By WITW STAFF for Women In The World
Just the simple act of applying red lipstick is seen as defiant by her relatives. Given that, it’s amazing what Naema has gone on to do. She’s from Lahore, Pakistan, and is the first female in her family to hold a job or own a car. She was profiled in a video by the BBC in as part of its 100 most inspiring women of 2016 series. Naema explains that in her family, the men and the women are married by the age of 24, and already having children. She imagines herself as a more modern type of woman. “I want to make a life,” she says. In fact, she’s so smitten with having worked hard enough to be able to afford a car, that she sees it as her baby. When relatives tell her, “my baby puts its head up,” she counters with, “yeah, my baby has sexy rims.”
But the car has been a point of contention in the family — to the point where one of her relatives, uncomfortable with the fact that she’s able to drive around and “go on dates with boys,” vandalized her vehicle. Naema works too, the only woman in her family to hold a job outside of the home she says. “I want a different life for myself, and I’m working my way towards it,” she says, suggesting that the car, the job and the lipstick is only the beginning of the woman she plans to be someday. Watch her story below.