These days, love has come to a point where our families want to take part in every decision that we make. I swear, it’s as if we seem to be moving backwards in time. They want to have a say in everything and if you choose to not run something by them, it’s as if you have seriously committed a crime. This has been happening a lot when it comes to love, these days. Our parents and families want to dictate whom we’re supposed to end up with without any sense of modernity or any thoughts about our feelings and emotions.
Alas, when you choose to deny them and let the power of love take over you, it ends up shattering your family life. This is when parents often choose to distance themselves from their daughters and this is purely out of ego and pride in terms of the decisions made by their sisters and daughters when they go against their wishes and end up marrying outside their caste or religion or simply against their choice.
India is a country where time seems to be moving backwards. So, we’re losing individuality and becoming more and more dependent on each other. We have reached a point where society has a say in everything. Whether it’s what you wear, what you should do with your life, how you react to things, what you should eat and even whom you date and fall in love with. It’s as if society dictates how you’re supposed to live and you know what the worse part is? Our parents, the people who are supposed to love, support and understand us unconditionally, give in to societal pressure and enforce things upon us.
Alas, the moment you choose to let your parents know about your love life, they bust out the good old, ‘log kya kahenge’ angle and it suddenly becomes a matter of their pride and ego. This ego driven by the fear of society is so intense that parents end up abandoning their kids for the sake of it, just because they chose to cater to their love. Parents turn their backs on their daughters and this state of anger and emotional disconnect can reach a point where even if either parties are in life-threatening trouble, they wouldn’t approach the other.
It’s worse for women, because they have no personal emotional support system that you’d normally get from your family, as they settle into their new life. And without that, it can be hard to adjust to a new life. However, in cases where marriages or relationships turn abusive, this lack of support and communication with her family can push the woman into a dangerous situation.
Because they know that their families will never talk to them or accept them back after they eloped against their wishes, these women choose to stay in bad or abusive marriages because they have no way of going home. It gets worse when the marriage is going badly and these women cannot reach out to their own families for help.
Isn’t it obvious? These women, who grow to become dependent on their partner who has been abusing them and hurting them in an emotional, psychological and even physical sphere, feel they have no other option but to stay. They depend on them for everything because they have nobody else and they’re stuck, even the law wouldn’t help these women because of the initially consensual nature of these relationships. How awful is that?
These women just end up suffering in ways that no woman should ever have to while their families are busy pretending they don’t exist and punishing them for something as normal and natural as falling in love or choosing a partner. In what world does that sound like the right thing to do?
This puts women in a situation where a man can decide her fate. You have heard of Shraddha Walker’s murder, right? The woman was allegedly murdered by a man she loved. Her live-in partner Aftab Ameen Poonawalla reportedly strangled her in anger after a fight. He then chopped her body in 35 pieces and dumped her remains around the city. There are reports that Shraddha was estranged from her family. Perhaps, had her family still been in her life, Shraddha would’ve found the courage and support to leave her abusive relationship.
Family is the most basic unit of the society we live in. And standing by our family members instead of abandoning them because they chose who to love is a rot that insidiously corrupts the values of this unit. Parents need to learn to free themselves from the shackles of society, their pride and ego, and support and help their kids.