Fortune Mother Exchange : Mother’s cooking for Indian male children.

What do you think of this ‘mother exchange program’?

Indian women in traditional families are raised to be these mothers. Some comments seem to find the video ‘moving’.

Do you think the video would have been found so moving, by the same people, if it was mothers of young daughters in law (also leaving home for the first time) feeling the same way?

Does the video inspire sympathy for the mothers? How, if at all, are mothers of Indian daughters in law different from these mothers? These mothers expect the sons to call them regularly – we know that in some parts of India, daughters in law are discouraged from calling their mothers. [Link]

How do you think does such looking after influence the way the sons grow up? What about young Indian daughters?

Young Indian daughters, in traditional patriarchal Indian families, are kept in dependence (emotional and financial) and married-off to live with another family, where they are trained to cook (and live) according to the preferences of that family. How does it make the daughters in law feel about themselves and about everybody else? It can result in – Stockholm Syndrome, or bitterness, or if there is support, then walking out of the abusive situation.

To safeguard against the last – traditional families prefer young and pliable daughters in law from their own communities, to make the moulding or training considerably less cumbersome.

The young wives are not allowed, or encouraged, to cook like their mothers did, that is considered disrespectful, because it implies that they prefer their mom’s cooking to the in law’s (ladke wale) cooking.

Women are required (or atleast pretend) to view cooking for their families as a primary purpose of their lives. If they don’t, then they risk being considered selfish and uncaring. And since patriarchal hierarchies are sacrosanct – in many families young daughters in law must display respect by eating last [link]. Having a male child changes the status of a daughter in law in traditional Indian families, she still eats the last, but she is not as powerless as a mother of a daughter (who has to start training her daughter to be a future daughter in law).

Which is why a male child is prayed and fasted for, and sex selected.

Boys in traditional families are not raised to ‘look after’ themselves, although, their comfort and preferences are considered important. Their wives would be trained by the same mothers (seen in the video) to cook just the kind of food they have raised their sons to enjoy eating. If the sons manage comfortably on their own – that’s viewed as being ungrateful or disrespectful to the mothers. They are expected to appreciate the sacrifices and efforts being made for them. One of ways of expressing their appreciation is by marrying an obedient girl of their parents’ choice.

A young woman who has options, might question this kind of helplessness in a spouse, so dependence and obedience in young men and women are nurtured as cherished virtues. Patriarchy can’t survive without these.

What do you think of this video?

Video shared on facebook by Nandini. 

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Shadi ke baad ladki ki PRIORITY sasuraal ki taraf ho jaati hai?

“My Mil never likes to cook. They have maid at home who does most of the cooking cleaning stuff.”

‘Your future is standing next to you. One of these girls will be cooking for you in the future.’

What advice would you give to a woman whose husband beats her when she does not give him lunch on time?

“My Mother in law is very patient towards all the doings of the Males in the family.”

“A Hindu woman derives immense pleasure in sacrifice for her husband. The white man will never ever understand this.”

“She went on and complained to my father in law that this gal cooks non veg at her home.”

It’s not about hot hot chappaties.

Can a Veetodu Maapilai rightfully ask for the 4th coffee of the day or whatever he wants in his in-laws’ house?

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Every Hindu woman must produce at least 4 kids: Sakshi Maharaj

Every Hindu woman must produce at least 4 kids: Sakshi Maharaj

Unnao MP Sakshi Maharaj has once again stirred a hornet’s nest by saying all Hindu women must produce at least four children.

In Meerut on Tuesday to address a gathering on the occasion of Sant Samaagam Mahotsava, he said, “The concept of four wives and 40 children will not work in India and the time has come when a Hindu woman must produce at least four children in order to protect Hindu religion.”

Link: Every Hindu woman must produce at least 4 kids: Sakshi Maharaj

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“A Hindu woman derives immense pleasure in sacrifice for her husband. The white man will never ever understand this.”

What makes someone find the concept of ghunghat appreciable?

Sindoor, Tali and Mangalsutra.

‘Mother india.. Flawless women… My grand salute to this mother..’

How are mothers treated in Indian culture?

Mommy Guilt: A Western Influence.

‘Mother india.. Flawless women… My grand salute to this mother..’

Many comments seem to see nothing more than glorious, flawless Indian motherhood in this news 😦

In her 9th month, pregnant woman swam 90 mins to safety

She hadn’t undergone any strength-training programmes nor was she fed any special diet. She had never heard any motivational speeches either. But when the time came to take the plunge, this nine-month pregnant woman, who had never swam in her entire life, dived into the choppy waters of the Krishna river. For nearly 90 minutes, she battled the surging river till she reached the nearest village with a hospital.

One comment:

‘…a mothers heart , selfless , pure . She would do anything for her baby . Hats off to her courage.’

Not just any mother.

‘Mother india.. Flawless women… My grand salute to this mother..’

9 months pregnant 22 year old Yellavva, was ‘married’ to a married man, 30-year-old daily wage labourer who ‘detested’ her. She was the eldest of the seven children of her impoverished labourer parents.

… Yellavva’s pregnancy was marked more with the fear of rising river levels than the anxiety about childbirth itself.

The nearest hospital was four km away, and they had to cross a river to reach it. Yelluva said she wanted the river crossed before it rose, but her family kept postponing it.

… the poverty-stricken family probably had life’s more pressing matters to attend to until Wednesday when the Krishna swelled like never before after excess water from Basava Sagara reservoir, 10-km upstream, was let into the river.

By then, the situation had gone out of hand and it was inevitable that Yellavva and her family would have to enter the swirling waters for the sake of the baby.

IHM:  Would they not have done the same if it wasn’t a pregnant woman but another very sick woman (or man)?

Why is it not about poverty, lack of basic facilities, lack of awareness and lack of value for the rights, life and health of the poor, specially poor women? 

“I even yelled at my father and others for arguing it would never rain as there was drought all around.” I told them to look at the river now, but my father just asked me to jump in.

“… Even when I was about to plunge in, I protested. Praying to gods I jumped into the river only to fall back. It was so cold and suffocating, even at that hour; it was 10 am. The strong currents kept dragging me. But then my brothers tied dried pumpkins and bottle gourd on either side to maintain buoyancy,” she says.

The pumpkin and bottle gourds helped Yellavva stay afloat when she was totally exhausted.

Her brother swam ahead of her and father swam along with her. Two male relatives followed them.

…. all those swimming around me started to push me one after another while my brother swimming in the front began dragging me by holding on to the rope. About 45 minutes later, we managed to reach the … the other side of the bank,”

Some comments found the story inspiring.

… Yellavva has survived only on the bare minimum her family could provide for. … Except for bajra rotis, subsidised rice and some vegetables, I ate nothing else ever since I conceived. Even on that day, I just had a couple of bajra rotis with onion chutney.”

Would she be judged if she said she was worried for her own safety and health?

 

“After all, why do we as kids, feel so entitled to our mother’s time, indeed her entire life and personality?”

“After all, why do we as kids, feel so entitled to our mother’s time, indeed her entire life and personality?”

Why do you think?

“For a man to be labelled a bad father, he needs to be a wife beating, severe alcoholic/spendthrift, good for nothing.

For a woman to be labelled a bad mother, she just has to be 5 minutes late in coming from the kitchen while the child is crying in the living room. That needs to change.”

Read more at: Indra Nooyi and her children.

I agree with:

“Women do not have to sacrifice personhood if they are mothers. They do not have to sacrifice motherhood in order to be persons. Liberation was meant to expand women’s opportunities, not to limit them. The self-esteem that has been found in new pursuits can also be found in mothering.”

“The art of mothering is to teach the art of living to children.”

― Elaine Heffner

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An email: Is it selfish to not want to be parents yet?

Woman you are not doing anybody a favour…

“I waited for maternal love to overcome me – it didn’t… After my baby was born, I didn’t feel anything…”

Society benefits immensely from childbearing, childrearing, and caregiving work that currently goes unpaid.

What does it mean to be a ‘mother’?? – Shail Mohan

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How would you react if you knew your son (or daughter) felt this way?

Why are mothers ignored, asks SC

While we claim to ‘worship’ mothers ( well, atleast the mothers of male children) do we really respect mothers or motherhood? 

How does the society ensure that motherhood does not come in the way of self reliance and basic human rights for women? (Do we give this a thought?)

Instead, it seems, many of us expect some parents (only women) to look upon parenting as a sacrifice, social obligation and duty.

Rights? Few.

Responsibilities? 

But here is a small ray of hope. 

Why are mothers ignored, asks SC

Link shared by K

Mothers hardly match the authority a father commands in official documents necessary to prove a person’s identity. While the father’s name prominently figures in government documents, the mother is usually given the go-by.

 

The Supreme Court is all set to change that.

….

The petition, filed by journalist Madhav Kant Mishra from Allahabad, says ignoring the parenthood of the mother in government documents is in gross violation of the Fundamental Right to Equality under Article 14 of the Constitution. It sought an ordinance making the mother’s name compulsory in documents.

Do we really respect mothers? 

How are mothers treated in Indian culture?

Mommy Guilt: A Western Influence.

An email: “I find it very hard to forgive my husband for all that happened at the time of my delivery.”

How can the society ensure that marriage (and homemaking and motherhood) does not result in women becoming financially dependent on their husbands?

Society benefits immensely from childbearing, childrearing, and caregiving work that currently goes unpaid.

‘How I am going to manage two toddlers, work, home, chores etc etc without any physical and moral support from my in laws?’

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An email: “She is considering having an abortion without telling her husband about it.”

“…and every month if my periods get delayed I am given a weird look and it clearly shows that she is afraid i might get pregnant again.”

How are mothers treated in Indian culture?

Would Indra Nooyi like to be the kind of mother to her daughters that her mother has been to her?

An update: “My friend is having the baby because her mother absolutely refused to support her decision to abort.”

Sometimes also used to control women’s freedom and choices:

New scare for urban women: Menopause in 20s

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An email: “I find it very hard to forgive my husband for all that happened at the time of my delivery.”

Some other points that SC has raised in the past:

Daughter-in-law should not be treated as domestic help, says Supreme Court

Marry Or Live With Anyone Of Your Choice.

Plain-clothed police officers, warning signboards, cancellation of permits, helplines: SC directs States to take serious steps to curb Street Sexual Harassment.

Don’t let off rapists on flimsy grounds, SC tells courts.

Why does Gender Sensitivity in Legal Language matter.

She chose to get pregnant so that she can miss all the work, enjoy attention and eat to her heart’s content.

So here’s someone with a different perspective to this post, How are mothers treated in Indian culture?

How would you respond to their views?

Below is their response, in their own words.

“Let me put a different perspective here… (doesn’t mean u r wrong in any way)

There are women who don’t like what they are expected to do.. for example i know an average scoring gal who was engaged to a topper guy who belongs to a family of toppers… Now this gal had already lost a year. She was forced by her parents to take up engineering in the first place. Now her in-laws were expected her to be a topper. She had got married when there was one year remaining for her engineering to complete. She chose to get pregnant while she was still studying so that after engineering her in-laws will not taunt or question her why she is not a topper in her college.

Another woman I know is not passionate about anything.. No passion to study or do anything.. She is not interested in cooking too. She was from a house where no one told her or ordered her to work. When she got married, she did not know even to prepare tea. She got married into a house where she had to stay with her husband’s parents, unmarried brother and unmarried sister. Apart from this, there was a lot of work as her family runs on just one grocery story. She chose to get pregnant (in fact she missed her first period after wedding) so that she can miss all the work, enjoy attention and eat to her heart’s content.

What would you say about these woman?

I am saying again, I know both the women and their in-laws family closely.. They are really good people.. But every gal after getting married cant be sitting like a guest right? Obviously they will have to help a bit.. It will be rude if her mother-in-law slogs to prepare food for all and the daughter-in-law just stays in her room all the time or watches tv.

First case:
The in-laws are nice and the husband too.. They had only one thing to crib about which is the topper thing. That too because their son had been stubborn he wanted to marry this gal. They are too rich and none of the women in the house get to do the household chores.. There are many servants in the house..

Second case:
The gal’s brother got her married to this house.”

Possibly Related Post:

It seems getting pregnant is not the only thing Indian women do with ulterior motives:
Dying statements of vengeful women settling scores by attempting suicide.