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Love does not abuse. Love heals. What Kabir Singh feels and expresses is not love; please don’t be swayed by it, people. It’s abuse. Recognise it for what it is.
I want to talk about stalking, abuse and love today. Last summer, I was in a listening circle. Everyone shared their stories about love, abuse, and harassment.
There is one story that stayed with me. An 18-year-old boy talked about his mother.
She was from North India. A brilliant girl who loved physics and maths. In her leisure time, she spent hours solving Maths. She wanted to study space science.
Every day she had to walk two hours to and from college. A guy fell in love with her. He would follow her, and bully her every day. She protested. Then ignored him.
One day he held her hand. She pushed him away and ran. The whole town came to know about it. Her brothers did not allow her to go to college anymore. She was married off in three months. Now at 37, with an 18-year-old son, she teaches Maths and Physics to school kids, because though she could never continue her studies, her love for knowledge remains. The son exclaimed, “Maa is still so good with Maths, she solves my sums. I am an engineering student now.”
I have a male friend who was in a relationship for 4 years with a woman. She would always tell him that she was going to cut her wrists every time he would try to break up. In the end, the police had to be involved. She left. Married someone else. My friend was in therapy for a year.
I asked my friend how it all escalated. He told me that the first time she abused him verbally he thought that it was because she was madly in love and came from a broken family, she did what she did. And I have heard this story from innumerable women when the coin was flipped.
In both the above cases, it is the abuser who went scot free.
Yesterday, Kabir Singh was released. A broken man, who hounds a girl and slaps her later. The glorification of the abuser is so much that the abused seems guilty.
In Pyaar Tune Kya Kiya, Urmila falls for Fardeen who is a married man and makes his life miserable. The movie ends with her in the asylum. We all know who had the audience’s heart.
In Darr, when Shahrukh first stalks Juhi, the first reaction was to marry her off to Sunny Deol. But nowhere have we talked about the journey the abused goes through.
Can we first get it? Any form of abuse, be it mental, physical or emotional is not okay. Repeat after me, “Love does not abuse. It makes you feel good.” If your boyfriend hits you in a fit of rage, run. If your girlfriend writes abusive mails to your family, run. Somewhere we are taught that if someone loves you, violence is okay. It is not. It never is.
Take it from me, abuse changes the wiring of the brain and takes years to heal. It’s time we show what the abused go through. The journey to healing is tough. If your partner abuses you, he/she needs help. If you let the broken break you, you let the cycle of abuse continue.
The system is already broken, don’t add to it. Run, get your family involved, get the police if needed. Or a restraining order from the court. Your future self will thank you. You are your first love.
One more time, repeat with me: Love does not abuse. Repeat it till the system where abusers are glorified breaks down, and a new world dawn in.
I have lived and experienced enough to know, love does not abuse.
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Proud Indian. Senior Writer at Women's Web. Columnist. Book Reviewer. Street Theatre - Aatish. Dreamer.
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