‘Yes, she can drink and dance just as well as you can, but won’t, simply Because you won’t like it, even though you say otherwise’

“Every mother should tell her son………..!!

Email forward shared by Mr GVjee. Author’s name was not mentioned in the forward – do share if you know who wrote this ‘piece of advice’.

What do you think of this attempt at good will for deserving Indian daughters in law? My attempt at better advice in italics.

*   *   *

Every mother should tell her son………..!!Tomorrow you may get a working woman, but you should marry her with these facts as well.Here is a girl, who is as much educated as you are;
Who is earning almost as much as you do;

IHM: How educated she is and how much she is earning is irrelevant. You are equal partners.Every mother should tell her son………..!! : One, who has dreams and aspirations just as you have because she is as human as you are;

One, who has never entered the kitchen in her life just like you or your Sister haven’t, as she was busy in studies and competing in a system that gives no special concession to girls for their culinary achievements

One, who has lived and loved her parents & brothers & sisters, almost as much as you do for 20-25 years of her life;

One, who has bravely agreed to leave behind all that, her home, people who love her, to adopt your home, your family, your ways and even your family name,

IHM’s Better Advice: Getting married does not mean either of you leaves behind your families and friends. And don’t ask or expect her to take your family name. The obsession with carrying forward of family names via male heirs is the reason why we have a skewed gender ratio.

Every mother should tell her son………..!! : One, who is somehow expected to be a master-chef from day #1, while you sleep oblivious to her predicament in her new circumstances, environment and that kitchen

Better Advice: Don’t expect your relationship to work if you ‘sleep oblivious’ and expect her to be in a ‘predicament’ in the kitchen. This is why Joint Families don’t work. Be there with her in the kitchen.

Every mother should tell her son………..!! : One, who is expected to make the tea, first thing in the morning and cook food at the end of the day, even if she is as tired as you are, maybe more, and yet never ever expected to complain;
to be a servant, a cook, a mother, a wife, even if she doesn’t want to; and is learning just like you are as to what you want from her; and is clumsy and sloppy at times …

Ek Sawal: She is expected to do all this by Who?

Answer: Only by Patriarchal Misogynists.

Better Advice: Don’t expect her to be a servant or a cook. Or a Mother unless if she wants to.

Every mother should tell her son………..!! : and knows that you won’t like it if she is too demanding, or if she learns faster than you;

Better Advice: You are an adult. She is not competition. You do not need to pretend to always know better, and she does not need to pretend she thinks you always know better. Let me not raise you to expect a slave who treats you like a badly brought up child.

Every mother should tell her son………..!! : One, who has her own set of friends, and that includes boys and even men at her workplace too, those, who she knows from school days and yet is willing to put all that on the back-burners to avoid your irrational jealousy, unnecessary competition and your inherent insecurities;

Better Advice:

i. Friends are a support system. You may find that you don’t like some of her friend or she doesn’t like some of yours. Do discuss and deal with this if it really bothers either of you, but don’t expect to get along perfectly with everybody either of you knows.

ii. If you remember you are an equal partner, and not a Protector and Provider/Lord and Master, you will find it easier to be free from ‘your inherent’  any ‘insecurities’ which might lead to ‘unnecessary competition’ and ‘irrational jealousy’. Do read: Man’s Man? No thanks. by Cynically Engineered

Every mother should tell her son………..!! : Yes, she can drink and dance just as well as you can, but won’t, simply Because you won’t like it, even though you say otherwise

Better Advice: Respect each other as individuals and adults – don’t expect to make her give up something (even while saying otherwise) she enjoys doing and don’t expect her to enjoy the same things you do. You will do somethings together, and somethings one of you will enjoy more than the other.

Every mother should tell her son………..!! : One, who can be late from work once in a while when deadlines, just like yours, are to be met;

One, who is doing her level best and wants to make this most important, relationship in her entire life a grand success, if you just help her little and trust her;

IHM: If she sees this marriage as the ‘most important relationship in her entire life’ then she will expect you to do the same.

Every mother should tell her son………..!! : One, who just wants one thing from you, as you are the only one she knows in your entire house – your generous support, your sensitivities and most importantly – your understanding, or love, if you may call it.

But not many guys understand this…….

Please appreciate “HER”

IHM: Nobody should be forced to live in a Joint Family.

Every mother should tell her son………..!! : Send this to all girls to make their day and to all guys who can handle it.

Related Posts:

These lines sum up the biggest reason for male child preference and skewed gender ratio in India.

Man’s Man? No thanks. – Cynically Engineered

Of girly men who fail to convert irresponsible women from liabilities to assets.

Honor and Masculinity: How Patriarchy Warps Your Thinking

First name, Unwanted. Second name, Dad’s or Husband’s name.

So what could make even the average, selfish, money-minded Indian family welcome baby girls?

Adarsh Bhartiya Nari – Ideal Indian Woman… !!!

61 thoughts on “‘Yes, she can drink and dance just as well as you can, but won’t, simply Because you won’t like it, even though you say otherwise’

  1. This post was going around on FB was not the ‘every mother should tell her son’ version. A lot of my girlfriends in their mid-20s were posting this, and I can’t tell you how irritating and annoying it is.. Why can’t these women think and realize how stupid, irrational, and unfair these expectations are and stand up for a fair relationship! Rather than becoming martyrs and expecting the guy to appreciate their sacrifices! Why does the Indian society value sacrifice so much?! It’s ingrained in us that a person who sacrifices is a good person!

    Like

  2. Dear IHM,

    I’m glad my thoughts (AND actions) completely matches with yours.

    These are my normal feelings. I just wonder why there are so few others who think the same.

    Like

  3. // Yes, she can drink and dance just as well as you can, but won’t, simply Because you won’t like it, even though you say otherwise//
    To me it only sounds like the mother is trying to send home the message that he should actually not be liking her drinking/ dancing even if he (horror of horrors!) says otherwise. She appears to be convinced that people who make progressive statements do so only for public consumption–at least that is what she would like to believe!

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    • Who the hell doesn’t like someone who drink and dance? It is so much fun. Also, I seriously don’t understand who came up with this associating women with kitchen duties and culinary skills. There is not even a biological angle to it. Who says its a woman’s duty that something nice is made in the kitchen everyday?

      Like

  4. Its like telling your son to treat the slave little better but don’t do anything to stop the slavery. That way they can have all the privileges of having a slave and at the same time get a pat on the back for being a kind master.

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    • I could’nt have put this better. This is exactly the message a lot of so called educated and aware families pass on to their sons and daughters/ dils.

      Like

  5. “One, who has never entered the kitchen in her life just like you or your Sister haven’t, as she was busy in studies and competing in a system that gives no special concession to girls for their culinary achievements”

    If your children (girl or boy) reach 25 without ever having entered the kitchen, you are doing them a disservice. Its just another way that parents teach their kids to be dependent. A 20-25 year old that cannot make a simple meal for themselves, clean up after themselves, do laundry etc is ridiculous.

    I hear a lot of young women who will say they cant cook/don’t want to learn to cook with pride. I don’t see anything to be proud of; that you cannot feed yourself and are dependent on mommy and daddy. Cooking healthy and nutritious meals is a life skills that both men and women should have.

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    • That’s what I don’t understand.
      Why is cooking healthy & delicious meals considered such a ‘low status’ task in the Indian household when home cooked ‘tasty’ food is SOOOO important in an Indian family.
      Some of the tantrums I’ve seen in my Indian in laws’ homes when the food is not tasty are just outrageous, yet when a female member of the household cooks an absolutely delicious & ‘tasty’ meal no thanks is given?
      Same goes for cleaning/laundry.

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      • Umm, because in Indian families, cooking is mostly done by women. Any activity that is performed predominantly by women is always considered menial and low-class.
        Women dominated professions like teaching and nursing are devalued the world over; even though they are vital to society’s well-being.

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    • Totally agree .. I am not too fond of cooking myself and do not fancy cooking 3 meals a day for a family every day but I can cook and I cook most of my meals because its healthier and cheaper. self reliant and basic survival at any part of the world demands that you learn to cook and clean .

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      • I dont enjoy cooking but know how to and do it because its part of day to day living. There are many chores i dont enjoy but do anyways because it is part of being a self-reliant adult.

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    • “I hear a lot of young women who will say they cant cook/don’t want to learn to cook with pride.”

      It ultimately has to do with anything that was considered to be traditionally “women’s work” to be less valuable. Why do you think doctors are held in such high regard, but nurses are often overlooked, even though they are really the ones who keep you alive? Because the vast majority of nurses are women, and if it’s work that’s done by a woman, it’s not as important. If you want to be considered “valuable” in society, do a man’s job.

      There was recently a study conducted in Russia, where doctors are generally not regarded with respect and considered akin to blue-collar workers. Why? Because the majority of doctors in Russia are women. I know for a fact that biology in my university is considered a “soft” major. Why? Most of the biology majors are women. Even though it was only around 60-70 years ago that women were thought unfit for college life due to the stress being too damaging for their “delicate” psyche.

      And the liberal arts. Most of the liberal arts majors are, you guessed it, women. Hence, cue all the jokes about how they won’t find jobs and will have to marry rich. And let’s forget about the fact that only a century and a half ago, women had to write under male pseudonyms because women simply didn’t have it within them to be writers. And let’s forget that most of the authors who are considered valuable enough to be discussed in these courses are men.

      Basically, if you’re a woman, and you do something, it’s less important. Why? Because women, in and of themselves, are considered less important, less valuable, and far more expendable than men are. I’m an engineering major who’s friends with a lot of people who are from other departments. When we hang out and introduce ourselves to people, I can visibly see the difference in reaction from when I tell them what I’m doing and when my friends tell them what they’re doing. Why? Because engineering is a “man’s job”, it’s “valuable”, so hence, I am too and therefore worthy of more respect than my fellow women. It’s plain and utter BS, but there you have it.

      Like

    • I don’t whom to agree with the most because I agree with every single comment below. Parents, keeping your kids dependent on you isn’t some achievement. If your 5 year old cannot as much as put butter and jam on his bread you’re not teaching them much, really.

      Like

      • Yes, i cannot stand the extent to which parents baby their children in India. They don’t teach their kids to do anything on their own and be self-reliant.

        Ive seen parents hand feed children as old as 7. A seven year old is capable of feeding themselves. Even small children can be taught to do small tasks such as putting on their own clothes and shoes, putting away their laundry, tidying up their toys, making simple snacks. But no parents baby them and do everything and see it as a form of love. I would rather my children learn to be independent and self-reliant. It also boosts their confidence when they are able to doing something all by themselves. The look of pride on their face when they made a pb&j sandwich all by them-self.

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    • Agreed…but everyone please read the ‘BOTH MEN AND WOMEN’ words clearly and not just women! As I have seen many men who come for debates in tv channels, start telling ‘In those days, wives used to cook, and nowadays the maids are cooking…’ at which all the audience, (including women) laugh. Cannot they even think for a minute, that many such men have been spending precious moments in their life, just by watching what women are doing and whether they are ‘conforming’ to the social norms. Had these men spent their life in better ways by learning to share household work, taking care of the kids, or their parents in the mean time, the entire society would have moved forward by now. A serious request to all men (and some women, with patriarchal mind set), look at what you are doing and stop commenting on what others do. ‘Be the change that you wish to see in the world’.

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  6. Lol. In trying to “fix” it, they just make it worse don’t they? The more some people open their mouth, the deeper the hole they dig for themselves. Unfortunately they just don’t “get” it….they just…don’t…get it.

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  7. No one I know on FB has posted this fortunately. I’m appalled at this advice–it’s basically saying that the woman’s going to give up her entire identity to serve her husband, so therefore, the husband should appreciate her? I wonder what this ‘mother’ would tell her son if the wife didn’t cook, didn’t sacrifice her own deadlines just so her husband could meet his, drank and danced with her friends, and decided not to live in a joint family. Would the ‘appreciate her’ advice still stand?

    When I was working, I had several colleagues put up similar things called ‘Indian wife’ ‘mother’ etc that were just as atrocious, but I deleted them from my FB friends list because I started disliking them and felt it would inevitably show up in my behavior at work.

    Instead of reading “Every mother should tell her son…” it should read “Every sexist, patriarchal, misogynistic mother should tell her entitled, sexist, spoiled brat of a mommy’s boy son…”

    Like

  8. “One, who is expected to make the tea, first thing in the morning and cook food at the end of the day, even if she is as tired as you are, maybe more, and yet never ever expected to complain;
    to be a servant, a cook, a mother, a wife, even if she doesn’t want to; and is learning just like you are as to what you want from her; and is clumsy and sloppy at times”

    This is just so messed up…
    Yet, I’ve heard so many mothers give this “advice” to their sons & the same mothers do this for their husbands who forever live in the fear that they may face their husband’s wrath or disappointment…

    Like

  9. we indians (read ‘women’) are obsessed with just 3 things:- ‘sacrifice’, ‘compromise’ and last but not the least, ‘appreciation’! most just cant think beyond these words!! wierdos!!!

    Like

    • Bang on.

      Essentially do not respect yourself. Do not trust your own judgement. Let others judge and ‘appreciate’ you, which can happen only via ‘sacrifice and compromise’.

      Ugghh.

      Like

  10. I appreciate the gesture, but this doesn’t do much. What this essentially does is continue to keep women where they’re at, without any change for them at all. While it tries to create some sort of empathy for the whole situation (I liked the bits about goals, dreams and deadlines etc.), it doesn’t ever take into account the fact that, “Well, she is a person who might not WANT to wake up in the morning and cook for you and clean for you and do things for you when she is tired, and that is okay too, because you have two hands, two feet, and what is presumably a functioning brain to do all these things for yourself.”

    But well. They tried. And failed.

    I do have a question for everyone else though–what would you tell your children?

    Like

    • I think I wouldn’t tell anything at all.

      I just hope I have done my job – which is to raise them to respect themselves and to respect others.

      Like

      • (Aaargh typos)

        I think I would not tell them anything at all.

        I just hope I will have done my job – which is to raise them to respect themselves and to respect others.

        Like

    • I tell my kids, be fair, be kind, dont cheat, steal or cause harm to others, be happy. you owe it to yourself to be happy. enjoy life , live to the max, love with a passion and do something good. bas the rest will fall in place.

      Like

    • 😀 Ssshhh…breathe in…breathe out…repeat until you’re calm😀 I can totally see how you feel because that was my reaction when I read that post too. I bother replying only when it is someone I know is likely to think intelligently. I don’t even bother getting myself riled up discussing this stuff with sheeple.

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      • The trouble Krith is as my girls grow older, they end up listening to such nonsense. Then I have to open my mouth and ask the offending party to take their gyaan elsewhere. I try to be polite but sometimes pay a price.

        Example: our excellent Hindustani vocal teacher. An old man, he’d say stuff like’god has not given you sons, never mind, your girls are so sorted out’ etc. Right when my girls are present.
        Tried to change the topic, laugh it off, say nicely I didn’t believe in that drivel, but he’d say the same thing in different ways over and over. Finally lost it. Result – we lost our teacher.

        Oh well.

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        • I agree with you n. You did the right thing by putting your kids’ ex teacher in his place. In any case these life lessons you’re teaching them by sticking up for them and doing the right thing is so much more important than the music lesson. They are learning first hand that they’re valuable individuals and should never allow themselves to be disrespected.

          My highly educated colleague actually had the gall to ask me if I’m disappointed that my first child is going to be a girl🙂 This guy has a girl and a boy. I asked him if he had that second child only because the first was a girl and made sure others could hear. That shut him up nicely. I never miss an opportunity to tell people off when they’re BSing.

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  11. Oh well another nonsense patronizing advice, good responses from IHM.
    Indian women do not need their husband’s mere empty appreciation in thoughts and goodwill, that is useless. Instead, these husbands need to get off the couch, go into the kitchen, cook the meals, clean the dishes, change baby diapers and wake up in middle of the nights when the baby cries. They should not just merely “help” with household chores, they must share the responsibility equally, anything less than that is bullshit empty talk and unacceptable.

    To any future Indian hubby or MIL: absolutely not giving up my favorite templeton rye whiskey “simply because you won’t like it”, we have been very good friends in moments of sorrow and celebration long before any of you showed up and we are not parting ways. Don’t make me choose, you would loose.

    What’s wrong with Indian culture and all this glorifying of endless sacrifrice only from women? What do men ever have to sacrifice ?

    Like

    • Well, Indian husbands will have to relinquish their demi-god status and live the way women live — as mere mortals.

      Indian men who have a shred of decency and humanity are already being good husbands; because a good husband is somebody to treats his wife with the respect and consideration that she deserves.

      The rest? No amount of Facebook forwarding will change the psyche of a man who simply cannot see women as human beings. No amount of progressive blogging will change his views. Such men, I believe are a lost cause

      Like

  12. IHM you have too much patience, I’m tired of these idiotic posts circulating in facebook, i cant even get the effort to dislike them anymore .
    A mom needs to say ‘ be with the person you love, the one who makes you happy and whom you make happy and enjoy life ‘ if that…
    ‘marry for yourself not for society’ and treat everyone as you wish to be treated. done.

    Like

  13. This is actually a re-hashed version of an ancient email forward (8-9 years ago, these things really don’t die). Remember when it was email instead of facebook🙂 I remember reading it on an email list and being annoyed and replying with very similar points. Unfortunately I was told that I should “appreciate the effort” and not be too “radical”. I was particularly annoyed by the tiny subtle details e.g. this phrase “lived and loved her parents & brothers & sisters, almost as much as you do”. I wondered why it was “almost” and who gave the person to quantify one person’s affection vs the others?

    Like

    • Oh also note the “Who is earning almost as much as you do”. Because god forbid she should earn “as much” or “more” than the husband🙂

      Like

  14. When I get these type of FB forwards, I immediately reply to them with my views. Because there are people who actually believe these things without thinking. It’s good for them to hear another point of view. Why not use social media to bring about social change? If everyone who participates in this blog aired their views on FB with their own friends, hopefully we can bring about changes to the Indian mindset faster and not have to wait for another century🙂

    Like

  15. This was probably written by somebody who didn’t really mean to write a real unbiased and well-researched article about social issues and solutions. This was very likely written by a mom for her schoolkid, and was probably just explaining how she wants her husband to treat her, given the current situation she is in.

    I don’t think it’s worth reading deeply into the article and (surprise!) realizing it is very shallow.

    On a related note, if idiots are sharing this, so be it. There will always be no shortage of them in the world

    Like

  16. Got the below as a forward yesterday –

    “A Cute Letter from a newly married girl to her mother
    Dear mom,
    Like every normal girl, I was excited about marriage right from my childhood days. I never thought beyond the time that I would spend happily with my prince charming. But today when I am married, I realize that marriage is not all roses. It’s not just about being with your
    beloved and having a gala time. There is so much more to it. It comes with its own share of responsibilities, duties, sacrifices and compromises.
    I can’t wake up anytime I want to.
    I am expected to be up and ready before everyone else in the family.
    I can’t laze around in my pyjamas throughout the day.
    I am expected to be presentable every time.
    I can’t just go out anytime I want to.
    I am expected to be sensitive to the needs of the family.
    I just can’t hit the bed anytime I want to.
    I am expected to be active and around the family.
    I can’t expect to be treated like a princess but am supposed to take care of everyone else in the family.
    And then I think to myself, ‘why did I get married at all?’ I was happier with you, mom. Sometimes I think of coming back to you and getting pampered again. I want to come home to my favourite
    food cooked by you every evening after a nice outing with friends. I want to sleep on your laps like I have no worry in this world. But then I suddenly realize, had you not got married and made such sacrifices in your life, I wouldn’t have had so many wonderful memories to hang on to. And suddenly, the purpose of all this becomes clear- to return the same comfort, peace and happiness to my new family that I got from you. And I am sure that as time would pass, I would start loving this life equally as you do. Thank you mom for all the sacrifices and compromises
    you made. They give me the strength to do the same. Love you.
    It’s an excellent letter for all daughters”

    What a way to promote/justify patriarchy. I especially hated the last sentence. When I replied to the sender that this is not an excellent letter for daughters, she said I am too impractical and do not understand the ground realities of life !!!!

    Like

  17. A similar ‘cute’ letter circulating on facebook-

    A Cute Letter from a newly married girl to her mother

    Dear mom,

    Like every normal girl, I was excited about marriage right from my childhood days. I never thought beyond the time that I would spend happily with my prince charming.

    But today when I am married, I realize that marriage is not all roses. It’s not just about being with your beloved and having a gala time. There is so much more to it. It comes with its own share of responsibilities, duties, sacrifices and compromises.

    I can’t wake up anytime I want to.
    I am expected to be up and ready before everyone else in the family.
    I can’t laze around in my pyjamas throughout the day.
    I am expected to be presentable every time.
    I can’t just go out anytime I want to.
    I am expected to be sensitive to the needs of the family.
    I just can’t hit the bed anytime I want to.
    I am expected to be active and around the family.
    I can’t expect to be treated like a princess but am supposed to take care of everyone else in the family.

    And then I think to myself, ‘why did I get married at all?’ I was happier with you, mom. Sometimes I think of coming back to you and getting pampered again.

    I want to come home to my favourite food cooked by you every evening after a nice outing with friends. I want to sleep on your laps like I have no worry in this world. But then I suddenly realize, had you not got married and made such sacrifices in your life, I wouldn’t have had so many wonderful memories to hang on to. And suddenly, the purpose of all this becomes clear- to return the same comfort, peace and happiness to my new family that I got from you.

    And I am sure that as time would pass, I would start loving this life equally as you do. Thank you mom for all the sacrifices and compromises you made. They give me the strength to do the same. Love you.

    It’s an excellent letter for all daughters

    Do not forget to Share..!!

    Like

    • Such letters make married life sound like life in the concentration camps.
      Why is it assumed that marriage for women is such an unpleasant, uncomfortable experience that they have to be prepped and primed for it?

      Why is there not an effort made to prepare and prime men for marriage.

      The subtext of such messages is always that marriage requires more unpleasant sacrifices and compromises from women than from men.

      Like

  18. Pingback: Please watch Queen. Feels like our country is finally changing. | The Life and Times of an Indian Homemaker

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