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We blindly follow many traditions unfair to women. We never question them, and when someone thinks about them rationally, we are shocked!
According to many, being a divorcee is bad for a woman, and being widowed is the worst. It exists in our minds without giving it a rational thought.
When I was being blessed with ‘sada suhagan raho’ by my elders again and again, I finally decided to question, “Why do you expect me to die before my husband, even though he is elder to me?”, humorously.
All of a sudden there was chaos around me. I was branded with many new labels just for this simple rational question. Naturally what had started as just a funny question became a serious thing for me to think about. Also my argumentative side came alive and I asked, “Why is being widowed considered such a bad thing when most of the women marry men who are older than them? My husband is 7-8 years older than me. When you say I should never be widowed are you not cursing me to die younger than him? How is this fair? Why can’t we both be blessed to live long? Or why cannot we both live our lives based on our luck, habits, and lifestyle independently and not be related to each other’s life-span? Just because I married a guy doesn’t mean my life-span has to be shorter than his, right?”
Even though I was surrounded by women at that time, none of them were willing to even consider it for a moment as to what I was saying. For them I was an evil lady who could freely speak about her husband’s death without any qualms about it. I realized that even though ‘Sati’ system is abolished now, deep inside everyone the system still exists. They wish the wife to die before her husband does even if she is way younger to him. If allowed, they can still burn or bury her with him without any hesitation.
I decided to reject all the blessings thrown at me there after since none of them seemed to benefit me in any way. Most of the blessings they were showering on me were for the benefit of others. For me to bear a boy to keep the family line of my husband alive, for me to take care and accept his family as mine, for my husband to be prosperous and healthy so that he could take care of me, etc. etc.
There are so many traditions we follow blindly that are quite unfair to women. We have come to accept it so strongly that we don’t even think about it rationally and when someone does, it comes as a huge shock. I hope someday we will find the right blessings to be showered on our girls rather than telling them to die before their husbands do.
Image source: RakeshPicholiya from Getty Images Free for Canva Pro
I am Farida Rizwan, 57, Counselor and Psychotherapist working as Senior Curriculum Developer with Chimple Learning. I am the founder of My Giggle Garden, Preschool, and Daycare. I am an ardent blogger @www.chaptersfrommylife.com read more...
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