“Kunal, just be careful as you are going to Mira’s home. Make sure you don’t mix up too much with Mira’s parents. Otherwise, they will exploit you! If they try to become too friendly with you, you maintain your distance. If you won’t they will make use of you! They will ask you for unnecessary help or could even ask for money! Don’t give them any wrong signals that you are their son! Let them treat you like a son-in-law!” my mother-in-law tells my husband as I was busy packing clothes in our room for our trip to my parents’ place.”
I wouldn’t lie but her words broke me from inside. While my parents were asking this of me, to make sure I keep my in-laws happy; my mother-in-law was treating my husband how to treat my parents like an outsider. While I was striving hard to treat my in-laws like my own, my husband was being taught how not to treat mine like his own!
But, the fact that my so-called educated in-laws, who are both working at reputed firms, believe in such regressive thoughts, irked me even more. I thought atleast such educated professionals could do better to build a more equal society. But, I was so terribly wrong.
Even though we preach that marriages are the alliances between two families, it is heart-breaking how parents of grooms believe that they are superior to the parents of the bride. While parents of daughters are told to let go of their daughters after marriage, the parents of sons tend to control them! No one would deny that our society suffers from the horrible problem of not letting go of its sons.
We want our daughters-in-law to treat us like their own parents, but we don’t want our sons to treat their in-laws like their own!
Wonder how our in-laws would react if our parents also start teaching us the very same thing – “Dear Daughter, don’t mix up too much with your husband’s parents. Otherwise, they will exploit you!” How easily parents of daughters could have broken families! But, thankfully, they understood that any successful relationship lies on the foundation of acceptance. They teach their daughter to make sure she accepts the in-laws as her own parents, accept her husband’s home as her own and accept his family as her own!
It is heartbreaking how some shameless in-laws rather than reciprocating the love and care that their daughters-in-law shower on them, in-laws stop their sons to do the same. It is high time that we start raising our daughters and our sons as equals. It is high time that we start teaching our sons to accept their in-laws as their own parents as we expect our daughters too!
While my husband chose to ignore what my in-laws taught him, I wonder how many men would be able to show the kind of maturity and courage to take a stand against their own parents to teach their in-laws like their own parents! Dear in-laws, our parents gave you their daughter, then why can’t you share your son!