Community Update

World Pulse Toolkits Available!

At World Pulse, we recognize the need for ongoing learning—for you and for your community! Our toolkits are all available here.

We are especially excited to share our signature Citizen Journalism and Digital Empowerment Curriculum. Start learning today!

Big sister or Big annoyance!!

Held back and held tight by your countless unforgivable mistakes that can define your future is what I have feared the most. Young as we are now so are our mistakes. We may be strong to fight against any forces that come by to intrude our smooth sailing; either accompanied by our hot boiling temper or the utmost urge to speak our minds aloud. The bitter truth remains that we are still young and we have a lot more to learn. We are as vulnerable to being brain-washed to thinking the opposite as we are to fall on our own dug up pits. Most of our younger years are spent with our friends who seem like the only sane people who make sense to us. That’s why we absolutely loathe attending social gatherings or family meetings. By the time we turned to our wonderful pre-teens, we somehow would have made our own little world of chaos and order that would grow too fast and forward into us. We have so much enthusiasm and strength in us; it’s inevitable that we thrive to be different. I recollect myself having quite a few ambitions and one of them was not to be like everybody else. I always thought my parents were living the life of some bygone eras hence wondered why put such ground to the usual and “boring” rules of this “boring” society. Little that I knew that we were all bound to change as the time would pass by. I understood that time wasn’t the factor that changed a person; it was the society and the circumstances that would change everything.
I have a very “interestingly enough destined to be disappointed” cousin who lives by his own rules and thinks of his life to be different than those with whom he has encountered so far. As much as I have respect for his individuality and try to put my faith on him that one day he would prove me wrong, he is heading towards the same tunnel where I went through. Our disagreement for each other’s opinion is what actually binds us together and we do have respect for our endless quarrels. He and I are the perfect examples of that single thread that ties two generations and which is seeing the possibility and the impossibility of life that can happen despite what others think. He is a boy of 17 yrs of age and I am his big sister of 24 yrs of age. I am supposed to guide him through the not-so-far years of his life that I as the elder one have just been through. He sees the world from his good eye while I see it through an experienced eye, well! Experienced than his. I try to make sense of his situation while he wants the situation to make sense. He always questions the convention of people’s behavior and deems it stupidity. I understand his rebellion to think differently and his urge to act by his own accord; however, he does not or will not understand the forces of the factors that lead to these people to behave as such. I share my own stories of failure and success, moreover, my perspective on the convention of things to him, he agrees for a second and lets his rebellious voice barge in that says “I’ll never be like them in this life time”.
I will not say that he hasn’t a clue of what hardship is or what matters the most in life. He is quite aware of his morals that he abides by but fails to comprehend that some mistakes can’t be undone. He has been through some tough situations that could have made a great impact in his future. All that gut and spirits need to be let out for a youngster to feel like a youngster somehow, doesn’t it? Although we live two different lives as one being of a girl’s and another of a boy’s, there is quite a certain possibility that he would end up just like me; someone who had so much life in her to someone who feels like it’s enough that she is fighting with whatever she has. I root for the latter and hope that he would not be the victim of this cruel conservative society that we have been calling our cultural norms. I as a teenager was him, I’m afraid to admit that he as a 24 yr old would be me!! However, with a little bit of twist. His life wouldn’t be as suppressed as mine but in a different way. A girl like me in a society like mine always has a compressed conserved story to tell. A man’s life no matter how educated or not he may be, he’s always more valued because he is always thought to be the bread bringer. Although, our country has changed a lot in a very short period of time, individually as women realize, the tradition still follows even in the most literate societies. Having said all this, men have their own difficulties to solve and so have us. There have been many discussions that I have had with my cousin about the relations that we have with our society. I tell him that we need to respect our society like we need to respect our enemies. No matter how much it infuriates him to listen to what others have to say about his lifestyle, he needs to at least acknowledge that the society was there when we were kids and is here now and will be here with us as we grow older. There were many instances that I had experienced that tested the very root of my gender and I had to resolve those events in the most diplomatic way possible because it’s very hard to convince a conservative person. As I share the event with him and advice him to act wisely if such situations ever arise in front of him, he fiercely points out the stupidity of people and again blames everybody for being as they are. It’s quite comforting sometimes to hear someone younger than you putting such hatred towards the difficulties that one has to face because of one’s gender. He is a very good boy to be able to understand the difference between what’s right and what’s wrong. However, he is still young and very immature.
He thinks that I am one BIG BUNDLE OF BOREDOM, “the fun ruiner” which is quite understandable for me because whenever he would want us to have some fun; I would somehow be up to my neck with my endless works. That’s the difference that he doesn’t get. He is in that stage of his life where he doesn’t have to care about a single soul, not even has to acknowledge that the society might sometimes disapprove and think him very wrong. But it’s the stage that he would have to grow out of and as saddening as it may seem, at the other end of his tunnel, there’s someone like me or far worse waiting for him. There are more pressing problems in life that he would have to acknowledge once he steps out of his teen spirit. I do not say all this as an expert of any field at all. I am only putting light to this issue through my poor perspective; the world as I see it now and the world which he sees it today. Whenever I shared my difficulties and the critics that so profoundly affected my thinking, his reaction would be so blunt and as easy-going as dusting off a chair. His lack of interpretation of problems quite obviously reminds me of myself. Therefore, I try to broaden his mind a little bit but obviously I feel like I am doing everything wrong. I should let the nature take its course. He would stand on his own from his own mistakes. I believe in this phrase strongly as the matter of fact. I would have bloated if someone was there who constantly reminded and quarreled with me that I am still young and I don’t know any better, which is what I am for him unfortunately.
When I was a 17 yr old girl, he was a very young boy who was very hyper-active and loved being with us. He still reminds me of my cruel doings to him. He says that he really looked up to us and waited for us to come to our uncle’s home so that we could play endlessly. However, he also says that I used to really ignore him which is quite true. For me, he portrait an annoying little child who followed me around all day long when I just wanted him to grow up fast and get busy with his own life. I do sound like an insensitive big sister and I wouldn’t deny that I wasn’t. But all I have to say in my defense is that I was where he is now and was just introduced to what life is like being around friends a lot and always hanging out with them. It’s quite an amusing story to tell. History repeating!! As I would like to phrase! (LOLz). Still now like we used to, we always try to emotionally (hypothetically that is) black mail each other. I would nag at him for not respecting my opinion and accuse him for not treating me like his big sister which usually worked whenever I wanted him to bring me something while I lied down lazily in bed. Not any more does that happen, he now accuses me that I don’t love him as my little cousin and I have never cared for him at all but obviously I assume that he says it to annoy me.
But my question is what happens to a youngster who was bounded tight by society. With respect to my question, I am trying to bring front to the fact that one needs to be rebellious to understand your own mistakes. Mistakes do change us, sometimes for the better and sometimes for worse. Having said that, I have no choice but to admit that life is what would seem like that happened. I could only be his big sister and not his mentor. I would try to be a good sister to him as long as I am here. But he would have to figure out his own life like I am doing so far. It is true that one must learn their values and understand the limits to which we can go but in the end, I think we should take life as it comes and make the best out of things.

Magazine »

Read global coverage through women's eyes

Letters to a Better World

Letters to a Better World

Campaigns »

Be heard at influential forums

WWW: Women Weave the Web

WWW: Women Weave the Web

Programs »

Help us train women citizen journalists

World Pulse Voices of Our Future

World Pulse Voices of Our Future

Blog »

Read the latest from World Pulse headquarters

World Pulse Launches our Inaugural Community Advisory Board!

World Pulse Launches our Inaugural Community Advisory Board!

Partners »

Join forces with our wide network of partners

Nobel Women's Initiative

Nobel Women's Initiative