Sharing a comment by Cultural Amalgamation in response to this post – An email from a Happily Married Indian Daughter in law.
Cultural Amalgamation: All the above replies reflect the current Young Gen society where the rate of separation with better half is more than that of bonding with love and affection as earlier times.
IHM: Did the women in the earlier times have the option of separating without being boycotted, stigmatised or honor killed? Only if both the partners had the option of separating and they still chose to stay together, can we comment on the earlier ‘rate of separation’.
Cultural Amalgamation: Being individually separate and gardening your identities isn’t all life is about. Its just a notion begun by some liberal women and followed as a trend by the rest like the fashion sale at stores!
IHM: And being denied education and self reliance and being married off to live with strangers is what life is about?
The concept of marriage is not well identified with everyone. The Love marriages husbands have no choice for they already have landed in soup. So they leave their parents behaving like cowards. Arrange marriages also have girls who have radical views. Google-ing such articles and hoping to change minds with family-dismantling views is really a disappointing and a pathetic situation for the present youth to be in.
IHM: Why is the children (only male children) moving out of the house (only if are married, because moving out for work is acceptable) a dismantling of family?
Someday the gals who talk about liberty are going to be in their mother-in-laws shoes and they would realize when their Son moves out of house with some girl who he likes and doesn’t even know if he loves for the duration a quarter of the entire love and affection showered by his parents who always have been looking after his well being.
IHM: We really need to recognise that parental love for sons (And for daughters, because we seem to forget that Indian daughters have parents too.) is not the same as the love that couples have for each other. The spouse is a partner, not a parent. The spouse’s job is not to ‘look after’ the partner.
Parents raise their children to become independent adults and teaching him (or her) to look after their own well being is a parent’s biggest responsibility.
Somehow we seem to think that male children are required to somehow repay the love that the parents have showered on them. The girl children are expected to repay it too – with life long obedience to patriarchal rules.
Cultural Amalgamation: Its true that every girl has to leave her own family and get along with a new family.
IHM: This idea is the reason why Indian parents pray, fast and sex-select for male children. Patrilocality favours the parens of male children.
It also keeps women and girl children in dependence, without which ‘has to get along with a new family’ would be difficult to enforce.
Cultural Amalgamation: It is difficult to absorb but then it is equally difficult for the other side (family) too.
IHM: When it is ‘equally difficult’ for both the sides, then why do we hear misogynists fighting for Patriarchy, and Patrilocality?
Is it surprising that many women today prefer less difficult choices?
Cultural Amalgamation: In modern days not all families have mother in laws/father in laws as showcased (cruel/orthodox) in classical drama movies.
IHM: If they are not orthodox they probably understand that modern young women (and men) should have the right to choose who they marry, where they live, what they wear, how they spend or save their money etc.
Cultural Amalgamation: Its all about beginning a new life and being absorbed and getting absorbed.
IHM: How do women benefit from being ‘absorbed’ in a new family?
Infact it makes them ‘paraya dhan’ in their own parents’ homes. We know the system has not worked, but many of us still wish to preserve it.
Cultural Amalgamation: It is an opportunity for every woman to help prosper her husband’s family and its also equally a responsibility that every family (parents) takes care of the daughter in law as they would do if she were their daughter.
IHM: Because daughters are viewed as those who help the husband’s family prosper, they remain unwanted by the parents. Since (traditionally) the daughters have not been permitted to prosper themselves, they remain dependent.