Parent: do not walk in the streets alone, especially at night.
Parent: don’t wear short clothes like skirts and dresses; bystanders will stare at you.
Parent: keep important contact numbers saved in your phone (police etc) in case of help.
Parent: do not share an Uber with a man; you do not know their intention. Travel in groups.
Parent: don’t work at night shifts; it’s not safe for a girl.
Parent: always watch your back and be aware of your surroundings.
…..and more. It’s an endless list of social norms for a girl to follow.
Why is that the women are taking all the safety precautions and the men aren’t being educated on such important topics?
Sexual violence is a major havoc in the society’s upliftment. Why do we ask women to learn self defence or always have another person present in the house when a delivery guy brings the order or to always be in a group and not alone or not work night shifts? The answer is quiet sharp and rather hurting to hear; “so that you are not raped or sexually assaulted.’’
In a ‘modern society’, there still exist some deviant social concepts such as the rape culture that stigmatizes the victim as well as the society. There is a pressing need to add stress on the point that awareness on sexual violence is not only necessary for girls but also for the males of our society. The need of the hour is to change the social fabric and educate the men. It’s time to nip the evil in the bud; boys should be taught how to respect the opposite gender from an early age. And this starts at home and schools. Parents must groom their child while teaching them the right social behaviors and educating them about the facts of rape/assault crimes. A school which is considered as a child’s second home must organise various programmes for highlighting the issue of sexual violence among both genders.
In 2014, a short film was aired on the television intending to spread a message on sexual violence in India. In the film, in one of the scenes, showed a school going boy crying at his doorstep because he did not want to go to school and his mom was telling him that boys don’t cry. In the latter half of the film scene it was shown that a man had brutally beaten up his wife and had assaulted her at home; the wife was crying in pain. In the end of the video, a line was displayed stating “We taught our boys not to cry. It’s time we teach them not to make girls cry.”