A little insight

I am an avid thinker. I try and make a difference in the lives of people around me. I make people laugh. My blogs might seem more on the serious side but don't let it fool you into thinking that I am a serious person. I am known more for my quick wit and ability to tickle ribs. I am also very passionate about parenting.
Anyway, as you read along, try and comment. It might just encourage me...

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Life's Like That!

I know a lot of people who tolerate abuse of some sort. Mostly women. But a lot of men too. Some women move hell and earth to separate their husband from his parents. Why can people not respect that fact that each relationship has its own rules? I detest being in the middle of anybody's relationship.It is sad to curb somebody's freedom and try and alter their behavior. Worse than that, is the way we condition our girl child to accept and 'adjust', because they are to be somebody's 'treasure' (paraya dhan) someday. We all know how much further from the truth the word 'treasure' actually is.

The story below, a real incident, has inspired me and I hope it does the same to you.

A friend, Janet, and I were discussing the other day about how some people complicate their life for no reason and walk around with a cloud over their head, when people who actually have been through misery, smile and spread joy.

Janet is from a well-to-do family who have lived in various places in India owing to her father's profession. She described her parents as very liberal-thinking, soft-natured people. When she was about 20-something, a family friend told Janet's parents about a nice boy. These family friends knew the boy's parents very well. They suggested Janet's parents meet them. Despite the fact that they were different geographical locations in India, Janet's parents agreed.

When her parents asked her what she thought of the boy, Janet said that he seemed ok during their brief meeting. When asked if she was ok with the idea of marriage, she told her parents that they can go ahead, since they had given it considerable thought. The wedding took place and Janet moved to her husband's hometown, very far away from that of her parents'.

After they unpacked at the hotel, they decided to go out for dinner. At dinner, she was in for a huge surprise. As they ate, the husband, Ravi made some rude remarks about her dress. At first, thinking that it was a joke, she laughed and looked at him, only to realise that it wasn't at all a joke. He went on to tell her that she was of loose character and that she was attracting attention and some other cheap stuff. Janet lost her cool and told him that she had nothing to prove to him or anybody else. She walked away from the restaurant and took a taxi back to the hotel. He came later in a mad rage.

Janet told him that she was not going to take that kind of behavior. She asked him to calm down and stay away from her. She called Ravi's sister and asked her if Ravi had mental problems. The sister admitted to something of that sort. Janet made the next call to her parents and just asked them to take the next flight and come down without telling them too much. How she spend the night in the room with that guy, is something I'll never be able to understand.

When Janet's parents arrived, Ravi was shocked and starting abusing them. The parents asked Janet to grab her bags and leave with them. They found out all they needed to know and decided that they were not about to leave their daughter to deal with her 'fate'.

  • The parents did not ask Janet to 'adjust'.
  • They did not fall down at Ravi's feet and ask them to forgive their daughter, for not being able to 'adjust' with him.
  • They did not scold their daughter for making a mountain out of a mole-hill.
  • They did not consider this the end of their daughter's life.
  • They did not care what the society would have to say about this.

Janet's parent's attitude to life before her marriage and the way the handled the ugly situation afterwards, is commendable. I am sure it helped Janet deal with it, the way she did. She did not mope and fret but went on to study further. She is now married to a guy of her choice and has 2 daughters.

In India there is a common belief that if boys are not serious about their lives, not earning, are mentally unstable, or are of loose character, getting them married is a way of fixing things. They don't realise that they are putting a hapless girl to a lifetime of misery. What Janet goes on to say is that if there is a basic flaw in the character, there is no need for anybody to put up with it. And girls, should not consider such incidents as the end of their life.

Janet is an inspiring person and I am glad to know her. The strength she displays and her constant efforts to spread sunshine all around her, belies the fact that she has been through any trauma. I do wish all parents empower their girl child to stand up for herself and deal with ugly situations the way Janet's parents did. You have to be so sure of yourself and respect yourself to be able to handle life, Janet's way.


Garima said...

Very inspiring story indeed.. Kudos to Janet to standing up for herself.. and her parents for not saying "Give it some time, beta!"

UmaS said...

WOW !!! WOW!!!!

Kudos to Janet for standing up against such rude behavior and to her parents for believing in her and her decision.

Really, how we brain-wash the girl child at home na ??? Always adjust, adjust and more adjust...this mentality needs a lot of change.

After all, she is an individual and deserves to her happiness and her life according to her ideals.

Why do we always look at the man's ideals and never at the girl's ????

Great post - special hugs to your friend. :)

bee said...

I am glad you posted this .. and I am glad there are few families who are supportive in any situation.. But I also know many parents who still stick to the ''adjust'' for the fear of society. Great post .. Relevant I should say ..

Indy said...

Oh this is so good to read! I wish parents will always stand by the girl and empower her to move out of such situations! Loved the courage!

Corinne Rodrigues said...

Thanks for this post. Janet despite the trauma of a bad marriage is indeed lucky to have such wonderful parents. She and her parents must be applauded for using the 'one strike and you're out' approach!

Agnes said...

Great parents. Wow.

And I like the new template -- very pretty :-)

Bhargavi Sameeran said...

Hey butterfly .. thanks for bringing the dancing to my notice ... lemme know how the blog looks now ...

Tan said...

Really inspiring!!!
I loved Janet's parents' attitude more than Janet's. Most of the parents fear society and in such situations all they want is their prestige upholded in front of friends and relatives.
This does not make them realise that they are putting their daughter through a lifetime of torture and misery.

Sharbori said...

great move on the part of the parents. however, I believe that both boy/girl and their parents should wait before they fix the marriage. I know of one marriage where the girl definitely semmed unstable and when i pointed that out to the groom's sister, she turned around and told me "aren't we all?" a little sarcastically. sure enough, the bride turned out to be a schizophrenic soon after the wedding. they had to part their ways through considerable trauma.

Lakshmi said...

Inspiring post Bins. It is very commendable how Janet's parents supported her. They did a great job bringing her up the way she handled the situation. She is indeed a great friend to have.

Chatterbox said...

Thank you for sharing this very inspiring story,people like Janet are a source of inspiration for everyone around :)

Anu said...

Inspiring post!!!!Parent-child relationship at its best.Really happy that Janet made a decision and made it quick enough, instead of 'wanting to give it sometime or another chance and hurting herself more than ever.Really proud of you Janet!Thanks for sharing this with us:)

Sam said...

Great post. Good to know such parents exist. They must have been really strong and thus a real support to Janet.