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The ability to applaud women for their success and forging new paths is important

CultureThe ability to applaud women for their success and forging new paths is important

When Lalit K Modi announced he was with Sushmita Sen on his Instagram, social media was up-in-arms calling the ex-Miss Universe everything from gold digger to someone who was making a stupid decision. But the smart and stylish diva had a perfect comeback to the trolls and the news died down in a week. Sushmita is someone who has always followed her own path and there are many other women like her in the film industry.
Cut to south star South star Samantha who allegedly demanded a whopping alimony during her divorce to Naga Chaitanya but the truth is she is a very successful person in her own right. Hailing from a middle-class family, their financial struggle is something she has widely spoken about and she has worked her way up to becoming successful through the ups and downs in her career. When the divorce was announced, she faced a lot of trolling on social media and was accused of breaking up the marriage. Even Sridevi, who went from being the top star in south India to ruling Bollywood, received her share of negative talk when she married Boney Kapoor in 1996. She gave up acting and focused on raising her children but the talk around her marriage would have definitely affected her.
Now why do women celebs, who are financially independent, get trolled and held up to a higher standard when it comes to their personal choices? The same is not expected from their male counterparts, many of whom get away with doing worse things. No matter how much we have progressed as a nation and society, there is still a section of society that clings on to the patriarchal mindset believing that a woman’s place is in the home looking after her husband and kids. Those who challenge these traditional values and culture and try to make their own happiness with a different outlook are looked down upon – whether they are normal human beings or celebs. And since celebs are in the limelight constantly, they get more of the flak than they really deserve. Life is not easy for many women in the film industry, especially when they don’t hail from a filmy family or have a godfather. The sacrifices these actresses make to take care of their loved ones and to secure a good future for themselves has to be commended rather than abused, humiliated and vilified. The inner reality of their lives is something no one but they will ever be privy to and no matter how much people want to speculate, we will never know the truth.
Change in attitudes is extremely important not just in society but within the film industry as well. A woman wearing a sexy dress should be seen as just that rather than call for preconceived notions about the person or a means to judge them. Women shouldn’t be objectified and vilified for those choices – this is a fundamental problem that exists across the world.
Today, women celebs have been idols to many young girls who have shown them that hard work can bring success and you can achieve your dreams. Many actresses have become stars, gotten married, raised a family and come back to the acting world. Others have continued to act or turned entrepreneurs while raising their family successfully. Women like Sushmita have chosen to adopt and raise a family leaving behind the idea that marriage is mandatory.
Women on screen and off screen are changing and changing the world – just as men are. There are innumerable choices available for men and women today in all walks of life and if a man can make a choice that suits him, then a woman has the equal right and opportunity as well. The ability to appreciate this fact and applaud women for their success and forging new paths is important – on screen and off screen.

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