What is it to be a young Asian woman today?

Friday 28 August 2015

sophie2Coming from an Asian background, when I was a teenager, if I wanted to go out I had to ask a week or so in advance.  After lengthy questioning of who I was going with, where, what we are going to do and what time... I then needed to wait a couple of days before the verdict was given. On the day, it was endless calls and asking my brother if he would like to join me too! However, when my brother asked to go out, that was not a problem. Usually he didn't even ask for permission!

Shouldn't my brother go through the same process I went through?  Why this different treatment? When a colleague of mine was offered a PhD at a renowned university, her parents didn't allow her to go because who would marry her if she has too many qualifications? Yet, when her brother wanted to do a PhD that wasn't a problem! Why was she denied higher education and me my freedom? I know why. Because we are girls!

I have a daughter and a son and when they grow up, they won't have different rules! I want my daughter to grow up in a family where she sees the same treatment given to her as her brother regardless of gender!  I want my son to grow up knowing that females are equal to men!

As young women, we are or will be raising the next generation sooner or later. Whether you have a son or daughter, teach them the same rules and stick by them! Never say "because you are a girl, you can't do this". Teach your daughters self-respect and teach your sons to respect. Raise them right and raise them equally. You'll be amazed at what inspiring people they’ll become!

I was ready to take my own life but then something amazing happened 6 years ago, my daughter, and this was the reason why, with no family/friends support, people criticising me, I decided to go to uni and now have a career! Everyone had a dream when they were little whether girl or boy! We, young women are a powerful resource and we need to show everyone that despite what life throws at us, we can still live our dreams! So go on, what are you waiting for?