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Why Should Women’s Contentment Always Be Tied Up With Their Supposed Family Bliss?

Posted: September 9, 2016

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Women’s contentment is always tied up with their marital/family bliss, with no thought given to the woman herself. Can she herself not be enough?

You should be content that you have a great job, a great husband, beautiful lovable children and a great family (read Marital Family)…  You should be content that you have a great husband, beautiful lovable children and a great family, so what if you don’t work…?

You should be content that you have a great husband, beautiful lovable children, so what if the (marital) family is difficult…?  You should be content that you have beautiful lovable children, so what if your husband is not all that great…?

You should be content that you have a home over your head, so what if you don’t have kids and not such a great husband and family…?

You should be content – you have yourself… so what if you lost everything? That last statement should have been the first to begin with… You should be content – you have yourself!

Why are women not enough for themselves? Why is all this contentment associated with their family (?) bliss? Why should she not be always inwardly content, happy or alternatively why should she not ask for more, if she has a blissful family life? The desire for more is natural and human. While there are values and there are duties, that are inseparable from every individual, there is also a soul there that needs to be tended to, with tender loving care, and it needs to grow too.

In India often women are given education, just enough to get them past their father’s door, in through the door of her marital home. A little bit more education and somehow all doors tighten. Too less education and then there are only walls, no doors going anywhere.

This is ridiculous. Trapped in a  gossamer web of culture and tradition, she fails to notice her individuality within this whirlpool of unending expectations and undue disrespect! Girls in India are children of discontent, their birth a tragedy in many families, their ability to foster life is at once a blessing and a bane.

What does a woman need?

Maybe that right to take a detour from work once in a while to go shop or have a cup of tea with friends, while someone happily steps in to take care of home. Maybe the right to opt into and out of work as per her own vision of how her children should be nurtured. Maybe the right to speak up without having to worry about cultural consequences. Maybe the right to not be a chattel of her family (parental and /or marital) and her husband.

Torture against women is an institutionalised affair, you need special laws to protect against dowry deaths and marital torture. We can’t even claim justice under general law, there is a need to speed it up, there is such a pattern to it! It is a vocation among certain class of society, organised dowry crimes!

Somewhere between the oft paining inside and the oft resilient outside, a woman always suffers the need to be just herself and yet not be shamed for that.

Just as much as I could have been stereotyped, I have been stereotyped. In many ways this piece is more a realisation than a complaint. Haven’t we all? We are wired to question things in a certain way… we do it till we are questioned in the same way! How and when did we each realise that we were women? When did we realise that being a woman made us a lesser species? There must be as many stories, as there are woman in the world.

Published here earlier.

Image source: shutterstock

I am a Chartered Accountant and a Mother of a 7 year old. Writing is

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