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Who changed her?

December 12, 2014 Leave a comment

married woman

I saw a video on Storypick on a marriage date in Delhi which showed a girl embarrassing a guy after he asked her to not wear western clothes and leave her well established career. She boldly refuses the guy to marry and leaves. The video depicts the feeling of a modern woman through her character. This is the common dilemma of an Indian society which is a blend of followers of the old traditions and those living with westernized views.

The problem is but only partially presented. It is not just about the girl who refuses to marry if the guy does not allow her freedom. But it is the collective pressure that she receives from the family and the society. Her family would tell her that it is impossible to get a guy she wants and thus she must choose to settle in minimum compromised marriage. In the small cities, the girls are prepared to be an ideal woman from the day they start going to school. The society has its own definition of an ideal woman “A woman who is able to cook well, dress well (saree or at least long salwar suit), able to take care of entire family including her husband and kids and has no problem in leaving her career for her family. She cares for home and cares for everyone. She is expected to a one-woman-army at home taking care of logistics, hospitality, catering, baby sitting, education of kids and their character building.

These norms have been strengthened by older generations imparting these outdated notions in their boys so that when they grow up, the responsibility of controlling a woman can be easily thrown upon them. If the man gets a promotion, he gets a pat on the back and when the woman is able to serve a dozen of guests alone, she gets a pat.

At first these seem like consequences of an arranged marriage but love marriages are not unaffected. It starts with a modern girl meeting a modern looking guy who makes her enjoy her freedom and love her the way she is. Once the acceptance of love is achieved from both the sides, things start to change as if the guy is put on a mission to transform the spoiled girl into an ideal woman. A few years back this used to be a typical theme of Indian movies in which a girl was shown in her extreme moods and her modern clothes, then she falls in love with a handsome ideal man who changes her at last, which is the biggest achievement shown in the movie.

In reality, something similar happens and gradually a girl is made to change. First, her mind is shadowed and control by love to make her accept forthcoming. Then her clothes would be modified telling her that she looks more beautiful in tradition clothes, her career would be given a back seat and slowly everything changes. She doesn’t change for the society but for the love of her life which soon dies as she loses herself to love.

Her ambitions are not important any more but only till she realizes that she lost lot more than her career to keep her marriage. She keeps looking at other women in similar conditions faking happiness with smiling faces and tries to convince herself that she can be happy too, without realizing that there could be a similar storm behind those happy faces. In the end she loses her charm. Her husband loses interest in her. He tells her that she is no more the woman he loved who was full of life but has become boring. Once the bubbly girl is now a typical woman busy with home chores.

She doesn’t try to look her best, she doesn’t make many friends. She is no more a movie buff or a traveler; she is no more a cool minded person. Her husband makes her depressed by showing her examples of charming women and making her realize that she is no more beautiful. Her man keeps complaining “You have changed.

The question is “who changed her?”

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