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Today's young woman prefers to be 30 and single. She prefers to reach for her dreams, rather than be 'married off' when she is 'old enough'.
Today’s young woman prefers to be 30 and single. She prefers to reach for her dreams, rather than be ‘married off’ when she is ‘old enough’.
We live in a society where the moment a girl turns 25 and is unmarried, family, friends and society look down upon her suspiciously. The society that never wanted her to have a boyfriend, suddenly issues her the licence to have one.
I personally pity those poor souls who are forced to attend all functions from the closest friend’s to the distant brother of her mom’s second cousin’s only daughter’s marriage. She is directed to be attired in elaborate ethnic wear with the customary dupatta, wear a delicate smile and to top it all, she is given crash courses on blushing too. The moment she walks down the red carpet, every eye ball scans her upside-down.
I am always disheartened to see how girls above 25 years of age are treated like products nearing their expiry date. The fact that most of the girls don’t speak up against the same, is even more disheartening.
Last evening, I attended my friend’s marriage (by the way she is 32 years of age) where I overheard an aunty yelling with excitement – “Ohhh maiiii Gawwdd!! Do you laaaikke somebaudy!! Tell me naaa…. Mai setting karwa dungi..”
I wanted to immediately flee from the place and find a peaceful corner to avoid a nervous breakdown. But decided otherwise on hearing a confident yet composed voice answering – “No I don’t like anyone! And if at all I did, I would prefer telling my parents first. My parents trust me and my choices. If I cannot sort out something with the ones who gave me birth and imbibed the values and principles in me, nobody on this planet can.”
Aunty – Toh kya problem hai? Woh ladka accha hain! The guy is tall, dark and handsome and to top it all, he earns much more than you! You need not toil now.
Woman – Really nice to know that he works and earns well. But I wish to be financially independent. I don’t want to be a financial burden on anyone. Moreover he may buy me thousands of solitaires but the shine and glitter of the diamond I earn for myself, illuminates my whole world. He may buy me the luxuries of the Jaguar and Rolls Royce but the sheer pleasure of driving my hard earned Honda City is much higher.
Aunty – As a girl you have to take up the responsibility of kitchen and home on your shoulders. Finances will be handled by him. So both of you would be working in coalition and effectively not doing a favour to each other.
Woman – Why do we have this predefined set of responsibilities? Why does the society confine us in those boundaries? I believe that a marriage should be a coalition in complete sense. Responsibilities should be taken up by choice and not forced upon anyone. If I am ready to take care of home and office together, I don’t see any reason why I shouldn’t work.
Aunty – You cannot marry after you have lost your charm and pass by your marriageable age. And few years down the line you will feel the emptiness in your life without a family of your own.
Woman – What pleasure and happiness will that family give me who doesn’t understand my wishes and desires? If my to-be family cannot make me happy today, what happiness can I expect from them tomorrow? I don’t see any fulfilment in life by marrying, when I have to first make it empty by leaving my job. I just don’t wish to get into a dictated relationship.
Everybody is ready to accept all her demands varying from the height of the groom to the weight of his pockets. One expectation that is just unacceptable is –“I want to work and the proposals I receive won’t allow me to.”
Most Indian girls, even highly educated ones, fall into the trap of the pre-defined beliefs of this society. I salute the guts of this girl who stood up for herself and who clearly knows where her happiness lies. I salute her for wonderfully sorting out her priorities. I salute her for not giving up to the societal pressures. Marriage is a commitment for a lifetime and one needs to be sure before getting into one.
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I am a mother of a baby boy, a management graduate and a multi-faceted professional mom making home a sweeter place to live in. read more...
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Mostly Normal is a book of innocence, longing, filial love, angst and acceptance, encapsulating a gamut of human emotions within its lightweight edifice. The book touches the human heart and will stay with you.
Some books enthral you till the last page, and then there are those that you stop reading after turning a few pages. Some books are a one-time read, while you carry some books with you long after you have read them. Then, once in a while, a book hits you so close to home that you find it difficult to slot into any category.
I will put Priyadeep Kaur’s Mostly Normal (BookSoul Reads, 2022) in this last bracket.
At a little less than hundred pages, Mostly Normal is a testimony of the power of words to inspire, irrespective of their length.
Most women do not get to live their lives the way they want, on their own terms. So why should they be tied down in their old age?
Every morning, while dropping the kids at the bus stop, I find a grandfather waiting with his granddaughter. I see him again when I fetch the kids. This has been the pattern for the last few years.
He is seen actively participating in his granddaughter’s activities, from morning and evening walks to attending her parent-teachers meeting, sending her for extracurricular activities to even planning her birthday party. He is admired by all. He is appreciated for making himself useful in his old age. People rave that the doting grandfather is doing his duty towards his children and grandchildren. The much-admired grandfather is also a widower, having lost his wife years ago to chronic disease. It’s also to be noted that both his son and daughter-in-law are working parents.
Every day, the onlookers appreciate his sense of duty and dedication. They say that this is how the elderly should keep themselves occupied. They should bring up their grandchildren while their children go off to work.
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