Monday, July 02, 2007

My thoughts...

It’s really nice to see the new breed of men – who are understanding, fair and who know that their wives’ are humans too and that feelings are the same be it with a man or with a woman – injustice and harassment are things which can’t be forgiven.
It’s nice to see them standing up for their wives without any hesitancy for they have the capacity to judge what is right and what is wrong… But, sadly this new breed of men is scarce! The “need to dominate my wife” category are still the majority.

Now, what's making me say all of this and more? Here's why:

I was blog-surfing as usual and as I hopped from one blog to another - similar kind of posts caught my eye - they were either male-bashing or praising them to the skies... (Mind you, these are none of the blogs which I read regularly!)
There was no balance.
I read somewhere as to how helpful the husband was and how understanding and how well he got along with her parents etc etc... Isn't that what is actually required? I mean, if you, as a woman is expected to stretch an extra mile or 2 for your husband's family, isn't he expected to do the same? Why is it considered so great?

It made me think and I spoke to a couple of my married friends, thought about what they had to say, saw weird examples in some of my cousins' lives and here goes those thoughts:

** Once married, the girl is expected to leave everything behind her - her parents, comforts, friends, and the life she had carved for herself and adopt herself completely to her husband's life, his parents, friends etc.
Why? Can't they meet half-way? If you as a man can't let go of your parents to whom you are so grateful for their care, upbringing, health etc, why should a girl give up the same things?
** If the guy's parents are not well - she is expected to take care of them, but if her parents are not well, then why can't she take care of them? Please tell me, how different the equation is?
** The in-laws assume they have the automatic right to abuse the new girl in their house, word- bash her parents and full family and she is expected to keep quiet!
My blood boils over when I hear and see such things!!
If the lady in question takes a stand and keeps her head up high and says that you can't get away with such rubbish, then she is immediately termed as "bad",
BUT if the girl's parents dare to make the same mistake as to utter one word against the GREAT son-in-law, it is his right as a man to severe all ties with his wife's family!!
Isn't this hypocrisy at its heights and isn't the girl being subjected to harassment?
** When I discussed the same with a friend, he said as a woman you are expected to behave in a specific way and as a married woman, certain things are expected from you.
What kind of crap is that?!!!
** 1+1 is always 2, it is never anything else. So why is a woman "expected" to behave in a completely different way?
** The guy helps out the wife at home, that's something very normal for both of them – the husband and the wife, then why does the guy's mother raise such a huge cry and go around complaining to anyone who bothers to listen that the daughter-in-law doesn't do anything, but her son does!! Especially when at home, the guy's father helps out too!!!
** Why is it that her income is the "additional pocket money" which is for trivial things like "shopping”??
** What makes you think that the love she shows for the guy will make her keep quiet about any injustice that happens to her because of her in-laws?
** What happened to equal-footing and quotes like - "my wife is an individual and she can do what she wants?" - Does that mean, she can do as she pleases as long as she doesn't cross some weird line drawn by the husband?
** And what is this constant need to dominate and control the wife syndrome?? Is this due to low self-esteem? And you being the mother, another woman - how can you teach your son to "control" his wife else she will go "out of hand"??
WTF does that mean???
** If a woman is "expected" to behave in a certain way, why doesn't it hold true for a man too? Why indecent, dominant and irrational behavior is justified and why is the excuse given that because he is a man he can get away with such behavior!

All you moms out there with cute boys – please make sure that you try your best to make sure that your cute boy turns out to be a smart man who will love, support his wife and when you become an in-law remember to treat the girl with respect – only then will she learn to respect you.

All you ladies, men out there, if you have good, decent in-laws hold onto them...
It’s always a give and take equation and as the elder one in the family, its your duty to teach the youngsters about individuality, respect, space, privacy and most importantly to trust and respect your spouse…
I mean, it's our parents at home who taught us right? (Grandparents included too!)

Remember that the girl is new to all this - just as you are. A girl isn't born into this world with a Masters degree in Matrimony!

Also remember to appreciate, love your spouse and more than anything else - support them when they are right and correct them if something is wrong!

Most importantly, always remember that a relationship is fragile and once broken; the cracks will always show...


rayshma said...

interesting piece.
for us, it was always understood that we both wud have to get used to being a "family" now! it meant for me to make that extra effort with his family and him with mine.
so far, we're doing okay! let's hope we keep it this way!
of course, i think i have a rather kewl MIL... and that helps! :))
in matters that she aint kewl, i always have V to fall back on! lol! :)

Just a grail said...

Very good post! I was nodding along while I read. I am doing my best to send four decent men out into the world, not to mention all the boys I come into contact with at work.

illusionaire said...

Culture also has a huge role to play in all these.

In our Mizo society, married women are more independent than the rest of India. It was never a taboo in our culture for married women to work. They have a much larger say in the family's functioning than in many other cultures.

A perfect Haven for married women, you may ask. Naaah. Our society is a rigorous Patriarchal society, and in terms of Elders (similar to Panchayats) and Church Leaders, women play a mere background role.

Khasis have a very unique tradition. Once married, the couple move in to the wife's home! The wife is the head of the family, and the children are more scared of the mother than the father :)

And apart from all the various norms and cultural practices, there is the metropolitan culture in the urban areas, which should not be confused with any particular culture. In such societies, women are definitely more independent. Liberation of women is indeed a sign of development, and where else can such development start other than in the metropolis. It is because of this, that the trend is slowly changing among the men about how to treat one's wife etc.

claytonia vices said...

So true.... If you can see, the most backward societies are those that restrict women...

Pixie said...

@Rayshma: its nice to know that things are working out well. (TOUCHWOOD)That always makes things easier somehow...

@Grail: Yea - you have awesome kids!

@illusionaire: that's a nice insight!Especially about Khasis!

@Vicky: Yup.. I totally agree...