Cambodia can be a tough place to be a woman (part I)

Cambodia is a country that hold strict culture and religion. There are many cultures norms that hold so strict in the society. In the new generation is getting better and better. In the older generation like my mum’s… it was even stricter than it is now. She used to tell me story about how the society treat girls during her generation. She was mostly could only stay home,and did house works. Girl were not allowed to talk with men.  It was also very hard for girls to get higher education during that day. My mother could not achieved her dream of becoming a teacher, and ended up in arrange married. (Though her married turn out right and luckily me and my 2 other brothers are her children).

There is an old way of saying that:

'Girls should not be educated, because she might write love letter to her secret boyfriend”, I mean what is wrong by just write love letter, if you love someone, right? Why is it so strict for only women? But not only in this new generation, even in the older generation, men always have better advantages than women. Men can travel, and study higher education, and when men lost virginity before married, they are just fine. 

”Girls do not need to continue higher education, because in the future, she will still  be someone’s wife.” How can they do something else different than being a house wife, when she has no opportunity to explore the outside world, learn, experience, lead. If you want women to prove that they are more than just house-wife, then give them a chance.”

”Girls should not travel far from home, it is not safe for them” why educated women to be scare of exploring? why not educate men to respect women. Rape is a dirty thing to do, but why men still do to women, when they have an opportunity? Imagine if you were being forced or raped, how would you feel? have you ever think, women is also human? and they are female just like your mother or sisters.

 “If girls are educated, they might not be able to get a husband, might fall into the proverb that says”The poor can’t afford,the rich won’t come!” – I personally would say”Who cares?” A real man would not be afraid of an educated women just because they can’t control over them and tell them to stay home? just because they are independent, and they are able to finance themselves? I believed we are all born to love and be loved, so I would encourage girls to not fall into this silly proverbs.

Even though I live today in the new modern world, but I am still in the pressure of the culture norms. I broke many norms, but there are too many more. I admit, that some culture norms are good to educated people to respect and love each other and there are many more good culture norms as well. But Sometimes, I just feel it is not fair as Cambodian girls that rules need to tide on their wrist since they were born. Girls have rules from walk to sleep.


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