As far as my basic knowledge of biology and human genetics permits me, I can assert that I am the product of two cells, one cell from my mother and the other from my father.
The fusion between my mother’s egg cell and my father’s sperm cell made a ‘zygote’ me. There is no evidence that suggests whether the egg or the sperm had a major role in the formation of the zygote me. That zygote me multiplied millions of times to form a ‘fetus’ me, and ultimately a ‘child’ me. All this time, I developed within my mother’s womb, I breathed through her, I ate through her and I lived through her. And I was still as much my father’s as my mother’s.
I could hear random people ask her, “Whose child is this?”
I was in the womb, and my premature brain mocked the people and said, “Her child. Duh?”
But they wanted an answer, a name, a male name, the male’s family name.
As soon as I was born, I was my father’s child. I bore his surname, and if anyone were to ask, I belonged to my father’s family. I did not belong to my mother’s family. I am an heir to my father’s side of the family. Why am I not an heir to my mother’s side of the family?
Just because my mother is a woman, who married another man doesn’t mean she shed her genetics. Half of me is her. Half of me is an heir to her side of the family. I should carry her family name in the same manner as I carry my father’s.
But you see, I am technically not an heir to either side of the family, just like my mother. Time and again, repeatedly I’ve heard people say, “Oh, Ghimire family has come to an end. घिमिरे परिवारको त वंश नाश भयो ।” I am a Ghimire, and someday, when I bear a child, that child will have half my genetics. That child will be as much a Ghimire as will it be my partner’s side of the family. But will they accept it?
Why is it that a woman can’t be the carrier of the family name? Why does society want a male to carry on the family, all the while they merely do is pass on a sperm? Why is a woman just a tool to further someone else’s family?
And as I write this, I personalize it using ‘I’ because I want each reader to understand that this is not about anyone else, but about us, about you and about me. It is about those questions we never ask. It is about those questions that challenge our caste, customs, cultures, patriarchy through evidence. Do we justify our cultures to further patriarchy denying scientific evidence? And maybe someday, when people stop emphasizing on the need of having a boy-child to further family names, someday, we will have no more female infanticide and female foeticide.
P.s. I absolutely adore my parents. Love you, mom and dad. ❤️