Life challenges

19 11 2009

This particular topic has been in my mind for quite some time, not only because I myself am a victim but I saw many others struggling too. I belong to a middle-middle-class and like many others in the same or similar status, was raised by my parents with lots of love and enough freedom. Girls are being given the same attention, resources and love as boys, are educated to be engineers, business women, doctors and what not. All this is a very commendable development, coming from a culture where women were always treated as subordinates to men.

With the increase in nuclear and small families, children got all the attention they wanted (sometimes unwanted) as they became the center of the parents’ lives and thoughts.  This too can be seen as a positive development. But the problem arises when the children go out into the world and find themselves incapable of dealing with the people and situations around. I agree that most people succeed in handling things well, but I must say that it comes only after a lot of initial struggling. I want to discuss one such area, which is perhaps the most important too:  Marriage.

A marriage brings two families together. From what I’ve experienced and observed, being raised in a nuclear family, with little or nominal contact with relatives and kin (everyone is busy with their own lives, people spread out geographically), embracing a new family through marriage poses its own problems. Often the guy and girl aren’t ready for the responsibility of the marriage. (Everyone craves marriage in the beginning for its benefits, but the duties and responsibilities are hidden for later) I’m not saying that everyone is like that, but I’ve seen a considerable number of such cases.

Problems for the girl are many because the expectations only increase for her in her new family. While they adore her for her beauty, education, job, dowry and gifts she brings into the family, the age old expectations of a DIL still hold. She must work and earn along with the guy but somehow also be able to serve the family, cook, and bear and rear children with unsurpassing excellence and ease. Add to that, she must be really tactical and diplomatic enough to deal with various satires, comments from the new family and continuously try to please them. This is the general scenario but in most cases, the demands on the girl go worse. How can a girl, who has little experience in dealing with people whose only duty is to find faults with her, who was loved and protected by her parents till now, and who strived all her pre-marriage years with education and career suddenly become an expert in housekeeping, cooking and interpersonal relationships and be able to handle so much just on the fly? People really have to get hold of reality of it at some point.

I seriously feel that many people are under-qualified for today’s marriage scenario. When someone enters a relationship with too much individuality and self-centeredness, they are bound to succeed only if they try hard to learn the ways of successful relationships. Almost everyone has good intentions but have no idea what to do or how to go about them. In order to avoid the confusion and struggle and pain that accompanies in the process of fumbling around to find ways of dealing with the new demands and situations, I honestly think that there should be a kind of program for would-be wed-lockers. Or else, parents should take it as their prime responsibility to let their children know the ways of people and life and actively make them ready for the life’s challenges, instead of just protecting them all the time and trying to solve their problems for them. Lessons in soft skills aren’t only required for a career but for marriage as well. People really need to be trained in handling criticism, diplomacy, adjustment etc. Of course, experience teaches everything, but sometimes the cost involved might be too much to incur, which might be avoidable.

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One response

19 11 2009
Sree

seriously feel that many people are under-qualified for today’s marriage scenario…. very true Sireesha..

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