A childhood friend who got married before any of us friends within our school batch, seemed to be having some marital problems fairly early on in her relationship. Her parents urged the couple to go in for marriage counselling. Teething problems we all thought. And yet somewhere some instinct had told me it ran deeper. They patched it up- to the relief of the parents -who were very keen not to cut a sorry figure in their ‘community’. A brood of kids followed and all seemed okay until recently many years down the line I received a cryptic message about ‘being treated like a maid’ and verbal and mental abuse. I was shocked. Nothing had changed? She was the passive suffering victim of violence through all these precious years?
Often the woman in a marriage is ridden rough shod upon because she is not the bread winner and the contribution she makes in terms of cooking, cleaning and generally being the ‘fall guy’ for kids, in-laws and family is taken very much for granted. There is no value for the sacrifices she has made and her husband is oblivious to her needs and desires. He feels that any kindness ‘bestowed’ upon her is a favor.
I recognized this from the experiences of many friends from school and college who got married to dominating men that wanted a ‘housewife’ to keep home and hearth. The statistic is higher when women give themselves up headlong into the chores of marriage -giving up all financial independence and cutting down drastically on personal pursuits of happiness.
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