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Since time immemorial, ‘getting married’ has been the most important part of anyone’s life. But do we really understand what marriage is all about before we take the plunge? I wonder!
Most of us, especially girls, see it as a fantasy world where everything is bright and beautiful, where everyone is giving you all the love, blessings and attention, where there is a sweet smell of mehandi and flowers, where life looks like a Bollywood movie with a romantic beginning and a happy ending. How much we as young girls crave for that Big Day and prepare for that day for months and years in advance; so much in our lives revolves only around that one Big Day. And, some of us are lucky enough to experience that day in the same way as we always dreamt of. But that’s about it!
What comes post that Big Day is what we never prepare ourselves for. We never anticipate, and no one ever tells us what exactly is ‘getting married’ all about. A lot of credit goes to our Bolywood movies which majorly revolve around the themes of falling in love, relishing the courtship period and enjoying the ever-increasing number of wedding functions. There are only a handful of movies made around the theme of Life After Marriage.
No, I am not against the institution of marriage nor I am against any celebrations. I live them by the way!
However, I have realized that we get married only for that one Big Day because that day we will look and feel the best. As Ranbir Shorey points out in the movie Pyar Ke Side Effects that all girls want to get married because the wedding day is like a beauty pageant for them and they know for sure that they will win it as the Bride! I could so very well relate to that, LOL!!
But even Miss Indias and Miss Worlds have to shoulder a lot of responsibilities once they have won those prestigious titles. And so does everyone who gets married and has won their self-organized beauty pageants! There is no all-inclusive comprehensive list of what you should know but all young girls who are willing to take the plunge must keep in mind a few important things that would matter a lot once you have gotten married.
Firstly, get over the Bollywood hangover and accept that real life is different from what we see on screen. DDLJ, Jab We Met, HAHK, Maine Pyar Kiya etc etc, they have all given us relationship goals but only till the wedding day. They leave you with your own wisdom after that!! So, we must be wise.
Before everything else takes over, know your self-worth and be financially independent. Once the hangover is over and the chemistry and biology of the relation are taken care of (though that will also have its own challenges), next big thing is the maths of relationship. You can’t imagine, how important the financial discussions become post marriage.
Have a big heart to accommodate not only your spouse but also their family. And it is meant for both, the husband and the wife. Unless you have had a runaway marriage, families will be there not only in the wedding pictures but also in your lives together forever.
Accept that perfection is an illusion, everyone will come with their own set of flaws. Depending upon how we have known our father, we would expect our spouse to be or not to be like him. But he is a unique person and will not fit entirely into the mental frame you have built in your mind after watching DDLJ!
Love and respect will be the two most important pillars of your relationship. You can’t afford to let either of them fall. Empathy towards each other’s challenges and struggles would make things easy for everyone. Having said that you will have those couple fights of course, that’s inevitable!
Be willing and be prepared to share each and every aspect of your life – be it mental, social, physical, financial, psychological, medical, professional. As a spouse, you can’t choose to share some and hide some. However, sharing is not same as participating all the time. You got to lead your life your way without him being by your side at every instance and occasion. Personal space becomes an important word soon after marriage!
Be flexible without losing your own identity. You don’t have to accommodate and change for every new thing but you don’t have to be fussy and adamant about every old habit as well. Maintaining this balance in your day to day life would be the trickiest part of married life.
Stay committed and loyal if you are from the same school of thought that marriages are forever. The instant thought that you could have got a better person in life, after almost every big or small fight, is devastating for any marriage. (Of course, except those situations where unfortunately things can go extremely wrong because of various factors and moving on is the only choice. Sticking around in a bad marriage and a dead relationship is poisonous.)
Don’t rush into planning a family because everyone else expects you to do so. Take your time, build a strong foundation of your relationships with your spouse, their friends and also your in-laws, build a trustworthy support system, seek commitment of co-parenting from your spouse and then only move forward. And before that you must travel together and make your stories together, as much as you can, especially to places where you can’t go with kids!
Lastly, well, don’t get married if you want to keep it easy, simple and uncomplicated! But if you don’t, then you will have to be solely responsible for all your problems in life as you will not have your better half to blame for.
Header image is a still from the movie Tanu Weds Manu Returns
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