality education must be resisted, since it is these uncomfortable, debatable, and differentially interpreted topics that most adversely affect our sexual and reproductive lives and health. 

With this in mind, The YP Foundation has put together a helpful glossary of terms that must be a part of any sexuality education curriculum for it to be comprehensive!