Sharing an email.
I stumbled upon your blog while I was too disturbed with the current state of my so called marriage.
I got married two years ago.
My parents had been looking for a match for me for two years but I couldn’t say a yes to anyone because I had seen so many marriages fail around me. I also have a younger sister, so obviously it was expected of me to get married as soon as possible so she could also be married off. We don’t have a male sibling. Also, I belong to a family where I and my sister were given the freedom of choice and were not controlled by our parents.
Now, when I met this guy, I had made up my mind to marry him because he belonged to a well off decent family or so was portrayed to us. His father made tall claims that they were pretty liberal in letting the daughter in law come home as and when she wishes to, and what not. He also made a phone call to me asking if I would be fine in staying with the joint family since they never ever want to stay separate. I was pretty ok since it didn’t seem like a big deal considering his parents understood that I am very well educated, have a career and belong to a nuclear family. During the courtship I had told him about my education loan which I couldn’t repay since my marriage was fixed soon after my education was over. And he was like I am proud of you that you took your responsibility and that we will take of that together. I also told him if he wants to tell his family, which he said he did. I don’t remember if the loan amount was discussed or not. I also told him that I would want to contribute financially after marriage you know because of my independent nature and high self esteem. I am not the kinds who would want to thrive on anyone else’s money, not even my husband’s.
Even though I had doubts about marrying this guy since he was not as smart as I am and which he himself confessed in a very boorish way, saying his friends call him a ch****a, I was really baffled as I couldn’t comprehend what kind of a man was I marrying. Then, things started becoming bad between us as I started losing respect for him for being what he claimed of himself. I am also short tempered. Just few days before the wedding I visited his place where he tried to dominate me and screamed at me in front of his mother. I was really taken aback. I fought with him the next day and abused him. Also, I said I would divorce him soon after marriage. To which he called both the families and I apologised to him. I, in fact wanted to call off the wedding but was too scared to do that at a very advanced stage. I couldn’t muster the courage and thought I may have misjudged, and things would fall in place.
After marriage things were not bad. I was gelling well with his parents. However, unfortunately my husband got really busy with his work. Also, since I had to shift to a new place, I left my previous job and became a housewife. This was the only way since my employer did not operate out of the city I moved into. So, I was a housewife, learning the ways of their house. During this time since my husband would work till late night I would not sleep until he would, in order to keep him company. And since he cared for me and my health, he would switch off my alarm in the mornings because of which I would wake up late which irked my MIL.
Also, in the kitchen, she would constantly tell me what to do, how to do, how to peel vegetables how to not use an extra plate to save the maid’s effort, how to dry clothes, etc etc. This, along with citing examples of how other daughters in law take care of their household, are ideal and also work. She would constantly send me whatsapp messages trying to manipulate my psyche of an independent working woman to that of a docile Indian bahu. I would cry my eyes out. She would sometimes snatch things of my hand. She would never let me cook my way. She would never allow me cook something different. It always had to be her way. There were many incidents where she commented things like
1. A girl’s house is also seen before marriage (since mine is a humble house)
2. She said you are not my daughter but daughter in law.
3. Once said ‘Zyada udo mat’ in front of her son.
4. She would constantly remind how they want a baby boy and not girl from that I should not even say that it be a baby girl.
5. She would tell me how much dowry she had brought with her.
6. She would say I wanted a working girl because dowry is one time while the girl will earn for a lifetime. [Link: Dulhan hi dahej hai]
7. Once she said I will fulfill all my wishes with your salary.[An email from an Indian MIL]
8. She also mentioned about other families where the daughters in law would give their salary to the parents in law.
I told my husband all of this and he ignored saying she just has this habit of talking nonsense.
During this time, my father was diagnosed with heart blockage and was advised to undergo a by-pass surgery. In which my in laws really helped me. Though they imposed a lot of things but I ignored.
Everything went of well, my parents stayed with us for 8 days and then left. My parents never wanted to stay with my in laws at the first place stating its a sensitive relationship and they didn’t want to spoil it for my future. But my in laws really imposed hard that my parents should stay with us post my father’s surgery. This because, my parents are from a small town and medical facilities are not so great there.
In the meantime I was also looking for a job. It was very difficult since I was at a high package with few years of experience because of my degree. Finding a similar job was being difficult. Also, not to forget that my mother in law would accompany me to my job interviews saying how would I find the place on my own. This to a person who stayed out of her house for 7 long years, who is treated as one of the smartest females, who is an Engineer and MBA by education. Nevertheless my constant efforts paid off and I finally found a job which was at a start up. I was so frustrated sitting at home that I took it up without thinking twice. That’s when the trouble began. I would cry because of the pressure at work and also because of my mother in law’s constant manipulation had started having an impact on me. I could no longer ignore it. I am an overly sensitive and emotional person. Then, one day I got back late around 9:15 PM. My usual time was 7:30 – 8:00. My MIL got over anxious, waited for me at the roadside outside the society compound stating what would people think if I am entering late all alone.
The next day I told my FIL that please explain MIL to not get worried since my job is such that I may get late sometimes. I told him since my husband would encourage me to discuss my MIL issues as he seemed like DIL supporting. To my surprise, he said this is not acceptable, you should leave home sharp at so and so time and be back by so and so time. Your career is secondary, our son’s career is primary. I was too disturbed, I told my husband and he ignored. I and my husband on a Sunday were watching a late night movie show that my mother in law texted saying be back soon otherwise FIL will be angry if you get up late and are not ready on time. I was so upset that I showed my husband this text. He also got pissed off. The next day morning when he was leaving for office, he probably did not talk to his parents. When I was packing my tiffin, my MIL asked me why was my husband not talking to her. I was pretty irritated with her that I said ask him directly he is your son, why do you ask me. Hearing this she started fighting with me.
I reached office, I told my husband and my mom about this fight they told me to apologise to MIL, which I did on whatsapp. In the afternoon I got a call from my mom saying my MIL had called her and said how ill mannered is your daughter and said many other things. She also went on to complain to my husband’s grandmom who got out marriage fixed. Also, this was not the first time that she had gone on to complain about me. I would constantly get to know that she bitches about me but I would ignore. She would also bitch about me with the maid, neighbor, her friends and her in laws. I never ever told anyone what was going on at my in law’s place. I felt kind of betrayed. Not just this, when we returned from work that day, she made me, my husband and FIL sit and shouted at me. I also got very angry and retorted. She made remarks about my relatives. She also said that when maid doesn’t come I should do the cleaning of the house and do the utensils. I was never used to do this. Also, I have a back problem. I took it to my heart.
Since bad luck was riding on me, after a month and a half it turned out that the company that I was working for was a fraud one and they asked me to leave without paying a single dime. I was very very disturbed by now.
Then, I found another job soon enough which was close to my in law’s house. They made it an everyday routine to drop me to office. Everything was fine again and my mom called up my MIL to congratulate on my job and told her that now she will be tension free since she could repay her education loan. This became an issue since my husband hadn’t told his mother about it which I was not aware of. In the same week the maid hadn’t come so I did the entire house’s dusting, brooming and moping. I developed severe back pain. So much so that I had to visit the spinal injury’s center. MIL accompanied us since my husband is scared of visiting hospitals and cant go there without his mom. There we spent 2000 rupees on fee and medicines. The very same day I helped in the kitchen at night and was crying in pain at night. My husband screamed at his mom for asking me to help her. She must have got upset that she barred me from entering the kitchen next day.
The next day, my husband did not eat anything. I constantly kept asking him to eat and talk to his mom but to no avail. I also did not eat. I was so scared the entire day. MIL came to me and asked me to eat and feed DH. I obliged. It was a weekend. In order to have the husband in a better mood I asked to go out so he be normal. While he was taking out the car, FIL called on me very rudely. He started asking me questions about my salary and why had I not given it to him. Why had I not asked him on investment declarations. Also, he said I shouldn’t repay my loan and in his words – “apne baap ko bol fund me se nikal kar tera loan pay kare, aukat kya hai tere ma baap ki, car aur furniture bhi nahi hai tum logon ke paas” (As I said I belong to a humble background. Not like we can’t afford it but my parents chose not to since they invested heavily on my and my sister’s education) He said you lie to us we have proof of you lying. I asked him what lie are you talking about. He said I will tell you later. I said are you spying on me, he said I will. I said since you are older than me doesn’t mean you would insult me like this. This said and he went on and on screaming at me, insulting my parents, hurling abuses at me. In front of my husband. He tried to say things for me, but they were falling on deaf ears. He was siding me but to no avail. I was so dumbstruck that I could not utter a single word. I was so terrified and humiliated that I caught fever. My husband at night said I should apologise to his parents in the morning which I did!
Now, the real problem, my FIL doesn’t work. They had said they have a factory, but it doesn’t run. His mother is a homemaker and his younger brother is also not doing very well financially. Its my husband who is running the entire house. Before marriage we were not told about this. Also, their house is mortgaged. My husband pays the EMI for their house. With my job, they wanted me to give them the entire salary. My husband put his foot down and said he had promised me before marriage on letting me repay my loan. To take this stand he renounced food for a month. He did not talk to them during this period. I also suffered because I did have lunches and dinners at home. I would make some instant food for myself. Husband would say he’d eaten at office. My health deteriorated. During this entire episode, my mother got stroke because of all the issues that I was facing. I went to be with her for a week. I felt extremely guilty for her condition. Also,that place had become a living hell for me because of the hostile environment, the abusive nature of his father, his mother’s non-realistic expectations and my own work related issues. During this time my FIL asked me to give them half my salary and from the remaining half take care of my expenses and my loan amount. I told my husband and we had a major fight on this issue. He was still not eating at home. Then one fine day when I was at work and my husband and his mom at home, she convinced him to eat and talk saying we will do whatever you say. MY DH assured me everything is normal and the issue is taken care of. The next day was a weekend again. He gave his mom some money with extra 10000 saying this is hers. His mom threw it on his face and said we want it from her. I was not aware of this. A major fight happened. His father was not home and from wherever he was he called up my father scolding him. He also called my mother who was recovering from a STROKE! How heartless is that. My sister did not let her take the call though. He also called my grandmom screaming and shouting and what not! They wanted me to show them my salary slips and bank statements, give them half my salary. And this was the day when my husband said, “Do whatever my parents say!” What about all the promises he made!? What about his stand on my issue!?
I was so terrified that I left that house and I am living separately from him now. He helped me move out. He comes to meet me over the weekends. We fight a lot. I asked him to move out and stay with me. It’s been a year. He left me waiting, said he is looking for an accommodation but changed his mind altogether few days back. Now the state is such that everyone is asking me to come back but I am terrified. I have doubts on my husband’s decision making capabilities. His maternal uncle called us at his place and made me understand how normal it was in all the households whatever happened with me. I am just too shattered and can’t even think of moving back in with his family. I am in a fix! What should I do. I even contemplated a divorce. Would that be a good move? I have lost love and respect for my husband as he is easily manipulated by his parents and relatives. He is also of the belief now I should surrender and that what’s the harm in showing my financials to his parents. Where’s the trust factor? What kind of a man is he?