Dear Ammis and Abbus of us Pakistani girls,
First and foremost, we love you truly madly deeply! Thanks for giving us a loving childhood. Thanks for investing in our education. Thanks for driving us from one activity/tuition to the other so that we can ace our Intermediate/A levels exams and get into the best universities. Thanks for encouraging us to pursue our dreams and letting us belief that we can achieve them. Thanks for enabling us to become independent, both emotionally and financially, so that we don’t have to go through the dependencies and struggles the women of the generations before had to. Thanks for treating us the same as our brothers, probably a tad bit more.
Thanks for all of this and so much more! But, Pyaray Ammis and Abbus, why then are you reluctant when that very same daughter wants to give you her first (or more) earnings as a gift? Why then do you think its unthinkable that the very same daughter can be your ‘burhapay ka sahara’ alongwith your sons? Why then do you feel it’s not quite right to visit and live with that very same daughter in her house (with her husband)? Why do you subconsciously still have that “beti k ghar ka paani nahi peetay” and “beti ki kamaee” tabboos at the back of your minds?
When you didn’t care about “log kia kahenge” when it was a case of enabling your daughters then why believe in this old-school rotten thought which has caused more harm to our society than good. Why, by doing so, do you want to indirectly support the notion that sons are eventually more important in the family equation than daughters?
I know it’s easier said than done. I know that your generation has already broken a lot of moulds when it comes to your daughters and it’s not easy to shed this mentality entrenched in our society over generations and changes happen slowly but consider this a humble request from all the daughters of Pakistan. The next time you visit your daughter or she wants to contribute financially, emotionally, physically in your life, whether you need it or not, accept it with the same Haq you exercise over your sons. Then only the phrase ‘betay betian baraber hain’ will start bearing any substantial weight.
A Loving Pakistani Beti