Publishing, The Superwoman Complex


by SHUHEL MIAH - Date: 2008-06-03 - Word Count: 594 Share This!

The Superwoman Complex Why do Asian girls feel the constant need to prove their superiority over men?

All Asian girls straighten their hair.

All Asian girls wear black all the time.

All Asian girls can't live without eyeliner.

All statements I have heard and taken umbrage to in the past. I, like most Asian girls, bridle at stereotypes which pigeonhole us all together. I grit my teeth and shake my fist at anyone who dares to tar us all with the same brush. That said, there is one stereotype I recently came across that really resonated with me. I was browsing the net, being generally unproductive, when I stumbled upon an interview with fellow author and journalist Sathnam Sanghera.

In the interview, Sathnam says:

â€"Sikh girls don't have personalities, they have post-traumatic disorder. They have to fight so hard and so persistently for their independence that they become brutalised by the experience, and even when they have their freedom, they can't stop fighting.â€쳌

While Sathnam's statement singles out Sikh girls, I think it can be applied to a wider range of Asian girls. The quote will offend some people - even Sathnam admits that it's a ‘sweeping generalisation' - but I actually think it's extremely insightful.

While claming that Asian women don't have personalities is too strong, it has to be said that many of us do struggle for independence; a struggle which does have a detrimental effect on our personalities. In fact, I'm surprised some of us can still walk what with the massive chip we're nursing on our shoulders.

I'm most certainly guilty of the truculence Sathnam speaks of. I remonstrate against all forms of dependence, stressing time and time again that I am independent, autonomous and free. I am committed to a man but hate depending on him emotionally or financially. I have a constant need to prove that I'm smart, secure, strong and self-sufficient. I can be fiercely competitive with a relentless need to prove that I'm right; a need that almost emasculates the men closest to me.

In short, I can't stop fighting.

Rather than an offensive generalisation, I think Sathnam's quote hits the nail on the head. Most Asian girls want to be taken care of. We want financial security, comfort, love and warmth, and we would love that in the shape of a man but when we've fought patriarchy all our lives, it's just not easy to allow a man to guide and support us.

So what is the solution? Should a man concede every argument to appease the woman in his life? Should girls be allowed to get away with this type of aggressive behaviour? Do we need to reign in the control freak and then learn to relinquish those reigns once in a while?

I'm interested in your thoughts. Am I the only one with this problem or have you come across it too? Have you dated a girl who was always smarting for a fight? Maybe you're a woman who recognises this type of behaviour in herself? Have you found a solution? Do you even think you need one?

Personally, I think it's unfair to use men as punchbags in order to prove our strength. A partner shouldn't be a pedestal which we perch upon to prove our supremacy. Yes, we had to fight long and hard for our independence; yes, prejudices still exist and women are still treated unfairly, but when we have found a man who regards us as equal, as truly secure women, shouldn't we learn to reciprocate that respect?

Source: http://www.insidedesi.com


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