We have been suffering from the Cinderella syndrome. As girls, we are assured that we will meet our prince charming and live happily ever after. Unfortunately, many marriages don’t lead to happiness, but rather are a beginning of a long war between the sexes.
The reason: Even in the 21st century, we still have rules and laws that are governed by ancient laws dating back to the stone age. We call ourselves progressive but still carry the regressive mindset, especially when it comes to marriages and women!
As a woman, you are supposed to behave in a way that is acceptable to the patriarchal society.
Our society doesn’t accept strong and independent women, who ask tough, meaningful, and real questions. When I met men during Rishta meetings, I realized how true it was.
How my simple, straightforward questions hurt their shallow egos so much that they labeled me as characterless.
After meeting prospective grooms, I noticed that men were only interested in questions about whether I know household duties, whether I would respect his family, whether I would meet his expectations of a life partner, and what were my favorite movies?
They didn’t even bother to ask if I had any passions or what were my dreams or what I wanted to do in my career?
Needless to say, these men were more than happy to be married to a girl who is decent-looking, has a decent income, and belongs to a respectable family. Even though I easily met their ‘not so difficult’ criteria, I refused. I said no as I felt there was something critically missing from the whole procedure – the need to ask the ‘right questions’; the need to be honest and upfront!
But sadly, my honesty and desire to be upfront got me the label of characterless. But, I have no regrets. Because rather than being with the wrong person, I chose to ask those tough questions to be with someone who deserves me. So, here are some of the uncomfortable questions that I asked to be sure that my arranged marriage doesn’t turn into a living nightmare.
Tough Questions That Society Doesn’t Want Any Girl To Be Asking, But Every Girl Should
My Life, My Choice: Will you be cool with me wearing a short dress, swim shorts, or even a bikini after marriage?
Career Vs.Marriage: As a boy, you will never be asked to make a choice between career or marriage, career or parenthood, and I won’t either. Would you be okay with that? Just because I am a woman, I don’t want you to assume that I would be ready to sacrifice my career!
Money Matters, But Does Gender? What if after few years, I started earning more than you or have more promotions than you, what is your take on it? What do you think about saving money versus growing money?
Happily Separated Or Unhappily Married: At some phase in our life, if we are not happy, what would you suggest: Do we separate or do we have to carry on the charade of husband and wife for the rest of our lives?
Motherhood Is A Choice: After marriage, I don’t want a child for at least two years. But, what if I get pregnant and I am not ready for it. What would you suggest? (What is your take on abortion and the right of a woman owning her body?)
Also On Motherhood: What would we do if we couldn’t have kids in the future? And, rather than going with IVF or surrogacy, I would like to go for adoption! Would that be fine with you!
Health Check-ups Before Marriage: What are your thoughts on a general health checkup before marriage, and can we talk to the doctor about family planning together?
Women & Abuse: What you would do if a situation arose where I’ve been molested or groped? How do you suggest we handle that situation? If you ever feel that I am being disrespected in the house or outside the house, how would you handle it? There would be times when I don’t want to do things that our traditions or families would suggest. How do you think we should handle that situation?
Sexuality: The Taboo Topic: What are your thoughts on women’s sexuality and their place in the bedroom?
Equal Marriage Is Non-Negotiable: Yes, I know cooking, ironing, and washing, but do you? What are your thoughts on being a feminist? What do you think when a woman calls herself a feminist? (a guy almost threw food on my face for asking this question)
Needless to say, my parents were unaware of these questions. But I had no idea that if I asked these questions, guys would twist the truth and tell their parents. As a result, a few furious mothers called my parents and branded me as a scumbag. They said that no respectable family would accept me into their home as their daughter-in-law. One guy’s mother was so flabbergasted that she claimed the women in their household do not ask any questions to men, and that I am a porn star because I asked an intimate question.
My father stood by me and said that if their son couldn’t answer awkward questions, he was certain that they wouldn’t be able to handle difficult situations in the future. He would rather have an unmarried daughter than marry her to a man who couldn’t accept a strong woman asking questions.
After a few random phone calls, I had to tell my father about the questions. Yes, he was surprised, but he didn’t stop me from asking them.
Before meeting my husband, I met twenty possible matches. Needless to say, the majority of them chose not to answer those questions and ended the meeting abruptly. However, there were few who respectfully listened and shared their thoughts.
Dear Women, Don’t shy away from asking rational & important questions. People may label you as characterless or shameless or unsanskaari, but don’t be scared. Let’s not inherit the silence of our mothers and accept whatever happens in a marriage lying down. Don’t rely on stars and kundali for your future. Create your own destiny!