“We are raising boys and girls with different standards and expectations, and that needs to change.”NIkhil Taneja, CEO and Founder, We Are Yuvaa
“We are not surprised, but outraged. In two months time, we’ll forget the anger, till something like this happens again. We are not addressing these issues enough,” says Nikhil Taneja, talking about the ‘Bois Locker Room’ issue that has once again shown how pervasive rape culture and toxic masculinity is in our society.
Taneja, Founder and CEO of We Are Yuvaa, spent two years travelling across the country, talking to young boys and girls to understand their perspective and point of view.
“What surprised me most was the number of boys who came up to me and said how lonely they felt and that they had nobody to talk to.”Nikhil Taneja, CEO and Founder, We Are Yuvaa
Taneja added that we need to really look at what we are teaching our children, about sex, love, respect and consent.
The ‘Bois Locker Room’ issue has raised several questions about who should be accountable when young boys glorify rape and trash talk women. Parents? The education system? Or society?
All of us, according to Taneja, who says that the change has to start at home, but it also needs to be applied at a societal level, to change the way boys and girls are conditioned and what they believe is the right or the wrong way to be.
‘Boys don’t cry’ and ‘good girls don’t mingle with boys’ or ‘pink is for girls and blue for boys’, are just few of the stereotypes that are constantly reinforced in the society.
“A young boy needs good, positive role models and shouldn’t feel pressured to the assumed norms of masculinity.”Nikhil Taneja, CEO and Founder, We Are Yuvaa
At the end of the day, Taneja says, we don’t need to raise strong men, we need to teach them how to be human. Perhaps, that’s where we need to start to break the vicious circle of patriarchy, sexism and toxic masculinity.