Thursday 28 January 2010

Being in control...

Recently a friend who is getting married had put up a status saying that she is loosing all control over her life. I checked back on my getting ready-for-the-wedding posts and most of them bemoaned the fact that I have lost control of my life! What is it about us new generation Indians and marriages that make us feel that way?

For outsides who think that Indian women are the most deprived lot, living below the poverty line, facing domestic violence, not getting the chance to go to school, well there are a percentage of Indian women who are not so. We are educated, brought up without discrimination, are independent, fly the nest and live independently, mostly pursue careers, do the dating scene, smoke, drink and have sex, finally marry in our 30s and that too those men whom we choose and generally do not take kindly to interference in our lives.  After having done all this and more, when we decide to marry and let our parents know about our decisions, life kind of takes charge making us feel unwanted and out of control. It is a bit like till so far we were the main character in our lives, we were the all important heroine without whom life would not go on. But once the marriage ball starts rolling, the centre of gravity shifts and multiple characters start stealing the limelight-- the parents, the would be in-laws, the rituals and norms of the ceremony and of course society at large. It is like finally the flood gates are opened and  people get the chance to poke their noses into our lives and how they make hay out of this opportunity!

Everyone is an authority on marriage,(it is a natural talent freely distributed among Indians you see), they have ready made mental lists of dos and don'ts (gigabytes long) and dictate it to you anytime, be it a social occassion or a chance meeting while shopping. It must be said that women relatives are the more nosy and interfering sorts than the male relatives. The men are more passive in this regard and mostly cringe with embarassment when their all-knowing mothers or wives launch into an uninvited, impromptu lecture on marraige. But however much their husbands cringe and the would be brides yawn, these ladies will not stop.

Mariages in India are still open to advice/tips/suggestions from just about anyone. I guess we modern Indians have figured out a way to live our lives our way...but when it comes to marriage, it is not yet done. That is why all these being out of control feelings. But the best part is that the countdown to a wedding is far longer than the marriage itself, so take heart and grit your teeth and enjoy your wedding. It would soon be over and you can soon get back to your normal life!

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