“All of us are judged on the basis of a few standards set by the society. It’s inevitable to walk out of your home in a not so branded outfit or something unconventional and not have people look at you. I remember wondering why I couldn’t buy an outfit that someone in my college wore. But my dad always told me that wants are endless and consumerism thrives on this idea. Today, I realise the depth of that sentence. We are often peer pressured into buying new things and being able to afford expensive products. But why can’t we be who we want to be? Why should there be any stress on being wealthy or stylish?
When you buy an expensive T-shirt, do you think about the chemicals used to dye it, the leftovers of that being directed to the nearest water body, eventually being used by local farmers and us finally consuming the same crop? Does the farmer who sells cotton make even 20% of the amount you pay for an outfit? These are a few thoughts that always made me think about sustainability. I take my own utensils to restaurants to avoid plastic as much as possible. I proudly opt for ‘pre-loved’ (a term for second hand) goods for my kids too. They’re the biggest victims of consumerism because they don’t understand the concept of less is more. But I teach them that luxury isn’t expensive goods but good quality friends. I talk to them about freedom of choice and gender neutrality. My son wears pink and my daughter plays with cars – both of which are absolutely normal and great. There is a struggle to keep up with the stereotypes that come my way from outsiders but I need to do this for my kids. I want them to live in a world that’s not so materialistic. They are young but they understand all of this. After all, they’re a reflection of who we are as parents.”
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