Click here for shortcuts to regional language blogs and city-specific events.
Aantrika is a single child born to a teacher mom and a businessman dad after 7 years of their marriage, in a nuclear family. An adorable princess, she was the apple of her parents' eyes. She was not naughty and was always quiet , playing with her toys alone in her room was what pleased her the most.
As time elapsed, she grew up into an exceptionally brilliant and talented child. Her medals kept mounting and she kept growing in her own world. Her mom and dad as they came back from work, always found her a very good and obedient child and so did her teachers who were full of praise for her.
Then, what was wrong? This pretty little girl never opened her heart to anyone. She barely spoke a few words in the whole day and was always surrounded by books, she so loved to read. She never liked going to birthday parties and felt awkward in social gatherings. She tried her best to avoid people and smile never fully touched her lips. The world soon termed her a recluse and she lived with the tag. Destiny further struck, when God took away her mom from her when was in tenth grade.
As she grew up a little more, this pretty damsel became my room mate in our hostel. The sadness in her eyes bothered me and those silent eyes pricked my heart. Many a times I struck a conversation but could get to know very little. She was either lost in her books or was listening to Jagjit Singh Ghazals. I really wanted to know why she never smiled, is their nothing which can ever make her happy. I could just understand one thing that there was an unknown fear that prevented her from enjoying life to its full. I was opposite, an extrovert full of life and wish I could have rubbed it on her. Our differences made us stick together for many years then. Later we got jobs in different companies in different cities. While so many eligible bachelors were waiting for her, she silently tied knot to a very simple and timid human being of a very different caste and left India. She again chose a hidden life at a place where no one would know her.
She wrote to me recently and opened her heart out. I could not hold my tears as I could not believe all that she has faced throughout her childhood and now that she was a mother of a daughter herself , she doesn't want her to silently face the worst like her. The letters ink has swollen with her eyes where she wrote how for years her parents most trusted domestic aid Maharaj has Molested and sexually abused her. It was not that she never wanted to voice this to her Parents, she did try but her plea was withdrawn considering she was a very small child and was misreading the gesture which made her embrace perennial silence. But in turn this made a fear from everyone other than her mom and dad sit in her heart forever. It took her decades to overcome this fear or is it even gone today? Will such a child ever be able to trust anyone in her lifetime.
If everyone would not have withdrawn that time, terming her a Socially Awkward Child and even one of them would have tried to find the real cause behind it, we could have saved this girl from leading a painful , full of fright, tormenting life....I am glad she has summoned the courage to speak it out today so that her daughter and many more daughters of the world don't get stifled by the inhuman tendencies of some psychopaths who don't even spare children of their vicious tendencies. It's high time we keep a strict eye on any behaviour deflections of our kids and also on the people that surround them.