‘I’m the only girl in the class’: Why my classmates don’t like me
I was sitting with some of my friends in a small cafe in the southern city of Chennai when I got the shock of my life.
I was not the only one.
For weeks, I had been telling my classmates that I was the only person in the entire class who was studying hard and keeping her mind off the stresses of the day.
“I feel like my life is ruined.
I can’t even watch TV, let alone read news,” I said, shaking my head.
“My friends and family tell me that I’m doing better than the rest of the class and that I have made the grade,” I added, struggling to keep my voice level.
I told my friends that I had gone through hell to get here.
In other words, I was making a big mistake.
The idea of being a woman in India was one that had been on my mind since I was a young child.
For me, it was a profound and emotional issue that I would never forget.
For many, it also meant that my body was not my own.
I had long considered my body to be my own property.
The concept of a woman’s body as her own property had been something that had dominated the feminist movement in India for decades.
In the 1950s, feminist groups were pushing for the right to own property, a right that many believed was essential to women’s liberation.
This idea of women owning their bodies was not an idea that I took for granted.
But, at the same time, I felt that this notion was wrong, that it was not based on equality, and that it had a negative impact on women’s health.
I thought about this for many days as I studied the health issues of women in India.
I realised that my family had come from a very poor and backward caste in rural Gujarat, and my mother was the first of our family to be educated.
She did not take education for granted and was fiercely proud of it.
Even as a child, my mother had never heard of a polio vaccine, and she had never even heard of breast cancer.
Her life was a living hell.
I remember her asking me, “How can you say that a woman can do anything if you’re a poor woman?”
And I replied, “Because if I can, why can’t you?”
And she replied, and I could not help but smile at that, “You are a woman after all.”
As a child I was raised by a single mother.
I learned to read and write, and when I was 16, I completed my first post-graduate degree.
I worked as a maid and then in a shoe shop, but I was still a child at heart.
At the time, when my father was working for a big oil company, I did not think of my future.
I only thought of how to provide for my family and how to pay the bills.
I did what I could to be able to give my parents an income, but my education was all I could afford.
My mother was also working, so my father did not have much to spend on me.
So, even as a young girl, I began to think that I could have a career in my father’s business.
Then, when I entered the university, my family moved to a new town in Kerala.
I stayed with my father in the house I shared with him and we used to watch television together.
In fact, he would sometimes send me to his office to help him out with work.
But I was in such a bad mood that I wanted to get rid of my father, so I left the house and went to work for the company I worked for.
As I worked there, I realised that I did have something to offer.
I realised the beauty of the job.
And my mother also realised that it made me feel good.
I even started to feel good about myself, feeling that I am different from other women.
However, as I grew older, I found that I needed to take responsibility for my life and work.
I felt guilty because my father had paid me so much, but that was not enough.
I needed money too.
And I needed a job too.
The first job that I found was as a domestic helper.
I made about $2 a day and lived on that income for two years.
But my mother, who had never taught me to work, took my salary and gave it to me as a dowry.
My mother had a bad relationship with my younger brother.
But she was always there for me.
And at one point, she even took him to her home to stay with her.
My father was always very strict with my mother.
He even called her a whore if she talked to anyone other than her mother.
But this was the time when I started to realise that my mother’s relationship with me was not that bad.
It was a very good relationship.
My parents even taught