”Shaadi barbaadi hai.”
”Shaadi karke phans gaya yaar.”
They might pretend to be jokes, but you and I both know that they are not.
If marriages are so hard-hitting, why do we take the plunge? Only because our parents want us to? Or because everyone is supposed to get married, no reasons required.
I am not married and, as of now, the altar holds a pretty distant light for me. Yet, I am perturbed by the rants young couples shoot. I will admit they are making my generation feel hopeless and cynical about marriages.
We have been made to believe that marriages are a doomed responsibility a.k.a dal-chaawal for pachaas saal. The word “marriage” is no more a rosy term for young girls like us. We no more shout about how we can’t wait to get married. We are, in fact, very, very scared of it. For us, it’s a stinky word looming as a ‘baggage’ — an end to our dreams and our goals. Which is why we want to do as much as we can before we take the call — because you know marriages are like cells you’re locked into with nowhere to go.
I wouldn’t like to believe that. As much as I am unprepared for a marriage at this moment, I am also pretty hopeful about ending up in a happy marriage with the right person. But I won’t deny I am met by a lot of people telling me how my dreams will eventually be shattered by the stark realities of life.
My version of sharing life is being with someone I love and admire, someone who keeps pushing me towards my goals of career, fitness or even being a better human being. This version does not dismiss reality by picturing romantic candle-light dinners every night (though, why not?!) but being partners in doing it all together and enjoying it while we do it.
But of course, you believe these are dreams straight out of a romantic novel. I understand the misery that we live in a world where hoping for a career, love or relationship we want is termed as ‘utopian’ or ‘too good to be true’. But I swear, I have seen happy marriages. And bad ones too. But they are bad because of wrong people involved — not because they are marriages.
We are not Americans who live alone for a majority of their lives and suddenly being thrown with another human shouldn’t make us feel awkward. Haven’t we shared chores and physical space before this? We have lived with our parents, siblings and roomies before this. We have done chores together and yet lived through maintaining friendships and relationships by real conversations.
Oh maybe because we might be a little egoistic and a little too stubborn to make two plates of pasta instead of one or make the bed when they are feeling too lazy to move their butt. Maybe because we are grown-up individuals and so no love shall make up for the extra work we do for them. Or maybe because we have our proud salaries to make ourselves feel bigger than the other.
I don’t just share a room with my sister but a wardrobe too. You can imagine the rage I feel every morning when I get ready and she has worn the dress I planned to or taken the gloss I wanted to match with my dress. We fight, we abuse, we feel cheated at times and some other times we also feel offended by the lack of gratitude the other shows.
Yet, none of it stops me from doing things for her or with her. Yet, none of it stops me from sharing my inner-most vulnerabilities with her. Yet, it never stops me from giving her the right motivation and advice. There are days when we are on our phones or watching TV in silence. This silence doesn’t feel creepy or tell me that we don’t love each other the same way. Because in the next minute, we’d be laughing our asses off on a cat video she would show me.
You can label me as a blind, over-the-top optimistic bitch with rose-colored glasses who will fall right on her face when reality hits her. But I will still believe that ranting about your marriages will not fix it. It’s not a punishment you have to live through. Make it work, enjoy it or move away and give someone else the chance to make it work for them.