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I remember the first time he slapped me. I was stunned, shattered. I wanted to call you both up and cry and tell that I didn't want to live with this man. But then my conditioning stopped me.
I remember the first time he slapped me. I was stunned, shattered. I wanted to call you both up and cry and tell that I didn’t want to live with this man. But then my conditioning stopped me.
Kavita could take it no more. With tears in her eyes, her body hurting from being thrashed mercilessly by her monster of a husband, she started to type an email with shaking hands.
She had contemplated sending this mail to her parents for the past 10 years but couldn’t muster up enough courage. She would type out the mail and then delete it. But today she decided to send this mail to her parents. She didn’t have the courage to call them up and tell them about her ordeal.
I am sorry I have to write you this mail, but I can longer pretend. I can no longer pretend to be happy. I have endured enough pain, both emotional and physical, in the past decade and can now take it no longer.
You both had raised me in a pretty conservative manner. I wasn’t allowed to talk to boys, go out for parties, wear jeans, have male friends. I had to be back home by 6 pm. I wasn’t allowed to wear makeup or laugh aloud. You always taught me to control my temper as it was bad for girls to be temperamental or opinionated. You used to keep track of my every phone call, every friend I met, everything I did.
I, like any obedient and good girl, complied. I trusted you, didn’t want to hurt you. I never questioned you, I never defied you. I had lots of desires. I wanted to travel alone, I wanted to party, I wanted to wear that little black dress, I wanted to have male friends. I used to envy the girls who could do all that. Yet, I never expressed any of these to you. Love before marriage was a taboo for you both. You had made it very clear to me that I had to go for an arranged marriage with a guy of our caste and community. I wanted to ask you, “What if I find a great guy who would not be from our community? Isn’t love and friendship important in a marriage?” But I never had the guts to ask this as I knew hell would break loose dare I ask that question.
You got me married to Ravi. He was from our community, had a good job, and that’s what mattered to you. You had already said “Yes” to the proposal on my behalf. You didn’t seek my opinion as you believed that as parents you could not be wrong. You got me married off with instructions to keep my husband and in-laws happy, never bring shame to either family, adjust and change as per the new family’s demands, never complain and always take care to maintain both the families’ reputation. Never did you tell me once to seek my own happiness and joy, to prioritize myself.
No one advised Ravi the same. You paid an insane amount as a dowry yet you had refused to part with that money when I had showed my interest in pursuing higher education abroad!
I had hoped to start my new life with joy and gave my 100%, but as I started to get to know Ravi I realized he was this egoistic, temperamental, male chauvinist who insulted me at the drop of a hat. For him, I was just his caretaker who would silently comply to all his needs. I remember the first time he slapped me. I was stunned, shattered. I wanted to call you both up and cry and tell that I didn’t want to live with this man. But then my conditioning stopped me. I knew you guys would only ask me to adjust.
I visited you so many times in the past 10 years yet I am surprised how you guys couldn’t ever see the bruises on my body, my sad dull and lifeless eyes, or my tears. Maybe you did, but you ignored for the fear of society and your reputation. Girls can get thrashed by their husbands yet its the reputation of both the families that needs to be saved, not the girl. I had indirectly told you many times about Ravi’s ill treatment but again you simply dismissed it as usual marital problems and shunned it. Isn’t it ironical that throughout my unmarried life you tried to protect me from boys but now when I really needed to be protected you have left me in the lurch?
I can take it no more mom and dad, please save me from this monster. Today he was just short of killing me. All my life I have been an obedient and good daughter, sacrificing my dreams, my desires, trying to adjust with a monster; but now its your turn to keep your promise of protecting me. For once, please think about me and not the society or your so-called reputation. If I die tomorrow, there will no point mourning my loss. Save me while I am still alive.
Your distraught daughter,
Just when Kavita was going to click on the Send button, she received a call from her mother. “Hello, Kavita, your younger brother’s marriage has been fixed. I will send a separate invitation to Ravi and his parents. After all, they are our special guests. The wedding will take place exactly in 2 months’ time from today. You have to come at least 10 days prior to the marriage to help me out. I have already started shopping. Do let me know if Ravi or your in-laws want any special gifts. I just hope the wedding goes without any hassles. Will call you tomorrow. Lots of work to be done. Bye.”
Tears rolled down Kavita’s cheeks, the salty water hurting her cheek bruise. Her mother didn’t even bother to hear anything from her. Her brother’s marriage meant that she could no longer send this mail to her parents. She knew her parents. They would never take her back fearing social backlash and now with her brother about to be married she was permanently unwelcome.
With a heavy heart she once again deleted the mail. She had to find another way out now. She had 2 families yet she was all alone. She had to fight it out alone.
Image source: a still from short film The Relationship Manager
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I am a travel expert by profession and an avid blogger by passion. Parenting and women's issues are something that are close to my heart and I blog a lot about them. read more...
Women's Web is an open platform that publishes a diversity of views, individual posts do not necessarily represent the platform's views and opinions at all times.
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