Growing Beyond The Social Norms – It’s Time To Wake Up!!


We grow up with a lot of social norms that are ingrained in our minds since childhood. Times are changing and yet some of these ‘norms’ are still going strong and are prevalent in the society. It is time that we come out of this restricted thought process and widen our horizons to assimilate new trends.

Let us look at certain aspects of the society which need to change –

Sports is not a career, academics is!

Ever wondered why we do not have enough sportsmen and sportswomen in our country? Is it just because of the lack of infrastructure or is it also because we give more importance to academics in our education system? We play sports as just one small part of our curriculum but not as a career option. We have been told to focus only on academics from a career perspective and keep sports as a hobby or recreational activity.

Isn’t it time that we get out of this orthodox set up and have more Saina Nehwals, Ritu Ranis, Kaustubh Radkars, Ashwini Waskars and Vijender Singhs?

Social Norms 1

Fair is Beautiful 

Did you know the fairness cream market has a turnover of almost INR 3,000 crore in India? Since childhood, we keep on telling our not very fair kids to use fairness creams and choose dress colors that brighten the skin tone.  When a baby is born, the first thing we do is talk about the baby being fair and how beautiful or handsome the baby will become due to the fair tone of skin. But is ‘fair’ really the only beautiful? Can beauty be defined by just one parameter? Is beauty decided only by external appearance?

Times are changing, but we still have a long way to go.

Social Norms 2

Also read: Dowry Is Never Going To Die In The Indian Society. Why?

Marriage is the Ultimate Goal of Life

We live in a society where ‘marriage’ is an ultimate goal of life for men as well as women. Fortunate are those who get a perfect life partner and lead a harmonious married life. But are the ones who choose to be not married really ‘unfortunate’? Each individual is different and the same set of rules cannot be applied to one and all. If one decides to not marry or marry at a later age, one should not be punished for his/her decision. Society should stop badgering and pressurizing and let them live life with a free will.

It is high time we start respecting everyone’s choices and inculcate this value in our society.

Social Norms 3

Husband should be taller than the wife

This is the most bizarre unspoken rule which is still prominent in our society. Whenever a marriage alliance is being arranged, one of the important factors considered is the height of the bride and groom. The bride should always be shorter than the groom. But why? Will the bride being taller make the groom look small or weak? Since when is the worth of a human being decided by their physical heights? Isn’t it time to stop smirking at couples who do not fall in this so called ‘society norm’?

For a change, can we stop judging and start accepting?

Social Norms 4

Got married? Have kids now.

After marriage all couples should procreate irrespective if they are not mentally, physically and financially ready to take up this BIG responsibility. That is not an important concern. What matters is having a kid after marriage, the earlier the better. Marry and procreate is the slogan imbibed in our heads. A woman who does not wish to bear a child is not a complete woman. A man who does not want to father a child is a complete failure in life. Having a kid of your own is the prime most important aspect to complete a family. Adoption is still not accepted whole heartedly. Seriously? Are we so narrow minded that the ability to reproduce determines the success of a marriage or even  the purpose of life?

Time to change our thinking and accept a new thought process.

Social Norms 5

Mental Illness? Stay Away from such people.

The stigma associated with mental illness still exists in our society and going to a psychiatrist or a counsellor is a big taboo. Mental illness is not treated with care and support, instead the person suffering is isolated from the rest of the world. We need to break this barrier and give our utmost attention in this situation. The person should be given extra care and most importantly undying emotional support. Depression is getting fairly common these days and we just cannot shy away from mental illnesses any more. We need to be open and go the extra mile for a loved one.

Let us hold our hands together to fight with mental illnesses.

Social Norms 6

Also read: Prenuptials: A boon or bane for India?

Isn’t it time to wake up and start afresh, burying these norms of the society and accepting each individual for the person he or she is? Isn’t it time to revolutionize our thinking and be more open minded? Isn’t it time to grow beyond these ancient social norms?

It is you who decides!

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