Growing up and living with feminine beings!

I grew up in Kolkata in the 60s and 70s, i.e. as a child and as a teenager stepping into youth. I grew up with the same middle class values like all others, went through similar experiences like all others, i.e. similar pangs of first crush, first rejection, worries and anxieties about future, dreams and wishes about life in general …. Life, then, took it’s own turn for me and I went with the flow or rather was washed away by the storm and held onto straws for survival. Survive I did, rather well I must say, and went onto living a fulfilling life from many aspects. What also happened during this period is that without my conscious understanding, I ended up swallowing the perfect patriarchal model of “man” and “woman”, though I did view myself as a rebel and a high achiever. What I did not notice was that internally I judged myself and everyone else through the same

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Finding relief in grief

Yesterday M, our domestic help came a little late to work. Her eyes were puffy and her expressions were sombre. When I asked her what happened, she said that her neighbour had just passed away in the morning, leaving his three little children orphaned. She remained preoccupied the whole day and from time to time, talked about how much she cried. She also spoke over the phone to her other neighbours with an urgency to get back, and she left early. Usually, when I observe people like M and others, I see that there is a great sense of community that prevails among people like her, especially when they are in grief, etc. Everyone comes together, be with the bereaved person, helpful or otherwise; a bit different from the affluent middle class where once your apartment door is shut, you live in your isolated world without any touch with your neighbours. Yesterday, as I watched M being absorbed in the

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