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This note to you is all about some demands and requests that have come from many hopes, expectations and experiences; this letter is for you, so that you don’t get surprised by my expectations later in life, and so that you remind me of when I’m neglecting my own rules, because this note is for both you and me, for the ‘us’ to work without wearing out.
I know everything may seem just perfect in the initial stages of love. I may look like the most beautiful thing to us, the most perfect, and ideal. But time is not so kind for we may have to gradually witness terrible shades of each other revealed, those ugly truths that may emerge from the inside and outside. Tough situations may remove the illusion of love, but I hope you’ll still accept me. These tests will run every day for us; right from waking with messed up hair and groggy eyes in the morning, which is not a most aesthetically pleasing sight- which is well when we may come to realize the harsh truth, even ‘the right one’ can be imperfect.
There are some things I’d like to let you know. I feel it’s important to reinforce this because there will be so many stones to tumble upon in the way of our ‘perfect’ relationship.
I’m a modern woman.
The first thing is that I will not change who I am, not for you or anyone. Only after loving myself enough will I have the strength to love you, because I believe dignity is most important. I am also an independent woman. This, you may be unfamiliar with, as many are in sexist India (which is sluggishly but definitely trying to change), but you must get used to it. I will respect you as an individual, and I hope that’d be reciprocated. We do not own each other; we are complimentary, yet free.
I don’t follow what others do. There could be a thousand ‘inescapable’ trends, but you’ll find me fight many of them. I don’t care what path the others may choose, but I’ll take that one which will suit me best, a way that’s may be different from yours. But I ask that you hold my hand to support me even as we experience our the different adventures that come along our own way, and not try to push me over the stumbling blocks or hope that I’d never dare venture individually, myself. I wish that you will care for me and protect me, and also accept when I may do the same to you.
We belong to the same species- Homo sapiens – which means that you are in no way superior; neither am I. I expect that you take equal responsibility in every stage of our life together- housework, child upbringing, because these and a thousand other Indian misconceptions are not equal to ‘woman-work’; because actually, they are ‘human-work’.
I may seem tough but I have my fragile points, and hazy times, just as you. I hope our arms will be open to comfort one another when we’re low.
We may get frustrated a thousand times. The voyage of love does not come easy. There may be frustrating times when the relationship feels unbearable, broken, times when love turns to hatred and anger, when the future looks bleak and dark, but know that, with optimism, courage, trust, and the power of both of us, we’ll somehow manage to light a candle. Please don’t ever lose hope or faith in me. True love, I know will never die. Please remind me when I forget, that silly fights, vague outsiders, stupid situations, none of these, nothing, is worth our precious bond.
I hope you’ll see right through all my defenses and understand me. I hope you’ll confide in me, and listen to me when I’m low. I hope you will be not just a lover to me, but a best-friend, a protective father, and a complimenting brother.
Most of all, I want you to recognize me as a unique personality with flaws and pluses, and love me for just that.
The modern Indian woman
Hi! I'm an often overly-excited, frequently fun-loving, and sometimes deeply-sunk-in-
I little intrigued by your definition of love. I thought Love is looking for the highest good of the other person. If you are not willing to change for the other person. How can it be love?
Well….she meant she won’t belittle herself, change her true soul nature just to fit in some sexist moulds eg. If your hubby beats you, you have to keep suffering it and be silent because you’re a girl. This goes on for many things like girls are forced to give up their friends, family, career, hopes, expectations everything just to fulfill someone’s selfish desires. And she made pretty clear in her article that loving another person is not possible unless a man/woman learns self-love, self-esteem and self-importance. Even though patriarchal society teaches men to be psychic vampires and women to be insecured, meek and ‘use and throw’ objects, in modern times we have learnt that a relationship is successful without power play dynamics and outdated societal norms (which were anyways created for selfish benefits)
earlier post should read “I am little” also It would be good to define what true love looks like. Some we moderns (post-moderns) have an aversion to objective definitions. Love seems to defined in different ways, each claiming to be right. If it varies then How do we know what is true love?
True love is an inner state – how you are within yourself reflects outside. Eg. If you are an insecured person then in a relationship you will either be a bully or you will ‘be bullied’. Just like happiness is a state of mind, true love is also a reflection of inner emotions.
So that’s why the author says that unless she learns to love herself she won’t learn to love someone else.
Very nice post, Keertana! I wish girls your age had this clarity of thought. I would love for my girls (I have two – one is almost your age) to think like you do.
Your clarity and self-love is a beautiful inspiration! Just a thought: if you can play along with the idea that all the world is a mirror, then by becoming resolute within yourself that you are loved and respected as you are (and giving it a little time, as it’s not always an instant mirroring), this allows the world to reflect this back to you. So there is no need to persuade others to change. Accept yourself unconditionally and you won’t need to “hope he’ll accept you”—you’ll automatically magnetize one who does.
Much Love to you!
Good perspective Keertana…Appreciate your thoughts and way of expressing at this age…
Even i use to be the same in my teenage days…but wasnt much expressive…
But as days passed by my perception has been more advanced specific to love,infact more matured than what i thought it is…it is beyond the words and feelings one can express about it..As feelings like love cant be defined rather they are felt…..:)
It took lot of research,redefining myself and understanding it..it was obtained with time than forward thinking is what i learnt out of my life’s experiences…
As few of our well known personalities rightly said human mind/thoughts keep changing according to the situations/experiences they had or going through..May be even this perspective of mine would change with time again…
BTW need to appreciate your write up..very impressive actually…Long way to go dear…:)
God bless you with loads of love..Keep writing/posting..
really well written… no man can love you till you love yourself 🙂
Unlike many.. I beg to differ. This sounds like an agreement thats comes with T&C, and I thought a true marriage/relationship was without that. However the only enemy to a relationship is ego.. were in both parties mutually agree. Looks like you ve been judged and bothered too often. No offence meant 🙂 but do look at the picture from modern men.
There are always some expectations in a relationship because without them we’d all be saints with no attachments and desires. Basic expectations or T&Cs like respecting each other, understanding each other as individuals and giving space for personal growth are important for a successful relationship.
Besides a woman who does not love herself first, or has a strong self esteem cannot create a meaningful relationship.
Same holds true for men. We need to love ourselves before we learn to love others.
Relationship is not made by two broken individuals trying to complete each other but two complete individuals complementing each other.
Why is it that every goddamn time a woman posts ANYTHING that remotely resembles an opinion, there are a dozen men who swarm in like vultures to say ‘BUT BUT WHAT ABT MEN’ – as if everything wasn’t already revolving around them. Sad.
This seems honest and heartfelt. Which leaves me a little surprised that the writer is still ascribing to the idea of a ‘Mr.Right’ (I know it is more nuanced than other uses of this term, but the term itself needs to be questioned since it reinforces a certain cliched understanding of gender relations). Also, why does the lover need to be like the ‘protective father’? That to sone extent contradicts the idea of equal footing in a relationship which the rest of the piece makes a case for.
I think she meant ‘a person who feels right’ by the term Mr. right. I didn’t find the tone of the article wanting a ‘fatherly’ lover.
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