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A married woman writes a touching letter to her younger sister in law, who was close to her when she came in as a new bride, but has drifted away, now taking her for granted.
When I married your oldest brother and came to this house, I thought I have got a little sister in you. I even remember telling you that. I hoped we could be allies and partners in crime. In the initial months, you supported me a lot; you showed me how things are around the house. In return I put in my effort to know you, to understand you and to help you.
I would ask you about the family and you would share family stories from along the timeline. I took your side when you were bullied by your brothers and took up your suggestions which nobody cared about. Remember, the lessons you took from me in the evenings? Yes, we did spent some quality time together in the honeymoon period. It seemed like we were bonding. But now looking back, I am not really sure.
Slowly as I took over the managing the household, you seemed to let go completely. The help you extended in the initial days, stopped altogether. And the part now you play in the household chores has become dependent on your whims.
You cannot deny that I hardly ever ask for your help around the house. And when I do ask you to do something, it is always a request. I know you have your college, studies and friends. But don’t you see that I too have a job to go to, and come back home tired too? And so a little empathy will go a long way in keeping me sane.
We hardly talk. Do you notice that? When you are home, you spend your spare time in front of the television, mobile phone or chatting with your friends. We don’t talk even when we are within a meter of each other; unless I specially try to strike up a conversation with you, usually by asking about your day or friends. Majority of the time, you come to me only when you need something. How I wished you too took an interest in me as an individual!
Our upbringings are very different. So obviously we don’t think and act alike. But I thought that you would learn to do unto me as I do unto you. I had the notion that you will take care of me as I do of you when you are unwell, that you will share my load in the kitchen as I do when you are in the kitchen, that you too would ask about my day as I do. But you never do. Maybe you are not a caring person by nature I guess. But once in a blue moon, you certainly are kind to me. And in such moments, I forgive you for the hurt I feel.
At times, your coldness makes me feel as if you are my teen-aged daughter. Being aloof from your family, friends becoming your family and world, treating your home like a place to only eat and sleep and being self-centered; that is how teenagers behave, don’t they? But again neither are you a teenager nor I am so old as to have a teen-aged child.
You know, there are times when my heart overwhelms with love for you. I truly want you to imbibe good practices, habits and behaviour. I wish you to be a good person. I often lecture you on life, family and thought process; but I can feel that you don’t like that. Your face says it all. Believe me; I do that with the best intentions in my heart; for I truly believe that you are my kin.
I don’t hate you, you know. I have always spoken to you in a loving manner, have always tried to be kind, even when I feel like shouting at you. Just because I don’t say anything, it doesn’t mean that I don’t notice, that I don’t get hurt. Sometimes I feel as if I am just a convenience to you, a silent caretaker. But I am human after all.
I am suddenly feeling so tired now. Pouring out my heart to you has drained me of my energy. It has become quite a long letter, isn’t it? But thankfully you don’t have to read it. I shall spare you the torment of another of my lectures. Maybe you will not understand my feelings now. But one day you will get married and become somebody’s “bhabhi” (wife of one’s brother). Maybe, then you will understand.
Image source: shutterstock
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