‘When husbands are jealous, they look so cute, no!?’

“Husbands jab jealous hote hain to kitne cute lagte hain na?” Roughly translates to, ‘When husbands are jealous, don’t they look so cute?’

Do you think a man wanting his wife to display her marital status shows that he loves her?

How different is that from men wanting women to hide their ‘beauty’ from gair mard (random men/other men) by covering up or by not wearing certain kinds of (Possibly ‘western’) clothes/make up/hair styles?

Why have we romanticised control, dependence, possessiveness and jealousy (mainly in men) as love?

For women: naiveté, ignorance, lack of experience, emotional dependence, need for reassurance and approval, trust, obedience and physical weakness,  (delicate or fragile are still used as compliments to describe women’s beauty, as opposed to strong, fit or athletic) are romanticised.

Why isn’t being supportive, being partners, being fun to be with, being emotionally stable (as against being unpredictable or insecure), being balanced, not being manipulative, being fair and honest, and courageous and respectful, knowing one’s mind etc romanticised – in both men and women?

What do you think? Do you find the man’s gesture romantic?

What would you say would have been appropriate reactions? (I am assuming that the man was not really aware that his action was not an act of love but an act of jealous and controlling insecurity)

How do you think would this man react if the woman were to put the mangalsutra back inside, … or take it off and put it away, after calling his jealousy cute? 

SimblyBored shared her post – Dabur Honey’s Mangalsutra Ad in response to this video.

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36 thoughts on “‘When husbands are jealous, they look so cute, no!?’

  1. IHM, you’re absolutely right about the romanticization.

    It’s depicted that way in all the movies we’ve been watching since we were children. How many times have we seen women acting coy/shy and running away when men make advances even if they want otherwise and men taking control – wooing them, taking liberties, even teasing them!
    And if the girl is a tomboy, she eventually falls in love and becomes coy after she has had sex. Remember whip-bearing Manisha Koirala turning into a demure woman in Sangdil Sanam(?) after Salman forcibly abducts her? It bothered me even as a 12 year old.

    And to answer your question, I find the idea of a mangalsutra/sindoor a little lopsided. I do not find asking your wife to display her mangalsutra “cute” unless he insists on wearing one too.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. What the hell is wrong with our society and the ad makers in special? Jealousy and cute! But only when it comes from the man. Have you heard anyone talk of jealousy in terms of ‘cute’ when it is a woman?
    Jealousy is jealousy, a negative thing. Period. Not cute. Never cute.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. So many interesting issues to explore here!

    I certainly DO NOT find the man’s gesture romantic but then I am no 12-year old.

    As a 12-year old, I may have found this romantic, because I grew up watching films and books that told me that boyfriends get jealous because they care for you and love you (eg, Sweet Valley High!). Seeing it about you in films and books also normalises it somewhat. As you have pointed out, the link between jealousy and love is problematic and should be questioned.

    Also, I think jealousy is easy to romanticise because it indicates passion…and people (or specifically women) do covet passionate lovers, until it all goes wrong (eg SRK in Anjaam).

    Now, why is that? There is something about our culture that glorifies a woman’s role as being the object of unwavering passion…as indicated by how sex is generally portrayed (man, in possession of passion and power, is usually in charge). When you are conditioned into being the object of passion, characteristics such as “naiveté, ignorance, lack of experience, emotional dependence, need for reassurance and approval, trust, obedience and physical weakness” follow more naturally.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. This ad is perfect example of modern yet traditional.

    1. Women is independent,allowed to go to office and that too in jeans and tshirt. Modern women.

    2. Women is wearing mangalsutra and in fact loving to wear it. Traditional women.

    This is what we mean by modern yet traditional. But somehow we fail to understand that what the tradition conveys. It simply means that it is necessary for women to flaunt that they are unavailable,they are object which the owner can flaunt by putting a tag, it will protect them from leaching eyes and comments.


    • – Women is independent, ALLOWED to go to office and that too in jeans and t-shirt
      doesn’t independent and ALLOWED sound contradictory to you?? Who is ALLOWING her? And how is she independent of the person ALLOWING her?

      – It simply means that it is necessary for women to flaunt that they are unavailable,
      So men don’t need to FLAUNT that they are unavailable?

      – they are object which the owner can flaunt by putting a tag, it will protect them from leaching eyes and comments.
      By THEY you mean woman and OWNER is Man and TAG is mangalsutra?? Oh they holy threads that will protect a woman. So by your logic, unmarried woman who wont have a mangalsutra or and OWNER is open sport for all leaching eyes and comments?????


    • Really now.

      Women are “allowed” to go to office and “that too” in jeans and t-shirt? Women should flaunt their unavailability, otherwise they will fall prey to leching eyes?

      No one has to right to impose upon, prevent / prohibit, or lech at / misbehave with anyone, man or woman, regardless of what the other person chooses to do / wear / live. That is basic human decency, you know. What part of it do you not understand?


      • That what I was trying to say but wasn’t able to convey it properly.All that was written as sarcasm.

        This is what society thinks that they have liberalised themselves by “allowing” women to go out for work or wearing western dress. This is privilege they have bestowed to womens. Every home says the same thing because still in our culture other way around is normal way of living i.e marrying them up as soon as possible. And because of this mentality many educated women do not question these martial symbol display.

        Before reading IHM I too loved this symbol , thought it as romantic but now I have read other side of coins. These symbols conveys inequality.

        And someone wrote that it is like dog’s collar. I wanted to write but thought it will become too strong words. But this ad seriously display it as dog collar which owner brings forward to make other realised that the dog is out of market.


    • I don’t even have one 😛 the idea of getting me one never crossed my husband’s, or my, mind. Doesn’t mean I have men falling all over me, because I don’t “look” married. Lechers will lech, regardless.

      To each his or her own… if you want to wear a mangalsutra, cool. You don’t want to wear one, equally cool. It’s nobody’s business to comment or dictate.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I actually feel women must take a stand against marital symbols or anything that dehumanizes them. Women-only type of martial symbols dehumanize women because they declare ownership and they make women’s safety contingent upon their relationships to men.
        Yes, some women wear these only during festivals for “fun”. But how did they get to be “fun” in the first place? Because a woman’s status got elevated when she was married to a man. A widow was treated worse than a stray dog, discriminated against, her head shaved, forced to wear white, and eat mongrel. All because she lacked a husband. So, you see, how “fun” it was by comparison to “have a husband”? You got to keep your hair and your clothes and your bangles and your food. You were “allowed” to participate in festivals.
        If we think of the origin of these symbols and their historical connotation, it takes away all the “fun” of wearing these symbols.

        Liked by 1 person

        • I too agree that women must take a stand against martial symbols. They segregate women and based on this segregation they give rewards to certain category and punishment to certain. And all of us wants to have rewards we spend our entire life to be in the category of rewards.

          Great example was given by writer by comparing the rewards and punishment for married and widow women.

          Plus what I think in this modern world we can not allow a women to choose to become SATI. Since it has such a strong attachment with our so called value culture that one’s choice will become fate for many others.Hence they are many symbols which should be allowed to chosen freely.


  5. I can pat myself on the back that i found and got found by an independent ,mature man with no jealousies who has no clue that i have nothing around my neck .. amazing indeed how lucky we both got.


    • “amazing indeed how lucky we both got.”
      That’s so true, you BOTH got lucky. Though most people see it as woman got lucky if she gets a mature, independent and non jealous man. The forget that the man also gets a WIFE instead of his mother’s BAHU


  6. So as a result it is presumed that some women like me who do not wear a visible sign of being married do not love and/or respect their spouse, or want to appear single to attract suitors. Well the problem is not with the symbols the problem is with their use as weapons of patriarchy to subdue, label and maintain the status quo. A husband who decides what his wife choses to wear or not wear may not be actually so much jealous in love but an emotional abuser.


  7. I dont wear sindoor or mangalsutra they look ridiculous on western formals……I wear it sometimes wen I wear ethnic etc…they r more like accessories n shld not be treated like a compulsary dog collar…..n seriously this ad is WTF !! Had my hubby been like tht dude he wld hav been dumped long ago


  8. To be absolutely honest, I do the same to my husband, I don’t think it’s got to do with the idea that there is mistrust. It’s just strong possessiveness and I feel it’s up to the couple – what they choose to do.

    Of course, doing this out of mistrust is a horrible thing.


  9. I too never understood why some women feel flattered and secure and coy when their husbands exert control over them. Some examples –
    1. Husband preventing his wife from going to her parents place whenever she wishes to is interpreted as “Oh, he misses me too much, so does not like me being away from him”. But wife dare not question how much time he spends away from family.
    2. Husband mandating that the wife wear signs of marriage (ie: mangalsutra, ring etc) but not adhering to that same rule himself is not questioned. It is interpreted as “Oh, he is so possessive, that’s cute” or “He likes to show the world that I am his” – as if it is a good thing being treated as an object of ownership and possession.
    3. Husband getting insecure if the wife is friendly towards male friends/acquaintences is interpreted as “He does not like the idea of anyone else getting close to me other than him, so cute”.
    Why do women fail to see that these are subtle and sometimes not so subtle ways of controlling their lives, and sometimes things start off in small ways but then become a way of life, increasing gradually in intensity and severity. After a point, it is too late to change things when women find a huge part of their existence being scrutinized, controlled and manipulated.

    If a woman exerts the same rules on the husband, she is seen as being bossy, manipulative, controlling and a bad wife.

    I hope blogs like this one make young girls and women question things, and see beyond what is depicted in books, movies, ads and popular culture as acceptable.


  10. I am going to come up with an ad titled “When husbands are jealous, they are so ridiculous, na?” Does the said woman not see that her husband doesn’t really think that his really good looking wife isn’t out to snag a hottie? Such ads make me sad. But they also make me thankful because my husband is kind enough to “allow” me to wear whatever the hell I want and not wear my mangalsutra just as I “allow” him to not wear a dhoti.


  11. I guess the admaker was never at the receiving end of a Jealous Husband. They probably havent had the long interrogation sessions where everything from who you met, where you went and why it took you as long as it took was to be reported to the Husband. If they had, they would have seen how Un-cute, frightening and suffocating it is to be that kind of situation.


  12. Well, ad makers are just exploiting opportunity to take an advantage of social psych.

    Somehow (at least) I don’t see many women buying this view point.

    Intact at times feminist women are seen flaunting their piece of metal.

    Women in general are portrayed as jewellery lovers! In unreasonable amounts.

    Now is it really so or public is just following sheep mentality god know.


  13. Some women in the west insist on husband wearing wedding ring even if for some reason he prefers not to. These women want the husband’s married status to be obvious.

    Are those women being jealous? Is such jealousy cute?

    It is emotional abuse? Is it trying to exert control?


    • Yes, the woman is being insecure. The husband should decide what jewelry he wants to wear, if any. There are ways for the husband to cheat even if he wears the ring. If the husband and wife love and trust each other, and are honest with each other, they will remain faithful to one another. A ring cannot protect a wife from dishonesty. Just as a mangalsutra cannot extend a man’s life.

      Having said that though, most couples make a joint decision to wear rings or not wear rings. My husband and I both mutually decided to wear rings. There’s an equal ‘ring’ to that notion – pun unintended. Like the kankana bandhana – a pair of bracelets that were worn by married couples as per ancient Vedic tradition (as opposed to the mangalasutra which seems to have originated more recently).


  14. Pingback: An email: “He told my MIL that he doesn’t like me. I knew he was depressed so I tried to console him.” | The Life and Times of an Indian Homemaker

  15. Pingback: 21 Married Women in Chennai Remove ‘Thali’ Despite Husbands Being Alive | The Life and Times of an Indian Homemaker

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