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Husband should be older, earning more, right? Wrong. What works best for a relationship is their mutual understanding and respect.
In our social system, although there are a lot of big talks about gender equality, we end up behaving and thinking quite contradictory to what we say. We still consider it ideal when the male is ‘more’ than the female in a marital relationship. The Male should be taller, he should be more fearless, he should be stronger, the male should be more educated, and of course, the male should earn more. He is expected to be ‘more’ in every aspect of life. Some way or the other, a male child is made to grow up with this constant subtle reminder of behaving in a more powerful manner in life than his female counterpart, which only kindles his male ego. In an era when we talk about women empowerment, isn’t it time that our mindset needs a change?
Aditi had always been a very bright student throughout. She graduated from one of the best universities, and soon after she got a good job in a multinational company.
Aditi, being a plain-looking ‘nerd’, didn’t really get much attention from boys in college or even in the university. So, her focus all through was on studies and then the job. Until now, she had lived a rather satisfactory life; satisfactory, but minus romance. But, she was really blessed and gifted. In a short pace of time, she climbed the ladder of success in her career.
In our society, however successful a girl may be in her career, ultimately the goal of all Indian parents is to get the daughter married to a ‘suitable match’. Arranged marriages are still considered to be the best and more acceptable option. And here in an arranged marriage, the hunt for ‘more’ in the boy begins. So, when it was time for Aditi to get married, all the matrimonial sites were scanned and suitable grooms were looked for. But unfortunately, none materialised. Probably, Aditi’s parent’s expectations were sky high and nothing worked out.
A frustrated Aditi now took the responsibility of her marriage upon herself and began searching for her soulmate on various matrimonial sites. She got hitched with Amol, a handsome man, but a little younger than herself. He didn’t have a great job, which Aditi didn’t mind because she could see a good human being in this man. They exchanged phone numbers, chatted for hours and then all these followed with some rendezvous in coffee shops and restaurants.
Amol and Aditi found in each other all those ingredients which they thought could make them good companions in life. However, the news was not taken well by Aditi’s parents. They were just confounded on hearing this. They just couldn’t imagine how Aditi decided to marry a man younger than her and who didn’t even have a suitable job. Amol being very ‘mediocre’, unstable in his career, in fact unemployed most of the time, was not at all a good match to their highly qualified daughter, according to them.
Presently, Aditi is the sole bread earner as Amol had left his job which anyway was paying him peanuts. He has happily taken the responsibility of looking after their two lovely kids. This suited them perfectly well, because Aditi can peacefully go to work and give cent percent attention to her job.
She is at peace knowing that her children are taken care of very well. They don’t have to pester the maids or hunt for good crèches to take care of their children. This decision of Amol’s quitting job and babysitting at home welcomed some ugly frowns from the relatives, and the neighbours got something new and unusual to talk about. But the confidence and a total commitment of this couple made them ignore all these. To them what mattered most was peace and happiness in the family.
With love and mutual respect for each other, they greased the wheels of their marital life well enough to run in a rough and tough road where any arrangement which is unconventional is looked down upon, and a road which was bumpy and challenging as they often become tired of answering some uneasy questions posed to them constantly.
With their strength of love and a zero ego clash, both of them are happily driving along this path which only proves that if there is love and understanding in a relationship, then oodles of obstacles can be defeated.
Their story also gives a strong message to the society. Marriage is more about companionship where it is more important for the husband and the wife to be on the same page. Instead of putting unnecessary burden upon children to take certain fixed responsibilities, it’s time that the son and the daughter needs to be reared up to become more accommodating, so that they can fight life’s battles gracefully. In the twenty first century, if a daughter is brought up like a son, made independent, then why look for a groom who must take the financial responsibility of the girl.
It can be vice versa too!
A version of this was first published here.
Image source: shutterstock
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A teacher by profession Dipanjana enjoys life in its every shade. She lives in Shillong
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