Family, India, Parenting

Boy vs Girl – does it really matter?

In 2021, the birth of a boy or a girl should not matter. But it does even today. India being a highly patriarchal society, the birth of a boy is still welcomed and the birth of a girl still evokes confusing feelings(even in bigger cities)

Bringing up, boys and girls – is it any different?

We mostly hear the cliched expressions “girls are easier to bring up” or “boys are easier to bring up” – but having a son and daughter, I have not seen any differences in the easier vs harder part!! Both of them were hard in some ways when they were young and both of them have been easy in some ways too. It is just that their personalities were that way.

Some kids just might be having more energy and might feel like bouncing off the walls 🙂 🙂 (but that is just a “child” thing to do and nothing to do with being a “boy” or “girl”, is what I feel!! 🙂 )

Educating them: Should it be different?

Coming from a family with no brothers, I have never seen my parents having any confusing feelings about bringing us up. We were given all opportunities as any son in the world. We were encouraged to study and always do our best all through school and college ( and I don’t mind studying even today! :)) We did all the professional degree courses and were encouraged to never shy away from studying.

Again, having a son and daughter, I have never shied away from giving the same educational opportunities to both of them (and even if I remotely thought about such a thing, somebody would have definitely shredded me!! 🙂 :)) Ultimately, it is their interest and choice.

Other things: should girls or boys be given different treatment?

My parents never shied away from keeping us away from this or that. We were always encouraged to do anything and everything. I could drive, stay away from home and study in a hostel, learn to play all sports in the world, travel and go on long trips with school/college friends and more. Ultimately, my parents knew that life will happen and we cannot stay protected in a cocoon all the time.

But dangers do lurk everywhere and we were always taught the importance of safety and how to recognize dangers anywhere. So, it is always wise to make the kids understand the risks before giving them the wings to fly.

So, then, why is a boy child still welcomed? Is it

  1. Because they carry the family name forward? (Lucky, us from Tamil Nadu , we don’t have surnames at all, we just use husband’s name or father’s name as our last name :), so, technically, in Tamil Nadu – they should not worry when a girl is born 🙂 🙂 )

2. Is it because, the wealth and other property assets were originally only given to boys ?

That has been altered, now, I think.

3. Is it because originally, sons stayed back as a joint family system?

That also has changed in most families with time. Now anybody stays with parents, – whether it is the son or daughter.

4. Is it because, mostly the sons were the primary bread winners in their house?

Again, that too has changed with the passage of time. Now, girls are equally well educated and can earn well to support their parents or anybody else!

So, what else is the reason for the society to favor boys more than girls? (at least in big cities) Any thoughts?

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