A Non Resident Indian Girls Take On Living With The In Laws

Posted by Sonam Patel
March 8, 2017

NOTE: This post has been self-published by the author. Anyone can write on Youth Ki Awaaz.

I was 24 when I was introduced, entirely through my own choice, to my fiancé. If you use the definition as loosely as possible it’s an arranged marriage, I wouldn’t have met him if not for my parents. Their involvement was there from the beginning and when all six of us met for the first the intention of imminent marriage was perfectly clear. In every other sense though it’s been a ‘love marriage’ – late night phone conversations, dates, joint holidays etc.


Cut to a year and a half later and the big day is nearly upon us. Countless days of planning, organizing and negotiation have bought me that one step closer to being married and moving city, and more importantly changing homes. And there’s the scary bit.


See it doesn’t matter where you live, for anyone moving from the home they’ve comfortably lived in for 26 years and shifting into another is hard. No I am not some stereotypical bitch set to break apart my husband’s family. And with an even louder voice I can say my in laws are not the sort you encounter Zee TV who set out to make the newbies life hell. We are normal people. But that doesn’t lessen the difficulty of going into a ready-made home as nothing more than an amateur. They eat at different times, with different sorts of food made in a different style. These are small things, yet it’s unfamiliar, and makes me feel anxious.


I feel no-one dwells on this aspect. Nobody talks about it, you’re either the evil girl who refuses to live in a joint family or the goody two shoes who fits right in. What about the girl who’s willing to give it a go but some days finds it all too hard to bear? I find myself struggling to understand how to constantly present the best side of myself, even on bad days, a steady pressure which refuses to budge. I feel as though if I admit the apprehension someone will judge me. It’s as though a girl feeling uncomfortable is normal, as this is the inevitable process. However when she admits she’s uncomfortable….nothing.


Whilst I understand things do indeed get better with time, or in some cases practice, why is there a lack of understanding for us in until then?

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