Women – Raise your bars, please!

A friend of mine recently got married and just came to the US a week back. She called me today to plan a meet-up.

I was so elated to hear her voice as I was speaking to her after a long time. Since I couldn’t attend her wedding, we hadn’t really caught-up in a few months. It was so great to talk to her and listen to her stories about the new experience; a new country, a husband, the wedding, post-wedding rituals etc. etc. There was so much to talk about.

I was curious to know how she was feeling in the new country and if she is doing ok. I was glad to hear she was considerably happy. I say ‘considerably’ now because of what she told me after a few mins of this. As we were on call for at least a couple of hours now, she was getting more comfortable and back to our old mode of chatting.

Slowly, she started revealing the common woes of all newly-wed brides; the cooking.

She, like most of the members in my girls gang, was a working women and never had to do much cooking at home or while staying in another city for work. We all had stayed with a group of 4-5 girlfriends and had hired a maid since it was difficult to prepare 3 healthy meals a day while managing a job. Plus, we were novices. Plus, there was no reason to not do so as we were financially capable enough to afford a maid.

So here is a newly-wed bride, in a new country, where paid labour for daily chores is neither convenient nor cheap, with her working husband, while she is on sabbatical to enjoy her marital bliss for a few months (although I could never understand why only women do this and not many men. Its almost as if this is thrust upon the bride).

While she continued with her little miseries of daily cooking and proudly told that one fine day, she woke up at 6AM in the morning to prepare breakfast and a full lunch for the husband to carry to work, a sudden gloom came over me. “He respected my gesture so much that he got me a big bouquet on the way back from work.” – her words. And she was floored with admiration and love.

Here was a girl I knew as strong and independent, smart and intelligent, turning into the stereotyped ‘Indian wife’. I dint want to think about the more severe consequences but couldn’t help it.

Do we really want our women to be this way? With such low expectations? The wife works her ass-off to make the husband happy and gets overwhelmed and overjoyed with a bouquet in return? They deserve better and much more!

We really need to teach our daughters, girlfriends and sisters to raise our standards! Stop patronising and gratifying the other half for every little insignificant act and glorifying it like an achievement.

The onus lies on all of us.

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This entry was posted in Feminism Begins At Home, OPINION and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Women – Raise your bars, please!

  1. Bhanu says:

    Eventually you must also teach your sons, brothers and boy friends to balance life – because it won’t help teaching only the one side.

    There are many couple who are trying make a balance in all terms of house holds and job combined. It’s not easy but they are making an example.

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  2. Agreed. Its funny how you added ‘its not easy’ which undermines the merit in your argument. Its not easy when women manage work and office alone but its very much easy if couples manage both together.

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  3. khushboo says:

    Although most of the 90’s kids are brought up in a similar fashion ( girls to stick up to the household chores and boys to be the tough one), but I am thankful to the parents of those who trusted them to go far and make independent selves.
    My perception admires the later part and am proud that while managing our independent lives we have improved our analytical, reasoning and action capabilities. We are well able to decide the best for ourselves.
    The case you mentioned above is not only the outcome of the upbringing but also what your friend has sought for her. She is a well educated and must have had ample exposure of the world. If something makes her happy, then might be she meant it.
    Happiness is all that matters and she is intellectual enough to decide what makes her so.
    Every person has his/her set of standards of being happy and things cannot be generalized.

    So just by being independent and smart, everyone’s standards could not be met.
    🙂

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    • Hey Khushboo! Thanks for the comment. I agreed with you partially.
      Like with most of women in our country, this is what has been decided for my friend by everyone except herself. She is still aspiring to venture back to work but suppressing those wishes to become the ‘ideal’ wife and bahu first.
      It doesnt matter what person’s expectations are in terms of being happy and thats something which cannot be generalised or debated but having such low standards is something that definitely needs improvement for every female.
      Husband makes one meal and the whole extended family showers praises and the wife becomes ‘so-lucky’. Husband handles the baby for an hour and he becomes an exceptional father. These are the low standards I am trying to bring up 🙂

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