Failed Determination

Jaibala/ August 4, 2016/ Short Stories/ 38 comments

Aashna, looked around helplessly, struggling to get out of the knots that bound her to the chair.  Her eyes at the locked door of the store room in the attic of an ancestral house in Lucknow. She desperately wanted to get out and tugged at the knots managing to free one hand. As she untied herself and got to the door she knew time was of essence.


She had to stop those barbarians from putting her daughter through it. Aashna still remembered how painful it was for her when her mother tricked her into getting “locked up” as they called it. She was in physical pain and was kept isolated in a room for 40 days. Her mental agony lasted all her life, and all this in the name of the family honour.


As the “Cutter” set up to work and cut her daughter she had neither the power nor the strength to stop it. The ladies in the house started chanting prayers, and she could hear the screams of her daughter. She tried harder to get the door to open, but it refused to budge. The helplessness was killing her now. Aashna closed her ears to try and drown out the sound, but the chants and the cries now kept mocking her, letting her know she had failed to protect her daughter from a fate similar to hers.


She did not know how much time had passed, when the door finally opened.  Her Mother in Law came in “You were going to mar our honour by your actions but see His will, you could not succeed. Now go and tend to your daughter like the perfect mother”


She remembered the day she delivered a healthy baby girl. But she was not happy, instead she dreaded her daughter having a fate like hers, living a life like she had. She had vowed not to let her daughter go through it. Today Aashna had failed to protect her daughter, the moment she was caught red handed trying to run away with her.


Note: Though this is a fictional account FGM is real and practiced across a lot of communities in the world, including some communities in India.

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About Jaibala

Academically a Microbiologist, I am a Web Columnist for popular magazines and websites, Freelance Writer and a Blogger. Words define me and writing and reading compete to be the love of my life. My biggest belief is that there is something good in everything and I always looks to highlight the best in things. Creative writing is my forte.You can reach me by dropping a mail at


  1. could feel pain #zarahatkeblogreads

    1. Thank You 🙂

  2. We never run short of crimes against women, right? It’s such a sad world out there.

    The first time I read about FGM, I was shocked. What a meaningless tradition. What is surprising is that some people compare it to circumcision when both of it are poles apart. No pun intended.

    What saddens me more is that there are women who follow such practices and impose it on another women. I mean if a woman can’t stand up for another woman, then the world we live in is definitely not a good place.
    Soumya recently posted…Code RedMy Profile

    1. We never do, the society always finds a way to dump all the burden of honor and tradition on its women. I agree I have seen a lot of people calling it Female Circumcision, but I refuse to use that term. After circumcision men can still feel sexual pleasure…but FGM takes away a woman’s ability to feel anything. As for the last point I can write an entire essay about how Women are a Woman’s biggest problem.

  3. There is pain in your writings :'(
    Youw write is really very deep

    1. I am an emotional writer Dixita. That is the key part of my writing. Sometimes the emotion they reflect is pain. Thank You

  4. It’s literally spine chilling! I still wonder why is it even practised in the name of whatever explanation they have for themselves!
    The state is utterly sad and poignant!
    Geets recently posted…Caught Red HandedMy Profile

    1. It is just a way to control a woman’s sexuality in the name of honour.

  5. Really. A part of the world is progressing by leaps and bounds, and the other half is busy practising traditions like these. I didn’t know about this before I read the post. And it finally burst my bubble that the world is a nice place to be in!

    1. I know such a dichotomous world we live in. Practices such as this co exist with all the progress we make. I was so disturbed when I first found out about it, more by the fact that I hadn’t known before. Even though the bubble is burst the world is still a nice place to live in because we have people like you that care.

  6. What a horrendous tradition! This is totally inhuman! Sad 🙁
    Kala Ravi recently posted…Sweet TemptationsMy Profile

    1. Yes Kala. At first I could not believe that it existed, and then I could not believe that so few people know about it.

  7. Wow! Heart wrenching!

    1. It is Suman,a very sad barbaric practice.

  8. Butchers in the name of relationships. I feel helpless that I could not do anything for the ones who suffer.
    upasna recently posted…Ma, even I was the Victim #Fiction #Child abuse storiesMy Profile

    1. Yes Upasna, that is exactly how I feel.

  9. Terrible, terrible practise. Read about it in one of the articles. So horrifying!
    Rachna recently posted…My Cherished Charm #CherishedBlogfestMy Profile

    1. It is Rachna. It is another way to control women and their sexuality.

  10. This is so depressing. 😑

    1. It is Ramya, I just wish I had the power to stop it.

  11. Reading it I had this anger boiling up and a sense of helplessness. What society do we live in? I was actually ignorant about it! Will surely read about it .
    Ira@ astimeflies recently posted…Shattered PiecesMy Profile

    1. If this piece moved you so much, I must warn you, reading up about t will only intensify the anger and helplessness.

  12. What terrible things men do for honour! And it is always the woman who is the keeper of his honour and who needs to be tortured in a hundred different ways to protect it. I could absolutely feel the mother’s helplessness. .
    Beat About the Book recently posted…Fragile LivesMy Profile

    1. It is frustrating and so infuriating Tulika. When I first found out about this practice, I was so numb, it took me days to begin to think again. I wonder what they must actually be going through.

  13. Makes me angry and miserable for what these women have to go through. Barbaric and senseless.
    Sunila Vig recently posted…Part 4 of A tiny tale. Day #4 #Barathon #Blogarhythm #Orange TangoMy Profile

    1. I agree Sunila, Barbaric and totally senseless, makes me feel so helpless sometimes.

  14. This is so sad. When are these atrocities going to stop !

    1. Hopefully soon Ruch, Nigeria signed a petition against this last year. Others need to follow suit quickly

  15. FGM.. Its a horrible thing to do.

  16. As you said, maybe fiction at your blog, but a sad, horrifying reality for many girls and women . I remember the tale, and well, I’ve written on the topic a few times too. I hope they stop the atrocity completely soon. It’s sad to even imagine, so I can’t even fathom how painful the victim might be finding it.
    Vins recently posted…Smriti {Part 4}My Profile

    1. True that, every time I write about it, it leaves me with a numb and helpless feeling.

  17. Sigh! FGM – yet another crime against women and girls!

    1. Yes it is so horrible.

  18. The horrifying truths of the society we live in. 🙁
    Sridevi Datta recently posted…Anamika-The Nameless One-Part 3My Profile

    1. I agree! Those poor women!

      1. True Melinda. I don’t even have words that express what these girls go through. What a nightmare it must be.

    2. It is one of the most barbaric things I have ever of!

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