Many kids face molestation during their childhood. Some are groped in the crowds and some on the deserted streets.
But, most of these victims choose to stay silent. Either because they never gather the courage to seek help or we were asked to stay quiet because of log kya kahengey?
While most stay silent, a very few heroic souls gather the courage to fight back to ensure that they could save many more from becoming the victims of the sex predators.
And, one such story is of this young brave woman who turned into the savior of hundreds of kids.
While recalling her immense contribution to our society, she shared with HoB,
“I was 7 when it happened, but I still remember it like it was yesterday.
One morning when I was going home, I got into the lift, and the milkman got in too. I didn’t give it a second thought because I saw him on a regular basis.
But he cornered me and slid his hand under my frock.
I tried moving backward, but there wasn’t any space to move further away from him and it was terrifying. Luckily, by that point, the lift stopped at my floor, and I ran out.
I was shaken, I felt dirty, but I didn’t tell anyone because I was afraid of what he’d do to me, if I told on him. So I just let it go.
But it happened again when I was 9. I’d joined a table tennis class, but the coach was very creepy– he’d pretend to teach us the right way to hold a racquet, but he’d touch us inappropriately.
He had even grabbed me tightly from behind under the guise of coaching. He did it to all the kids, but none of us ever spoke about it, because we never realised it was wrong.
For the longest time, I felt like it was all in my head.
In those days, openly talking about such things wasn’t encouraged. In fact, I never even got sex education in school.
It wasn’t until I turned 15 and started reading about such incidents, that I realised that what had happened to me was sexual abuse.
Soon after, Crime Patrol started airing on TV – watching it worried my father enough that he asked me to join a martial arts class.
Initially I wasn’t into it, but when I realised that it was making me more confident, I started taking more interest. But one incident cemented my resolve to get really good at it. I travel often by local trains, where being groped by men is way too common.
This one time, when a guy was trying to be too handsy, I turned around and publicly confronted and shamed him!
I felt like I was finally in a place where I wasn’t helpless, but empowered.
These things didn’t bog me down, I had a renewed spirit in me that helped me fight back. I felt like I needed to help others like me find a voice, to stand up to men who looked at us as objects.
So I put all my heart and soul into learning and now, teaching martial arts.
Today I’ve taught over 600 kids. It helps me sleep at night knowing that if someone misbehaves with them, they know that they can fight back.”
At I For Her, we are celebrating the courage of this woman and wonder how better the situation would be if every child is taught martial arts as a part of the school curriculum.
There are many boys and girls who struggle with molestation and are unprepared to protect themselves. In such situations, how great it would be if schools step in to take the responsibility of training our kids’ martial arts.
A Humble Request to Parents:
Even if schools don’t step in, we request every mother and every father to teach their kids about sexual abuse and self-protection. Given the rampant increase in the cases of child abuse, if we won’t strive to protect our kids then who will?