11 December, 2018

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A Letter To My Daughter

By Thisuri Wanniarachchi

Thisuri Wanniarachchi

Thisuri Wanniarachchi

The world may seem so big, and it is, but don’t let anyone make you feel small. We are not here to stay; billions of people came before us and will keep coming long after we are gone and the world will ‎keep on spinning. But while we are here, remember to change a few things, or at least die trying. It’s rough out here for you than it will be for your brother. And I’m so sorry. I’m going to try to give you everything you’ll ever ask for, but I can’t promise you that there won’t be days when you will feel so deprived just because you were born a woman. They will have so much to say to you, about how you should look, about how you should feel, about what you can and cannot do with your body. The world is full of ugly double-standards. Don’t give in.In the midst of all that chaos, I know you will want to give up and try to fit in, but hold on to who you are. We are born with the privilege of the ability to be blind to injustice. Most remain blind to it their whole lives, it’s the convenient thing to do. But not you, you will learn to see the world for what it truly is.

Travel the world, learn what it is like to live as an ethnic minority. Learn the pedagogy of the oppressed. You are not alone, there are many like us, like women, many different communities out there who get marginalized just because they were born to a political minority. Learn from their strength. Forgive history, but never forget it. ‎Know that more often than not, history repeats itself.

Always remember that the term “tradition” is a very dangerous one. Question it persistently. It has acted as a roof for many conservative, oppressive values since time unknown. Slavery was once tradition. White supremacy is often justified by tradition. In our country, it is also tradition that has always held back women. It is tradition that restricted women to the kitchen. When women want to dress the way they prefer they are told they shouldn’t, as it goes against tradition.When we Sinhalese shamelessly played “Mey Sinhala Apagey Ratai” on loudspeakers in cities where all communities lived, we saw nothing wrong in it. “It’s a traditional song,” we said. When men want to love men, and women want to love women, they get furious. “How dare they? They are disrespecting tradition.” When women give their man a dowry in order to get married, that is in no way derogatory on the value of the woman, it’s tradition. When women take their husband’s name after marriage, it’s not in anyway saying that the woman has to lose the identity she’s grown up with her entire life to please the man, it’s tradition.

You still haven’t even heard the most dangerous part about tradition: it convinces the oppressed that tradition is a good thing, that it is sacred: it is ‘what makes us who we are.’ For instance in our country and many others around the world, women are taught to appreciate their traditional role in the household, to take pride in their cooking and housekeeping skills, in being “the good wife.” Women, too, are often taught to feel the need to defend the acts of men, performed solely to feed their sense of entitlement. They laugh it off and often defend such acts saying “it’s just a fun tradition.” It is because, as oppressive and divisive as tradition is, it applies to the whole society in the form of the blinding term ‘culture.’ Don’t get me wrong, it applies to different communities (political minorities v. majorities) differently, but it applies to the entire society as a whole, creating a false sense of inclusion. We humans are weak; we want to hold on to that false sense of comfort. The world is a cold, lonely place, and tradition gives our vulnerable selves warmth. In a world that is constantly changing we find comfort in the consistency and familiarity that tradition provides.

How did tradition become this omniscient God who knows it all and gets to decide what is good for us? Remember when I said history often repeats itself? Tradition is a product of history. Our history was built on oppression and inequality, and history is more often than not, written by oppressors and generation after generation, the oppressed have been educated to respect the oppressors and respect tradition. So don’t be surprised when women conveniently turn a blind eye to patriarchy. Just like men can support gender equality women can support patriarchy.

I wanted you to know this because it will help you understand what is to come. Whenever you question patriarchy, hell will break loose. Disrupting existing traditions requires strength. And being my daughter, I’m sure you’ll have it. They will tell you that you are offending them by disrespecting age old traditions. They will tell you that you are deluded,that “not everything is about gender.” They will feel so threatened and get so irrationally angry. They will threaten to “make you unrecognizable” with acid attacks. Ironic, isn’t it, that whenever they find a woman threatening they think that hurting our physical image would stop us? But don’t be surprised, most of them will only see you for the curves on your body and your face. When they hear you speak things they do not want to hear, they wouldn’t be able to resist. Their reactions would be quite the sight, like animals in a circus. They will work day and night to find ways to tell you that you are wrong. Be watchful: different people deal with their insecurity of losing the grip on tradition in different ways. Some will do it furiously and some will just mansplain to you calmly. In the thick of it, no matter how passionate and angry things make you, stay above the fray and always treat others the way you would like to be treated. Never resort to personal attacks. Topple the game, not the players.

I want to build you a world where you will be treated equally, where my son and my daughter will have equal opportunity. I want my son to be called a great leader, a go-getter, and tough as much as my I don’t want my daughter to be called bossy, pushy, a bitch for doing exactly the same. I want my son to be cheered for his achievements as much as I don’t want my daughter to be hated for being successful. I want you to be born to world where you can speak your mind and not be threatened with acid for doing it, I don’t think that’s too much to ask for. But we are so far behind and I’m afraid you’ll have a lot of work left on your plate. But, you might be able to have the pleasure of building that world for your daughter. And the day you decide to, I hope you read this.

*Thisuri Wanniarachchi, 21, is the author of novels The Terrorist’s Daughter and Colombo Streets. She is Sri Lanka’s youngest State Literary Award winner and the world’s youngest national nominee to the prestigious Iowa International Writers’ Program. She is currently an undergraduate student and full scholar of Bennington College studying Political Economy and Education Reform.

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Latest comments

  • 27
    26

    Thank you, Thisuri. I really worry about the plight of women in Sri Lanka and moving forward. I have 2 daughters and it concerns me. But having incredible young and fearless women like you for them to look up to gives me hope. This is such an incredible read.

    Thank you for always speaking up.

    • 9
      14

      Thisuri

      Women have no place in Srilanka. They are marginalised or bullied out of any thing by the
      MALE CHAUVANISTIC SRILANKAN MEN, ok??
      When comparing to even India and Indian women our women are nowhere to be seen., leading due to chauvinism.
      Our women had been subdued by men within a household and outside the household.

      The other reason for Srilankan women taking the backseat is due to their family background.

      I may be wrong but the male chauvinism is a reason for educated women to get marginalised in Srilanka.
      Correct me if I am wrong!! I am open for criticism.

      • 9
        5

        “Correct me if I am wrong!! I am open for criticism.
        think upside down! Passion rules the world.

        first woman PM, First woman President, now world’s youngest national nominee.
        In a mans world that they have beaten even the smart western woman.

        I think over 90% of the citizens are left leaning racist so they have their own agenda and there are no statutory controls and some citizens are more than equals.
        Hillary politics will ruin woman further than promote.Most women did not nominate her before as they clearly saw thatcherism masquerading as liberal.

        • 5
          3

          The smartest family in the world Her majesty’s
          We spend £30 million per year on her dynasty and she brings back half a billion.

        • 3
          2

          Trunket,

          “First woman PM, First woman President”

          My foot. Total BS. There is no reason to be so proud of that. She was propelled from kitchen to Temple Trees. Cuz’ we South Asians love to worship families.

          That was not an achievement in terms of women’s emanicipation in Sri Lanka.

          Cheers!

          • 3
            1

            Ben Hurling,

            Passion rules the world as always kussia or kakkusia.

            Common candidate: When given the opportunity even you did not mind MR2 being elected.Why did you not think like an Aussie and say no confidence??

            Anyway,how about Hillary who ran away saying I give up politics and here once again.

            Passion mate passion.

            vote Donald for a better economy (both Xi and Putin like to work him because he says what the administration conceals)

    • 4
      4

      Thisuri . Teach your daughter the core values like honesty , decency and standing up to truth and justice . Your letter is full of doom and gloom which just poisons the mind of your daughter . Teach her to respect elders and speak for the weak and vulnerable . Ask her not to remain silent where there is injustices all over the world . Teach her to differentiate between righ and wrong intelligently .

  • 24
    31

    Madam Thisuri Wanniaarachchi:

    Your article shows that you are very inexperienced. You know very little about the life. You say, you are going to give every thing that your daughter wants. Reason, you did not get. Anyway, some children can take it. Others can not. The result they screw it up for them and therefore you, the parent, too.

    Then you talk about a few other things.

    To live like an Ethnic minority.
    To respect the “tradition”

    This shows that you are very inexperienced.

    Anyway, I show signs that one day you will grow up and until that talk BS.

  • 29
    33

    Teach your daughter that a majority living as a minority in their own homeland is the worst thing.
    Teach your daughter to learn what happened to the Fijis, what happened to the people of Hawai.
    Teach your daughter how the British subjugated Asian countries and destroyed the civilisation there. And how they took indian labour to many countries and altered the demographics for them to use.
    Teach your daughter how the indian migrants were used as a tool by India to take away the country from the natives of Fiji and Mauritius.
    Teach your daughter what happened to Bhutan and Nepal and how they are NOT sovereign states and why
    Teach your daughter how SL’s war began, how Dutch and British brought people here and how Vellalas tried to create their own private fiefdom.
    Teach your daughter how India financed war in SL..

    Otherwise your daughter too will be countryless gypsy who has no idea on what happened to her right to a motherland…and who is a simple tool at the hands of western NGOs

    And finally looking after and caring your loved ones in family is not a role put on you by others. That is part of being a woman..

    • 21
      21

      Sach:

      Fantastic.

    • 13
      11

      such the booby mercenary
      the greatest wisdom is like stupidity
      the greatest eloquence is like stuttering
      don’t be to smart with your plundered wealth.

    • 26
      18

      sachooooooooooooooooo the stupid II

      “Teach your daughter that a majority living as a minority in their own homeland is the worst thing.”

      I hate to agree with you. You are right, Sinhala, Tamil, Muslim, … majority will refused to live like a minority in a Sinhala/Buddhist ghetto. However the noisy Sinhala/Buddhist ghetto builders can go back to their ancestral land (North or South India) and carve out their ghetto in Bihar or Coromandel coast.

      “Teach your daughter to learn what happened to the Fijis, what happened to the people of Hawai.”

      Thisuri Wanniarachchi should teach you what happened to my people (the rightful owners of this island) over the past 2500 years of history.

      Thisuri Wanniarachchi please teach these stupid people how their Kallthonie ancestors (mostly from South India) came begging to this island and converted themselves to Sinhala/Buddhism.

      The recently converted Sinhalese Lascarins helped the Portuguese to capture the coastal areas of this island.

      Being the descendants of those Lascarins or the Vellaikkara padei of Erivirapattinam sach the stupid II, Jimmy, Somass, Nuisance the stupid I, ……. have been suffering from ancestral guilt.

      • 3
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        Everybody knows you are not a vaddha…so take ur opinion to someone who takes it seriously..in my case, i dont give a rat’s a$$ to what u say..

        • 8
          5

          sachooooooooooooooooo the stupid II

          “in my case, i dont give a rat’s a$$ to what u say..”

          We don’t either to yours.

          What is the difference between you and a knife?

        • 4
          3

          sach/sachet/holdall for modawanse.

          “i dont give a rat’s a$$ to what u say.. “

          that is because you loved the riches of the mercenary maha bodhi rat hole that carries a gun and get suit boot.

          Whey hay, keep chewing the boot sach!

          • 2
            6

            I dont have time for u..actual didnt even read what u both said

            • 3
              1

              sach stop fa’ting.
              reading has never been a problem for a school drop out like you as you have admitted and the cause of your trepidation.
              You never qualified even for free education at university.

              You don’t `understand` what you read because as you admitted you are a racist mercenary. You won’t last long till you get hounded by the very racist in your clan.

  • 13
    9

    Wow.

  • 17
    13

    More strength to your elbow Thisuri! Its wonderful seeing strong women who tell it like it should be told!Being the father of two beautiful, intelligent,independent young women, I’m glad I brought them up to be like that. They don’t need anyone to depend on because they have the life skills to survive. The likes of Jim Softy can go screw himself. He’s just a bigot,as his other writings show…

  • 19
    10

    Honestly speaking, I had a slight disagreement with your writing on the big match culture but I really respected your opinion since, as a man, how can I pass judgement on what patriarchy is. That being said, I was disgusted by the personal attacks carried out against you.

    You are a tremendous writer and I am glad that you continue to write. This piece is amazingly personal and something we can all relate to. I’m expecting my first daughter soon and I honestly echo your sentiments. Please keep writing and setting an example because it is so important for young women to change the game. Or else I fear what my daughter’s future will be like.

  • 5
    2

    Thisuri Wanniaarachchi:

    Art has made the modern man sex conscious; I have no doubt about it. It is hard to square this commercial exploitation of every part of woman’s body.
    Artist call it beauty, theatre goers call it art; only producers and managers honestly call it `sex appeal` and men generally have a good time.
    It is typical of a man- made and man-ruled society that women are stripped for commercial exploitation and men almost never, outside a few acrobats.

    What have Lanka women Sirma, Chandrika, Rosy done?? Opportunist, who became robber barons and are tying a string to the sun to be young,.

    [Edited out]

  • 7
    13

    One day, you might have a son (a great many sons).
    And he won’t be called a great leader,
    a go-getter, or cheered for his achievements.

    You’d love him all the same,
    You’d love him in spite of it,
    You’d strive to nurture, love, and protect,
    Giving reassurance, so direly needed.

    You’ll want to safeguard your son,
    From the harshness of ambition and brash success,
    And know that only from you, his mother,
    Can that confidence come from within his soul.

    And one day, your daughter might have to go to a foreign land,
    To be worked hard for so little a gratitude.
    And when she returns to her Motherland,
    She will kiss the ground on everything that she calls her home,
    Where her family resides,
    And their families before them,
    Giving meaning to that, which is called the Motherland.

  • 14
    9

    Thisuri, reading your letter, I feel what I have felt when reading the series of letter late Jawaharlal Nehru wrote to her daughter Indira Priyadarsini from his prison cell. I hope and pray that the conviction with which you write now should remain in you forever. Thank you.

    • 5
      2

      have you not read that he wanted that island in the south where dark people lived??
      aren’t lankans going to live that dream in the near future because of financial crisis??

  • 4
    23

    Madame Thisuri, congratulations. I did not know you’ve had the baby. Heck, I did not even know you were pregnant.

    I hope she is a bright thing, and I wish her well in this wonderful world with so much scope for doing good and having fun.

    I see a lot of angst in this writing. Take it easy.

    Better you return home and play the missionary. There is so much to do in our sunny island, you wouldn’t know where to start.

    Learning all these high falutin things in a foreign land is well and good, but home is where you are needed.

    Put this letter away. Give your daughter love and time and access to a good education.

    Now, read what that Mr Larkin wrote:

    They fuck you up, your mum and dad.
    They may not mean to, but they do.
    They fill you with the faults they had
    And add some extra, just for you.

    But they were fucked up in their turn
    By fools in old-style hats and coats,
    Who half the time were soppy-stern
    And half at one another’s throats.

    Man hands on misery to man.
    It deepens like a coastal shelf.
    Get out as early as you can,
    And don’t have any kids yourself.

  • 11
    10

    Heartening to see a powerful and moving piece by you yet again, Thisuri. At the end of the day, all we have is our optimism, idealism and hope for a better future. But in order to achieve this better reality, we must be willing to open our eyes to the problems of today. How can we ensure that our daughters, and their daughters after that, will be able to live in a Mother Lanka that respects and values them?

    Your piece is beautiful and truly captures how far we must go to build a better society

  • 12
    3

    dear Thisuri,
    Besides your daughter, I have also read this. It is good, Bensen

  • 15
    7

    These so called culture and traditions are a ton of bricks on a woman. These are imposed on women for the convenience of men.

    I went for a wedding and a speech was made. Some of the statements are

    ” Don’t let the smoke inside the house go outside” – If there is a problem, suffer in silence. Don’t go to a counselor. If you are beaten by a man never tell anyone.

    ” you must respect our culture”- what is our culture. Can some one explain how 2500 year great culture where half the kings were murdered by a relative in the most cruel way. Ruins we are proud of are built by slaves. We never see houses of ordinary folks in our ancient cities. It is where kings and the clergy lived.

    ” Respect your swamy purusha” There is no word about how the swamy purushya must treat their wives

    ” When the husband comes home treat him with a smile- (The bride at the wedding was a working wife-) No where it was told that he should also smile and share the household chores, as our tradition says women must always look pleasant despite all her household burden. Even if you work outside, she must do the housework. This is what is called tradition.Men are not obliged to be pleasant.

    Hats off to Thisuri.

    • 6
      1

      Bravo nicely put. Women hold up half the sky and it is time that we women make everyone aware of this fact

      • 3
        1

        In a western factory women cant lift a box but get equal pay and it seems that is what you trying.
        Behind every mans success there is a woman is true.
        So there is Ardhanarishvara to understand that shiva cannot function without his consort shathi.
        Good luck don’t create gays lesbians etc- it originates in the family because of neglect.

  • 12
    10

    Dear Thisuri, thanks a million. You give me hope that we can still dream of Srilanaka be a decent beautiful place where people can live with dignity speak loud and clear. People will follow. Best wishes Sajith

  • 12
    9

    Thisuri,

    Nice piece of writing!

    Geeze…. You are only 21 years old, enjoy your life before you saddle yourself with children.

    Don’t let other people’s constrains throttle your life and in turn constrain your children’s lives. To hell with other people, the society; you should define you, not others.

    You are — your life, and nothing else. A woman is what she wills herself to be.

    Not only women, everyone has problems with other people/society. That’s why some French dude said “l’enfer c’est les autres”

  • 11
    4

    ‘Travel the world, learn what it is like to live as an ethnic minority.’

    I like that line a lot. Her writing is poetic.

  • 2
    9

    There is only one God,and Prophet Mohamed is the messenger.
    Like Jesus/Moses/David/Solomon etc..
    For aithist what can I say, with the little and know knowledge u have,you determine
    No God. How foolish. Did u create your self. the perfect world,universe we live in.
    Take for instance the human eye , and compare it to a camaras, camaras is created which is so much low
    Technologically than the human eye.
    But camara is having a creator,eye there is no creator for aithist?

  • 14
    9

    Thisuri,

    Thanks for the good article. Is it addressed to your future son and daughter? If you already have a son and daughter, I can guess that you will make a good mother.

    Please teach your daughter to also take pride in her feminity. I meet many girls who wish they were males. This is wrong. All biological indicators show that the female form is more advanced in evolutionary terms. There are equal or more advanced than men in many parameters. Why then do they want to be males or behave like men ? Teach your daughter to give the men a good run on equal terms. Teach your daughter also that some men can be brutes and hence to take care of herself to avoid becoming a victim. Teach her that male behavior is a result of evolutionary development and that it will take a long time to change the brutish aspects of it. Teach her also that it is Testosterone and the male type of brain that makes him a male and this is a biological imperative. Teach your daughter that she has the female type of brain and is governed by female sex hormones, which dictate that she has the most responsible role in procreation.

    Teach your son to view females as his equals and respect them for what they are as humans. Teach him that he should not be a barbarian who takes advantage of his muscle mass. Teach him that bad behavior towards any female is an insult to his mother,sister, aunts, grandmothers and other female relatives. Remind him always that he was born of a female and was nursed and nurtured by her. Teach him that he has to manage the effects of testosterone, with his intellect.

    Please also teach your son and daughter that the male is biologically a modified female.

    Dr. Rajasingham Narendran

    • 5
      3

      Dr. Rajasingham

      I always appreciate your comments. Among the internet warriors you stand above. But what you do not understand is that the girls tried to be boys, in this patriarchal society as it is the men who exert power.

      You are also excusing men for their brutish behaviour by implying that it is nature and they are born like that.

      “Please also teach your son and daughter that the male is biologically a modified female.” What do you mean by this and what is the implication for male, female relationship.

      • 4
        2

        “You are also excusing men for their brutish behaviour by implying that it is nature and they are born like that.”

        there is no excuse but civilized folk are reasonable and law of the west circles around it.

        If you like to review your past and why sinhala buddhist behaved like brutes in 83 read Aesops Fables, Gulliver’s travels they are valid till 4000AD.

        Now your passport has no value because sinhala buddhist have not understood the importance of living reasonably in a changing world which nomads understand better.
        Why is it that the Japanese don’t have a Gautama in Zen Buddhism??
        When you travel from young days you realise that your language and your culture is not the only and the perils you face even in Asia. You don’t find this in books alone because it is changing all the time like your PC communication.The west leads the world because of technology and communication. Be reasonable and the world is yours Buddha or no buddha.

      • 6
        4

        Maali Karunaratne,

        Thanks.

        The scientific finding that ‘ Man is a modified female’ is an antidote to male chauvinism. It also turns on its head the belief that Eve was created from Adam’s rib!

        Modern genetics also shows that habits with time become part of our genetic make up. The ‘Hunter Gathherer’ and ‘ Dominence role’ assigned to the males is part of our evolutionary history. It is now part of the male genetic makeup. This genetic makeup when interacting the environment- in this instance the social mileu-is either manifested fully, mitigated or subdued. It is being both mitigated and subdued right now. The male is in the process of change as much as the female is. However much the male may resist changing, he ultimately has to change. His daughters are a daily household challenge! One can deal with a dominance aspiring wife, but not a daughter with the same aspirations! He will change and as a result his genetic disposition will change. Challenge the male, but do not condemn him. Further, females should not try to imitate the males and envy the males. The alternative to male dominance is not female dominance. Do not try to render the male effeminate and in the procees do not try to become the male you condemn now.

        Embryological development and the early secretion of sex hormones also modify the initial sex neutral brain into male and females types. This makes the male and females different and from what I know is advantageous to the female in playing her reproductive role and coping with the associated stress. The man is a weakling when viewed in this context.

        Let us be equal partners in life with complementary, supplementary and specialized roles. This is the new evolutionary path that is emerging.

        I take much meaning from the Siva-Sakthy concept in Hinduism. Siva is the male and Sakthi is the female and are each 50 % of the whole. Siva is also the form and Sakthi, the function. In the conceptualized statue of ‘Siva-Sakthi’ one half is male and the other half is female. There cannot be greater equality than accorded to the female through this conceptualization of a Supreme God, by ancient Hindus of the Indian subcontinent.

        Dr.RN

    • 8
      5

      I agree with your assessment. This world will never work unless we understand the values impregnated by nature to both man and woman. Buddhism gives us a very important example to follow. Maitri Buddha the buddha of compassion created a woman bodhisattva called Tara from his tear to become the female bodhisattva of compassion. They worked together. It is said that to achieve Nirvana or absolute wisdom you have to practice both the principals of a woman and a man. Equality of man and a woman is a western thought process that is anti nature. Let us all celebrate the nature of both men and women and only then will we be able to achieve the best in humanity. Society must move away from this division .

  • 7
    8

    Thisuri since you belong to the majority community teach your daughter not to belong “to a majority community with a minority complex”.
    Further teach her to dress modestly without adorning exposing attires,make up etc just to entice the opposite sex.

    Finally tell her to take up professions that will give her plenty of time to spend at home so as to guide the children she bears.When we were kids our mums were there to receive us when we return from school and also monitor our movements. Nowadays children come to empty homes with both the parents at work and then they join their friends and indulge in many vices like drugs,etc since there is no parental supervision.Further when these parents come home late in the evening they are so worn out that they have no time to spend on the children but merely hit the sack and also become quarellsome due to the stress in their workplaces thereby setting a bad example for growing up kids.

  • 10
    9

    Hello Thisuri Wanniarachchi,

    You have written, and written well, on a topic that draws the interest of both men and women.

    At age 21, you achievements stand out. Your article foretells that your successes will continue and multiply.

    Now, let me focus on your theme. You, for reasons stated in your write up and more, consider that women are a marginalised lot. You are convinced that women are oppressed in the society.

    I am myself oppressed, – on a different level; for a different reason. I state this to show that I can empathize with you.

    My empathy need not lead me to blindly accept what you have stated.

    My overall view is that your lamentation, though genuine, is without cause or merit. Your freedom is in your hands. Your shackles can be ripped apart by sheer will. Not mine.

    Your main thrust is against traditions, – traditional values, opinions, and judgements.

    Traditions are continuing practices, nothing else. The world is ever changing. New practices take hold. Old practces get swept away.

    That is to say that your worries ‘may’ cease, even without your effort. Not mine.

    What are practices. Practices are ways and means of dealing with a situation. Some borne by nature; some by men. Your concerns are a mix of both.

    You may fight against men. Do not fight against nature.

    Some of the curses women face are fundamentals of life. I wouldn’t fight against them. They are God’s plan. They are there for a valid purpose.

    Just a sampling, of your worries.

    ‘women are taught to appreciate their traditional role in the household, to take pride in their cooking and housekeeping skills, in being “the good wife.” Women, too, are often taught to feel the need to defend the acts of men, performed solely to feed their sense of entitlement’.

    Cooking. Sense of Entitlement. Do they go hand in hand? I don’t think so.

    Women cooking for men and children was a practice. Men hunt; women nest!

    Do you consider cooking harder than hunting? Go hunting. Let man do the cooking. (Nowadays, cooking is a shared chore).

    Nesting is a nature’s decision. Do not complain against it. Entitlement is not a tradition. It is not a standard behaviour. It is how some men profess their strength, to hide their weakness. Shun them.

    Let your daughter grow with an open mind. Don’t feed you thinking to her. Teach her how to reason; teach her how to analyse; teach her how to value nature; teach her how to appreciate life. Things will fall in place.

    You are welcome to argue against me. But, don’t make arguing a habit.

    Good luck.

  • 9
    5

    Hopefully by the time you really have kids, you will experience other issues too.This is a nice essay and probably will form part of your senior thesis given that you are training to be a writer; But it is amazing that you are at the MOST EXPENSIVE PRIVATE SCHOOL IN THE USA. Bennington.

    THE FIRST Sri Lankan to go to Bennington went there ONLY in 1984 on a full scholarship from the Church.

    So you have to be really really wealthy, and from an elitist family to go there or living in the USA and writing as if you are from a middle class family in Sri Lanka. If that were the case, you have not experienced single parenthood, welfare in the USA or shuttling real work, daycare and home where we women still do the cooking and are expected to wait on our husbands who also work. VERY RARELY will you find an enlightened family where the husband does household work, do homework with kids, cook etc. The woman is STILL the main person who does everything while working too.

    Word of caution if you are an F-1 student there aren’t really any good jobs for you in the USA after you graduate. English graduates are dime a dozen. Even from an elite school, then you have to limit yourself to graduate work and perhaps a PhD. That will get you about $45,000 to $60,000 as an Assistant untenured professor. So I hope someone is really rich or you did get a fullride scholarship to attend the most expensive and incredibly prestigious Bennington. OR perhaps a parent or grandparent is a politician in SL or a Military commander who made off like a bandit. A bit of clarification might help me erase my cynicism while it is kudos for getting there.

    I doubt if you ever experienced the humiliation of being on SNAP (check on what it means) and having to stand in line for part time jobs even with a degree in Psychology. English degree holders end up at McDonalds a lot too or at the best being in advertizing as script writers etc.

    My advice to you: GET YOUR PHD and then go back and serve SL because you have an incredible passion.

    Did you go to International School in SL if you really were from SL?

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      7

      Father is an Army Brigadier from MR times ;)

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        2

        No wonder Political Economics.
        Till Elton John exposed the Spice Girls the world at large never knew but it came too late and yet they wriggled along.
        Lets see brigadier have a book reviewed in the liberal New Republic where publishers meet.

    • 2
      1

      Kristina,
      ” to attend the most expensive and incredibly prestigious Bennington. ” vincent Raj Boot is dead.

      According to US rankings (look up the web) why is it 93rd?
      Almost all those private arts schools in the rankings are in the $50k-60K

    • 3
      0

      Kristina:

      Here is the link to US Arts schools rankings and fees.

      http://colleges.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com/best-colleges/rankings/national-liberal-arts-colleges/page+9

      #93
      Tie
      Bennington College
      Bennington, VT

      Bennington College was established in 1932 as a private institution. Bennington College follows a semester-based academic calendar and its admissions are considered more selective.

  • 6
    6

    Nicely written with lots of passion. Sadly in the US minorities were brutalized and savaged for a long time.

    In fact until 1967 in the former slave state’s a marriage between whites and colored including you was illegal. Like Hindu Tamil casteism, blacks were not allowed equal access, equal seating, equal rights or voting by law. To this date black Americans have to fight more police brutality. Single mothers struggling to make a living on minimum wage jobs, deadbeat fathers, racist society, lack of access to clean safe water, drugs , poverty, terrible schools etc. Blacks were treated far worse by law. Terrorised and browbeaten etc.,

    • 5
      2

      “Like Hindu Tamil casteism,”
      your ancestors came to the island and associated with portugese fascist who were out to kill the muslims because they were ruled 800 years and sex slavery was the norm.
      they demanded that all muslims be killed at kerala. portugese promoted casteism to colombo (salagama only) and thanks to the kandyan king they were driven away by the dutch….

      before you talk of others know who you are starting from DNA.

      casteism is not a religious thing but occupational thing.- bread and butter.
      you don’t understand india where your original forefathers come from.

  • 8
    3

    We cannot be part of a world where men dress their wives as prostitutes by showing everything that should be cherished. Where there is no concept of honour and dignity, and one can only rely on those when they say “I promise” Where women do not want children and men don’t want a family. Where the suckers believe themselves to be successful behind the wheel of their fathers’ cars, and a father who has a little bit of power is trying to prove to you that you’re a nobody.
    Where people falsely declare that they believe in God with a shot of alcohol in their hand and lack of any understanding of their religion. Where the concept of jealously is considered shameful and modesty is a disadvantage. Where people forgot about love, but simply looking for best partner.
    Where people repair every rustle of their car, not sparing any money nor time, and themselves, they look so poor that only an expensive car can hide it. Where the boys waste their parents money in nightclubs, aping under the primitive sounds, and girls fall in love with for this.
    Where men and women are no longer ago identifiable and where all this together is called freedom of choice, but for those who choose a different path-get branded as retarded despots. I choose my path, but it’s a pity that I did not find similar understanding in the people among whom I wished to find it most of all.

    Keanu Reeves is a famous actor, producer, director and the statement is attributed to him

  • 3
    4

    Is it true your father was a Brigadier ?How does a Brigadier send his daughter to the most expensive private school in the USA to study political economy etc?(useless fields where it is hard to get jobs)unlike in STEM careers.

    The annual total list price cost to go to Bennington was $61,319 for the 2014/2015 academic year. The cost is the same for all students regardless of Vermont residence status as there is no in-state discount. Undergraduate Tuition.

    Tuition alone for Bennington College is $46,048 for the 2014/2015 academic year.

    Where is the money coming from? Did you get a fullride scholarship from the Church? Answer these because you sound so elitist and removed. You are a child who writes well but you have no kids. You have not changed diapers, suffered when a kid has to be taken to an ER at 2:00am and do not have Obamacare or any private health insurance. You have to wait a long time when white people look the other way. etc

    Again, tell me where and how you got the tuition money when a parent with 3 kids living in the US loses her health insurance with layoffs because of downward spiraling oil prices has to take his african american mixed kids to hospital.

    • 4
      1

      In none of her articles on CT has she posted a comment like some honest folk do because data from comments can be gathered without work- easy peachy. [Edited out]

  • 4
    3

    Have you experienced poverty?
    Have you cleaned toilets like I have in the USA to make a living while supporting 3 kids ?
    What do you know of need and poverty?
    Were you on welfare?
    Was you kid born on Medicaid because of low income levels?

    • 5
      1

      CT is also involved in the coverup…Cheeee.
      Cheap stuff 21 is an adult.

  • 4
    1

    Part of the article is naive as only a tiny fraction of the people of the world can have what she desires for ‘her child’. Gender equality is inseparable from social equality.
    But the points about male chauvinism operating via tradition and our intolerance towards non-conventional sexuality need to be said, and have been said well.

    The comments reveal that the Sri Lankan males are still mostly an incorrigible bunch of MCPs.

  • 3
    0

    Poisoned Ivy. Period.

  • 1
    6

    Thisuri,

    May be life had been harsh on you. It may have deprived you certain things, we all have, may be you are just so mean on those at personal level. And may be here you too yourself drag in to the same coffin as far sighted women, when you can be an intelligent soul. I am actually bit saddened and surprised too by the tone of your rant.

    And I wonder why you plant so much negativity seeds into your child’s, when you can hug her with warm positive values of man-kind and treat life’s as it is with core values.

    If you take a balanced view. Sri Lankan society is one of the most forgiving place for gender equality. Specially compared to some mean extremist societies we have seen elsewhere. Also we have multi ethnic cultures that have their own values carried on generations, even in the merciless and troublesome seasons of times.

    Generally often the safety of our public values in our land has questionable moments, true, but it is not as much as women or gender specific one as you may try to elaborate with your personal views or experiences.

    The politics are being played everywhere, but women have been and still have very respectable place as Amma figure in our society, and they always had being on far with any male counterpart, whether in jobs, post or society layers, even as leaders and head of states.

    So teach your little to take it as human core values at questions, without filling her head with some gender discrimination crap or push her into some monologian isolated camp.

    It’s the best you can give her as her mother, or you are doing a harm more than you help her.

    Cheers!

    It’s your move.

  • 1
    2

    Teach your daughter to be a ‘good girl’/virgin until she gets married. Teach her to be a excellent wife and a Mother.
    Teach her cooking, cleaning the house, and managing other household chores.
    And DON’T teach unnatural, disgusting LGBT nonsense.

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