The Knot…Or The Noose?
Posted by IdeaSmith
Another shouting match with my family. You know those scenes in movies where they’re trying to show a person who’s slowly losing it? They have this deep distorted voice booming all around in dingy gray surroundings. That’s how I feel now. And those voices are intoning…Marriage…Marriage…Marriage…
Wanna hear the spiel?
There is an age for everything…and you are at the right age now…
Its very important to have a life partner….to be happy…
Independence is good but you have to learn to adjust….your generation doesn’t want to do that
If you don’t get married now, you’ll lose out on the ‘good’ men
As you grow older, it will be harder to find a husband
I said, “And why is it a matter of life or death that I find one?”
They look at me like I’ve lost my mind.
When I took a vacation a fortnight ago my colleague asked me if I was taking leave to get married.
Last year when I quit my job, everyone thought I was getting married.
Friends, parents of friends, friends of parents, distant aunts and uncles, my 13-year-old cousin, my yoga teacher, my boss, colleagues….everyone wants to know about my ‘big day’.
Met S in Bangalore and she wanted to know what my ‘plans’ were. I told her, “I’ve drunk enough of coffee with strangers to put me off caffeine for life (and it has!). I’ve chatted, messaged, spoken to and met enough of eligible bachelors. I’ve dated men of all shapes and sizes and varying degrees of lunacy. Don’t talk to me about men!!!!!!!!!!!”
Recently, Dreamcatcher wrote about her cousin who got engaged to a guy she barely knew. I sympathize with the girl. A little bit. I’ve had enough of close friends giving in to this fight. And yes it is a fight. Ask any woman in this age bracket who isn’t fortunate enough to have a man in her life. Why fortunate? Because no matter who you are, it is drilled into you at every corner that you are incomplete without a man.
One of my friends had a rush marriage and pregnancy. Something hit me right there when she said, “Got fed up of everyone getting on my nerves. He’s as good as any guy I guess.” A close cousin with big ambitions that were all neatly folded away beneath those glossy kanjeevarams when she threw away a promising career in medicine to settle down in ‘matrimonial bliss’ with a guy she barely knows in a town whose name I can’t even spell…..a friend who graduated the same year I did and barely remembers anything of the corporate world on account of a forced marriage to a man who can’t make up his mind whether to live in India or the US and keeps her career on hold in the meantime….the number of such tales is staggering.
I really don’t see the point. I don’t have anything per se, against marriage. It is a social system, it has its uses, it works. But I don’t have to go out and drive myself bonkers trying to find someone to make it work with. What’s wrong with the alternate system of being single and content that way? Years spent trying to please everyone around with education and career and talents….being a twenty-something in this time is a nice balance of financial independence, modern thought and several options. But its a tough fight just to hold onto it all.
My best friend and I have this running joke that some day when we’re past this pressure, we’ll co-author a book about the weird experiences we’ve had in this marriage market. I am full of flippant remarks and the kind of observations that are should (I think!) put off any potential bahu-hunters. But no…..it isn’t about what I say after all, is it? It is about the fact that I’m female, 20s, of such-and-such family, employed here with XYZ degree. That’s what makes me eligible. That’s what makes me the nicely packaged, ready-to-cook meat in this bazaar.
I’m almost hoping one of those dowry-demanders turns up before me so I can do a nice whammy on them and put them behind bars. Tougher to shut up all the unsolicited advice, overzealous matchmaking and prejudices
Damn it all, I’m not going down without a fight.
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About IdeaSmithIdeaSmith is the digital doppelganger of Ramya Pandyan (intrepid train-traveller and frequent spouter of post-midnight rhymes and rants). As IdeaSmith she battles obscurity and slays boredom with her stories about men, books, digitalia and Mumbai. She performs live and also blogs, tweets, Instagrams, Facebooks, +G’s, Youtubes and Goodreads all as IdeaSmith. Ramya is a blogger, digital storyteller and spoken word performer. She also runs a forum for aspiring writers called Alphabet Sambar. Tweet-bomb her at @ideasmithy.
Posted on June 7, 2006, in Hormone hangover, I'm An Indian Woman, Relationships, Times, they are a-changing and tagged Family, Family pressures, Marriage, Oppressive social structures, Pressure to get married. Bookmark the permalink. 13 Comments.