“You are not the first one to get married. Every girl gets married. Don’t worry marriage only bring happiness and love.
You will have two families now. You will have two set of parents who would love you and adore you! Two set of sisters, who will be there for you to celebrate your happiness and to help you through any pain! Don’t worry about getting married! Marriage adds only more love and family into your life!”,
My mother tells me as I shared my deep fears of getting married and the change all that it brings along with it.
But, the reality is my mother lied!
Like many Indian Brides, I didn’t get two homes after marriage. I got a new house with a new set of rules. After marriage things changed for me. And, mostly those changes were painful. I bear the burden of being treated like an outsider not only at my new place but also my own family stopped treating me like their own.
While I was struggling to understand the rules of my new family, I realize my own family started treating me like a guest.
In the quest of being a good daughter-in-law, I became that forgotten daughter, who was still counted as a family member but wasn’t treated like one.
The more I was treated like an outsider at my in-law’s place, the more I felt the need of being with my own family. But with time, I realized they have moved on without me.
Gone were the days, when my mother would openly talk about family matters!
Gone were the days, when my father could discuss financial matters with me!
Gone were the days, when my sister would treat me like her own!
With no place to call on my own, I started realizing the ugly truth of being a daughter in India. How unlucky we are!
We always try to balance our in-laws and parents, our families and career, our husband and friends, sadly to find ourselves all alone. While we are there for everyone, there is hardly anyone who is there for us.
Though I am trying to build my own family with my kids and husband, a part of me still misses being treated like a daughter by my in-laws and my own parents. I have come to terms that may not happen again.
But as I write this letter, I look at my 3-year-old daughter, wondering will she also find herself in my place?
Like me and many married daughters, will she also lead a lonely life?
Will she also have two homes but none to call her own?
Will she also have two families but none to treat her like their own?
As I ask these questions, I feel how I can’t let my daughter have the same fate as me.
At this moment, I promise myself that I won’t ever treat my daughter like an outsider. She will be my daughter till I breathe the last breath. She will not only be counted as my family but she will be treated like one. Like my mother, I won’t lie to my daughter. She will always be my family.
P.S. Thanks IFORHER for giving me the platform to share my inner feelings with millions of women across the world. I am sharing this letter in a hope that some women around the world will be able to relate to my pain and loneliness that I went through as being a daughter!