Tag Archives: Relationships

Before Marriage Till Marriage!

indian marriage

By Malathy Madathilezham

Man is a social being. This is something, which we have all studied at some point of time. Thus one of the most cruel and effective forms of punishment/ torture meted out to criminals, terrorists, etc. is solitary confinement. The need to communicate and interact is something of the utmost importance to human beings in order to retain their human nature. Self-expression, exchange of ideas and organization are something’s, which we are experts at utilizing for our benefits. Thus we have groups beginning from the family to nations. We have created complex social structures, which compete and cooperate with each other. On the basis of social interactions among human beings spread over time and continents, we have established a wide variety values, norms and rituals that are the foundations of the human society.

The society keeps changing, earlier this change was at a much slower pace. Something’s, which were unacceptable, unpardonable and frowned upon, are now part and parcel of our society and nobody gives a second thought to him or her. Similarly, some accepted aspects of society are now considered a blight on society. Thus change is also an important aspect of human civilization.

This change has also affected the dynamics of men and women. May be some people have enjoyed or suffered these changes more than the other! There are of course extreme situations of women still living in the same age old conditions and bound in tradition or poverty, but in this particular discussion I would not elaborate on that. Feminism, Liberalism, Capitalism and many other ‘isms’ have contributed in parts to this change. So a woman doesn’t look at a good marriage/alliance or domestic life as the only criterion, which makes her life a success. It is definitely still one of the most important things to majority of women but education, career, self dependence, financial independence, an interesting social life are also being counted somewhere on the list.

A fairly well educated woman in her twenties wants almost everything from a good job, a handsome and loving husband, friends, a fun social life, decent salary etc. etc. She doesn’t want to have the life of her mother; she wants it to be better and bigger! Any mention that her gender makes her vulnerable is almost blasphemous. Her semi-liberalism and semi-feminism along with her ego would be a force to reckon with. She is assertive, confident and has her own opinion on everything ranging from fashion to politics. At work she may be ruthless. Efficient, competitive and aggressive she want that corner office to be hers. She looks for true love and romance but at the same time is practical when it comes to decision making…She is becoming more and more demanding it seems… ah and confused too. What is the most important? What is the priority?

Until few years ago, the man was the sole breadwinner of the family. He took on the burden of providing a good life and a better future for his children, at least in financial aspect. A well settled (government) job, a ‘good’ wife along with a sizable dowry would probably make him seem more successful back then. Now look at a twenty or thirty something man, he is equally confused. The father was feared and revered. His appreciation and love, one could only see the glimpses of. He sees his mother, always loving, most probably a housewife. She was the stable rock of his family when his father was busy working or on tours. She is the quintessence of womanhood and selflessness for him. The women his age confuse him. They are his classmates, friends, and colleagues/superiors. Equally aggressive and competitive as men, and given undue advantage at times due to they’re gender. And yet they crib about inequality! Life is becoming tough for him. A simple joke and they get offended!

He is in a reasonably good job and enjoys the weekend parties and stuff. Parents want him to marry, but is he ready for marriage? And demands from the parents of the prospective brides are also high. In addition, the question of whether or not to accept dowry. His ex gf thought he was an MCP with double standards. Yes, it is imperative for him to earn more than his wife, what will his friends and family say otherwise! He wants a workingwoman, but not a career woman. He wants to definitely have a better life than his father, who he thinks had it all easy. The option of changing jobs is open, but with the recession and all, the growth in salary is not worth it. At the same time staying in a company for more than three years may mean stagnation. May be he should go for further studies? Or is it better to get married and ‘settled’ now?

And it is in between all this confusion that suddenly a their families find a good match in each other’s families, backgrounds, etc. Its in a daze that meet each other, ask each other some questions, forgetting the important ones, which  they always wanted to.

‘Do you like her/him?’

‘Yeah she/he is okay. I would like to spend more time though.’

‘Oh sure! You will have all the time after the engagement. We need to fix a date for that though.’

After that its’ a whirlwind… Time passes so quickly .. then engagement, the thousands of calls and SMS’s, each of them trying to impress the other, share as much as possible about themselves, the apprehensions and doubts,etc etc. Then the wedding shopping, planning…

And Voila! The D-day is here. The usual confusion and mayhem prevails during the wedding also… and soon its all over or should I say its all beginning of everything!

Let me not say more now… Just

Wishing them a happy and blissful married life!

🙂

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The Great Indian (Before) Marriage Tamasha – Part 1

By Shwetha Kalyanasundaram

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As customary it is in India, for girls to get married as soon as you enter the 20’s, I was no exception. A few days after I turned 21, my parents sat me down for an “adult ” talk. (The last time that happened was before I entered my engineering college where I got a discourse on the do’s and don’ts at college). My parents bogged me down with questions pertaining to my social life, more directed towards my “preferences” to the opposite sex. When my parents were convinced that I wasn’t seeing anybody, out popped their question – “Are you ready to get married?”

Boy that did set me to think. I set my grey cells in action and tried to introspect if I indeed was ready for marriage. After days of pondering, I decided that the answer was a “yes”!! When I told my pals’ bout my decision, I received a variety of emotions – some rolled their eyes, some laughed it off, some cried (honestly!!) but most of them were shocked. My girl pals bombarded me with a lot of (silly) questions like:

What happens to your career?

Why do you want to settle down so early on in your life?

What happens to your identity?

and many more!! Does this drive me to another state of confusion?!? No!! I was sure that my decision was spot on. Here’s why.

I’m blessed to have wonderful parents, who belong to a small group of people who have evolved with the times and they have always been very liberal with me. They have been very supportive in whatever I have done till date and have always ensured that I carve a niche for myself in whatever I do. Till date, I have been able to do just that and I know for a fact that people recognise me for who I am and what I stand for. They have made sure that my head is held high all the time and that has indeed made me a better person. And I am sure that my partner would respect my ideals and give me the same encouragement that my parents have showered and I am absolutely sure that he would support me in my every step towards success. So, getting married is definitely not going to stop me from achieving my goals.

The entire concept of an arranged marriage, these days can be compared to an online dating process with parental control! My parents, who are very liberal, did give me an option of finding my partner while I pursued my masters, within their reasonable expectations and by far, the only expectation they set forth was that the guy had to be a Tam – Brahm!! But with my studies occupying most of the time, I just found it to be a humungous task and removed it off my list of things – to – do.

I find the whole concept of arranged marriage very appealing. I like the fact that there is commitment before there is love – there is a strange allure to that. In arranged marriages, two people make a commitment to each other and then embark upon the voyage of really getting to know each other – trust before anything else. This is what drove me to ask my parents to hunt down a groom for me.

That’s when the whole fun started! Stay tuned for the fun ride J

Detour

By Joybrato Dutta

road-sign

As kids we always faced that one question which was asked by relatives, neighbours, dad’s friends, mom’s friends, teachers, even fellow kids. “What do you want to become when you grow up”. None of my classmates said they wanted to become an engineer. Today 80% of my classmates are engineers.

So what went wrong? What changed?

Why did people stop believing in their dreams? As we grew up, why did we start compromising on everything we wanted as a child? Is that what people call maturity? How different is maturity from pretence?

Since childhood we have been trained to lie, to act pretentious. Virtues like etiquettes and formalities were forced on us which sealed our true feelings inside.

We have been trained to smile and say “I am fine” each time anyone asks “How are you”.

We have been trained to say “cheese” each time someone clicks us.

We have been trained to say “thank you” whenever someone gifts us something.

Today these things might look small because the blanket of etiquette is quite huge. But think carefully, wasn’t that the start of us accepting pretention. Didn’t we love being appreciated? Didn’t it increase our hunger to be loved even more?

Today I have decided to denounce pretention.

Today I have decided to figure out who I really am, and what I always wanted to become.

I know I love singing. But I love being appreciated for it.

I know I love dancing. But I love it even more when someone else praises me.

I know I love playing cricket. But I enjoy the importance I get after I hit a good knock.

So what is it that I really want to do? Something which will give me so much satisfaction that I won’t care what others think.

A psychiatrist friend offered her help. She said she can give me a tour of my own subconscious. “Our subconscious”, she said “is like a hard disk which stores some really important data. People, moments, stories that we don’t even remember exists”. I warmed up to the idea and gave in to hypnosis.

My journey to the depth of my own heart began.

Go deep she said

I saw myself dancing at a club with a beautiful lady in my arms. She was impressed. I could tell from her eyes. The way I moved her, manoeuvred her arms, guided her feet, she was in awe. Nothing boosts a man’s ego than a girl stupefied. That day I knew I wanted to dance all my life.

Go deep she said

I saw myself playing in the finals of the Inter College Tournament. It was the last over. I had to hit a boundary. The next ball I did. My college won the finals and I won every heart. I had never heard so many people chant my name. For a day I was a celebrity. I knew I wanted to play cricket all my life.

Go deep she said.

I saw myself winning the Annual Elocution Contest. I was in class six, and I had already defeated a few tenth standard students. My teachers were proud. My principal praised me in front of the entire school. I heard my dad scream and say “That’s my boy”. I had never seed my dad so happy. He was as happy as I was when I got my first GI Joe set. I wanted to keep him that happy all my life.

Go deep she said.

I saw my grandmother telling me a story. The way she narrated me the characters. The way she set apart the good guys from the bad, wow, I was amazed. How can these characters who I don’t even know, find such an important place in my heart? The protagonist who wasn’t even real, who never faced the hardships we mortals face, how can he solve every problem of mine? How does he know what I am thinking? They my granny said that it’s the power of a pen. An author’s weapon, his pride. A storyteller can pierce the hearts of his readers without even meeting them. A storyteller can ignite desires and tame passions. A storyteller can reveal your darkest secrets. A storyteller can create magic. A storyteller is what I wanted to become. At that moment I was sure I wanted to write stories all my life.

Go deep she said.

I opened my eyes. I couldn’t have delved further. I had hit my core. How could I have forgotten? Now I know why I still enjoy stories. Why each time when I write even a small story, it gives me the satisfaction no award can. Somewhere in this 28 year old that 5 year old kid still lives. And somehow time hadn’t changed what I really loved. I love stories. And I can write them for the rest of my life.

While I was walking home from my friend’s place I realised that the curse of shallowness can go really deep. However, if we choose to go deep, more things will surface.

Friends Are Our First Major Decision In Life

group of friends

By Ankush Kumar

Last Sunday I sorted my closet, this is a routine whenever my ballooned waist decides for a change. During the entire exercise a few pieces of clothes took me back to some very fond memories.

I had this old torn white shirt of my school days. It was our last day at school before our board exams. There were best wishes messages, colors and torn ends that reminded me of the madness that took place that afternoon. I had pretty much lost touch with that bunch of pals but Facebook revived those memories.

While cleaning the lower rack of my tees section I came across a red shirt (still baffles how did I buy that one). A few friends and I had gone shopping for our first day at college. Thanks to my waist, which always embarrasses me, we tried a million stores before I finally found this shirt. My friends annoyed by stupidity, convinced me that it was looking awesome on me. I eventually was ragged to death for my red little riding hood. To date they are my closest friends and, they haven’t missed a single chance in making my misery public.

While I was arranging my photo albums neatly inside my closet, I stumbled on a few photographs. One that took me back in time was when my friends and I had beer and cigarette for the first time. One of my friend’s dad had this huge collection of scotch and cigarettes and he used to keep it in a drawer inside his bedroom. We were bored to death watching the same movie again and again, purely out of fun, we sneaked in while he was out and stole a packet of cigarettes and booze. Then went near a beach and tasted blood for the first time. Then we were just having fun; today those photographs have become cherished memories.

Once I was done with my closet act, and was dumping all my old belongings in the trashcan, a thought struck me. All material gifts get worn out and replaced, parents are a relation we choose by blood, but its friends we make independently. It’s the first major decision we take, some turn out to be sour and some very sweet.

Happy Friendship’s Day.

प्यार या आकर्षण?

love or attraction

शीला चित्रवंशि कि कलम से

प्यार है या फिर मात्र छलावा
भ्रम है या फिर दिखावा
युगों से लोग इसमें फंसते चले आ रहे हैं
ऋषि-मुनि भी तो कहाँ बच पाये हैं?
किवंदंतियां भी सदियों से चली आ रही हैं
इस युग में भी तो भरमार है

प्यार है या एक आकर्षण,
पहले तो कुछ सच्चाई भी नज़र आती थी
पर आज तो इसका रूप ही बदल गया है
प्यार एक आकर्षण मात्र ही रह गया है
न ही कोई सच्चाई न ही स्थिरता है
बस बुराइयों का ढेर बनता चला जा रहा है
यह कहाँ कोई समझ पा रहा है
युगों से तो प्यार की गरिमा व ठहराव की चर्चा भी चली आ रही है
उसके भी उदहारण हैं बहुत
पर कहाँ किसी को दिखाई देती है?
सच्चाई की प्रतिबिम्ब की झलक अंत तक दिखाई देती है
खुशबू बिखेरती है, चारों तरफ़ हवा का रुख फैलाती है
उसकी गरिमा को जानिए, गहराइयों तक पहुँचिये,
निष्ठा, गरिमा, व स्थिरता का सच्चा स्वरूप नज़र आता है
पर झूठा आकर्षण, झूठ का आधार जीवन को नकारात्मक बना देता है

कहाँ गया वह युग, कहाँ गए वो लोग,
जिनका ज़रा भी इस ओर ध्यान नहीं जाता
बदलाव आते हैं हर युग में,
पर आप कितने पानी में हैं यह सबको समझ में आता है
झाँक कर देखो तो प्यार में निष्ठां, प्रतिष्ठा,
स्थिरता एवं एक अटूट सम्बन्ध का कितना अच्छा सुखद एहसास नज़र आता है
जो लोग समझना चाहते नहीं हैं,
और बिगड़े हुए रूपों की ओर निरंतर भाग रहे हैं
यह छलावा नहीं तो और क्या है?
भ्रम नहीं तो और क्या है?

Marriage Bond

By Monika Sharma

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With lots of dreams and hopes in my mind,

This bond of marriage I decided to sign.

A commitment for my entire life,

To be proud to be called as your wife.

A bond of love, trust and gratitude,

We will continue crossing all the latitudes.

two_wedding_ringsWith life’s experience and ups and downs,

This bond of marriage makes us strong.

An intact connection of a friend and a mate,

This package of all relationships is great.

A few adjustments and a heart of love,

Can also forbid a number of brawls.

A bond so pure and intimate,

Marriage is where two souls meet.

How Not To Get Rejected By Women

rejected-by-woman

Robin Choudhary after the stupendous success of Types of Young Women in Delhi talks of how unless you’re Adam Levine from Maroon5 or a shade of Brad Pitt’s chiseled Greek-half twin sibling; you probably get the my-blood-freezes-so-I-hose-down-my-armpits-and-stutter syndrome whenever gorgeous ladies enter the room. He also gives some pro-tips to handle this situation.

This reaction is perfectly logical, triggered by thoughts of humiliation, rejection and having your delicate masculinity trampled over by a girl and then not being able to handle the scene like a man. So, here’s what you need to do.

The real secret is practice. Speaking with loads of women as part of your routine. You’re going to prepare and embrace yourself to be like a squash ball – resilient.

Pro tip: The hottest looking girls get hit on the least because most men assume they are already taken.

Location, location and location: The best place to approach hotties is either in a professional atmosphere or at a club or a social event, when most girls let their guards down. In short, it is easier to strike up a conversation there versus the creep who followed me home.

Next, make it casual. Start the conversation with what you’re doing at that point in time. Use your spare time as a playground. Hesitation and fear can be overcome by speaking with women who work at coffee shops,  at the office water-cooler, the gym reception – wherever they are supposedly employed to serve you as a customer. That will build your confidence.

Pro tip: Walk into a ladies store and chat up the sales girls. You can use the “I’m looking for something special to give to my grandma or sister for her birthday/ anniversary” routine.

With time, and once you feel you’re ready, begin to approach ladies at clubs first (because they are there to have a good time and they are probably drunk).

Once you’re comfortable speaking with women, handling and composing yourself will become a lot easier. The easiest way to approach any lady is with a smile, a unobtrusive but nosy attitude, and keeping your chin up no matter what.

Pro tip: Speaking in a soft voice will bring her closer to you (because she wants to hear what you have to say). Maintain that tone no matter what.

Lastly, exit on an optimistic note (always) because there are plenty of fishes in the sea. Don’t ever show disappointment, let alone upset or anger, at being rejected. Just move in politely. She may even change her mind.