A comparative analogy for the Indians’ conformist behaviour is that, when you wear white to a gathering where everyone is dressed in black, you somehow start wishing you wore black too. But secretly everyone is hoping they could have worn what they wanted. Just like that, in most issues, deep down, all Indians are open-minded. But the fear of standing out and being the brave person makes everyone wear a mask of pretentiousness. Some things are heart breaking and some are plain lame. Here are the 8 things that I think, Indians pretend about.
1. When in a gathering, if the topic of discussion moves towards sex or anything remotely related to it, most people shrug or pretend that they do not talk about “such things”. But they might secretly be reading playboys in incognito windows, when they are alone.
2. Most people deny that they are in a relationship with someone, because they are wearing the mask of being an ideal child to their parents; while they are talking to their partner on the phone, under bed sheets, at night.
3. The common answer to the question, “Do you smoke? Or drink?” is “Ew, no way”; while they enjoy an occasional puff when they are alone.
4. If you ask your parents whether they had a crush before they had gotten married, they would deny, but most of them would secretly cherish their teenage memories of a “Harini” or a “Rajesh”.
5. Everyone wants to look nice; wear enticing clothes that make them look prettier. No matter how old they are. But old women stick to wearing saris and no make-up and also no hair dye for the fear of being judged as not having an “age-appropriate” clothing style. So they stick to fantasizing about dressing up and admiring those who do.
6. While most modern parents do not allow Inter-caste or Inter- religion marriages at first, they are just wondering if they can say yes since it involves their child’s happiness but they are contemplating about the impact of joining the non-conformist group.
7. Most people would squirm if you spoke to them about differences in sexual orientation. In fact, they know it’s a normal question and many are even secretly admiring Neil Patrick Harris of How I met your Mother.
8. Most people trash talk about those who have divorced or remarried or had more than one relationship, while they drag themselves thorough a failed marriage hoping they could get out of it just like others who found happiness in a new relationship.
Although this does not apply to everyone, my guess is that most of them are non-conformists at heart, hiding behind a fake personality for the fear of being judged by the society. But the one thing that people fail to realize is that the so called society is you. You set the rules, and you sacrifice your likes for the sake of being accepted by people you don’t even know. In a world so big, we are insignificantly small people, who worry about people who are just like us, at the cost of happiness.
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