inanutshell

Singapore

she/her/illiterate

Message to Readers

ik this is pretty shit but i've been very uninspired & unmotivated lately
also school is just kicking my ass and laughing at my misery, on top of that i'm sick! yay for me :(

UPDATE I'm better now! which is so great, absolutely did not wanna cancel on my friend who i haven't seen since Feb. i still tried to be socially responsible, cancelling work & staying home instead for a few days, and since then my symptoms have largely disappeared so i cant wait to meet my friend :")

lessons on suppression

July 20, 2020


as my childhood faded into adolescence, my mother would teach me:

sit, don't slouch, no boy wants a girl with a crooked back; straighten every last strand of your untamed hair, comb your father out of your curls; swallow your anger in public, your gentleness should never be openly tainted; wear these pretty skirts and dresses, now people can tell you're a girl; paint over your facial flaws with makeup, strive for an immaculate appearance at all times; cover up every slip of skin, you know what boys are like;

wash your hands of social injustices, don't get involved in things that don't concern you; reel in our dirty laundry, you know our reputation's on the line here; carve out an actual prestigious career, writing can only get you so far; marry a respectable man, but keep our bloodline chinese; care for your body so it can host a child, it's a woman's purpose after all; pass these lessons down to your daughter, but hopefully you're granted the gift of a son

be yourself; no, not like that

now on the cusp of adulthood, i shrink into myself more and more; she thinks i've gone astray. my mother asks: why do you hide yourself? i taught you better than this. i say no, mother, generational suppression's at play here: so much of me is buried under my forgone innocence; now there's shame where my femininity should be. 

 
tried to introduce some structure here but the flow is still wack. might improve on this idea in the future when i have the brain cells for it so feedback will be much appreciated

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7 Comments
  • sunny.v

    this is so powerful and so so important! it’s all the little things us girls are taught as we grow up that fit us into a box, and you write that perfectly. “ i say no, mother, generational suppression's at play here: so much of me is buried under my forgone innocence;” aaaa that really just drove it all home. you’re the master <3


    4 months ago
  • chrysanthemums&ink

    i'm late and this is a shittily (ain't even a word but i digress) short comment but this powerful tone and the narrator's voice is just impeccable and fdlskjlksajd you're just a frickin deity.


    4 months ago
  • dovetrees

    i think this is such an important piece of writing! 'pass these lessons down to your daughter, but hopefully you're granted the gift of a son' is such a powerful line that really packs a punch. a super amazing piece, i loved it!


    4 months ago
  • The Midnight One

    Wow so powerful, and I love the ending.


    4 months ago
  • teethfaerie

    i really loved the lines that implied some issues within the family and the mother's struggles. i think you could run with that some more and elaborate on the multi-generational issue of women teaching each other to hide. this is really beautifully written, very powerful!


    4 months ago
  • Kayden

    This is a really important piece of writing. The world acts like women are free of suppression because the media makes it seem like they are while in reality there's still so much pressure on them to be feminine and perfect. I hope school gets better for you and that you get well soon!


    4 months ago
  • outoftheblue

    "sit, don't slouch, no boy wants a girl with a crooked back; straighten every last strand of your untamed hair" I am now convinced that we have the same mother bc my god did this resonated with me.
    "care for your body so it can host a child, it's a woman's purpose after all; pass these lessons down to your daughter, but hopefully you're granted the gift of a son" I love how you've explored ideals of femininity and how it's suppressed. Just so effortlessly evocative.
    (and I hope you feel better soon! <3 :)


    4 months ago