Kajol Said Catfights Were Invented To Make Women Insecure. That’s True Because Sisterhood Makes Us Stronger And That Makes Everyone Uncomfortable
We live in a bigoted society that speaks two different languages when it comes to women. On one hand, women are treated like the less-capable section of the society and the right to live life on our own terms has been snatched from us. The world thinks that it is completely acceptable to dictate what we should wear, who we should love and who we should the rest of our life with. They tell us women must not drink and smoke, we must prioritise domestic duties, be soft spoken and even that we should sit like a lady. The world has taken it upon itself to prepare a guide on how women must exist and it’s down to the very detail.
Yet, on the other hand, we are held responsible for everything. If a man cheats on his wife, the mistress is held responsible. If a son is mean to his mother, she will blame it on her daughter-in-law. Even when a woman is raped, the blame is conveniently shifted on her. Why is it that men are free from all cause and consequence? Suddenly, the women are the leaders here when we are ironically not seen capable of being leaders, in our own fucking lives. And this is terrible, that a woman pulls another woman down, just to acquire a higher status in the eyes of the men in her life.
Women are pitted against each other because like the British invaders, our society too likes to divide and rule. And for decades, I feel women didn’t figure this out and continued to be manipulated into being on different sides of the fence. But women are over that and we are seeing a shift in attitudes. We are standing with each other, with our hearts filled with the sentiment of sisterhood.
If we closely observe Bollywood friendships, we will realise that this is a milestone period when female actors are friends, colleagues and have no qualms in sharing the space. Kajol, who recently starred in Devi, a short-film on rape victims, shared the screen space with several other actresses including Shruti Haasan and Neena Kumari. She spoke about how they should stop asking them about catfights and all that, as if women can’t co-exist!
Kajol expressed, “Catfight is imposed in our mind by society to create insecurity among us, women. I find it is nonsense. When it comes to fights and arguments among women, I would say it is only natural that no two human beings have to get along with each other. Not everyone has to be my friend. That does not mean the person is my enemy or hater. It is high time we women unite to celebrate sisterhood because catfights are outdated.”
Even Shruti Haasan elaborated on sisterhood and how it is the need of the hour if we want to empower ourselves. “I think the sisterhood is not strong enough, and that is one of the important aspects of empowerment. Even in the film, these women start off with fights and argument, but in the end, they unite because the root cause is the same — all of them are victims. Why do we have to deal with something as rape to support and stand by each other. If we want to bring about a change, we have to celebrate sisterhood. Instead of thinking that another successful woman is my competition, we should celebrate each other’s achievements and stand by each other. The argument is a healthy practice but hatred is not and that should be stopped by celebrating sisterhood,” she expressed.
Shruti further added, “Women are facing atrocities and discrimination worldwide, and unless we stand by each other we will never be able to bring the bigger change. We have to understand that crime like rape and other social discrimination is happening on women beyond age, caste and social status. So, why can’t we just unite beyond caste, age and socio-economic status?” How are we going to rise if we are spending all our energy in fighting each other? At the end, we all have shared experiences and we are in the same team. We need this. We need each other.
Neena Kulkarni revealed how she has friends who has stood by her for years now. “Humein insecure feel karaya jata hai (we are made to feel insecure) and we were conditioned to look at another happy woman as competition. I have been working in the entertainment industry for the last 46 years, and I have friends here who stand by each other. I think so-called ‘bromance’ and ‘brotherhood’ is a new concept. We women have always been standing, celebrating and fighting together against all the atrocity,” Kulkarni explained.
But here’s the thing, we are not here to make men vs women groups. There’s no propaganda. Shruti pointed out that it’s possible that two people don’t get along but it shouldn’t be gender-based. “I think generalizing is dangerous. One should not think all men are bad and all women are my competition. If I count you as my rival because of your gender, then that is discrimination, too. I can dislike an individual based on her opinion, habit or just the fact that we do not get along. But that has nothing to play on that ‘women are women’s worse enemy’ theory. In my personal life, I do not ‘like’ or ‘dislike’ people based on gender,” she said. Similarly, if a woman is wrong, it doesn’t mean we support her in all her shenanigans just because she is one of us. These things shouldn’t have to do anything with gender.
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I have grown up to really love and value the women in my life. I have realised that they understand me and my feelings more than anyone else, because they exactly know how it feels. In fact, the more men I date, the more I appreciate the women in my life. Not because men are trash; I don’t say that. But because women understand each other more than men can understand us. And don’t we all want that? To be understood without even trying to explain so hard.