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10 Excuses For Your Family As To Why You”re “STILL” Not Married In Your Twenties

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By Makepeace Sitlhou:

You’ve barely entered your twenties. You still can’t buy a Breezer (let alone a beer!) for yourself in a bar nor have contemplated voting in the upcoming elections, but your parents befit you to start seeing good Indian IT professionals, surgeons, MBA professionals, NRI businessmen etc. But hold on, you’ve got your dreams and just because you’re born a woman in India does not mean you have to give up on them. Go pursue your dreams and keep these excuses handy whenever those family functions and parents’ anniversaries come around.

  1. You’re giving entrance exams:Be it the civil services or the CAT, our Uncles and Aunties are always approving of anything that involves mass participation and competition. Never shall you be dissuaded.
  2. You’re waiting for an older cousin to get married:There’s always an older cousin or a distant cousin in your extended family to pass the buck to. And tauba tauba should you be so disrespectful so as to upstage her chances.
  3. You have plans to study further:Ah, the great Indian respect for higher knowledge can always be relied upon. We still revere the pride of our Ph.D. titles and women with MBA degrees make great trophy wives.
  4. You can’t find a suitable boy for a match only made in heaven:But no one has responded to your specifications on Matrimonial papers or sites: Tall, dark, handsome, chikna, Gora Chitta, Brahmin but Caste no bar, Salary: 12.33 or 15.86 lacs per annum, Drinking: Breezer Socially, Smoking: Clove socially, Dietary Preference: Seasonally vegan and non-vegetarian.
  5. You want to travel:Just like Simran asked for freedom in a one month Euro trip in the 90’s Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge, you ask for a year’s freedom to trip around Europe, Africa, South America and Asia. Tell them you’re also volunteering in village communities and NGOs as a part of your travel.
  6. You’ve signed a company contract:You are a valuable asset to your company and they cannot lose you to marriage or motherhood for the next three to five years while the profit margins are steadily increasing in the markets.
  7. You’re taking ‘skill building’ classes (like cooking, baking, stitching, knitting etc.):What’ll prospective grooms and families think when they come to your house and realize the walls are only covered with spotless glasses of framed degrees and photographs of athletic and co-curricular accomplishments and not a single hand made tatted flower pattern? All rounder like Dhoni on the field, you’ve got to be.
  8. You’re a feminist:You think marriage is the ultimate subordination to male chauvinism and the most Victorian idea of a civilized patriarchy.
  9. You ‘slut walked’ this year…In Montreal where women actually showed up in net stockings and lacy bras holding placards which read, “A Proud Slut!”
  10. You’ve taken a vow to marry only after the Lokpal is set in motion:You want to start your new life in a world that is apparently going to be more accountable, systematically functional and alcohol free. Imagine the cuts in the costs of the reception with no open bar! The wise ones will wait.

Makepeace is the Associate Editor of Halabol, and a weekly columnist at Youth Ki Awaaz.

 

You must be to comment.
  1. rigyasingh

    Hilarious article. Loved it!

  2. Yeshu Aggarwal

    How about this! “too many options too choose from. Can’t decide”

  3. Naina

    great reasons to walk away from marriage and the most common ones too….also visit http://www.youthdestination.com

  4. pooja negi

    Amazing article for all the singles out there

  5. palash

    young generation’ll like it definately.

  6. chamko

    You’re “taking” entrance exams. Cringe @the article reasons

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An ambassador and trained facilitator under Eco Femme (a social enterprise working towards menstrual health in south India), Sanjina is also an active member of the MHM Collective- India and Menstrual Health Alliance- India. She has conducted Menstrual Health sessions in multiple government schools adopted by Rotary District 3240 as part of their WinS project in rural Bengal. She has also delivered training of trainers on SRHR, gender, sexuality and Menstruation for Tomorrow’s Foundation, Vikramshila Education Resource Society, Nirdhan trust and Micro Finance, Tollygunj Women In Need, Paint It Red in Kolkata.

Now as an MH Fellow with YKA, she’s expanding her impressive scope of work further by launching a campaign to facilitate the process of ensuring better menstrual health and SRH services for women residing in correctional homes in West Bengal. The campaign will entail an independent study to take stalk of the present conditions of MHM in correctional homes across the state and use its findings to build public support and political will to take the necessary action.

Saurabh has been associated with YKA as a user and has consistently been writing on the issue MHM and its intersectionality with other issues in the society. Now as an MHM Fellow with YKA, he’s launched the Right to Period campaign, which aims to ensure proper execution of MHM guidelines in Delhi’s schools.

The long-term aim of the campaign is to develop an open culture where menstruation is not treated as a taboo. The campaign also seeks to hold the schools accountable for their responsibilities as an important component in the implementation of MHM policies by making adequate sanitation infrastructure and knowledge of MHM available in school premises.

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Harshita is a psychologist and works to support people with mental health issues, particularly adolescents who are survivors of violence. Associated with the Azadi Foundation in UP, Harshita became an MHM Fellow with YKA, with the aim of promoting better menstrual health.

Her campaign #MeriMarzi aims to promote menstrual health and wellness, hygiene and facilities for female sex workers in UP. She says, “Knowledge about natural body processes is a very basic human right. And for individuals whose occupation is providing sexual services, it becomes even more important.”

Meri Marzi aims to ensure sensitised, non-discriminatory health workers for the needs of female sex workers in the Suraksha Clinics under the UPSACS (Uttar Pradesh State AIDS Control Society) program by creating more dialogues and garnering public support for the cause of sex workers’ menstrual rights. The campaign will also ensure interventions with sex workers to clear misconceptions around overall hygiene management to ensure that results flow both ways.

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MH Fellow Sabna comes with significant experience working with a range of development issues. A co-founder of Project Sakhi Saheli, which aims to combat period poverty and break menstrual taboos, Sabna has, in the past, worked on the issue of menstruation in urban slums of Delhi with women and adolescent girls. She and her team also released MenstraBook, with menstrastories and organised Menstra Tlk in the Delhi School of Social Work to create more conversations on menstruation.

With YKA MHM Fellow Vineet, Sabna launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society. As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

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A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

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A native of Bhagalpur district – Bihar, Shalini Jha believes in equal rights for all genders and wants to work for a gender-equal and just society. In the past she’s had a year-long association as a community leader with Haiyya: Organise for Action’s Health Over Stigma campaign. She’s pursuing a Master’s in Literature with Ambedkar University, Delhi and as an MHM Fellow with YKA, recently launched ‘Project अल्हड़ (Alharh)’.

She says, “Bihar is ranked the lowest in India’s SDG Index 2019 for India. Hygienic and comfortable menstruation is a basic human right and sustainable development cannot be ensured if menstruators are deprived of their basic rights.” Project अल्हड़ (Alharh) aims to create a robust sensitised community in Bhagalpur to collectively spread awareness, break the taboo, debunk myths and initiate fearless conversations around menstruation. The campaign aims to reach at least 6000 adolescent girls from government and private schools in Baghalpur district in 2020.

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A psychologist and co-founder of a mental health NGO called Customize Cognition, Ritika forayed into the space of menstrual health and hygiene, sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights and gender equality as an MHM Fellow with YKA. She says, “The experience of working on MHM/SRHR and gender equality has been an enriching and eye-opening experience. I have learned what’s beneath the surface of the issue, be it awareness, lack of resources or disregard for trans men, who also menstruate.”

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A Computer Science engineer by education, Nitisha started her career in the corporate sector, before realising she wanted to work in the development and social justice space. Since then, she has worked with Teach For India and Care India and is from the founding batch of Indian School of Development Management (ISDM), a one of its kind organisation creating leaders for the development sector through its experiential learning post graduate program.

As a Youth Ki Awaaz Menstrual Health Fellow, Nitisha has started Let’s Talk Period, a campaign to mobilise young people to switch to sustainable period products. She says, “80 lakh women in Delhi use non-biodegradable sanitary products, generate 3000 tonnes of menstrual waste, that takes 500-800 years to decompose; which in turn contributes to the health issues of all menstruators, increased burden of waste management on the city and harmful living environment for all citizens.

Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

Find out more about her campaign here.

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A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

A Gender Rights Activist working with the tribal and marginalized communities in india, Srilekha is a PhD scholar working on understanding body and sexuality among tribal girls, to fill the gaps in research around indigenous women and their stories. Srilekha has worked extensively at the grassroots level with community based organisations, through several advocacy initiatives around Gender, Mental Health, Menstrual Hygiene and Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) for the indigenous in Jharkhand, over the last 6 years.

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A Guwahati-based college student pursuing her Masters in Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bidisha started the #BleedwithDignity campaign on the technology platform Change.org, demanding that the Government of Assam install
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