“I’m baffled that Indians (not just men) truly think that virtue stems from being sexually chaste.”

Sharing an email from Anonymous. 

Subject: Link regarding a wife’s sexual past

Hello IHM,

I am a reader of your website.

I had run across a link that I thought you and your readers would find interesting (maybe). It details a man dealing (badly) with the strong possibility that his wife has some kind of sexual history.

The comments in the article are interesting from both sides of the debate.

I also wanted to include a link to a similar discussion, from a Western point of view. It’s a link to an American sex / relationship advice columnist. I don’t always agree with the advice he gives, and there are problems I have with his point of view, but I do find it interesting that his advice is quite similar to the advice given in the original article.

Incidentally, Dan Savage, the American, has occupied an interesting niche in US popular culture. The US actually has a fairly conservative view of sex; however, Dan has set himself up as a no-boundaries type of columnist. You can ask him literally anything. This has led to some really interesting questions being asked of him over the years. In that time, the questions have evolved beyond technical questions regarding sex, and more about ethics in relationships.

RANT WARNING:

Why in the world am I going on and on about this? Because, even as an Indian female who was raised in an Indian culture, in the Middle East, I never understood the hangups Indians have about sex.

Even so, I tried to be a good girl and never dated, never dressed provocatively, never drank, never smoked or did drugs, and hadn’t even kissed a boy when I got married (I had moved to North America at college age). I got out of my marriage with my virginity intact (sorry for the graphic detail), because my body rejected my husband – I simply wasn’t attracted to him. So much for the rewards for being a good girl.

After my divorce, I thought ‘to hell with this, I’m going to live!’ and I dated and did everything that went with it.

I’ve now decided to put myself on the meat, er, marriage market again, and again, I find I’ll pretty much have to go into that shell: to get married, I have to project myself as a robot, who functions to keep house, make money, and timidly accept whatever her husband deigns to give her, with no reciprocation (because after all, where did I learn *that* from? Answer: the internet, dummy).

I’m baffled that Indians (not just men) truly think that virtue stems from being sexually chaste.

END OF RANT

Anyway, the links are below:

http://www.loveinindia.co.in/wife-sex-before-marriage/

http://www.chicagoreader.com/chicago/savage-love/Content?oid=889937

(the letter I was referring to is the first one)

Happy Reading!

Related Posts:

“let me ask – how many girls in city remain pure till marriage ?”

Girls morally bound not to have sex before marriage, says fast track court judge

“There is so little conversation about a woman’s desire for sex that a lot of people simply assume it doesn’t exist.”

A tag: But when a woman sees a hot man, nothing happens in her brain?

‘I’m now thoroughly convinced that the entire concept of virginity is used to control female sexuality.

An email: Also this is a genuine question and not a pornographic mail.

“…if this thing comes out my husband will think my wife is after all not that ‘pure’ or is not that ‘untouched flower’”

‘I’m now thoroughly convinced that the entire concept of virginity is used to control female sexuality.

Making Marital Rape a legal offence is the fastest way to make it clear that Rape means forced sex, not lost Virginity or Honor.

Here’s why I think the society should not obsess over a woman’s virginity.

The video is speaking against the acceptance of rape, acid attacks, honor killings, forced marriages etc that are viewed as normal ‘Consequences’ for women.

Madam so many rapes don’t happen in Germany coz girls don’t refuse to have sex.’

Question about Sexuality in Indian Arranged Marriages

‘Rape is theft of the victim’s potential to fulfil her destiny from birth, the pivot of her existence, her marriage.’

If pre-marital sex if here to stay, then so are HPVs and other STDs.

“I am terrified of confiding in my husband, though I really really want to just cry on his shoulder.”

“Girls need to be little bit aware of the consequences. Men – will enjoy …”

“See – UNICEF has figured it out. It doesn’t take rocket science to figure out.”

Question about Sexuality in Indian Arranged Marriages

A Guest Post by Rucha.

As someone who is still figuring myself out, I was fortunate enough to grow up in a country where I could explore my sexuality via the Internet *ahem* to see what I liked and disliked, even though I live in a VERY conservative family, I wonder how it would be for young adults living in India who have such repressed ideas about sexuality and a tremendous focus on studies and getting a job. When it comes time for arranged marriage, they are automatically expected to marry the opposite sex and then usually have intimate relations on the first night! Even in US fundamentalist circles, there is a year given to getting to know each other. But in Indian arranged marriages, you have to decide in 1-3 meetings if you like each other or not (never mind getting to know each other-the elders think that can happen AFTER marriage!)

Never mind figuring out what TYPE of sexuality you have, how do you even know you HAVE a sex drive/sexuality if you are pushed into it like that after repressing it for that long? How many Indian couples are actually physically attracted to each other? There is no room for not being “sure” of your sexuality, it is assumed that you are straight and like men/or women even if you have never had a relationship before! Also what if you find out on your wedding night you are not attracted to your SO?

I think this happens to women more than men, because men often place importance on a woman’s beauty during the marriage search, but if a woman sees an unfortunate-looking man but with a high salary, her relatives will often try to downplay the importance of physical attractiveness because of the higher financial stability. I know that happened to my mom, when she was meeting a guy who had glasses and did not look very good but came from a rich house. Her aunt and uncle tried to convince her that you have to take everything into consideration, including education, good family values, etc, not just the face. Another trick is to say that good physical appearance is temporary and will go downhill with age.  Fortunately she did not end up marrying him or I wouldn’t have been born!

I read a story about how a devout man, who had never watched a porn film in his life was married to a similar devout woman. On their wedding night, he had no idea what to do and had to call his parents for steps! I think that it is truly more sad than embarrassing. How can you get married with putting something as important as sexuality on the back burner and just hoping the problem will go away or resolve itself with time?

I read another story about a woman who was best friends with a guy and so when pressure started for her to get married, she married him. In 10 years, they had intimate relations only 2 times and it was only when she was pressured to have a child she figured out she did not like sex with men, wasn’t even physically attracted to him, her relationship with her husband was more of siblings, and she was a lesbian. Imagine how much pain and heartache could have been saved for all if she explored her sexuality before getting married. But again, there was the assumption that of course she is straight, why wouldn’t she be and that if there is a problem the couple will figure it out themselves behind closed doors.

I am interested to know what your readers think about my above questions and comments.

Also posted on – theindianamericanfeminist.blogspot.com.

Related Posts:

Girls morally bound not to have sex before marriage, says fast track court judge

“In my own company in a cosmopolitan city, I know women who were horrified on the First Night.”

Denying sex to spouse on first night ground for marriage annulment: Delhi high court

“why not marry them first and then have sex ? What prevents you from doing it ? Deep within YOU WANT JUST SEX and nothing more”

And what would have happened if this man had declared that he was gay and hence would not marry a woman?

Romanticizing innocence, chastity and related taboos for women.

“There is so little conversation about a woman’s desire for sex that a lot of people simply assume it doesn’t exist.”

Of Love, Lust and Respect

Where Consensual Sex is Rape, and Forced Sex a legal right.

Panchayat orders girl to marry her rapist because one way to make a Rape right is to make it Marital Rape.

Making Marital Rape a legal offence is the fastest way to make it clear that Rape means forced sex, not lost Virginity or Honor.

“Instituting the idea of marital rape raises the specter of a man going for long periods without sex even though he’s married!”

Would this crime have been reported if he had mercilessly raped her but not sodomised her?

Here’s why a 6-year-old rape survivor was ordered to marry alleged rapist’s 8 year old son.

“…offenders who raped unmarried (and virginal) women got higher sentences in contrast to men who raped married women”

“Girls should be married at 16, so that they don’t need to go elsewhere for their sexual needs. This way rapes will not occur.”

If pre-marital sex if here to stay, then so are HPVs and other STDs.

This post is an attempt to respond to this comment.

If pre-marital sex if here to stay, then so are HPVs and other STDs. Even with only two partners, you caught a disease and are wondering who gave it to you. Just image the situation in US/Europe where people have dozens of partners in the course of a few years. How are you supposed to confirm that partner#15 is clean and is not carrying any infection and does not indulge in risky behavior ?

It’s not just pre-marital sex but the combination of casual and pre-marital sex that “feminists” (like the ones here) want to promote that causes the problem. What if someone falls in “love” ten times and sleeps with 10 different people. Are we going to pretend that it’s not a risky behavior because it was in the name of “love”? The more sexual partner one has, the higher the risk of catching an infection.

 

So, if there was no risk of HPVs and other STDs – then would the commentator above feel differently about ‘the combination of casual and pre-marital sex’ ?

Is abstinence really about women’s (or men’s) health, happiness, rights and empowerment?? 

Do you think promoting of abstinence – over the centuries – has benefited the society in anyway? How?

Isn’t it true that abstinence is promoted mainly for women?

And that has lead to men (and women) looking upon sex as something that is not a pleasurable consensual activity but as something:-

1. That must not be talked about, and ignorance of which is seen as a virtue.

2. That can make women ‘impure’ (more so if they participate and enjoy it).

3. Something that men are entitled to, and can ‘buy’  – but the one who ‘sells’ (or is ‘sold’) – must thereafter be denied human rights.

And hasn’t that indirectly lead to one of the partners being viewed as a commodity?

4. As something that can be used to punish women who don’t submit to patriarchal controls.

Sexual assaults are often justified, mainly by those committing them and those who have the power to control them, as attempts to ‘teach a lesson’.

4. At the same time or because of this stress upon abstinence as something to strive for, sex has also come to be seen as something to feel guilty about – specially for women.

Now, since heterosexuality requires women’s participation – this has made it difficult for many men (and women) to view any sexual activity without associating some amount of guilt with it.

This criminalisation (socially, ‘morally’ and sometimes legally), of an activity which concerns nobody except those involved, is a result of the stress upon abstinence.

If abstinence is really about women’s (or men’s) health, happiness, rights and empowerment – then what do you think is ‘risky behaviour’ ?

1. Denial of information and silence about preventing infections (or sexual and emotional abuse)?

Or

2. Moralising about and glorifying lack of experience (mainly for one partner) – which leads to silence and guilt?

Related Posts:

A tag: But when a woman sees a hot man, nothing happens in her brain?

Romanticizing innocence, chastity and related taboos for women.

Girls morally bound not to have sex before marriage, says fast track court judge

Here’s why I think the society should not obsess over a woman’s virginity.

“let me ask – how many girls in city remain pure till marriage ?”

How does an average Indian define Rape, Child Abuse and Consensual Sex?

“why not marry them first and then have sex ? What prevents you from doing it ? Deep within YOU WANT JUST SEX and nothing more”

“Instituting the idea of marital rape raises the specter of a man going for long periods without sex even though he’s married!”

“There is so little conversation about a woman’s desire for sex that a lot of people simply assume it doesn’t exist.”

How illegal bans on Valentine’s day and birthday parties are connected with dowry deaths and sex selection.

Indian loses online bid to buy Brazilian student’s virginity

‘I’m now thoroughly convinced that the entire concept of virginity is used to control female sexuality.’

Yet another rape that was not about lust but about aggression, revenge and putting the victim in her place.

Ek Hindustani ladki ki Izzat.

What the hell is difference between a homemaker and a porn star?

http://uncyclopedia.wikia.com/wiki/Heterosexuality

“This man is openly threatening his daughter and is instigating others to burn alive their daughters.”

Desi Girl of girlsguidetosurvival shared this:

The bar has not yet taken Suo moto on this lawyer’s statement but is waiting for a written complaint. This man is openly threatening his daughter and is instigating others to burn alive their daughters for transgressions he and others like him do not approve. Women as daughters, wives and sisters are not independent citizens of an independent democracy but are cows to be herded.

HOW ABOUT WE DRAFT A WRITTEN COMPLAINT AND FILE IT WITH THE BAR BY YOUR BLOG AND BLOG READERS- WE CAN SIGN A PETITION. – Delhi gang-rape case: Would have burned my daughter alive for premarital sex, defence lawyer says

When Anil Singhal first shared a link to this threat, I simply assumed that the idea of protecting the rapists and burning alive daughters for consensual sex would be universally condemned. But that was an underestimation the Indian obsession with the sex lives of other people specially with the sex lives of women, including the women we are related to. The same obsession with women’s sexuality (denial of) and sex lives (we believe other people have the right to decide who women have sex with, not doing that makes them ‘impure’ and unworthy of respect, safety, life etc) is what silences the victims of child abuse and rape by family members (including marital rape). These comments echo this mindset.

 

1. 

Many Indians believe that the sex lives of everyone’s sisters and daughters is everyone’s business. It’s so important that brutal crimes can be permitted to ensure the women do not see themselves as sexual beings.

SO … to all who agree that AP Singh has given bad statement… You so agree that everyone’s sister and daughters should indulge in pre marital sex..!! nice going people.. [rahul.arrorra]

2.

Which social value is maintained by preventing an adult from choosing who they go out with, live with, sleep with or marry?  If women do not interact with men – how are they going to meet future partners? But it seems the biggest ‘moral value’ for some Indians is preventing young Indians (specially women) from choosing their own partners.

your daughter goes with boy friend. what do you do? (here my intention is that every parent must take responsible to maintain social values)

3.

Maybe the real concern is that if Indian women started choosing their own partners, then the parents and family elders of Indian male misogynists would find it impossible to find them wives? (Obedient and dependent wives with horoscopes matched, with dowry and a willingness to bear them male heirs)

i am asking one question below commentors who are commenting against him. all are OK that your daughter or sister could go with her boy friend.

4.

Some other comments believe burning of adults who make choices that we disapprove of is ‘a personal matter’. So is it okay to kill, burn, beat, threaten someone so long as the neighbours do not hear about it?

Why comment on such matters in the Public domain ??? Showbiz people always hog the limelight to remain in focus for the audience all the while but this defence lawyer who pulled this Delhi bus case for over 9 months should not have opened his mouth for such comments and shows his attitude We hope in the future Lawyers will have to be carefully given the case and should not air their personal comments like APSingh did

5.

Some others believe that ‘physical relationship’ should not be ‘entertaining’  and that ‘premarital sex break families and will bring embarrassment to parents‘.  Consensual premarital sex will ‘break families’? If families can only be saved by controlling who women and children marry or live with, then are these families meant only for non-women? Or do we believe that everybody knows what is best for the Indian woman except the Indian woman herself? And who finds premarital sex ’embarrassing’ but not marriages based on horoscopes, skin colour, obedience, income and dowry? Or child marriage, marital rape, semi forced marriages and expectations of male heirs from newly wed wives ?  It seems some of us find sex ’embarrassing’ only when the woman chooses the partner.

Let the whole critics blame you. But I do strongly support you Sir. Pre martial $ex is really a shameful one. Parents are not gonna make their children nuns or fathers. They are gonna get them married only. So why do the children need to have pre martial $ex. Why the hell can’t they wait till tying the knot. . ?? Physical relationship has become just an entertainment for people, many don’t understand the love in it. Everybody wish India to be a cultural country, but criticise the man who gives bold statement about saving that culture. Shame on you people. To any extend pre martial sex should be discouraged. Encouraging it will only break families and will bring embarrassment to parents.

6.

But not all the comments saw gang rapes as an opportunity to remind Indian women to marry and have sex with the someone their parents chose.  Here’s a comment I  agree with.

And what if same thing done by the same lawyers son?? definitely he will not burn him, our legal system should give more harsh punishment to these type of peoples, so that the defence lawyers should think twice before speaking in public. [Abhijit Guharoy (Bangalore)]

Related Posts:

Letting an outsider see or comment upon our imperfections is washing dirty linen in public?

13 things Indian Misogynists believe about men’s mothers and sisters.

Why exactly do we disapprove of Live-in relationships and Premarital sex?

“There is so little conversation about a woman’s desire for sex that a lot of people simply assume it doesn’t exist.”

“why not marry them first and then have sex ? What prevents you from doing it ? Deep within YOU WANT JUST SEX and nothing more”

BJP and Trinamool are objecting to a lower age of consent on the ground that this is in conflict with “conservative norms” of Indian society.

“A clandestine, and irresponsible, affair may prove dangerous. A city girl learnt it the hard way,”

Why do we hear concerned voices about ‘misuse of freedom’ the moment we talk about Freedom?

Live in Relationships: The man gets a temporary disposable wife?

Don’t let me down dear daughter!

“Can anyone guarantee that absolute empowerment of women thru feminism will improve the social balance and not give rise to new social problems?”

Dear 35 year old would be groom,

Irresponsible girls who throw away their lives while in throes of lust for the completely wrong person…

Who is afraid of awareness about menstruation, and open letters to all Gynaecologists?

The beauty of Red.

@TowardsHarmony shared this video on twitter.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/qf4TulXdNXY

“And something changed

The goodness of red escaped from a crack
And then it became the colour of shame… of pain
I was around eleven when I saw the red river, flowing between my thighs…
I was frightened and confused…
I have blood cancer I thought…
I did not know this blood would become my lifelong adversary…
My life would now be full of don’ts.
Don’t walk like that
Don’t talk to boys,
Don’t dress like that,
Don’t think like that,
Shh…
Don’t speak about those things!
Don’t go out late…

Spread awareness about menstruation and shatter myths around the subject.”

The breaking of Silence about menstruation would be a step towards questioning the disrespect, ignorance and society’s control over women’s bodies – specially women’s reproductive health.

Controlling women’s reproductive rights and sexual rights would be difficult without the power and authority of Silencing and Shaming.

This control facilitates women little girl-children being seen as no more than future mothers of male heirs to carry forward their future spouse’s ancestral names (since women must have no names of their own)

Which is why this letter is so relevant:

Open letter to all Gynaecologists [link]

Dear gynaecologists,

I write this letter on behalf of all women who have or are touching the dreaded age of 30. Some of us come to you as part of our annual check ups, some of us come for minor irritations and questions while some of us come for questions related to our fertility and choices of motherhood.

…the first thing we are told is that our fertility is running out. The implication always is that most of us have given preference to career goals or some new age ideas and are delaying motherhood. These assumptions are made regardless of your knowledge of what is going on in our life, whether we have been coming to you for years or even if it is the first time we ever came to your clinic.

This assumption is just the starting point, …

In a country where sometimes even a well educated 20 something woman sometimes does not know fully well about sex, sometimes a woman just comes to you to get a clearer idea. And a friend who came to one of you regarding clarity, so that she could proceed with caution with her fiancé was given a morality lecture on the pre-marital sex and basically told her fiancé was probably only after one thing.

… We thought our grandmothers and those pesky aunties scared us the most about marriage and the impending deadline for it. However, the fear one visit to you puts in us is far worse.

…. if you show the way, there is a likelihood, the society might also consider a woman’s utility beyond her reproductive abilities.

Edited to ask: So, who is afraid of awareness about menstruation, and open letters to all Gynaecologists?

Those who are empowered by ignorance, shaming, blaming and silencing. Also those who feel having a Voice is shameless and immoral.

Related Posts:

1. Women’s sexuality

“This impudence of a widow to fall in love cannot be tolerated by any man…”

Dear Daughter: I Hope You Have Awesome Sex

A tag: But when a woman sees a hot man, nothing happens in her brain?

“There is so little conversation about a woman’s desire for sex that a lot of people simply assume it doesn’t exist.”

“In my own company in a cosmopolitan city, I know women who were horrified on the First Night.”

“let me ask – how many girls in city remain pure till marriage ?”

Here’s why I think the society should not obsess over a woman’s virginity.

Romanticizing innocence, chastity and related taboos for women.

An email: Also this is a genuine question and not a pornographic mail.

2. Menstruation:

If men could menstruate, this is how little boys would react to their first period.

Some doors are different… they are closed for fifty percent of the population.

Should women go to this temple?

Sex Education has nothing to do with Blue Films.

Being untouchable during periods.

Nepal: Custom & Dangers of Isolation of Women During Menstruation

Have you heard about the menstrual cup?

Shuddh Desi Romance : When Getting Married and Staying Married is not an Indian woman’s life purpose.

So here’s an Indian movie where good women (and others who know them) do not view their lives as ruined because they do not marry the person they were about to marry, or they do not marry the men they sleep with.

The movie also does not (atleast not directly) comment upon the life of one of the main characters, a woman who lives alone, smokes, has had an abortion and has been in more than one relationship. Please watch the movie, not adding any spoilers. 

Amongst one of the many points the movie made, here’s one that struck a chord. Traditionally being what’s considered ‘almost ruined’ (e.g. being widowed very young, broken engagement, being an ‘innocent’ divorcee, being too ugly to find a man to marry, some physical disabilities etc) can sometimes be liberating for Indian women – when there is acceptance that a woman is unlikely to find a Protector and Provider, the family elders decide to let her fend for herself, encouraging her to follow her dreams, be self reliant etc.

What do young Indian men feel? Hrishi, 26 shared his thoughts [link]:

• Not only men but women also have desires, and they look for different things when they check out/look for a partner. While in itself it is not the revealing of a hitherto unknown fact, but the admission of it is deviation from many Bollywood movies.

• Even if a guy and girl just talk, they become Vikram and the rest of the world becomes Vetaal to hound them.

• He can’t understand why people tell him ‘Zyaada mat socho, bus settle ho jaao.’ (Don’t think too much, just settle down) as if ‘Shaadi na hui, glucose/ ICU ho gaya, har chees ka ilaaj’ (As if marriage is like glucose/ ICU which is a treatment for every ail)

• The best part was: ‘saara hindustan settlement karane pe laga hai… saatth saal se do padosi se settlement kara nahi paae bade chaudhary bante hain’ (The whole nation is behind getting settled, they couldn’t settle two neighbors in 60 years but still think of themselves as something great)

Do many other Indian men share these views on the main characters?

Hrishi on Gayatri –  I can understand her having been in a relationship before (even if they were ones where she slept with her boyfriend). I would be miffed on finding out that she had had an abortion, and would wait for sometime for her to bring it up to me, until I couldn’t handle it anymore and ask her about it. You see, I can’t sleep around with my girl friend and then judge her ( in a demeaning way) if she had slept with her previous boy friends as well. About the abortion, I would want to have a talk as to what we need to keep in mind to have safe sex.

While smoking once in a while is understandable, I might not be able to manage a chain smoker. The smell is put off.

Hrishi on Raghu –  At a level I think he is courageous and questions the conditioning family and society have brought upon him. I can relate to him questioning things, and being commitment phobic. However I cannot relate to how quickly Gayatri and Taara wanted to get in a relationship with him.

Is Tara easier to like?

Hrishi: Taara is my favorite character in the movie. While Gayatri is an independent woman as well, Taara shows more presence of mind, an understanding for human emotions, and is the only character who accepts things for what they truly are, so that she can move on. When she is left standing when Raghu runs away, her reaction is to ask for a cold drink instead of breaking down (for which she gives a good reason later).

Whose responsibility are Indian women’s personal lives? (this includes not how they manage their safety, meals and rent, but who they befriend, marry, divorce, live or sleep with)

Hrishi: She says that she alone is responsible for her life, and she doesn’t need help from an uncle who met her only once in the last four years … In fact they were doing this not because they felt for her, but they wanted revenge for themselves.

But,

Hrishi: There  is one thing that didn’t click with me: The three central character are shown as people who don’t have much family ties or are orphans.. I would like to have seen people from the traditional family structure to go through this.. It might lead to stereotyping

I couldn’t help noticing that Raghu couldn’t decide if he should be concerned about the kind of men a future Indian wife, an Air Hostess, had to deal with at work – Raghu had seen (and participated in) single-women-living-alone handling neighbours’ curiosity.

Please share links to your reviews if you have seen, liked or hated the movie 😀

The movie doesn’t pass Bechdel’s Test though.

Related Posts:

Sudh Desi Romance: Movie Review by dhwanis

“I need suggestions – these girls are ruining their lives with their stupid ideas about love.”

Dhobi Ghat. Zara Hat ke.

Delhi Belly: Indecent, immoral, abusive language. Permitted everywhere except on screen.

Dev D: Practical Paro Artless Chandramukhi

Heard about ‘Bol’ – from the maker of ‘Khuda ke liye’?

Bechdel Test: Apply this test to Bollywood movies.

Love Aajkal is against Indian Culture, but Kicking is legal?

Ek main aur ek tu. Guess why I loved this movie.

If I ever made a movie…

Three thoughts on Bhag Milkha Bhag.

Couples who have premarital sex to be considered ‘married,’ says HC

I didn’t understand this verdict.

What is the difference between Premarital sex, Live in Relationship and Marriage?

Does this means breakups after any relationship become a legal procedure if the couple has had sex? Who benefits from this?

Link shared by Dr Arun

Couples who have premarital sex to be considered ‘married,’ says HC

“If any unmarried couple of the right legal age “indulge in sexual gratification,” this will be considered a valid marriage and they could be termed “husband and wife,” the Madras High Court has ruled in a judgment that gives a new twist to the concept of premarital sex.

The court said that if a bachelor has completed 21 years of age and an unmarried woman 18 years, they have acquired the freedom of choice guaranteed by the Constitution. “Consequently, if any couple choose to consummate their sexual cravings, then that act becomes a total commitment with adherence to all consequences that may follow, except on certain exceptional considerations.”

The court said marriage formalities as per various religious customs such as the tying of a mangalsutra, the exchange of garlands and rings or the registering of a marriage were only to comply with religious customs for the satisfaction of society.

The court further said if necessary either party to a relationship could approach a Family Court for a declaration of marital status by supplying documentary proof for a sexual relationship. Once such a declaration was obtained, a woman could establish herself as the man’s wife in government records. “Legal rights applicable to normal wedded couples will also be applicable to couples who have had sexual relationships which are established.”

The court also said if after having a sexual relationship, the couple decided to separate due to difference of opinion, the ‘husband’ could not marry without getting a decree of divorce from the ‘wife’.”

While any man (or woman) should be required to provide child-support to any children they have within or outside marriage, but does acknowledging paternity mean they are also admitting that they are married to the mother?

And should any child be seen as legitimate or illegitimate?

“In this case, the man had signed in the ‘live birth report’ of his second child and given his consent for a Caesarean section for its birth. As such, he had officially admitted that she was his wife.”

“It is not disputed that the petitioner has been a spinster before she gave birth and that the respondent was a bachelor before developing sexual relationship with the petitioner. Both of them led their marital life under the same shelter and begot two children. Therefore, the petitioner’s rank has been elevated as the `wife’ of the respondent and likewise, the respondent’s rank has been elevated as the `husband’ of the petitioner. Therefore, the children born to them are legitimate children and the petitioner is the legitimate wife of the respondent.”

And what about couples who are in Live in relationships? Are they going to be considered married too?

On the verge of becoming a Zinda Laash but saved by marriage.

Why do some ‘rape victims’ fight to get married to their ‘rapists’? 

1. Unfortunately ‘rape’ in legal terms is also used to describe consensual sex if the woman was promised marriage to get her to consent. The term here should be ‘cheating’ or ‘breach of trust’ not rape or sexual assault. In such ‘rape cases’ a ‘rape-victim’ might demand that the ‘rapist’ keeps his promise and marries her.

[This is one of the many reasons why child sexual abuse, sexual assaults, acquaintance rape (marital rape or date rape), sexual harassment and street sexual harassment should be clearly defined.]

2. The women perhaps feel that being married to someone who cheated them and clearly does not wish to marry them (probably someone they don’t love, like, respect or believe they would be happy with), is a ‘respectable’ thing to do.

Why?

Because, patriarchal societies allow (or tolerate) premarital sex for men. If these men intend to marry the women they have sex with, they are said to ‘respect’ them. All good women in patriarchal societies are expected to strive to earn Men’s (and everybody’s) Respect.

3. Marriage by any man is seen as the only way a dishonored woman can be redeemed.

And they fear that no other man would marry them (since they are not sexually inexperienced anymore) and they see Getting Married and Staying Married as their life purpose.

Would you call this a case of Cheating or of Rape?

“Singh had promised to marry her and so she agreed to sexual relations, as a result of which she found she had been impregnated.

She alleged that they had even married in a temple. However, subsequently, his parents were not prepared to accept her as a daughter-in-law ….

“She assumed he had no intention to marry her and hence initiated criminal prosecution against him,” the court noted. She filed a rape case under section 376 of Indian Penal Code against him and he was arrested by the Goregaon police. But Singh’s counsel said he had infact taken steps to marry her. He had on January 4, three weeks before her complaint, filed an application for registration of the marriage.” [Intention to marry ‘rape victim’ gets man bail]

Somebody asked in a comment: Why is this cheating? Couldn’t the man just change his mind about marrying the woman?

If the man promised marriage to get consent, he knew the power of the ‘promise to marry’, he obviously also knew how breaking that promise could affect the woman. [More here: Link]

If she needed that promise, she probably did not think that it was hypocritical and demeaning to women, to value sexual inexperience in women. A broken promise could force her to fight a fight she didn’t believe in, or was incapable of fighting or simply didn’t want to fight. The man in the case above, had committed a crime against Patriarchy and he was allowed to make patriarchal amends and thus turn a dishonorable act into a sacred one.

BUT.

Would you describe his ‘dishonorable act’ as Rape?

The woman perhaps genuinely feared that she was on verge of becoming a Zinda Laash [Zinda Laash]. Many Indian women (and men) believe women should have only one sexual relationship, and that should be with the man they marry (preferably only after they are married to him). Indian women are denied education, freedom and opportunities; and are warned (and protected) against premarital sex. If the partners turn out to be abusive, incompatible or unwilling to marry them, they are warned, they would be ruined. [No second chances for an Indian daughter.] Suicide, stigma, social boycott, shifting to another place, marrying someone who doesn’t know about the ‘dishonor’, and honor killings have been the traditional methods for dealing with such ‘broken promises’.

So, the woman (and even the man) probably did not think she had the option of ending the relationship, claiming child support (if applicable) and moving on. Chances are that the man (and his parents) saw the broken promise as ‘ruining her life’ but also realised that they could get away with it.

So there can be no doubt that the man should have been held accountable. If he promised marriage in return of premarital sex, perhaps he should have been punished for Cheating. Maybe he could have been asked to keep his word. I agree that Consensual sex on false promise is cheating: HC.

But would you say he raped her?

Consensual sex, just because the woman was inexperienced (a virgin) should not be seen as Rape. This trivializes rape. This is also why many Indians confuse Rape with Sex. [How does an average Indian define Rape, Child Abuse and Consensual Sex?]

Also,

It is dangerous to allow marriages to make sexual assaults alright. [Five rapists in Patna want to marry gangrape victim.]

Another case:

Man raped girl on promise of marriage, gets 10-year jail

“The court said that after maintaining physical relations with the Muslim girl for over two years, Deepak Dogra refused to marry her. Moreover, to save himself from legal punishment, he went through “farce of marriage ceremony” despite knowing that it was neither lawful nor valid.”

Zinda Laash translates to ‘a living corpse’ or a lifeless person. Would you call a Rape Survivor a Zinda Laash?

Related Posts:

Would you call a Rape Survivor a Zinda Laash?
When a rape victim chooses her life over her ‘Honor’.
What do dented-painted women and disco-going protesters understand about a rape victim’s loss of honor?
How does an average Indian define Rape, Child Abuse and Consensual Sex?
Irresponsible girls who throw away their lives while in throes of lust for the completely wrong person…

BJP and Trinamool are objecting to a lower age of consent on the ground that this is in conflict with “conservative norms” of Indian society.

So those who have been harassing young Indians for interacting with the ‘opposite sex’ continue to have support.

What kind of mindsets want the age of consent to be 18 and not 16?

I am curious to know, how do they think would the society benefit from criminalizing consensual sexual activity between sixteen and seventeen year olds? They don’t seem too concerned about women being hurt, since they seem to see nothing wrong with women being raped by their husbands – even if they are 16. Some of them actually recommend they are married at 16. If women are raped by men they are not married to, many make excuses for the  rapists and blame the victims. It seems the only time the man involved is blamed is when the woman has consented i.e. premarital sex or adultery.

Are they then more concerned about Marriage as an Institution than they are about citizen’s rights? Do they see women as people with equal rights and feelings?  Do they think Patriarchal Institutions (any Institution) are more important than the people they were created for? What would happen to children born from these ‘criminal activities’? Would the unwed, teenage mothers be arrested for consenting or would they be asked to claim they were raped?

Do they ever think? Or, they are either trying to say what they think their voters want to hear, or repeating what their great grand fathers probably said.

Govt’s move to lower age of consent to 16 from 18 years runs into opposition

Serious opposition is building up to lowering the age of consent for consensual sex to 16 from 18 years with main opposition BJP expressing reservations to the move – a stance that can force the government to rethink its position.

Trinamool and BJP are objecting to a lower age of consent on the ground that this is in conflict with “conservative norms” of Indian society. “BJP is of the firm view that the bill should be passed in this session itself, but the provision lowering the age of consent to 16 years should be excluded from the present bill,” a senior party leader said.

As apprehended by a section of the government, Muslim organizations too slammed the proposal to lower the age of consent from 18 to 16 arguing premarital sex or sex outside marriage was against social norms and culture.

Abdul Rahim Qureshi, assistant general secretary, All India Muslim Personal Law Board, said, “It is an irony that government proposes to lower the age of consent to 16 when marriageable age for girls is 18. Sex outside marriage is detrimental to society.”

Taking note of the undercurrent in Parliament, official sources said the government may not make reducing the age of consent to 16 a sticking point, arguing that it was for the all-party meeting to indicate if 18 was more acceptable.

Related Posts:

Where Consensual Sex is Rape, and Forced Sex a legal right.
“why not marry them first and then have sex ? What prevents you from doing it ? Deep within YOU WANT JUST SEX and nothing more”
What Khaps need is a strictly implemented law against Forced Marriages.
How does an average Indian define Rape, Child Abuse and Consensual Sex?
Who benefits from criminalizing consensual teenage sex?
Parents should choose the boy for a girl aged below 21, as it is they who bear the brunt of an unsuccessful marriage – Karnataka HC
Love Marriages spoil the Family System of our Nation.
Where is the opportunity for Indian men to learn the most natural thing in the world – finding a mate??

Where Consensual Sex is Rape, and Forced Sex a legal right.

Is it women-friendly to call Consensual Sex ‘Rape’ and Forced Sex a legal right? It makes no sense unless we see a woman’s virginity (and bodies and  sexuality) as something that rightfully belongs to her husband, in laws and the society. Who benefits from this kind of mindset?

The government has now brought in an ordinance to introduce stricter penalties for crimes against women Patriarchy, instead of implementing recomendations made by Justice Verma Committee. [Do read more here]

1. Why is it that the Indian law makers believe that Indian men must be given the legal right to rape their wives?

Do they see a sexual assault as loss of honor/virginity/purity or as a criminal assault? If a sexual assault is seen as a criminal assault, then why is it treated different from any other violent assault?

When it is not a legal right to beat, cheat, treat cruelly or burn-alive a spouse – then what makes the government hesitate in acknowledging that forced sex with a spouse (or anybody) should not be seen as a husband’s (or anybody’s) legal right?

2. The same logic makes it legal for Indian men to rape fifteen year old girls if they are married to the minors. [link]

And here’s what makes the patriarchal hypocrisy so obvious:

3. Consensual sex between 16 to 18 years old unmarried teenagers is being seen as rape. Who do you think benefits from criminalising consensual sex between 16- 18 year olds? [link]

This is NOT what the Verma Committee recommended.

Women’s groups reject ordinance on rape laws, urge President not to sign it [Link] Do watch the video here. http://www.ndtv.com/video/player/news/fromndtv/263810

Related Posts:

1. Making Marital Rape a legal offence is the fastest way to make it clear that Rape means forced sex, not lost Virginity or Honor.

2. Who benefits from criminalizing consensual teenage sex?

3. “Here’s why I think the society should not obsess over a woman’s virginity.”

4. ‘Bill seeks to let 12-yr-olds have non-penetrative sex’. Does it really?

5. Pregnant at fifteen? No moral issues. Unmarried and pregnant at fifteen. Degeneration of society.