I hate being an Indian Woman


My eyes are watering and I am having a terrible headache.

I again looked at my laptop screen but I closed my Gmail web page without logging out. The e-mail which I read  seconds before burnt me completely,it squeezed my heart to sink and it made me yell and cry.

I had a very close senior friend to whom I have an elder sister affection.During my younger days,I used to wonder upon the way she handled huge responsibilities and I always had a stint of jealousy seeing her matured and sensible behaviour.

Though she is elder to me,we are very close enough to talk out anything.The terrible e-mail was from her.I could feel the pain in her but it’s too late.Below is an excerpt of her mail.

“…I am hating myself for being in such a situation now.Though my kid’s smile and his love are making me happy,those were not that I craved to have at the age of 26.I have always told you about my dream start-up right?Remember??I topped the school and college dreaming about my start-up and not to baby sit and cook.Of course I want a family in my life,but this was too early.My dreams are shattered.I fought with him about this and he asked why I need to do it when I have no time to breathe with household works and baby;also he is earning more.It is making me more frustrated.Before marriage he had promised me that I could go ahead with my plans.Now I have to ask permission to a 101 people if I need to sort out this and it will be a mess.I should have not heeded for the emotional drama of my parents.I should have just made them understand what I wanted in my life.But what to do?I remember my mom falling on my feet telling that if I don’t get married at 23 they will suicide out of embarrssment.Now I am in deep s**t.I can never get out of the present committments.It will either end up in a divorce or I will suicide.Is there any rule that Indian women should never have dreams??Malu,I am tired of crying,I am tired of fighting for my dreams..I don’t know what to do now.Sometimes I will feel that I should just leave everything and then come to India.Tell me..Tell me something…………

Why do this happen to Indian girls?Why do girls have to sacrifice their dreams?If we were born for it,why are we taught to dream high?

We slog as much as or at times more than the guys do.We top the schools and universities.We top the work and again at the age of 22-24 we are forced to leave our dreams for somebody who just came into the our life.

All we have is a life..Just ONE life.

If we don’t do things that we wanted during our one life,then when will we ever do so?Looks like the purpose of educating us and teaching us to aim high was to get married off without allowing us to do what we wanted in life.Then what was the need for spending/investing/wasting money on us?

According to the current trend,students join their colleges at age of 17/18 and they graduate at the age of 21/22.Some go for higher studies and some take up jobs.Lets take the people who work after their graduation.It will take at least two years for a normal human being to understand the industry and it will take time to decide whether to switch the job or to find out the field that he/she will be good at.The problem happens when guys always have the freedom to decide on their lives because they are just 24 and still young.But,at the age of 24,a girl is apparently old;of course for the wedding market(no wonder because when parents get their 18-year-old daughter married off,then 24 years is old for the wedding industry) and she is nagged to marry someone.Like any other human being,the girl will be confused about her career and dreams.May be she had plans to do a start-up or to study further or to switch jobs.But that normally doesn’t happen because of the emotional dramas and the endless phone calls from home.The post graduated people suffer even more because they take again two years to find out a right job.

After some years,we girls see guys who were not even half talented as we were fulfill their dreams with their hard work and determination while we end up sitting at home with two kids.Nobody will ever understand the pain in watching it in front of our eyes.

Is it a big mistake to think about having a financial security of our own before getting married?Is it a sin to be stubborn to talk about our dreams?

The problem is when parents expect us to do everything in the traditional way.They are happy and proud when we top school and college.But they show frowned faces and wrinkled foreheads the moment we tell them that we would like to post-graduate or work abroad.This mess is created by the society which makes crap rules.Parents are pressurized as the society creates nightmares for them if they don’t get their daughters married off at 23.The society cooks up stories about the girl not getting married by 23 and most of the parents are scared about this.Unless the younger generation tries hard to make a change,our daughters are going to have a tough time ahead.

I will not say that its everybody’s case,there are some rare lucky souls who gets a supportive husband and understanding in-laws.But that’s just .01% or even less.

At times I hate myself after hearing and seeing these issues..I don’t hate being a woman..and I don’t hate being an Indian.Though I am a proud Indian,I have no other choice but, to say that I hate being an Indian woman.

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198 thoughts on “I hate being an Indian Woman

  1. bhavya! u are absolutely right… i feel the same way… why dont ppl tell us early in life that education is just for time pass.. at least i’d have got 50-60% and lead a peaceful life without having to struggle..

    • I thought a lot about your story and I’m so happy that you shared it. I’m an American girl who has been living in India from the last 5 years. I SEE this same situation happen all the time and it breaks my heart. I wish there was a simple solution to it, meaning one generation,(us) could change this. But it’s going to take work from all levels of society….ground up, to make the change. BUT WE can be the voice of change. When our children stand in same position REMEMBER what you are going through and make the CHANGE YOU WANT TO SEE IN THE WORLD MY SISTER! There is NOTHING wrong with passing your intellect on to your kids as well…it’s not a waste. If you have a educated MOTHER and she spends all the time with the kids then PASS that education on to your little ones! Knowledge is never a waste. MY heart is with you and I wish you all the best.

      • may our little efforts can bring about a change..
        Thank you Connor for your inputs..

        Like you mentioned education can do a wonderful change in both women’s and her family life.It will give her the strength to move on while in troubles and she will be able to handle the family better than before.

        Dreaming of a world where women are well educated!!

    • So agree with your Pragna. I really wish girls were not educated and allowed to dream if these dreams were to be taken away from them as they grew up. That hurts more. Giving hope and then taking it away.

    • yes I am 100% sure..
      I thought a lot before posting this..
      I blame the society and the parents..
      either they should tell us when we are in the womb that you are born to get married at 22..you study,you don study,you work,you don work we don care.. or they when they bring us up giving hopes,ambitions and determinations,things after 22 should be that way..

      • I’ve had a tough time deciding where my sympathies lie. When I look at our neighbors and see girls forced forced (physically) to get married at a young age and physically prevented from following her dreams, I feel sad for them.

        Then when I look at an Indian woman in the urban areas who has a job, is financially secure and has all the ability to walk away and do exactly what she wants and still gives in to emotional pressure from parents, I have difficulty feeling too sorry for them. One needs to fight for their rights. And in India, there is support for that – our legal system allows it and our financial system allows women to be successful.

        What more can one want? Sure it’ll be nice to have society approve, but what’s preventing a woman from just saying “fuck off?” It’s a question of which she wants more – society to accept her, or to fulfill her dreams. She chooses and the choice is hers.

      • I loved the way you ended like “She chooses and the choice is hers.”
        yes,it is ot only with her but also with him too..
        We get what we choose in life..There will be a lot things that are important but it just depends on how she/he prioritize it..
        Thank you for sharing your views.. :)

      • @Bhagwad: I kind of disagree about having a financial system that supports the independence of women. In India, the companies openly advertise that they want only male candidates for the job. I was told on my face by company representatives that they won’t hire me because I am a girl: they didn’t even look at my resume. They interviewed and selected guys from my class who were, let’s just say not that much knowledgeable. And when I did manage to get a job, I was surpassed for promotions, hell even for trainings, because I was a woman. (As Bhavia put it so accurately: “Nobody will ever understand the pain in watching it in front of our eyes.”)

        Imagine going through that in your career and then being emotionally pressurized by your parents to get married, I actually do sympathize with women who take that route, even though I didn’t.

        @Bhavia: Great post. I also hate being an Indian woman, even more so ever since I landed up abroad. The freedom of walking on the streets without frowning, in fact smiling instead, is the best thing I ever experienced. I am not a victim anymore. Moreover, I am not blamed for being a victim anymore.

    • Why would you even answer this twit that would even post something like “u sure? Why blame someone else?” “Arunkumar = Male”… Enough said. No you moron everyone on this page agrees even other males…but I’m sorry you’re right…women blames thier problems on others. They should just shirk thier responsibilities and leave husbands and kids…. IDIOT. You and your comment = disgrace to your kind.

  2. Whatever you have posted on the situation of women in India is still happening in India. But I see so many of them getting married at 27 – 28 these days. It is a good sign. 8 out of 10 I know have planned to get married only at 27 and their parents are fine with it. The sad state of women in India will slowly change and there will be better future until they themselves spoil it (I say this because I believe everything is in cycle- If there is light, there has to be dark. If it is dark, there has to be light at some point).

    Cheers,
    Loga
    http://cresloga.wordpress.com

    • Yes I understand that..But the effort those women take to make them understand and agree is tremendous..hats off to them..
      Yes,the change is slow..lets see how things are after 10 years..

    • I think the folks who are saying the woman should assert her rights haven’t been exposed to the kind of pressure the family is capable of exerting on the psyche of the gal.

      It’s easy to say stand up for your rights, fight, live your own life, and in some cases it might work. especially if the girl is strong willed to begin with, doesn’t really care two hoots about what her folks think, and has the option of moving out of her parental house if they throw up too much resistance.

      But a majority don’t have this luxury. If the father or mother just threatens to commit suicide what can the girl do? Will she say ok go ahead, kill yourself or will she succumb. In most cases she will give in. In case she says do what you want and the parents actually try something stupid, it’s the gal again who has to live with that guilt for the rest of her life. And the society is not going to forgive her for it ever. They will make sure her life is miserable.

      If the parents don’t do anything stupid when she walks out then she has to live an isolated life, which is again not something most women are willing to handle. Forget women, even most men won’t be able to handle it. Also, tell me, how many guys stand up to their parents when the latter are pressurizing them to get married. Very few. So in a society like ours how can you expect the women to stand up to anybody when the male in an otherwise male dominated society can’t do it.

      And thirdly, even if the woman does move out, life is not that easy. In just this morning’s paper there was an article about how people are not willing to rent out their flats to bachelorettes. And that too in a city like Mumbai which is supposed to be India’s most cosmopolitan city. So having the means to move out of the parental home does assure of an easy life. It just gets tougher. I mean what harm can a woman who is staying alone do it anybody in any bledy apartment complex. But that’s the reality. India has progressed economically but mentally we continue to live in the 15th century.

      • Very true Stanley..there are incidents where the girl is abandoned by the family for life long if she go against their wishes..
        And what you told about getting house for rent is absolutely true..ppl.think that if she is not married then she is a public property..
        Academics..job..salary..nothing will change the situations like these..

  3. As Arunkumar says, why blame someone else? Yes our families tend to pressurize us to marry soon. . The society, though not as actively as before, pressurizes them to put pressure on us. . But don’t we have the right and ability to stand stubborn on what we want in life? I think we do. . Though it might be emotionally taxing for most to keep fighting. . The control is still in our hands.

    And as Loga says, True. . change is happening. . happy about that. . But even in the best cases, there is still this veil of emotional tug-off war between girls & parents. Both girls & parents understand the need for this change. But I guess the parents are still unsure. . what with the ‘biological clock ticking’ and ‘more the girl studies, ascends the career ladder & develops a mind of her own, more difficult it is to find a match’, they are not too sure if letting their daughter delay marriage is a good idea. There is always this constant thorn prick in both minds – for parents, it is “is she going to be okay & have a good family life at this rate? am I putting less-than-required pressure on her to get married soon?” while for the daughters, it is “if only i could concentrate on my present life & goals instead of frequently being irked with this marriage talk”. I guess THAT is going to take longer to change!

  4. Hello Bhavia,
    Happened to come across your blog and found the post…disturbing.
    I’m an ardent reader of women writing, the women’s movement and so on. But it doesn’t stop there, one needs to go a little step further.
    Well, for starters, if a girl feels comfortable marrying at 25, so be it. It is a matter of personal choice according to me, because there isn’t a ‘right’ age for marriage so as to say. Second, the Indian system itself is at fault. They expect the lady to get to the house of an unknown family. Try sitting in your neighbours house for an hour and you will know how stifling it can be. Again, here we women are expected to ‘adjust’ , ‘embrace’ and other such synonyms for married life.
    I’m not on a i-hate-the-family sphere, but marriage is fine; not childbirth. One needs to wait, fulfill the dreams and then think about it.
    I’m happy that women these days are defying the societal rules.
    I’m happy for them.
    And it takes one to start a revolution. Sometimes you don’t even know its started ! :-)

    • Hello Sneha,I feel that the revolution already started.I could see many of my friends fighting for their rights.
      The more we are determined,the faster we are going to repair the faulty society :)

      • I know how it is , a women ‘s worth in our society is still associated with her marital status and her kids …if u doubt it , check the profile pics of ur frends in FB , how many women have their own pics , its either a family pic or just the kid :)

        even the most successful of women at some stage feel , I wish i had married at the right age , because when they are ready for marriage , all the nice men are gone . I never understood marriage business , its good to have someone to love and share your life with but when it comes with kids , in laws and extended duties , either both share it or its not worth it . most people think that women should work only if required , as your friend said they dont understand why she wants to work when he can provide for her and family ..we indians dont even realize that a woman can dream of more than family and kids .
        things will change and are changing ..

        nice blog

      • Its sad and terrible that most of them ignore the fact that we too have goals and dreams..Thay force on us that your family is your dream..you eat or sleep is not a matter..give food to your family..your health is not an issue and you take care of them..
        Its pathetic!!

  5. Bhavia..
    i dont completely agree on this. You dont have to feel ashamed being an Indian woman.
    You are right. Our society wants a girl to get married at the age of 23 or 24, bt that doesnt mean that it s the end of her dreams. Instead of cursing the situation and society, one should analyse and prioritise their daily activities to balance their responsibilites towards family life and chasing the dream.
    There are so many living examples for this. If those senior ladies can prove this ..then y cant we… ??A person who complaints about her situation does not change even if she is in any geographical location or in any organizational hierarchy.

    During a casual chat with a foreigner lady of age 39 who is still single, She has mentioned that If she was an Indian, her parents wud have arranged her marriage at appropriate age .While going behind the carrier goal she didnt even think about getting married which she s regretting bcoz she has no one to share her success.
    India is the only country where we give more value for relationship.When rest of the world is learning and trying to follow our customs and tradition there is no need to hate being an Indian woman.

    “I blame the society and the parents..
    either they should tell us when we are in the womb that you are born to get married at 22..you study,you don study,you work,you don work we don care.. or they when they bring us up giving hopes,ambitions and determinations,things after 22 should be that way..” — this is only from ur perspective which is very rude and disturbing.Jus show this to ur parents and if they are happy about this then u may be right.. :)

    • hi Remya,Thanks for stopping by.
      The problems happen when we have our own plans in life.I know girls who just grow up for getting married.They don take their studies seriously.They don have any particular aim or goal in life.They just live because they are alive.They get married,fly abroad or stay in India,do nothing other than taking care of the house,they spend most of the time in front of the TV or facebook or orkut,they get a child in one year and gets busy,they work and take care of the family and then die one day..

      I don want to be a “just another girl”!!!

      • I think u have nt understood the context and your reply was for a sake of writing something… I was jus tryin to convey a point that u can be sucessful even if u get married in the age of 23-24 if u have strong determination.
        Anyways….. congrats for nt being a “jus another girl” and gud luck :) :) and jus to add one day everyone wil leave this world… :)

    • Well.. It would be possible to pursue your goals even after you are married if you have a supporting spouse/In-laws. but In India Most of the time there are expectations from a daughter in law. Irrespective how much you earn or how hard you work, one is expected to go home and cook and clean and take care of others and the kids and their education. Husbands are obviously tired after a long day of work, but the women (Super Woman?), she has to do it or she is lazy and a few other things. and prioritize, how can she do it when she gets a hundred phone calls a day from family/home.

      after a point she leaves the job to be a full time Mom and daughter in law and a Full time wife and yes in that order.

      Sure my parents might not accept with what I say, But I know for a fact that even my mom hated it when she had to choose home over career not because she wanted to but she had to. Today she might preach what the Indian Society accepts but deep within she know the pain of giving up a dream or an ambition.

      As for the foreign lady who thought that if she were an Indian and her parents would have arranged a marriage for her… She could still have told her parents and they would have done it no matter where they come from. Heard of Blind Dates?

  6. “I hate being an Indian woman” tis is like giving up.
    things are changing as ppl hav commented here, its a long road and some do sacrifice for the next gen to hav a better life. the whole conservative generation will pass out soon , hopefully the current crop of men and women do more to respect an individuals thoughts and dreams.
    i always think everything starts at HOME, if we wanna cleaner society, start cleaning our house first. So women shud stop takin Bull…… from her dad, brother, husband and son. when men respect women at home, it will transpire to te society.
    cheers

  7. previous generations are responsible for this, they refused to progress with logic.
    Now the question is is it going to stop (dilute) here, or are we taking it to our next generations, may be in next 10-20 yeas we will be reading posts by our daughters complaining same… Its in our hands now.

    “I hate being Indian woman” is little too intense, isn’t it ? In a way I too hate being few things, “Human” for instance.

    fantastic read btw, love to read you more.

    • Yes,you said a valid point..
      Then about the title..hmm..yeah..thats lil intense..but was not purposely kept,it was the first thing that came to my mind when i started writing the post :)
      Thanks for dropping your comments..
      Do read more of my posts and let me know your thoughts :)

  8. hey i identify with what ever you have written
    it seemed that you have penned down my feelings.
    this is very true about the emotional blackmailing on the part of the parents
    but our society is such, we do care a lot about what people say about us
    ask any parent whose child is of marriageable age — and what they under go. at every corner of the life they are stopped and the first thing they are asked ,” when is your child getting married” as if by knowing the marital status or the plans for marriage of the child will affect the person asking the question.
    people just ask these questions to start a conversation or just to gossip
    without realizing how traumatic it becomes for the parents.

  9. Indian women have been groomed to be emotionally dependent, so much so that we feel it necessary to ask before we do anything. The guilt and complex is really in our minds and we let it take over. We need to be assertive about our dreams. When people see they can’t push you over, they leave you alone. This I write from experience. All my life I have had to fight for my dreams…at every step…with my father and my husband…now I think they have understood their limits.

  10. Great post and I agree. But hopefully, times are a-changing. I’m 26 and unmarried. And so are quite a few of my friends I grew up with. I think we can make a change if we believe it. Unfortunately, I do believe a lot of Indian women are brought up with the mentality that you have to get married at 21. Till date though some my of parents’ friends ask them when they will ‘find someone for me’ and when I will settle down. All I can say is that I am glad I am independent, in a different country and don’t have to listen to all that day in and day out. And I can answer back to those nosey questions by relatives and parents’ friends without batting an eyelid. I don’t care if they think I’m up myself or too ‘modern’ or very ‘unIndian’ :D Because, Indian women don’t stand up for themselves… :P

  11. Good idea but amusing choice of words :) You hate neither being Indian nor woman but when two put together.
    If it is any consolation even amrriage at 27 is no fun for a person with her own mind.

    http://girlsguidetosurvival.wordpress.com/2010/01/20/desi-parenting-raising-confused-daughters/

    @crealoga,
    The reasons for marrying have to be very clear for a marriage to work. Rise in age at marriage for women does matter but does not matter where gender expectations are piled on women.

    http://girlsguidetosurvival.wordpress.com/ask-before-marrying/

    @Remya,
    … foreigner lady of age 39 who is still single, She has mentioned that If she was an Indian, her parents wud have arranged her marriage at appropriate age .

    That is what my non-desi friends tell me all the time forgetting how much adjustment and compromise goes into arranged marriages. At least she has tried kissing some frogs out there and knows what she wants. :) Desi women often times have to do with what is given to them.

    @Bhavia,
    Your friend, where ever she is exhibiting signs of depression and if she is talking about suicide it is time to take action.
    http://girlsguidetosurvival.wordpress.com/suicide/

    Please ask her to speak to her doctor and read the Desi Girl’s communication with Mehak in the comments:
    http://girlsguidetosurvival.wordpress.com/dealing-with-in-laws/
    with Khamoshi here…
    http://girlsguidetosurvival.wordpress.com/home-and-happiness/

    Keep writing,
    Peace,

    Desi Girl

    PS: if it is a repeat comment please delete it.

    • Thank you for the support..I have been in constant touch with her so that I don’t lose her..
      I am trying to talk with her guy who is refusing to have a talk..
      Lets see

      • Bhavia,
        You are doing a good job in supporting her. I would suggest seeking professional help. You are not trained to handle this and also you two are in different countries. Mention of suicide is a serious issue, you cannot take chances.

        The more you talk to the guy the more hostile/defensive he’ll become. A person will make an effort only if he/she believes there is a problem. To him there is no problem (he is not sitting at home with his crushed dreams), according to him the problem is with your friend because she is complaining and is not satisfied with sitting at home and eating in peace. They basically need couple’s counseling. If he is (I am almost sure) reluctant then your friend should go just for herself.

        The more you’ll try talking to him the more defensive he’ll become and more he’ll start bothering her because he’ll feel she is painting him black. This can even result in him cutting you off from having access to his wife and your friend.

        It is time your friends seeks counseling for her self. If she needs support and inventory of resources in her area Desi Girl is willing to work with her.

        Please keep up the good work.
        Peace,

        Desi Girl

  12. I am sorry. Please accept my apology, as a male, an Indian male, who, I think are single handedly responsible for the state of Women in India. The only promise that I can make is that I will keep trying to understand women with each passing day, and be more tolerant,understanding, and normal towards them. I hope that through the changes brought about within me, I would be able to influence a few others.

    • Hi Kislay,
      I greatly appreciate your thoughts :)
      We woman cannot make this happen unless we have support from you guys too..
      I am sure that you can bring in change in both yourself and the ones with you too :)
      Thank you so much for your support ..
      Keep visiting the blog!!

  13. “Why do this happen to Indian girls?”

    Because they LET it. At 23 she was a full-grown adult woman. She should have ACTED like it and told her mother “don’t try to manipulate me emotionally by pretending that you will ‘suicide’ if I don’t marry now. You know that you will not. I am going to follow my dream and start my business. After it is started THEN I will get married.”

    Indian women need to grow up.

    • It is true that most of them LET IT and thats why it is happening..
      But some famileis are crazy..they will even kill their daughter for their honor and prestige(im not kidding please!!)
      I have seen..they will make the girl stand in front of the whole family memebers and there wont be a single person to support her during this family trail..they will curse her..they will blame for bringing shame to teh family..they will tell her that if she refused to do it,then she is out of the house..
      I know one mom who even tried to attempt suicide when her daughter wanted to marry a Punjabi guy ..
      After all this hungame,what wil the girl do???

    • @Fact of Life,

      Yeh that is so right, she should have out. It is so easy for a woman in India. Just walk out if you don’t like it. Go where. At 23 you are still in school or have just started your first job. You are not financially ready for an independent life. Even f you are, are you aware how single women who live on their own are treated by communities? Strange men not only make passes but break into their homes. If a woman tries to live independently she is bothered so much that she goes back to where she came from. Communities make sure that no other woman dare follow her lead. A tacit fear of sexual assaults is used to keep women in place. Read this to know what goes into making of a desi marriage
      http://girlsguidetosurvival.wordpress.com/2010/06/17/desi-marriage-eligible-or-ineligible-question/

      Peace,

      Desi Girl

  14. “When rest of the world is learning and trying to follow our customs and tradition there is no need to hate being an Indian woman.”

    Remya, what part of the world is “trying to follow Indian customs and traditions”?!?!

    Just because some people are almost 40 and single doesn’t mean they would want to be born in India and forced to marry someone they don’t know, or emotionally manipulated into marrying when they are too young and then being expected to live with your in-laws!!!

    Bhaviya, as a woman I can say to you, don’t hate being what you are, but at the same time I am VERY GLAD I was not born in India. Perhaps in your next life you won’t be.

    • Well said :)
      Women from other countries just dont realize the emotinal torture and adjustments that we undergo here..Once they know it they will withdraw their comments :P

  15. I am sorry to read about your friend. The education that you talk about also teaches you to be intelligent and strong and independent. We have such strong leaders in India like Soniaji and earlier Indira Gandhi. We should take inspiration from the likes of Gandhiji and Kiran Bedi and understand that we too have a persona and a life which is God given and become stronger. Since I advise a lot of such women who are also my disciples,I personally chide them for not standing up against this heartless society. They have to understand that they too have a dream and not to just become slaves of some guy and his mother and family. The woman has her dignity and self respect too so she better take care of herself or learn from those who have won the battle earlier.
    I know you will say it is easy to advise but hard to do so let me assure you that the day the women learn to assert themselves and become self respecting and empower themselves they will win in this war and not mope about it ever. God bless you and your friend. btw,I have more unmarried women disciples in late 20’s and early 30’s who know what they want in life and know how to get it. They value their freedom and would get married only after they have achieved their goals in life and only if they feel like it not otherwise.

  16. Hi,

    I first read the post when a fellow blogger friend shared it on FB and decided not to comment, mainly because I am actually reading these kind of posts for so long, and none of the post seems to make any headway or provide any kind of solutions. It should not be construed as anything against you or the post; just my observation of reading blogs over 4 years.

    There are a few things which are missing from the write up – (a) you haven’t mentioned about your friend’s stay – is it a city or a small town (Trust, me it makes difference as it gives an idea about the reasons of her problem!) (b) It is not very clear from the excerpt of the mail why your friend is facing issues in trying to start working – is it just because of kids, then I am not ready to buy it because thousands of women successfully manage work with kids and this cannot be an excuse for not working. Having said that, I can also understand the complex layers of deceit, lies and constraints your friend may be going through.

    I actually agree with most of the points here, though the end was excruciatingly exaggerated where you want to categorise all women facing such problem and in turn, ignoring the contribution from all those men who have been extremely supportive of their wife working and achieving their dreams (and the ratio of those lucky souls is not less than 0.01%, please!). But then it is your space and you have the liberty of putting boundaries on assumptions and conclusions you want to put forward.

    The major issue in the post is actually to do with the parents, but if the girl is really educated and wants to work, I see no reason of parents forcing anyone to marry. But more often than not, girls fall in this emotional trap (no blame game, but just happens!) without taking proper decisions and most importantly, without asking any pertinent questions before marriage to the husband or in-laws. Yes, you may be forced to marry earlier than what you would have liked to, but no one is stopping you to ask questions before marriage or plan your career with the husband. You will be amazed to know how many less women actually go ahead and ask relevant questions about career before marriage. Also, this post ignores the fact what men have to put in front (house, car, cash, etc) before getting married, but that can be considered as out of scope and safely negated.

    To end, as a lot of bloggers have commented – things are changing and it will take time to reach majority of the people. But to bring a change, you got to believe you can make a change. You got to stand up for your rights; you got to ask the right questions at the right time. Obviously, this is no guarantee that things will not go wrong in the future, but atleast you reduce the probability of it happening. It may be a totally personal opinion, but I don’t think it is fair enough to compare such kind of women with the rest. It is demeaning to all those women who have achieved their dreams and to all those men who have supported their wives all along.

    Cheers,
    Amit

    • Hi Amit,
      Thank you for commenting it..
      I will never forget those good husbands who always support their wives in life including my Dad.Just that the numbers should increase.
      Then all the missed points are there in the post itself :)
      Anyway,I happy that you put in your comments :)

  17. I am sorry but I can’t place those missing points. There is neither any mention of location nor any rock solid reason of not working after marriage. There is a mere mention of constraints and excuses from her side, but no major reason. It may be in the original mail, but I can’t find in the excerpt of the email you have shared in the post.

    On the lighter side, if she was so interested in working by starting of her own, why she didn’t discussed it with husband before/after marriage and sorry for being a little sarcastic, but why to have 2 kids also? Please don’t say this was also emotional blackmail from the parents, which will be so cliché’.

    PS: The responsibility of numbers increase lies equally on women, and just not on men.

    • @Amit
      …why she didn’t discussed it with husband before/after marriage and sorry for being a little sarcastic, but why to have 2 kids also?

      Men and their families usually agree to things before marriage and then change it is very common scene. I guess you are living in a different world.

      ” Nalini Singh’s Hello Zindagi on DD in one episode she documented broken promises, where married women disclosed how their lives were controlled and manipulated by natal and conjugal kin. A woman spoke from the dark to be anonymous how she was assured she could continue her education after marriage but was forced to quit after marriage. Another told how her dance career was terminated by her in-laws even when it was the condition of marriage that she’ll continue her dance practice and career. Now even her parents were silent on it, they said it is up to her in-laws. Yet another woman’s word stuck in my head she said, “In parent’s house my parents said we won’t allow you to wear skirts or go to movies. Do it in your home. Now I am here my MIL says we won’t allow this do it in your home. I want to know where my home is.” I have never heard or seen such restrictions imposed on men their lives continue and women’s lives are put on hold in a wait of unknown golden future that no one is sure of. ”
      Desi Girl

      You think women control their family size, use of contraception or even time of copulation? Research has shown it is man and his family that makes these decisions for her. Women’s Education plays a little role in it. It is a long road to ahead…

      Refer:
      Jejeebhoy SJ: Women’s education, autonomy and reproductive behaviour: experience from developing countries. Oxford, Clarendon Press; 1995.

      Moursund A, Kravdal O: Individual and community effects of women’s education and autonomy on contraceptive use in India. Population Studies 2003 , 57:285-301.

      It is not happening until men start taking responsibility and challenging gender role stereotypes and treating women as equalhumans. If she wants to work she needs support from her spouse. Though job market is bad but if she goes out of home she needs her spoiuse to help her with childcare and house keeping. Is he willing?

      May be he doesn’t want her to work because he thinks he is man enough to provide her? But isn’t that limiting that all his identity and existance is dependent on his image of provider. He is willing to let go of time he can spend with his kids. What kind of system is this. where a man can only act as uptight and in controll all the time and miss out on being human and enjoying little pleasures of life?

      It is time we each changed ourselves instead of each other and change the system that oppresses us in the name of being man or woman. Let us all be Humans first then be men or women…

      Peace,

      Desi Girl

      • well said..
        it is pathetic to say buy in her case having a kid early was the solution her husband found out to make his parents behave well to her :(

      • @bhavia

        So, this was the reason why they had kids. See, I appreciate you writing this post but I still feel there were many things which were not clear and hence, for me making an objective judgement was difficult. It may have been crystal clear to you through the email, but it didn’t come out properly in the post. Anyways, keep up the good work…and keep penning.

  18. Ok, there is some mention about coming back to india, so must be abroad….but, then i was not sure you are in India :) this is my first visit to your blog.

    • I have personal constraints in revealing the facts as I can’t risk her identity out of the bag.Thats the reason why the original mail is not pasted and an excerpt is shown..
      We have to respect her privacy too..

      • @Bhavia

        That’s alright, i can understand the issue of privacy. I just replied to your comment..when you said to the points i said missing ..are already there in the post. But it would have helped if it was told what’s her past and present location because there can be a huge difference to the way things are perceived in cities and small towns.

        Thanks,
        Amit

    • @Amit,
      Who gave you the right to judge and why do you need to know the minutest of the details if the woman says she is unhappy then she is unhappy. Why can’t her word be taken for what it is? Why does she have to explain to everyone and everytime.
      Peace,
      Desi Girl

  19. “they will tell her that if she refused to do it,then she is out of the house..”

    So? At 23 she SHOULD be living on her own – like a grown adult!

  20. @Desi girl

    This is one reason why I was sceptical about commenting on this post. Because people don’t read all the comments by a person or read one comment in isolation and start thrusting their point of view. No need to give so many proofs or references, we are not making any law here.

    Yes, I am in different world where men give equal opportunities to women and willing to share all the household responsibilities. I am in a world where men and women together decide when to have kids, to hell with what parents think. There is no indication in the post what is the exact reason why she was stopped from working; it is only coming up in a little way through the comments section. To me, any effort of trying to work after marriage or having made an effort before marriage to sort out her career was not evitable; hence I raised the issue of asking right questions and utilising your education. I have commented earlier that if there are lies and deceit, it obviously becomes tough for women. Just pushing the envelope back to men don’t make any sense to me, it is just a blame game. When any women don’t utilise their education to make the right decisions at the right time, there will be issues later on. Again go back and see the comment where I have said this is no guarantee, but still atleast reduces the probability.

    Change doesn’t come along writing long posts or giving comments, change comes when you yourself follow it. Blaming the system is not a big deal, everyone does that. Obviously, you live in a different world where you are not aware of the women whose sole intention of taking up education is to be a suitable match to higher qualified men. Obviously, you live in a different world where women themselves don’t want to work after marriage even after getting all the encouragement and persuasion from the men. These cases may be in minority, but that was not the main contention of the write up. Let’s not play a blame game and stick to the main agenda. Changing the system and the human nature is more important, which was the first intention of writing this post.

    Peace,
    Amit

    • Amit, I didn’t see anywhere where she is “blaming men”. Rather, she is commenting on the state of the CULTURE AT LARGE. If newlywed Indians, like in the West, made their own way in life – lived separately from parents and in-laws (preferably in a different state or even country), and dealings with parents and in-laws were minimal – a few phone calls a month and a few visits a year – then I think INDIAN MEN are more likely to go along with the dreams and plans of their wives and the couple would be making decisions together.

      As it stands now, a young Indian husband is under the sway and control of HIS PARENTS and allows them to dictate his own marriage. The parents of the bride say to their daughter, “do whatever it takes to make that family happy. they are your family now.”

      Basically Indian people are never allowed to grow up.

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  22. I am really glad my Dad really stood up for me. Mom was conserved but I think eventually they let me be who I wanted to be. After a disastrous first marriage I am married again now, and happy.

    Wish you luck!

    I am Indian by the way. A woman.

    Hugs!

  23. I’m going through the exact dilemma as written by you, I’m 23.. My parents want me to get married but I don’t want to! Everyone says fight for what you want, but its so emotionally draining, it is emotional attyachar :(

  24. Your friend is in a tough situation and I hope things work out well for her. Luckily, it is never too late and there is no reason to not have a dream just because she got married. Our conditioning as Indian women is also that marriage is the end game.

    There is good day care abroad and I know so many friends who work and have very successful careers….rising to the top. As for husbands, they have to deal with supporting..what is an option? Do women not support them?

    I know there are a lot of issues with being Indian and a woman. And in general being a woman – wherever you are, the child seems to be significantly the woman’s responsibility. However, there are so many cool things about being a woman and an Indian and an Indian woman. It seems like lack of assertiveness is a huge issue we all have to face and break out of. Personally, I can’t hate being an Indian woman!

  25. Heartrending story. And the saddest thing about it is that it’s not an unusual one. Its not easy being a woman anywhere in the world, juggling children and housework and trying to pursue one’s dreams at the same time. But, being an Indian woman is definitely harder because you get absolutely no moral support. You are expected to be the drudge, the maid, the one who is ‘looked after’.

  26. I am sorry to hear the story of your friend and things generally a girl faces in her life. I didn’t have time to read the comment page fully but i do it definently sometime. Startup dream might not have to start after college or it will end soon after gifting a child to this world. To tell about me, I finished my engineering from a top college and joined an MNC and topped in my career and been to most of the countries. felt an vacuum after all achievement and cash. Then joined with pals started an company, we struggled really hard to establish our name in the market. now, with clients who are great in their respective profiles & started having revenue after about 4 years of product research and right team formation.
    But struggle personally to get an girl. My parents are advising me to join any company , get married and go back to my startup world. But i dont like to cheat anyone in this regard. Even girls who are in great MNC wants to have stable salary person as their partner than try someone who wants to be different in life.

    My advise to your friend, keep her dreams powered during her hibernate period and educate her husband and in-laws and there will be time for her when she can unfold her wings and fly in this world. There is nothing to blame this world or society. Everything is lying with her whether she wants to move forward or stay back in where she is right now.

  27. Life is tough, more so for a woman, even more for an Indian woman….but then good things do not come easy, do they? I am really sorry for your friend and a lot of women like her. We must learn to grab our dreams, not let them float by untouched.

    All of us women should learn to be assertive and to say no. Two things that make life simpler. I must say I am lucky in this respect that I married very young (By choice!) and am still studying, 3 years into marriage. Will continue for 2 more years. With a lot of support from family and husband of course. I have no idea what the future holds for me though!

    I sincerely hope your friend finds a way out of her problems.

    God Bless

    Varsha

  28. Hi

    Good blog and congrats for the listing on blogadda.

    Education helps us think and makes us independant if required and gives us an identity and broadmindedness. Its not just for building a career

    In Western countries where parents dont do the marriage arrangements there are so many singles in their thirties frustrated that they dont have a life partner. The Indian system kind of ensures that there are not many like that. Having said that I dont agree to parents forcing their children to marry at a particular age. But I personally know some cases where the girls were so immersed in their career that they kept postponing their marriage and got married at 40.

    There are families in rural parts of india that dont allow you girls to study quoting that they are anyways going to get married. Would we agree to that?

    If the education does not help you to stand and speak up for yourself there is no meaning in that education.

    Compared to certain customs and countries in the world that we hear of, Indian women are in a much better position. But certain problems in society will take some time to change. But I am sure they will.

    • I don’t agree that women in India are in a better position. Not if they are FORCED to marry someone and I know some families in India aren’t like this, not in the case of if she wants to be independent and career oriented. Now, for the women abroad, has it occurred to you, that not EVER woman WANTS marriage? Has it occurred to you that maybe she is happy that way? Not having to cook, clean, AND chase her dreams but decide which path to take and that she chose her career and didn’t want to be a superwoman?

  29. I have a friend in a similar situation as yours, but she had the guts to walk out, not out of the marriage, but out of the suffocating situation and pursue her dreams. Now she has all the certifications she craved for, is in a high position careerwise and claims to be happy, now that her ambitions are fulfilled. But is she really happy? I wonder.

  30. Hi Bhavia! new to your blog. read ur post, very emotional. Equally intersting were the comments part. BTW congrats for being the pick! keep up the good work.

  31. Jayashree, I know of cases in India where the parents would not allow 2 love birds to marry and the love birds refused to marry anyone else, so then at the ripe old age of 40 when pregnancy is very risky, the parents finally “allowed”. Several cases like this are there.

  32. wow…it realy hurted me ven i saw d title “i hate being an indian women”…….see i dnt kno of wat society r u talkin ’bout…maybe its d story of 1% of indian women hu dnt hav d courage 2 stand 4 demselves nd blame others 4 it…or maybe dos gals hus moms r nt wel educ8td…in my opinion,every persn has a power 2 achiev nethin if she iz truly wiling 4 dat…luk at d actreses,dey gt marid ven dey r abov 30 nd derz no1 2 stop dem…if a woman is realy gud in studis den she can get part tym jobs newer…cal centres or,malls…etc…nw even if her parnts dnt suport hr 4 furthr studis…she cn tek up des jobs nd complete hr studis being independent….. but ol des women jus simply blame d society…i mean c’mon, in america only 60% of ppl r ctualy graduated!!!!..nd 30% of women work as a part tym prostitutes 2 suport demselves…..bt stil dey never say dat dey h8 being n american women….its realy idiotic of ne1 hu thinks dis way….nd equaly idiotic of ne1 hu promote such craps…my hol point is dnt blame ur country 4 ur probs…otherwise u wil urself bcom d laughin stock…its ol up2 u nd ur will…….b proud of urself bein n indian women…

    • kattie you need to wake up. were you living under a rock ? and what the hell ? women in other countries have a way better life than those in india.

  33. Hi – You have hit the bull’s eye with the blog. I agree that a cross-section of the society namely middle-class is still biased towards the fairer sex. Let’s hope and pray that atleast the next generation will not have to go through this. You have really grown in stature as a blogger and the topics you are choosing are simply superb. Keep up the good work.

  34. There’s a huge difference between respecting women and putting them up on an untouchable pedistal, which over time, makes them appear to be unhuman – and as time erodes the original idea, less than human. It is a devastating spiral.

  35. omg….
    u spoke my heart out….i so..much feel alike..why should we kill our dreams for our parents,our in laws,our husbands or our children…are we made just fro sacrifices …..

    it hurts….and things like emotionally getting things done by telling they would suicide…they are murdering their own child…..

    i am deeply touched…and i wish i could vote 100 times for it.

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    [url=http://nuscin-online.info]skin,[/url] bookmarked… Keep up the good site…

  37. I agree with your views… This is something educated woman have to change… life is not about having kids or family… it is only about doing what you want when you want… It takes courage and conviction to do so… I totally agree society does not want the women to be 100% free… but freedom comes at a cost… it will take a mass movement to kill this get-22-get married syndrome… it will take a humongous amount of women to kill the ugly marriage system. which is not needed in the first place… in today’s world preference of sex has almost vanished.. why is then that our families are forcing bright girls to do this? mostly because they think that they can not sustain themselves? or because of security reasons? or just because of societal pressure? in any case girls have to defy them… being “girly” does not help… (though that is where issues of losing femininity arise) but again the choice lies with the women… you have to MAKE THEM SEE that you can survive and live well without men and family… You will have to crush the 4000 year old rusty system of ours… I think it can be something women can be proud of….

  38. Audacious attempt to address women liberty. It reminds me several girls of my relatives who had forced abortion of their dreams for their parents desire. I think there is nothing glorious that a girl give up her dreams for the love of their parents. In fact it should not be called love. It is like controlling the life of child.

  39. Very nice post. But the thing is girls themselves need to come up and oppose their parents or even the society when need be, if they are forced into an early marriage. I know this is Way easier said than done, and its indeed hard to change a traditional Indian mindset. However we must make effort to do so.

    If a girl does not want to marry or have a family, why on earth should she be forced to do so? Let her stay alone if she is happy that way. Let people think what they want to think.

    I commend you for this article. Well done. :)

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  41. Only an Indian woman can love only one person and spent the rest of her life with him. Only an Indian woman can be called the best cook and feed her children till she closes her eyes, only an Indian woman can give birth to Indians and gift them a legacy thousands of years old. Only an Indian woman can forgive and hand feed her 40 year old son without questions or protests of embarrassment. Only an Indian woman can open heartedly welcome her spouse’s family into her life. Only she can smile and be called mother by not only her children. Only she can juggle her home, career, family children and the Tv Shows and still have time to talk to God everyday. Only she can have children and grandchildren cry alike, like babies on her funeral. Only she can hope to have the same loved life with her loved ones in the next life.

    Everything else she doesn’t have is nothing but a glimmer of a materialistic lifestyle Indian woman adopt seduced by glamorous fantasies and the ludicrous western philosophy of advertising your life as success, when the only person you love and loves you is yourself.She looks everyday,on her face in that vanity mirror to find little cracks on her frigid face that has to be covered up to hide the real woman inside.

    For a male chauvinist like me,”Greatness” is only scattered around India, in little houses where the Indian woman lives, as a tear drop of joy and sorrow mixes with her kajal and flows down a ever loved face capable of pure selflessness and boundless love, when each time we make her god, calling her ‘Amma’.

  42. ooh..Hii Bhavia..u know dis is exactly the samething im going through n to tell u its draining life out of me…n particularly ur line den why make dream high if u knew d end result..wen I was young i wished to be like bill gates n now dat m 21 im emotionally harassed to get married..its draining life out of me!!n m not sure wot to decide.have my career or spend my entire life with someone i dont know..its a tough decision to be made cos i lose on either sides..i lose even if i win..i lose even i lose…dat 1oo wishes i made for myself seem meaningless now and just cos im a traditional indian girl..looking alll around i see unhappy married couples being together just for the sake of it..but still my parents arent understanding..POOR ME!!

  43. I am a Indian man, and i think you should be proud to be an Indian woman. Marriage should not be a stumbling block that you should start hating like what the title of this post says. Marriage is social institution, but extremely frustrating at times. Agree your friend is contemplating divorce or suicide. At times we men feel the same too.

    And its 110% true that the husband and family will NEVER support you in these matters. Someway they will talk you into agreeing their terms. After all they went ahead with the marriage with expectation that woman will take care of household and he earn to run it . Those are man/woman primary responsibilities in indian family.

    With dilemma and frustration woman must opt for a divorce and further her career. Think separately – husband, goals and children.

    Never get all angry and frustrated …. get EVEN.

  44. hiii…the title of the blog led me to go through.
    first of all…i liked the way things are put in this post.ya its really hard and a tough job for the females in India to lead a good life. In the still male dominated society females are given ample chance to dream but not fulfill them.
    Its so sad to say…we still lag behind with our so called cultural emotions for the male counterpart. At the end of the day…its only us who need to sacrifice, shatter our dreams for lightening others life.

  45. Interesting post, Bhavia. I am grateful to have been born into a family that has never pressured me to marry. I am 28-years-old and unmarried and I often think of all the wonderful experiences I would have missed out on had I married and had children at a young age.

    Thanks for sharing this with the world and best of luck to you.

  46. Nowadays girls in India are free enough when compared back around 15-20 years. They are now in all dept and they started ruling. What happened to your friend is a rare case as of now. In current situation most of the females in India are willing to marry at the age of 25-26. What’s your friends parents reacting may be because of their experience they had.

    It’s the duty that every children should explain and makes their parents clear about their wishes and future plans. If it’s acceptable then they won’t stress things like this.

    But no one should forget that Indian culture is the best all the time.

    • Sekar, You are right now a days most of the girls handling the situation brilliantly. My TL is a lady she is having 2 years old KID and she will leave the office exactly by 6, One day i asked her about this.Her reply is, My KID and my family is important than my professional life and if needed i will resign the job for my KID happiness. I really stunned by her response. Point is attitude is important.
      @Author …Taking care of a KID is not a sacrifice and it won’t shatter the dreams.
      Time will tell the truth …I hope your turn will come

  47. We Indian girls do have it hard in so many ways. Education and marriage are the biggies but even with little things, differences do show up. I hope that with time this patronizing tendency dies and you change your thoughts about being a woman in India.

  48. Trust me you are talking bullshit

    Girl in india is always in golden hands

    why?
    1:if you compare first 5 years of girls childhood they have more functions(celebrations)
    2:they always have advantage from dads
    3:when they get little enlder …have boyfriends sround
    4:girls dad pay good money as dowry ..show enjoy that
    5:then she gets a new slave so called husband

    happy life

  49. Hi,

    Found your blog linked here [http://blogs.wsj.com/indiarealtime/2011/11/06/india-journal-why-does-india-hate-women/]. Agree with most of the points you made here but don’t agree with ‘parents are scared of society’ part.

    Society is who we are. We are the ones who change the society. If society thinks bad about our girls, so be it. Society hasn’t really contributed anything constructive in understanding girls. It is totally a girl’s decision to get married (whatever be the means – emotional blackmail or financial security). Parents have to take major blame for messing the careers of girls in such situations.

    I have advised a friend (girl) not to get married early. She went on to get married and is now having a torrid time.

    One can only feel sad for the girl.

  50. Society is made up of people. Its the person you have chosen who is wrong, who is not fulfilling the promise. why are you blaming being an Indian girl. there are many girls i have seen who after marriage working successfully. Its the individual person to blame for.

      • Bhavia, I am sorry but I do not agree with the article and your reply. Being born in India doesn’t mean that you are backward or you did not get opportunities. There are lots of other countries where women need permission for work and yes in US as well. It depends on the individual how to tackle the situation. Why don’t you take the bold step and work. Why do you require permission? To hell with society, its your individual decision and you can pursue your dreams. Blaming a country doesn’t work.

      • haven’t you seen the fates of girls taking a bold step?They get killed..
        I wont say that the whole country is bad or the women don’t have opportunities..but a handful of people come up from middle class families..check the previous comments to know more..

      • See its not an argument and I hope you take it positively. Your post only hurting the image of India though its an individual family decision. I have read all the comments and in all the cases they are blaming India to be the reason of their exploitation and this is very bad. I know some man and their family do not want their daughter in laws or daughters to work. These things have to be discussed earlier before marriage and if they go against it, girl has a right to seek legal advice and can work. Let these people be happy with finding daughter in laws who do not want to work after marriage and trust me there are many.

  51. I find it ridiculous and amusing the way in which people take any criticism directed at the nation/culture personally. Most comments take offense to the fact that you hate being an Indian woman. While I may not share your strong opinions or feelings, I definitely understand them. I know for a fact that several women suffer in silence so as not to hurt their families/in-laws and as a result, their lives are spent making others happy. They endure too much for the happiness of others. There’s a lot of things that weigh Indian women down and for those choosing to ignore that, you’re only living in blissful denial.
    (Sorry for my extremely late comment – only saw your blogpost now. Good work though!)

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  53. Thanks for bringing this up. The attitude is still to have women having to walk two steps behind with their heads covered, unless, of course, they use their feminine wiles, as a senior female collegaue has advised others.

  54. Very interesting post. I believe the situation is not much different even for men except the age goes up to 26-28. Of course, it is worse for women. I think the problem arises due to changing attitudes and aspirations of our generation. Our parents’ generation never had the opportunities and hence not-so-many aspirations as we do. Probably, it is a problem with our parents’ generation mindsets. They have been a risk-averse generation growing up in a socialistic India where jobs were scarce and dreams were meant to be just dreams. On the other hand, we are much more globalized generation, much more competitive and risk-taking. That’s a huge clash in attitudes, which leads to lots of emotional drama. I guess even they would understand if we are firm and help them understand. I took a whole year to convince my parents (who are well educated) that “I want to do a start-up”. It just needs more patience from us and more understanding from our parents and spouses.

  55. Bhavia,

    Like everyone else, I was really touched by your post. Even though I have always had the freedom to do whatever I wanted, I completely understand what your friend and lakhs of girls like her go through. But I am really happy that your friend could finally start her own boutique.

    Though none of this is new or something we haven’t heard/read a thousand times before, I loved the honesty and directness you have written it with. And the way you have replied to even the most ignorant comments (which blame the girl for not fighting back or claim that it isn’t even a problem) with such grace, really makes me your fan! :)

    I wish you and your friend luck and hope that people will learn to be more sensitive about women’s dreams and wishes in our country.

  56. Hey Bhavia!
    I am in two minds. I’m 22, in the final year of my undergraduate study and planning to pursue graduate studies in US. My parents, through pressure from family elders and other close relatives, have had to introduce me to some guys. I don’t totally blame them because they’re on the grind mill too. But, it IS hard to sympathize when I think that, as adults, it was high time they put their foot down and told the elders that what they really want is for me to concentrate on and pursue my studies without external pressure.
    I don’t think there’s any right time for marriage, but a certain maturity of thought and wisdom are required to choose a mate. For different people, this age may be different. And everyone must be allowed to make their own choices, especially in a decision as important as marriage. I guess I’m one of few lucky ones who has that privilege, even though we delude ourselves that we’re ‘developing’ as a nation everyday. I ask you, where does development in the economy stand without development of the people (who are the very backbone of the nation)?
    It takes courage for any one person to start the change, irrespective of how old or mature they are. Because in the end, society is always bigger than any individual. Lets not judge people too harshly (least of all, little girls who hardly have had their say in anything at all throughout their lives), if we have to judge them at all.

    • Actually,I like this post.every gal who is the age of 23-24 should read this post.A gal who is just graduated ,she have her mind full of future dreams of her career.She is in a state of planning what should be done or not which will help in her growth in life.But because of family pressures and all with no reason she gets married to some guy.Parents don’t simply bother what their daughter thinks? what she really wants from her life?What is real definition of happiness for our daughter? According to Indian parents ,doesn’t matter if a gal does not educate,doesn’t become independent,does not matter if she is not mentally ready for this responsibility,But she should be married anyhow so that parents can take fake pride in the society.How selfish is this? its even disgusting.Girls listen how you try to become financially independent likewise try to be emotionally independent also.We have only one life and we have all the rights to live it fullest as per our terms and conditions.I hate my parents.I can’t tell the reason behind it.But in my life after some experiences i can firmly say that every man or a girl are alone in this whole world .Even after death we go alone neither our parents come with us nor our spouse nor boyfriend neither brother nor daughter neither son.So be strong and clear what u want in your life.And most importantly we have the right to say “no”.Show the courage to say “NO”.
      And remember “Jo insan khud khush na ho woh dusaron ko kabhi khushi nahi de sakata!!!”.Become more responsible.Because responsibility is the only key to freedom.For me freedom and contentment give you sheer happiness.Have your own voice don’t obey others voices.!!!!! All the best.

  57. Pingback: Why Does India Hate Women? | BellBajao

  58. I am a single South African woman of Indian origin. Having lived in South AfrIca and India I have seen both perspectives on how Indian and South African societies have a common denominator in so far as materialism is concerned. It seems unhappiness and financial problems are inextricably related. The question of who you marry is of extreme importance as opposed to why you marry. If women can divorce emotion from this then you will know why being independent, confident and self-believing is of paramount importance in so far as societal pressure on women is concerned. Sounds abstract, but in context of marriage, women have the choices but with limitations. I feel it reeks of masculinity in a typically conservative environment to emphasise on the importance of equality in your own mind before expecting societal changes. One should subscribe to the view that equality in society, financial independence and self- belief must be intrinsic values to inherit if not inherent to ensure that the future roles of women is one which is powerfully and realistically exemplified through present sacrifices of any nature to achieve sooner than later. Sorry its raining now and I have got to park my SLK amg merc in the garage of my palace and if I marry one day….

  59. Yeah, one thing i never understand is why do they force us to study, get good ranks, join a prestigious college, work very hard only to give up in the middle just because we “have” to marry someone. Some people are happy getting married and staying home, some people aren’t. We need to achieve financial stability and attain maturity, then only that marriage actually works. It’s takes two matured people to make a marriage work, not two unstable antiparticles. Many people just say yes or no without much thought. often it’s people who are not clear in terms of life or who don’t have much ambitions start with a no first and upon a little force they bend. Now that’s generalized to everyone – ‘Use Pressure until they bend’. Sad! instead of forcing, parents can drop the idea, let it float for a time until girl/boy is comfortable with it. Yes, marriage is important, no, it shouldn’t be forced.

    • such a conundrum that nobody has a definite answer for why parents do parents spend so money for daughter’s education if they were going to get her married to someone in the middle of the graduation..

  60. I need a suggestion from you…I also have a dream to make my career I am 24 years old now it will take around three years to complete my education and my dream career by that time i will be 27 years old and in our caste its difficult to get a groom and relationships are important as well…and I need atleast one year to understand a person so again one year delay and I dont want to have a baby very late …and also dont want to sacrifice my career so tell me what to do ????

    • Hey if you are very particular about building a career before settling down with a married life,go ahead with your studies.Then it is usual that elders make statements like you wont get a groom our your own caste.World is changing.Look around.There is a different world outside.But having a baby very late is a personal choice.It is difficult to make all the pieces fall in place correctly.Try getting a guy who is fine with you studying further.

    • That’s life–you cannot have EVERYTHING! You have to choose, and that’s what makes you an adult. With choice comes risk, with risk you win, or lose. That’s what separates children from grown women. You can’t have your freedom and yet take shelter in the regressive tradition of arranged marriage. You can’t have everything. Chose wisely, be brave, have confidence.

  61. Domestic Violence and corrupt system in the USA created by some of the volunteers at the Chinmaya Mission in southern California along with my husband and the police and the schools. I reported for domestic violence against my husband in USA. Soon after that my husband planned for retaliation behind my back. Harassment and hostile work environment started at my workplace. Not knowing he was responsible for it I asked my husband for help. Within a week I lost my job. It was easy for them to do because it was a at will position. So I didn’t suspect anything and I kept believing my husband about it. Then he joined the Chinmaya Mission and in the name of culture and tradition they all started harassing me and the kids. They started showing disrespect, and misguding me, backstabbing me and what not. Then it slowly was spread among the Kannda group. Then finally my kids school. When they started showing disrespect and isolation at school there was no support from my husband. All I got was beatings and more anger showing. The Sheriffs which works with the school very closely was giving protection to you and the school to continue with the harassment. When I complained they made fun of me saying that you are not an Indian. They also said in a very sarcaustic way that they would help me. So our social life and especially for the children went bad. I(WE – meaning kids included) was not allowed to volunteer, any extra curricular activities the same kind of harassment and just everything and anywhere we went, it would be fine until you and your select group got involved. So when everything peeked out and I still didn’t hurt you physically nor any other way you(my husband) resorted to sexual abuse. It is in his nature to retaliate and justify any wrong that he does using any means. When you have a small black mark you try to remove it, it only becomes messy and spreads out and is distorted. So how to make it go away. It is by making a bigger black mark on your enemy (namely me) so that your black mark becomes insignificant and all attention will go towards your enemy. So the Sheriff, the schools, the kannada group, the Chinmaya Mission group and my husband all join in, in what is called a matrix and start the harassment. How long can one person take it with two small children to take care of. Their ultimate goal to make me do something terrible to him and so the provocation. That is why he would so often demand when physically abusing me to retaliate back. He wanted me to hit back which I didn’t do. And as I said finally the ultimate weapon harass the children also and sexually abuse me. I so often heard the people at my work place say “oh! we know how to break people down”. Yes you are the Sheriff and that is what you do for a living. But I had not done anything like that that you needed to break me down. But who is there to listen to me. Intimidation was constantly used not to complain at all. That is the reason everyone was isolated from me by spreading something against me and telling them not to help me get out at all. I tried to move to another place but there was no help. I had two small kids and no emergency contact number to move out at all. So I tried to sponsor my parents but they just kept on delaying coming to my aid. Nobody wants to call their parents daily unless they are totally sick when you have a busy schedule like mine. But I used to call them daily because I was so mentally disturbed because at that time I didn’t know what the reason was. They took culture and tradition and anything else to harass me and the kids. Now they want it to be legal. So finally with all this I broke down one day and thank God that even in that situation my better sense prevailed and I did not hurt him much. Then I told him that I would call the cops and tell them what happened. But he just acted as though he was not going to pursue this matter. But guess what all the planning for just this to happen will he let go waste? Well stupid me thought that like me for the innumerable number of times that I had forgiven him he would do the same. No… he wanted to make this big, in fact world wide known. It was to teach me a lesson that nobody should complain against their husband for domestic violence especially if it was perpetrated in support of parents and to cover up their wrong doing. In the name of family honor just do whatever it takes to make somebody look like a criminal. To spoil their life in every possible way. To discredit the person from the beginning so that every single truth told will not be heard until what is already spread is in the minds of the people and nobody will believe you. It is to legitamize this corrupt system again corrupt system is being used. All across the neighbourhood, even grocery stores everywhere look at me as though I am some person to be feared. It is to create this paranoia and then to call me a paranoid person that I am forced to go to the psychiatrist. It is to cover up this corrupt system that I have to be blamed for somehow even if it a false medical condition. His feelings to kill me and he using things to show that with no provocation other than his own hatred was enough for his lobbyists to harass me so that I get the same feelings too like him. These women and men all highly educated have used their knowledge and education for doing this without proof. It is this idea that should be feared becuase it is a very dangerous thing to do. In a democratic society this kind of creating a dictator and democratically kill someone like this by killing all their cause is a very dangerous thing to do. Oppression and Corruption are the worst enemies to a democratic set up. It is very sad that this so called advanced country in the world, the USA, there is not a single soul that has come to my aid in spite of my repeated pleas for support against this corrupt system. They have somehow demonized me and that is why no even a single soul is there to tell me of what is happening or what is the intention behind such a crime. It is this idea that should be feared because it is a very dangerous thing to do. In a democratic society this kind of creating a dictator and democratically kill someone like this by killing all their cause is a very dangerous thing to do. By influencing the people to do what he wants is a corrupt system. So after using this now he wants to legitamize the corrupt system. The Sheriff pretty much owns the judicial system. And this case has spread all across southern California to many people already and their mind is already set on what has been told. In fact I do not know where else has it been spread. Otherwise this much support to making a man who has wronged his wife is unheard of. It is very sad for me that this country has only this kind of thing to offer in the name of lobbying and making someone look good. Until what he wants to propagate nobody is there to listen to what actually happened. Even the worst of criminals and evil people have not been treated this way. This is such a sexist and oppressive culture. There is no precedence to this. Now today I am forced to endorse this corrupt system. It is against my conscience but I am forced to do it because you are not letting me live.
    By spreading things against me they have isolated me from all the people and keep saying that you have no friends. By spreading hatred towards me like this. I have been complaining about this for many years now and nobody has taken action against it. I am calling for action against this kind of injustice against a person. I am requesting help from you. I would like to talk to you first. They have killed my life like this.

  62. @Suma,

    Please get in touch with me at girlsguidetosurvival at gmail dot com. Where are you in SoCal?
    Chinmay Mission or any other they are all alike. I haven’t heard very good things about them they did similar to another woman I know in SoCal.
    @Bhavia,
    If you have Suma’s email from the one she posted this comment, please ask her to write to me. And ask her to write in paragraphs not a running text I have hard time reading long texts.

    Peace,
    Desi Girl

  63. Thank you guys for responding to my post. Even today the harassment is going on. They harassed me so much before so I lose my tolerance and something and now they are saying that I have to acknowledge that I did something wrong. I could not bear the harasssment from the police and the people around me from school and grocery store and all these places that I tried to commit suiside. I have repeatedly told that anything I did was because of the harassment. They just made it sound as though I complained because I just wanted to dishonor my husband and his family and spread the hatred towards me from these kinds of false accusations.

    I filed for divorce and didn’t ask even a single penny from him and even didn’t file under domestic violence because of the harasmment towards me and the children and I realised it would get worse if I did that. We have two houses and he would not let me move into the other house. Even though I went and occupied the other house he brought some Indian renter and rented the place and he started calling me and pestering me saying, “why can’t you rent it to me?”. I couldn’t come to tell him what my situation and my family situation was to a complete stranger. So I called my lawyer but she said that I would have to hire another attorney for eviction and that would take months together. I had a good job and could have paid for the whole thing and lived in peace. But, my husband wanted retaliation so he wouln’t let me move out. I can’t complain to the cops and I worked as a civilian employee for cops. Look at the irony!! He started beating me up more ever since he came to know of my intentions and the intimidation and harassment increased so much more towarads me and the children.

    Even today I am being isolated and being harassed since they want me to admit to saying that I did something wrong. I don’t want to admit to something that I didn’t do on my own. I never wronged any of them and yet I am being torchered again and again. My children are being held hostage by not allowing them to have any fun or go out with friends or anything. Because it is retatliation they just keep on harasssing me until I admit to what they all had planned. Again they just want to hear something that will put the blame on me or my family (that is my parents side) and hide the torture that he did and the retaliation. I don’t know how long I can hold on. If I admit to I feel like I have cheated myself by bowing to the corrupt system at the same time if I don’t the harassment continues. Either way I feel totally lost and dejected. By spreading hatred against me he and all his lobbyists have just killed me like this.

    I don’t want to leave my kids with him and leave the house either because I have also come to know that he invites prostitues home and had them over when me and the kids are not there. He has corrupted the system so much to protect him from everything that the police with the attorney don’t even take a complaint against him. They cover up and not even take the complaint. I called an attorney for consulataion sometime ago for our safety. He said that it is illegal in the state of California and must be registered as a sex offender. But who is there to protect me and the children.

    Before when I tried to complain at the school and at my office I was mocked and said that I was not an Indian. So to be Indian you have to quietly take the abuse and never complain I guess in America.!!

  64. First…….We Must Abolish Arranged Marriage System………

    Why Arranged Marriage System is Immoral and Unnatural:
    (In My View)

    –Marrying Couples buy arranged marriage itself says its is Arranged so it certainly and absolutely UNNATURAL

    –Most Partners didnt Know Eachother while Marrying
    “Knowing Eachother is the Bases for Marriage”

    –It has Discrimination depending on Caste
    “Caste which also should be abolish”

    –Dowry
    “Still Happens in India.”

    –Partners are brought together by parents.Parents choose partner.
    “”Why Should We Leave Our Marriage Life to Parents Choice.Who they are to choose our personal things.Common people wake up”

    –Age Difference
    “”Girl Should Always be Under boys age.why?????crazy people

    –They Should be Equally Qualified in Education.
    “”what qualification had to do with feelings and emotions””

    –Boy Should Always have Job
    “Why is that ****** ***”
    etcetc

    BUT MOST OF ALL WHAT OUR PARENTS ARE DOING:

    -Is Training their childrens to be Dogs to their words.To do what they tell us to do…In a way they also destroy our right to choose.which In case turns us to believe that our parents will choose and we also forget to choose everything on our own…..They pure this parents,children sentiments shit that is a spell on most children who done even speak against parents….

    I Think Many Indians are Living a False Life which was never meant for them who had Dreams but got Shattered Only in their Dream.I Would Say not only women but also men from the childhood their dreams are destroyed without them knowing it then after u grow up u realize the world u live in was a garbage……………

    Most Indians Think Westerners are Immoral and UnCultured…..But Indians are far behind their liberal values and open society which treats personal matters as personal and also gives women equal right to choose…

    for All Indian Womens who were born here what have u done wrong to be treated like this..I Done know may be GoD forgot to help u…May be there was never a GOD it was just an Delusion AfterAll….If he was really there he would have helped Us…After all why blame GOD blame parents………

    If my parents would fall in my feet or blackmail me by suicide..I Would let them suicide afterall it is their choice why blame me….Any way they dont interfere in my personal ways as i explained it what is real and not real……Yes, there are some idiotic relations who pressure it on us….but my parents ignore them…
    and i dont interfere when my parents fight eachother as from the real view it is not my problem at all…..Indians Should stop bluffing about Family Sentiments and Start Living in Reality then this country will develop….Oh but it might take another 300 years are so for india..

    • First of all I think marriage whether arranged or live in is just a matter of luck and how much compromise you can make. It is all about respect towards each other and supporting each other. Love develops over a period of time. Only in movies it happens that not in real life for most of the cases. The registar’s office is corrupt and they play with peoples’ emotions and time. So people end up buying their marriage certificate. But that is only a certificate which is for some legal purpose.

      All of us love the people we grow up with and want to make them happy and things like that. But the problem occurs when the same set of people do not treat the two of you now as one entity. This happens because it is usually the boy is not able to see that now he is not just himself and there is another person who is also looking upto him for support and care that she is able to give him. It is not his fault totally either because everybody else around him makes him feel as though it is a sin to support your wife. It is treated as betryaying your parents if he didn’t support them even when they are wrong. Most of the time the problem is for the woman because son-in-law is treated with respect and not the daughter-in-law. Emotional abuse in Indian marriage is so much that many times women commit suicide due to lack of support. We women are made to think that we are nothing without the father first, then the husband and father-in-law. It is inbuilt in our society that we need some man to survive in this world. I am not saying this in a bad way because we all need each other. But the fact that I am a person first, then categorize me as woman, caste, creed etc is lacking.

      Most of the time when the man knows to balance between his family and his wife and their life, their life is lot smoother and more strong.

  65. It’s called evolution. Women have to reproduce and bring up babies, men have to bring home the bread. It’s just nature.
    If you personally disagree with it, be strong enough to resist pressure from family and keep working in your career.

  66. Hi Bhavia! I find what you say strange, because I come from a famiily where my mother was married at 22. She did her nursing degree while being pregnant with me and graduated when I was a few years old. I remember asking her when she studied, because I couldn’t remember when she wasn’t there for me – and she said ‘when you slept’. We also didn’t have any servants in the house to do cooking or cleaning. She was working part time from when I was age 3 onwards because she worked when I was at school, and cleaning wasn’t that bad when the family was told to always put things back in the right place. Now she has a cancer certification, and has worked within four fields of nursing, and she is now doing her graduate studies in Education… she wants to teach nursing now. I can also never remember a time where she was not there for my dad and I.

    My dad never complained because it never got in the way, and she would be and still is very supportive of his dreams as well. I think both of them have similar priorities and know how to compromise, which is why it works so well. I know you said that this is only 0.01% … but to be honest, I know many mothers who are in their 40s and 50s who have now started their postgraduate education, especially since their kids are already grown up now, and the husbands are OK with it. All right… the cooking and cleaning tends to rely a lot on the woman, but nowadays we have ready-made chapatis and Swiffer-Sweepers to get the job done in less time!

    If we want to be treated like queens, we need to be queens… of time management!

    I am a girl, and I love to study, but I also know that if I am in a marriage, I will have to compromise some things, but I don’t mind that, because that’s marriage, its compromise. For example, instead of doing a pHD and a six month internship abroad, I’ll settle for doing the pHd part time and trying to help people within my local community instead. I feel like my husband would also be working hard and would probably compromise for me as well. I will be a working wife, but in this day and age, I think more and more husbands are being ok with that.

  67. if you really are proud of being indiam…i think you are deluded…i’m a 22 yr old indian guy, and i curse my luck every single day for being born into this shitty culture..only when we realise and recognize that our culture is nothing but a degraded set of mindless and braindead rituals and customs can we hooe to make any progress…but we refuse to accept just how messed up our great indian culture is…

  68. It’s not the end of the world actually. It is not a good situation I agree, but the person in the article can still accomplish her dreams. Just raise your kids ad when they’re independent do something. Better late than never. Seriously drama won’t help..

  69. @Preeti – “I know how it is , a women ‘s worth in our society is still associated with her marital status and her kids …if u doubt it , check the profile pics of ur frends in FB , how many women have their own pics , its either a family pic or just the kid…”

    Dumb Statement….

    How many people on FB put up full profile pics of themselves….there’s a risk attached…the photographs could be harvested and used for malicious designs…

    I know many men who put up pictures of Lions or Goats…or for that matter even celebs (sic – hate that word – better call them actors and actresses)…so which do they associate their self-worth with…Lion, Goat, Actor, Actress….Parakeet, Pigeon…what…?

    @To all readers

    As for the “career tragedy queens” out there sniffing and snobbing – just my .02 of advice – stop whining and stand up. The choice is in your hands – exercise it.

    Given today’s world and economy…it is difficult as it is…you might not have it all on one platter…contrary to your belief, men don’t have it much better either…a lot of male commenters on this post have confirmed.

    I know some women who did it…they too had their problems…but they gave balls to the world and got hold of it…

    Don’t just make an entire country look poor just because some crappy parent somewhere doesn’t know how to deal with his kids other than forcing them on to the marital dias…(and now, don’t just starting whining about the rural women – that is entirely different socioeconomics and out of the canvas of this story…too bad feminists seem to have no clue that the same problem in different financial/cultural strata might need different approaches to resolve…they all keep clubbing them under a zombie category – “women”….and work out a pretext for bashing India…I agree India has problems…but it has its good sides too….the problems need to be solved by us Indians, and not some American birdie on a 30-day culinary migration to this country…they have their own problems back home which they’ve only made progressively worse…economy reeling under debt…hyper-inflated dollar…70 percent divorce rates…boys dropping out of school like flies and insects…and what not…)

    Parent acted smart and blackmailed you with sucide…you act smarter…marry and then negotiate with the man…he agrees, great…he does not – dump him and leap for your career…he tries to create problems – the law is on your side…

    Ditto to all the half-baked-3rd-wave-feminist-dogma fed grrrls….

    As Bhavya said…”There has to be a revolution”….and a revolution can’t happen until you quit acting Don Quixote and stop attacking the windmills under the pretense of “Patriarchy”.

    Buck up missys…pick up your cudgels…and fight the real war…

    Ditwa got it on the point – “Seriously drama won’t help…”

  70. Just as a feeling….I hope you’re writing this blog independently and not under the aegis of feminist “gratitude”…

    I understand and empathise with all your problems as long as you’re thinking with an Indian mind and heart….but were feminists to be a “guiding light” here, they stand warned people here are ready to take them head-on…we’re aware of the mayhem they have heaped upon their own society…they don’t need to show-off their skills here again…else they’ll immediately be sent packing back to their “douchebags”…

    Amen.

  71. Rise of every feminist is a triumph to men because a woman becomes a feminist when she fails to keep her husband happy,when she fails miserably in her married life.All feminists have an unhappy married life.

  72. Pingback: Feminist – Written and Directed By Society « Bhavia's Blog

  73. I dont know how to say it. you are so right about what happens. It might nt even seem related to topic but i still would want to share with other girls out there in India. I am a 28 years old girl married to a Finn and living in a Finland. (yes its a marriage about which I made my own choice, but was arranged my parents in a cheap resort and sent me off by packing my old clothes in my old student days bag :D).

    So my point here is we the girls have to make our own choices. Choice word might sound like something which is chosen by ultra modern girls but it is not so. I come from a very small village of lakhimpur district from UP but I made my choice that I have to study and I WILL respect my life. its no bodys property and they cant make me do things for which my souls will cry forever. not even society or any relatives. (I hardly care about society anyway. all it does is supresses you and makes you a contestent of a rat race).

    If you girls really give up your lives in name of religion then please dont do it. Just looks back in hinduism. It is full of stories of brave women who made there own decisions. Its no rocket science. All you have to do is say a big strict NO where you want to say NO and ought to say NO.

    Say NO when you dont want to get married to a man you dont want or hen you dont want. Say No when your husband when he impregnates you without your wish and gives you motherhood when you dont want it. Really its all about just standing out for yourself.

    AND if you ever find yourself in a situation that you dont like or feel that you cant survive and want to get out of it (either by suicide or divorce ) I would say just walk out of the mess. Leave the people who are making life difficult for you and really take a flight. Leave it all and start a new life.

    No misery is worth your life. love it respect it and just have the courage to kick the people who try to hijack your life.

  74. I don’t blame you Bhavia. It’s worse if you are born and brought up outside India. You have no idea how bad girls get it there! LOL!

    Now, I don’t hate being an Indian girl, overall I love my Indian identity even though I do not behave like a typical Indian (Yea so I speak English mostly and believe Western ideals work better than Indian, but I still love Indian festivities, food, movies and catching up w/ events happening in India..etc) but am finding myself having a dislike for a certain group of people and a parent of mine who has these very narrow mindset is making it worse. I guess I am expected to be a “traditional” girl. In some sense, I don’t mind it to a certain extent but not to a point where I have to give up my life to serve and be under order of my husband and in-laws. Also I need qualities that I feel comfortable with, not what society want you to do. 4 years ago, things seem to be going out of control where I just felt deprived. I got to get away from it in college and live in peace, but at home, it’s chaos and at times hell. But I was able to analyze the situation and now know to be extra cautious and careful, especially after a failed rushed arranged marriage in my family that somehow indicates the minds of most Indians are just plain twisted and backwards!

    I’m of South Indian descent and in their society:

    1. You don’t get married by like 25 and don’t have kids right away, you are shamed down. Hmm honestly I can tell that though when I went to India before, some of my married relatives may seem to have happy lives, but there are some inklings I suspect that there’s something that’s hiding that they won’t admit, so..are they really happy? Society will nag and criticize the parents if they don’t marry their children right away and guess what? They do it to satisfy society, where the successful marriages are only though plain luck. Just learned that my cousin who married last year, may have married because of these reasons and where her parents were nagged and insulted until they got her married. Now she just had a baby, directly after she married. Though I”m not sure why they had kids so soon especially since she was planning to get her career license but no longer can b/c of her baby..am wondering..did she and her husband choose to have a baby because they felt it was right for them, or because of society? I seriously hope it was due to their wishes, not the society. Anyway time will tell how things will go and whether or not they were mentally prepared to have kids and what impact it will have on their marriage. The worst is though in my family, it’s a Indian custom to marry within a week. In one week, they haul you off to see guys and you have a little time together and decide if you like each other. If so, they plan the marriage, inviting all the guests and after one week, you’re married. But, do you even know your future husband well? Do you really know who he is, whether he is caring and honest or just some dumbo who agreed to marry to use you for some reason and won you over by acting sweet and humble? It’s messed up.

    2. I guess you need to be perfect in everything in cooking/cleaning/etc. It’s understandable to some extent as it’s valuable when married and you are responsible for your family and duties. But according to what I was told: Know everything to please the in-laws. I am pressured to start acting like some DIL already. Well the in laws, (unless they have lived outside India for a very long time and are MENTALLY SANE, then they know better), will criticize harass, abuse their daughter in-laws no matter what…part of being a Indian DIL? I’m not going that route, I’ll learn as I keep progressing and I learn BETTER that way and MATURE better like that.

    3. Of course gossip, criticize, fight, manipulate you name it. Is this the traditional Indian family, or some dysfunctional shit?

    My issue is the marriage issue is coming up soon and believe it or not after I get my nursing degree, I’m supposed to be hitched up right away. Yea, not going to happen. Also some of the psychological damage done to me will take a long time to recover and am now distancing from all my relatives in India. In fact, I don’t feel comfortable around them at all with my parents at all, and I hated my last trip to India..didn’t enjoy it and felt uncomfortable. Ive been lashed at a lot things and it causes rebellion. One example is language, I am ok in my parents’ tongue, not fluent, but enough to converse w/ grandparents and we still bond like no other. However, some lashes at me for notnot being perfect and having them understand my comfort levels only to get threats and my mom getting upset stupidly made me hate it a lot. I had a small desire to read and write, but it’s gone now. That damage is set for good for a long time. I refuse to speak or even utter a word and don’t give a shit about it anymore. That’s how you try to teach kids your native tongue, that’s what you deserve. I keep getting I’ll regret it later on..no I won’t. Anyway, I have a aim to perfect Hindi at least :p

    Last but not least I get the “you should have grown up in India, it’s a mistake to raise kids abroad b/c Indian kids Indian kids never do wrong and always “obey” the parents.” What a fucking joke first of all. They have no idea do they? They are still in 1845 for heaven’s sake, and in fact I told my parents that I seriously hope they go back to India b/c it’s not like it used to be and it will slap them then.

    That said, I love my parents, as they have done good things as well, like paying for my education. They deserve a lot in that sense by getting support when they get older, but the way they think is ok to treat children and force them to be shoved like little robots is utterly pathetic and sad. I admit, I believe you should respect your parents to a certain extent, but when it gets too much you just need to defend yourself and fight back, no matter how “rude” or “disrespectful” it is. You can’t give in if you want a good life, and living the typical Indian life is just plain misery for girls at least. So do not give up.

  75. Nice blog.. I’m 28 yrs. & i was married at 25.. & just like most Indian parents, I was convinced by my parents that I wont find anyone when I get older.. So u see being a doctor, I had not done my post graduation & studying for it itself is a very long process.. But once I got married I put my foot down & fought with everyone, parents & husband saying if I’m not allowed to study & work in my field then I’ll even go work in Mc Donalds but not sit at home..My husband complains of course & I told him he’s free to get married to anyone he wants & I’m ready for a divorce.. The lady in your story should be fighting for her rights instead of whining.. Unfortunately Indian parents & husbands don’t realise that a woman can have dreams & unless we fight for our rights nothing will change

  76. Hey,

    Just came across your article while looking for similar blogs. I am 29, from a typical middle class Indian family, not married yet. This year I would become 30. But still I could not find someone I would like to love and get settled with. So now my parents are searching an alliance for me. But I am not really liking anyone :( My career also started bit late around 26 and I did not want to get married before I get job and earn some money. So now since last 2 years since I made up my mind to get married, I am not able to find anyone. Its very complex. My parents supported me till 26-27 but now they are extremely tense. Before that even I was not that mature and was kiddish. But now I feel very pressurized from all angles – family, relatives, neighbors, friends, colleagues – when all of them ask when u getting married, I have no answer. I can ignore them as and when I like but that’s not the solution because I can not live in isolation. Sometimes I think I should not marry anyone just for the sake of it and wait till the time (may be for years) I find someone. But then that would be like going against everyone and get hatred of all. But again if later after few years I dont find someone then what to do ? Or, Should I marry anyone my parents suggest even if I dont like. Actually no one is completely clicking to me. Its very tough and complex situation where I am going clueless day by day. It is affecting my work, health :( I am always tense and never able to enjoy. When I myself dont know when will I find right guy, then is it worth keep waiting to which no one would agree now as am reaching 30 ? But If I marry anyone out of pressure, then is it worth doing ? What kind of compromise would it be ? With life, with family or with myself ? Can I blame anyone here ?

  77. I’m a Russian girl desperately in love with an Indian guy from a village…Lets call him Mr X. North India. We’ve been in touch for almost 5 years now, unfortunatelly mostly on the internet. All that time it was friendship-love-rethinking-quarrel-goodbye-im sorry-friendship-love-quarrel-go on and on… Only recently he wrote to me about his feelings… And his close friend wrote to me that Mr X really loves me, needs me in his life but he should find a good job and make everything easy for me to come and stay with him, he was sure that Mr X is trully in love (yes, almost 5 years…this goes on), we are very alike, like “carbon copies”, we feel the same, we are the same, we must be together, be happy…. A month ago Mr X finally got his university degree and returned to his village, his family… A week of silence… When he wrote to me… By and by we came to a quarrel, later he said that he asked his parents “what if he bring a foreign girl into his life?” he said “they were uninterested, they kept numb, so for him it was a certain indication…you know….. I wanted to die. His parents don’t even know me, yet they already dislike me and against me… :( Why? im not a slut, i was a good student, college, university, now going to start working, no bad habits, never even held a guy’s hand… at almost 24…but i’m already not wanted. And he rejects me becos his family made those frowns and kept numb? Is it love? When you love you, you struggle hard to be with the one you love…. But these are Indian parents…Mr X doesn’t want to go against them, he wants to stay in the village, support them (having 2 married sisters, married brother, nephews, nieces and lots and lots..)… He doesnt want to live in a city where he studieв and look for a job there, find some lil place to live…for us…no he wants to stay with his family. When I showed him my despair, he told me Im so selfish. But days later I wrote to him that if he still thinks nothing will work out….start looking for a proper girl there, a proper wife to live up to his and his family’s expectations…. I acted selfish? I just let my love go and build his life

  78. (cont) …. without me….becos if I come there and live in a big joint family…I wont cope with it…Im too shy, too stubborn, too loving freedom of action…I want to live with him only, to be ready to give my love, energy fully… i m such a person…lots of people make me die slowly when around…. and if I stay in his family…they will expect me to be a good housewife, a good daughter-in-law, etc. He will obey them, I will obey him and them….:( there wont be no happinness…. there is no happinness when a son always does what his parents want him to do….. A grownup man must be independent…like a grownup girl… have his own views on everything, wishes, plans……… i dont say “send them to hell and leave them” no, I just want some independence… why is it so hard in India? so … he keeps silence now…. i guess he works there too hard…in the fields, garden…. maybe he has no time for emails….still i wrote to him to start looking for a proper girl… he’s 25 now… maybe they expect him to get married soon…. not me of cos… who am i? loved him for almost 5 years, cried so much… want to meet him and be with him…. but his family….. :( i want to die… i already decided to live until my parents’ deaths… then i have no wish to live…. i dont want anyone else….. he will be happy without me, he will….me..what about me? who cares?… :(

    • Hey Rina,
      The social set up in India is pathetic and even men suffer the constrains of the society taking away the liberty to have a life which he wishes for.it is a practice in India to forcefully get the kids get married the moment the family gets to know about the love affair.
      Move on..you will be fine.

      • the thing is not that the force him to marry someone becos he has some love affair, no.
        they just dont really feel glad to hear his question “what if i bring a foreign girl into my life?”
        i cant be sure, i dont know his real thoughts but seems he doesnt want to go against them…

  79. Pingback: Young Indian women are taught by their mothers that men are sex crazy dogs | Bhavia's Blog

  80. Being a mid 30s woman living abroad with Indian parents – I can say this applies to me also… It doesn’t matter where in the world you live… Indian woman are emotionally traumatized about being married and pure etc etc which causes even more issues because we live in a country where everyone dates (USA) and has premarital sex and relationships… We are made to feel like something is wrong with us wanting boyfriends and a normal life…
    We are expected to stay Virgins and marry a nice Indian boy! Whatever that means
    I’m so fed up with my relatives and family friends and parental societal pressure that I feel like I should just give in and marry anyone… Atleast they will then leave me the f$&@ alone…
    They don’t realize that all this pressure just leads me in broken pieces… And no matter how well educated I am or where I work… The fact that in single is a huge red flag for anyone that meets me or my parents – it’s ridiculous and I don’t know how and when this will change …

  81. Adding to what I wrote -I really hate being an Indian woman and hope I don’t come back as one in my next life…
    I hope guys and society out there realizes that Indian women all over the world are being scrutinized for no reason – and constantly judged by their actions…
    I feel like I got the worst of it… Bc in high school and college when everyone of my American friends was dating I avoided boys bc I was to be a goody 2 shoes… In college I had to pay attention to studies bc boys are bad for you… Now in my 30s it’s like what the hell is wrong with you how come you aren’t married?! Are you kidding me?! No one encouraged me to date when it was my time to do it… Those slutty girls that did everything behind their parents back are all married and having kids… And the goody 2 shoes is now not married and looked at with suspicion like something went wrong with me… I just don’t get it… So I would have been better off dating and doin whatever behind their backs bc maybe I would have been married by now…

    None of what people’s rules are applies – as individuals we women need to make our own decisions when it comes to relationships and sexuality… Even guys in their 30s now wonder why she isn’t active ?! What’s wrong with her… And his family will demand a pure or someone who hasn’t done anything.. We are a hypocritical society and in the end it’s the Indian woman that suffers

  82. Dating is really the only way to find out what you want- don’t want … Why are Indian women discouraged to date? It’s all these fears about pregnancy? Oh come on!

    So a typical Indian girl is not to date her whole life – has no idea what guys are about… Suddenly one day in her 20s gets married and is to become a sex goddess to her husband overnight?! It doesn’t work like that!!! Guys are encouraged to do whatever and Sow their wild oats- even hindi movies depict the player types getting the pure innocent girl at the end – case in point new movie yeh jawani hai dewani ranbir kapoor –
    Society comes up with such double standards! Why can’t the Indian Woman date and be in charge of her sexuality?!
    India will never change and Indians living abroad bring that ridiculous mentality and their daughters suffer as a result… They think they are doing so great by sheltering their daughters – it’s awful that in the west as an Indian I feel so awful about all this.. And double standards apply to me bc if my brother stays out all night ( at his girlfriends place) no one bats an eyelash – bc it’s ok if he has sex…
    If I am out at a party I get 10 phone calls to find out when I am coming home- staying out all night is obviously unacceptable … And I’m older than my brother!
    When will we give that freedom of choice to Indian women to live as they want to? Maybe it will never happen bc we are too stupid as a society

  83. You go girl!

    I hope Indian women have a better future. I for one, am very very disappointed and shamed by the utterly misogynistic attitude that India has. Woe be to all Indians who thing women are one step lesser than men. Woe be to them all.

  84. I have gone a step ahead and got married at the age of 25, my in laws are too orthodox and I have been brought up in a little modern family, where my parents gave me equal opportunities to go ahead in life and make career choices. My husband is quite supportive and we don’t live with our inlaws, though we meet quite often. I do not want to change according to whims and fancies of my inlaws as that suffocates me. Am I right in taking a stand in living the way I want?? I never want to settle in with my inlaws as I know they will never change.

    Why do mother in laws think that they need to teach us how to live our lives, we never asked for it???

  85. girls don’t like to marriage someone truly stranger , i had a problem in my life.i love a girl , she love’s me too.His parents don’t accept me ,REASON:”they want to sell a girl” really i don’t thing its arrange marriage .They really don’t want a girl,if the girl birth they committed a f….logical idea ,they had a land problem 4 acres if she married his son the land owns for there parents .good and great idea .i am really upset ,they r brutal .no one have own dreams and lifes in india . certainly girls don’t .

  86. A girl is also a HUMAN for heaven’s sake….she has feelings,emotions,ambition…once she gets married,she has to sacrifice all her dreams(there are some lucky exceptions)…she will be taken away from her parents..why should a girl be taken away from her parents and why not a guy??? this question has been buzzing in my head since i was 17(i didn’t think about it before)…if we question about the girl being taken away,we get answers like this: You were born a girl,so you are supposed to stay at your in-law’s place away from your parents to serve your in-laws and look after them(new parents they say..is it practically possible to neglect your own parents and believe that your in-laws are your new parents for the rest of your life.??)and for the prestige;you can’t question it as it is a NORM (norm..?? ridiculous)….my parents have 3 daughters(meaning that they will be abandoned and will not have anybody to look after them when the three of us get married as my parents don’t have a son)..i would rather not get married and i am happy being single and want to be independent and will support my parents and look after them..

  87. india is a land of men who’d like to sell themselves for dowry and women who’d call the police when proposed….god save indian women

  88. I am going to be getting married at the “ripe” age of 31 which i’m at now. reason for marriage is only that my parents have become old, my younger cousins are married and i have no one to take care of me :(

    i have/had dreams of studying mbbs but my to be husband has clearly stated(crushed my dreams) that i must work to fill his family’s loans. my parents have been searching for a suitable match for years now and since it did not happen, i’m stuck with whoever agreed to marry me at whatever the price. now suddenly the not-at-all good looking boy expects me to sleep with him, although we don’t know each other at all on an emotional level and he does not want to even try to understand me, because he is my husband and it is his “legal” right. not to mention the social pressure that i must produce a baby as soon as possible because the biological clock is ticking. i am expected to “adjust” to HIS dreams, HIS ambitions, HIS family, HIS everything, like some sort of a robot that i must suddenly become.

    on the other hand i see my dull male classmates who are doing very well. i remember the innumerable times they had borrowed my notes and passed their exams. who is there to help me in my life exams now? i worked in HP as a software engineer as was always preessurised and tortured and finally shown the exit route while my dull male classmates made it to managerial positions. this is the true indian socierty for women.

    I agree with bhavia, sneha nad stanley. indian society today is worser than it was before for ladies because in your education and general life you do better than men but suddenly you are chained forcibly by the society to a below-the-par husband who thinks of you as movable property that must bring income!

    the only way out is divorce but the way out to WHERE? society? wasn’t it the evil villain to begin with. this causes intense psychological problems only ending up with doctors making money and advicing you to make peace with the situation and “accept” it. wasn’t that what the society advised too?

    where is corruption? this is how it starts.

  89. I studied till the age of 28 and got married at 32 coz I loved my parents and wanted to see them just a little more and society nor anything else could force me to anything else.But unfortunately,I didn’t have the guts to prevent dowry and I tried for nearly 6 jobs, unable to face the criminalisation of being a girl.I never learned to cook and don’t believe I will excel at it.However,nobody can pressurize me.At least in cities,girls should know what they want and do their part.I am sure it will change some day,but you need to try,at least a little.

  90. Seriously I HATE HATE HATE INDIAN culture!!

    Its disgustingly gender biased,patriarchal and stubborn to change and the most amazing thing is that most women actually cooperate and accept this sort of gender bias in the society!

    I recently had a heated argument with my mother as to how she was forced to have children when she was 16! and she got furious at me for telling her the truth that its all about we have a stubbornly patriarchal society!

    viewing girls as inferior is ABSURD.. GROW UP INDIA !! this is not the dark ages!

  91. Pingback: Proud to be an Indian, but Not an Indian Woman | Indian Women's Rights

  92. Bhavia, excellent post
    However, I have to disagree with you and a bunch of other people here who say women let it happen. women are programmed (for lack of a better word) to accept and be docile.
    Family will go to any lengths – yes, really… educated urban families do resort to physical and mental violence is need be. Hard to believe? Imagine the number of women who have to keep quiet because they are too embarrassed to admit it and the police…let’s not go there.
    Then we have society and other married women who will be more than happy to make you feel less than inadequate for being single. These are women in marriages that are less than desirable but they are married.
    And lastly, divorced or separated women aren’t women at all. They are surely [insert cuss word/insult/stereotype] here.

  93. I’m an Indian man and while I empathize with you and girls like you for not being able to live your dreams, I would say to a great extent the problem lies with you. It’s easy to put the blame on your parents and society but the problem with Indian girls is that you do not know to handle the responsibilities that come with living an independent existence. Most of you really don’t deserve independence because you have too much of a princess attitude unlike Western girls who are of sweet nature.
    Now you can blame Indian girls’ behavior on Indian men many of whom are very insecure, frustrated and childish in nature but it’s really a chicken-egg situation. It could be possible that Indian girls didn’t have any positive role male models while growing up which makes you forget your place: women are supposed to be submissive to their husbands and of soft, feminine nature. Most Indian women even in their 30s (when they’re supposed to grow up and act mature) throw princess tantrums which becomes really intolerable beyond a point: I absolutely hate it. It’s one thing to act coy, demure and a little bitchy but the sense of entitlement you find among middle-class Indian girls, you won’t find elsewhere. I have lived in 5 different countries so I know what I’m saying.
    All my life I’ve been surrounded by Indian girls but could never form a stable relationship with one and some of them were long-term. Probably Indian girls are turned off by my Westernized attributes and my assertion that men should naturally dominate girls which is how nature intended. Besides, Indian girls are whining, complaining, over-possessive when in a relationship and are only concerned with money. “How much do you earn” and “what are your career goals” seem to be the only things a girl in India asks you in dates? .
    Everytime I met a girl from other countries, they may be more liberated, independent and assertive than Indian women but they haven’t forgotten their submissive side. It’s about how you make a man feel – even British women supposedly the world’s most modern know this art. But don’t expect these soft skills from Indian princesses. They perform oral sex on you without a hesitation – in contrast, most married men in India are sexually frustrated because their little Indian princesses are not interested to please them. Forget about sex, after a few years of marriage, most couples in India don’t even hold hands together. And all this is considered perfectly normal in Indian society where money triumphs happiness.

  94. I agree with your point 75 % rest i have certain dis agreements,.You cannot have 100 % focus on everything you want. That too when u are married :D u may feel bad, But fact is fact, that too after kids, your priority is shared. So you should decide before you proceed in the married life. So focus on what u want. wait till u achieve , if u married for your parents sake, then u are taking deviation on your dream , so it wont be 100 % , its all in your hand.

  95. It’s just as hard on Indian Men. It’s not like they are given the freedom of choice to opt out of marriage whenever they want. Also they will judged on their position and wage. If they are not good enough, Indian women won’t be interested. To have an arranged marriage to and Indian man is like an investment to an indian woman, especially if there is no love involved.
    Plenty of expectation, responsibility and disappointment. I understand it can be hard on women. I see my Grandmother, my Mother and my aunts and can’t imagine what it must be like to have so much expectation and pressure and almost little to no personal choices on their own path. I see these really confident female students, self sufficient, well aware of the world come over from India and make their way and have it exactly how they want and I feel sorry for people like my mother who had just as every bit of talent but no choice and she’s unaware of it all.

  96. Every word in this article is true. I met an Indian man who already had a girlfriend in America. I am in Germany. His name is Anmol Chandan or Nikka Anmol. He cheats lies and is a lying piece of shite. He took photos of our visit to show his friends and used me. He uses online dating sites to find women all over the world and con them. He uses them to stay or have sex until they see him in person……. He is disgusting with bad hygiene and clogged pores all over. Dirty. He is doesn’t deserve any woman and all need to beware.

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