Sharing an email.
Sorry if the post is too long and seems random. I was emotionally overwhelmed and in too much of a hurry to pen them else my head would have bursted.
I questioned on issues of gender inequality but considered it okay if somebody is expected to dress as “married woman”, or to have kids, and similar other things. Well thanks to you that I was prompted to read from other places as well and value an individual’s freedom and opinion.
I am a highly educated, working woman of 25 and planning to get married next year to my boyfriend. As my boyfriend is of a different caste, I had a hard time convincing my parents. They have agreed reluctantly.
Though my mother treats me and my brother equally… now she has started me giving advises on how to behave at sasuraal…. get up early in morning, take a bath, wear a saree, do puja, behave nicely with everyone and cook/do all those things they require.
I question her that she is expecting me to do these things and definitely she will expect her DIL to do same. For this she replies that you or any-other-girl-these-day is going to be with their in-laws with only for few days/weeks in a year so why can’t you live the way they want and keep every one happy.
I initially perceived that my In-laws are understanding so I could be myself. I wanted to have a dialogue or discussion with them over every thing — wearing a saree, putting a sindoor or say at what time to get up. And my intention was to develop a healthy relationship in this way so that they know and accept me for what I am. (Considering that I haven’t met them so far ). All of my friends who have similar backgrounds and got married recently advised me against this. They “compromise” when they are with their in-laws and they feel its good to keep them happy. The mere fact that they crib to me about some or other bullshit traditions proves that their rendezvous with in-laws are not happy ones.
As a working woman The only time I will get to spend with my in-laws place will be during festival breaks or such. And I am expected by one and all to be an ideal bahu at that time and “not create any scenes” by my “unnecessary feminist ideas” as they won’t serve any purpose. Its not that I can’t fake an ideal bahu for few days but I won’t be happy doing this and would never be able to love and accept my in-laws as my family. ( On a side note as of now I don’t feel part of either families. I am “parayi” for my parents and I am not able to accept my in-laws). When I talk to my boy friend about these things he agrees that my points are valid (for eg. I can be disrespectful with a foot long ghoonghat so respect lies in how I behave rather than how I dress and similar arguments). But he does not argue with his mother any-more. (Remember his parents feel that they have done a huge favour by agreeing to an inter-caste marriage and to an extent I feel that my boyfriend believes in it as well). He wants me to adjust for few days and behave in my ways with my kids. I want to behave with my kids in a way which is suited at that time. Time changes and so does context. If I argue with my mother-in-law it will cause a fight with my bf which I don’t want to for simple emotional reasons. I think that my bf wants to avoid any confrontations and to have a “normal” undisturbed life.
I am really confused what to do. I can do drama for few days if thatz the solution. I know it seems an easy way out but trust me its not easy to please everyone when you are not happy yourself. I will be dreading those bi-annual in-laws visits which will be no fun for me. I will be forced fancy dress participant-cum-beautiful-cum itni padhi likhi par sanskari bahu-and other such tags which are considered praises. On the other hand I wonder whom I going to argue or discuss with. Will it be a case of “bhains k aage been bajaye aur bhains khadi paguraye“?
Thanks & Love,
Not sure if ready to be a itni padhi likhi par sanskari bahu