Hello Wild Ones🌻🌻,
I hope you are well and doing awesome. My hope is that you are loving on yourself and taking time to sit with yourself. I am doing well and full of joy and peace.
When I talking to a friend this week, I realized how privileged I am. In the middle of a pandemic, I am not worried about my education, I will not have a gap in my resume because I have an online job and I have also been taking online classes. My friend was worried when he is ever going to finish his course and he felt like he was doing nothing and that led him to feel like he was worthless. This conversation led me to think about my privileges that I took for granted for example, Being in a school that is able to transition into online classes more smoothly, having WiFi at home, having the networks that allows me to get an online job, etc.
The Oxford meaning of privilege is A special right, advantage, or immunity granted or available only to a particular person or group. Everyone has privileges that give them some sort of advantage over a certain group of people. This can be white privilege, male privilege, able-bodied, etc. Checking your privilege allows you to approach the less privileged community with grace and understanding. It also presents you with an opportunity to be part of the people who fight for the less privileged. Checking your privileged is no way meant to shame you for having all these unearned advantages but to educate you and inspire you to work towards a better society.
Once upon a time, I would have been caught dead saying anything about the Feminism movement. It took me a friend to check my privileges as an educated woman who has lived most of her life in an urban area. I didn’t grow up in a family where my parents didn’t want to take me to school because I am a girl. My mother talked to me about my periods even before they came. I never missed school because I didn’t have sanitary towels. At the age of twelve, I was not afraid that my parents were going to marry me off. All these privileges that I never even thought about so I was so nonchalant about feminism or about the struggles these women face. Now every day I try best to approach the world with an understanding of these topics and create change. Although I think I am not doing much as a feminist, other than talking, some of my friends organize drives to get sanitary towels, others are hardcore activists with big Twitter followings, but I guess we all have to start somewhere.
There are many privileges in the society and it is very easy to go through life without ever knowing them. One of my favorite bosses told me once that one way to figure out if you are speaking from a privileged point of view is when you see someone who has not made it in life more than you and your instinct is to think ‘Well they should have worked harder or be smarter.’ The subject of ‘Checking privileges’ is hard sometimes because then some times you feel like someone is saying that you didn’t earn your success. For example; imagine the year 2025 when my friend and I go to apply for a job and someone says that I have an excellent resume because I am privileged. My first thought would be that I worked really hard during the quarantine period balancing school, my blog, my job and online courses and I will feel very insulted. But the truth is that I only managed to do these things because I am in place that my family can afford wifi, my school can go online, have networks to give a job and I can afford to take online courses; all these are things I didn’t earn. My friend could want to be as proactive as me but he can’t. Does that make me a bad person? No. Does that take away from my hard work? No. But I need to understand my privilege and do my best to make sure that at least one more person has it as easier as I did.
What are some of your privileges and how do you deal with them?
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With loooooove and grace,