“Sonal, it’s a matter of shame how you fail to accept my parents as your own! How you keep running to me to complaint about them whenever they say anything to you. Why can’t you make an effort to adjust. Everyone needs to make some adjustment when they come to a new place, but you are not even trying! Look at my sister, she has adjusted so much after marriage!”
My husband, Rishabh, tells me as he blames me for not making effort to adjust after marriage. In short, what he meant was:
“Sonal, you failed miserably at being a daughter-in-law! You are such a loser! ”
To be honest, I tried really hard to be a good daughter-in-law. I tried a lot to be accepted as a part of the family. But after trying hard for 8 months, I realized that neither my husband cared about the effort that I was putting in neither my in-laws. Rather, whatever I do was less for my in-laws and my husband. I realized that whatever I do, I won’t be accepted, I won’t be loved, I would still be judged and criticized.
My husband preferred to be a son rather than be a husband and somewhere, it felt that he wanted a daughter-in-law more than a wife.While he builds his career and lives his dreams, someone has to stay back and take care of his parents unconditionally.
It was then it struck me how lonely I was in this new house. I had no one to love me. I was trying hard to be there for everyone, but no one was trying to be there for me. I felt so alone that at many times I thought of packing my bags and going back to my parents’ place. Because if you just keep giving in a relationship, takers will keep taking without even a thought of giving anything in return.
But then every time I decided to give it one more try. Probably, some part of me still wanted to make it work. So this time when my husband accused of me not trying hard to be a daughter-in-law, I just couldn’t stay quiet. I gathered all my thoughts, took a deep breath, and said:
“Rishabh, actually, you are right. Maybe I am not a good daughter-in-law. Maybe I am not a person who can give love without receiving any; who can give respect without seeking any; who can care about others, without being taken care of. Frankly, it’s not your parents’ fault. I think it is not them, whom I expected to love me, or respect me or take care of me. It’s you! I married you for love and now look at me begging for love and attention every single day. I never wanted to be with a man, who doesn’t understand how to be a husband.
I do understand that you have expectations of me – and one of them being a good daughter-in-law. But, have you ever wondered if I also have some expectations of you – an expectation to be a husband, who gives his wife the love, care, attention that she deserves?
Rishabh, we all have parents and we love them! But, marriage isn’t for our parents, it is for us. And, every time I raise a concern with you about not being accepted in this house or feeling lonely in this marriage rather than being a supportive husband you become a son, who sees just a woman complaining about his parents and his home.
Sometimes, I feel this marriage has no significance! Honestly, I didn’t marry to be a daughter-in-law, I married to be a wife. But, if you can’t be a good husband, then stop expecting me to be a good daughter-in-law!”
At that moment, thankfully, my husband realized that there was only one solution to all our issues – that he needs to be a better husband. He needs to see me as a wife and not as a daughter-in-law. Because if he fills my life with love, happiness, and care, then it will make me feel accepted in his life; And, it may drive me to share his love for his parents.
Fortunately things improved. I feel more loved and accepted at home that makes me ignore some things for the sake of our marriage. And, in case I have concerns, Rishabh attempts to understand it as a supportive husband!
I hope other couples realize it too – that marriage isn’t for parents. It is for us.
If husband and wife support each other, then there would be no conflict that can take away their marital bliss. Because in the end, every married couple deserves happiness and love!