#MyStory: What My Parents Told Me About Getting Married…
When a woman gets married why does her life automatically become secondary to the man? There was a time when women were confined to the four walls of her house and all she was supposed to do was take care of the house and the family; however, times have changed and now women have taken up the role of breadwinners and doesn’t that mean men should also help in the housework? Unfortunately, this hasn’t happened.
Yes, there are quite a few exceptional men who have accepted the changes and they support their working wives. But for every one man like this there are three who think women’s place is in the kitchen, and two others who think by giving their wives “permission” to work, they are being progressive men.
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My parents have always been exceptionally supportive about my career. They even sold their house to buy me a seat in an engineering college because they believed in my potential. However, when I became of “marriageable age” I saw a drastic change in their attitude towards my career. My mum, who told me how proud she was when I got admission in a premium college for my MBA because I had achieved something she couldn’t, was now telling me to not be too possessive about my profession as managing a home and a career is no cake walk. My father, who always celebrated his two daughters’ success in education and profession, was now telling me how our marriage was a cause of constant worry for him.
It is actually surprising that despite being well-educated and independent in life, it is believed that a girl needs a man for “security”, though till date I do not understand what that security entails. I hear such opinion being used about a girl once she reaches her 20s. I hear a lot of dumbing down of a girl because somehow a woman’s confidence and achievement makes a guy insecure. And the most ridiculous of all, is the belief that a woman should take care of her husband and put his needs and desires ahead of hers.
When a marriage is supposed to be between two people why should the woman be expected to consider her husband’s ambitions over her own and help him flourish even if that means her ambitions take a backseat? I am not against the institution of marriage; I would love to share this adventure called life with someone who will be as enthusiastic about my career as he is about his. I would love to have a life partner who will be ready to accept my point of view in the different matters of life, someone who will enjoy life me as my equal and as my companion.
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Unfortunately, according to my family my thinking is just a fantasy and I should not expect such things in life. When I asked them why this can’t happen, they told me that I should stop all this intellectual and feminist talk and accept the reality. If my life was meant to revolve around running a home and taking care of some guy, why was I encouraged to be a model student throughout my life? Why did my dad discuss matters related to his business with me then but now says that I can take over his business only if my “husband allows” me to do so?
This is a constant battle I have been fighting with my family and I don’t know if I am going to win or lose. But no matter what I promise myself that my daughter will never have to ask such questions… I will always support her choice in life and I will make sure she finds someone with whom she can share her life as an equal.
Published on May 25, 2016