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So many women share among their peers that "I have two young children and one big one!" Don't most of them say it with a decided note of pride in their voice?
Is your romantic relationship built between two adults, and not between one full adult and a half adult?
There was a byte from Ranbir Kapoor recently that he doesn’t even bathe or eat if he doesn’t know where wife Alia Bhatt is: “Very dependent on her.”
While he might have said it in jest or to showcase to the world how he loves his new wife, in the world of social media this kind of statement can definitely become the new ‘couple goals’.
If he expects her to mother him, then it is definitely wrong. And if his words are meant to make her feel so ‘important’ that he “can’t function without her,” once again it puts her on a pedestal which she might not really want, and which she might not be able to sustain in a long run.
After all, she married a 40-year-old man who surely can fend for himself?
Some three decades back, my then newly-married friend rushed home from an impromptu get-together stating that, “my husband eats only if I serve.” My snarky, “what was he doing all of twenty-eight years?” ensured frostiness in our friendship after this, not to speak about sounding like a douchebag.
Being in our twenties, we too were agog with the notion of romance. Growing up on a steady diet of romantic movies in the late 70s and 80s, we too had planned to iron the shirts of our husband, serve him food… for we had learnt the adage both by words and actions, “the only way to the man’s heart is through his stomach.”
As impressionable young women, we were always told that our role as women meant that “we were there for the family.” Career was considered only as a fall-back, “in case.”
It only took me a few years into my own marriage to realize the fallacy behind such expectations. True love doesn’t make anyone dependent on you… though everywhere around me I saw evidence to the contrary!
In my years of ‘adulting,’ I have seen a variety of roles played by the women in any family. Serving food first for the men-folk was the least of them all.
I have noticed a couple of men who would just step over the lungi that they had discarded on the floor, and the significant other would pick it up to put it for wash.
Or the men would wash their hands in the plate that they had eaten in, and the women would pick it up after.
There are wives who refuse to be around to help even their own parents, because their “husband will not be comfortable if they are not by their side at night”!
Over time my husband and I have realized that if you really care for the significant other, you do not send them on frequent guilt-trips by asking them to be by your side at all times.
You don’t make them responsible for your physical and mental up-keep. You help make them independent – be it shopping for grocery, cooking, finances, or the upkeep of the house. It means egging the other person on to be a better version of themselves, and also display in both words and by actions, that we are together in this as two adults.
This is what we as women do wrong – accommodate dependent husbands, and later, dependent children.
It is indeed lamentable that men continue to sit in the car while the lady goes to do shopping for household goods. Many youngsters grow to be adults without knowing the prices of essential commodities. Cooking, loading of washing machine or cleaning of utensils are all necessary life skills.
Unfortunately, I have come to realize that even in a family which is ostensibly open-minded, it is solely the woman’s role to cook and serve.
But then the question arises – are women also happy mothering their husbands? So many women share among their peers, that “I have two young children and one big one!” Don’t most of them say it with a decided note of pride in their voice?
~ Are you constantly looking for this person to make you feel special?
~ Have you made your partner responsible for your happiness, self-worth, and safety?
~ Do you have a set of expectations for you to feel loved and safe?
~ Do you feel empty and alone unless you feel useful?
~ Are you terribly possessive of your space- be it kitchen, your culinary expertise?
~ Are you adaptable enough to let go?
~ Do you have a life beyond your family?
Couples often wait to eat in the company of one another, or share a bathtub to increase intimacy. But to expect the other person to rush back from say, work that may go on till late, an incomplete project, time-out with friends, or to want to be a chauffeur to the other person so that they are totally dependent on you, is so wrong at so many levels.
A few months back there was a young man who said that his mother loved to feed all of them before eating herself. It could be very much possible. I am not prescribing a life of so much independence that it ceases to be a family.
But the fact remains that you and your significant other are supposed to be building a family as two adults, not as one and a half adult.
Chandrika R Krishnan, a Bengaluru-based writer and educationist likes all things beginning with a ‘T’ - talking, teaching, tales and tea.
Her 300-odd published articles, poems and stories are eclectic and mostly experiential and 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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Rajshri Deshpande, who played the fiery protagonist in Trial by Fire along with Abhay Deol speaks of her journey and her social work.
Rajshri Deshpande as the protagonist in ‘Trial by Fire’, the recent Netflix show has received raving reviews along with the show itself for its sensitive portrayal of the Uphaar Cinema Hall fire tragedy, 1997 and its aftermath.
The limited series is based on the book by the same name written by Neelam and Shekhar Krishnamoorthy, who lost both their children in the tragedy. We got an opportunity to interview Rajshri Deshpande who played Neelam Krishnamoorthy, the woman who has been relentlessly crusading in the court for holding the owners responsible for the sheer negligence.
Rajshri Deshpande is more than an actor. She is also a social warrior, the rare celebrity from the film industry who has also gone back to her roots to give to poverty struck farming villages in her native Marathwada, with her NGO Nabhangan Foundation. Of course a chance to speak with her one on one was a must!
“What is a woman’s job, Ramesh? Taking care of parents-in-law, husband, children, home and things at work—all at the same time? She isn’t God or a superhuman."
The arrays of workstations were occupied by people peering into their computer screens. The clicks of keyboard keys were punctuated by the occasional footsteps moving around to brainstorm or collaborate with colleagues in their cubicles. Most employees went about their tasks without looking at the person seated on either side of their workstation. Meenakshi was one of them.
The thirty-one-year-old marketing manager in a leading eCommerce company in India sat straight in her seat, her eyes on the screen, her fingers punching furiously into the keys. She was in a flow and wanted to finish the report while the thoughts and words were coming effortlessly into her mind.
Natu-Natu. The mellifluous ringtone interrupted her thoughts. She frowned at her mobile phone with half a mind to keep it ringing until she noticed the caller’s name on the screen, making her pick up the phone immediately.
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