It’s not about outrage and arrogance, it’s about concern.
Last weekend we went to the mall for a quick stop at one of the toy shop and decided not to take the stroller. Surprisingly both the girls were willing to walk and were very excited to use the escalator. I looked at my husband and we knew our stroller days and waiting for the elevator are finally coming to an end. What a relief, now we don’t have to wait forever to go to another floor. I was standing right behind an old man on the escalator and before I could react, he reached for Sabar’s cheeks. Yes, you guessed it right! It’s the unappreciated gesture of expressing love to small children by strangers, which by the way is done by almost everyone in India. I choose to ignore it and didn’t do any thing about it. But when we reached the top of the stairs, he tried to do it again. This time he came so close that I could smell alcohol on his breath. Immediately I picked up Sabar and did not allow him to touch her cheeks. It was an extremely uncomfortable position. I told him don’t come close to us and he went away. It was a pure parental instinct to protect our child, something didn’t click right with that man. But the real question is why does everyone think it ok to touch children’s cheeks or hair when you’re a complete stranger? This incident lingered on my mind for quite some time and I decided to always oppose this strangely uncomfortable practice.
With our experience of raising twins we have seen that the concept of twins really fascinates everyone. We are always asked the super obvious questions like “Are they twins?”,”Who is the elder one?” “Do they cry, eat and poop together?” We have grown use to these invasive questions and honesty I think they are quite funny and entertaining. I take it as an opportunity to enlighten people about the myths of having and raising twins. But then comes a point where we should draw a line as a parent. And I must say that it’s NOT OK to touch my child. Period.