At a certain place of discussion, someone commented while discussing trends followed in marriages, “If a woman looks for a man with good income for marriage, then what is wrong with a man asking for dowry?” This question is wrong on so many levels. But again, I think this kind of question can be seen on social media, especially on Quora, Facebook or Twitter. I don’t know what answers are available on these sites, as I do not operate on these spaces for the sanity of mind, but what I can certainly tell is what must have ensued when the question was raised.
First of all, the scenario that was discussed in this context was “What do women do in married lives?” Many answered “Nothing more than cooking, cleaning, washing and yes, what they do best, producing children.” Next that was discussed was what men do when they get married? The answer was they raise a family by earning money. People do not understand that men earn and bring money, and along with that, food. This is nothing compared to what a woman does. He feeds her, keeps her alive and if he does ask for money/dowry in return, what is wrong with that?
Beyond this, some discussed the answers that were available online. One statement discussed distinctly was, “These days, women have so much expectations that they refuse good proposals.” The example was read in reference to this statement: “My very good friend, who is a doctor, was rejected by a girl who is an MA.” I think more examples were read, but then I tuned myself out of this whole debate, because what was being said and discussed was so disgusting that it will make you question the need for a relationship. The whole brigade of men were not leaving any chance to prove that women are evil, greedy and selfish. Having to listen to these vile comments and discussions, this day turned out to be the worst days of my life.
The attitude that these men displayed was that married men are the only ones doing all the hard work, simply because they earn. Now, I am struggling to even address this kind of mental apathy to the lives of women. For centuries, women have been stereotyped into evil creatures who lure men into bad things. But still, men marries or continues to desire to marry. Oh! But do not forget that in the minds of men, it is the fundament right of a man to have sex with a woman.
If you forget the villainy of marital laws and domestic abuse laws, especially Article 498a, and the number of cases of suicides and extortion of money in the name of alimony, then yes, a woman is cruel to a man. Women just don’t understand how cruel they are if they desire to have any expectations of life other than giving to men what men demand.
I can say or write a million things to counter this thinking. But what can you say to such men who won’t even understand that marriage in India means forsaking the feeling and right to consider your own parents as equal to your husband for considerations of various aspects of life, let alone prioritising your parents over your husband. As a woman, I cannot be punished for taking care of my parents, but legally, I can be granted divorce from my husband for not taking care of husband’s parents. A husband, by society’s standard, should treat his wife and parents equally.
What do you say to people who manipulate data and statistics to prove their version of a story? For comparing the data of suicides, does the population number of men and women matter? In the coming years, there will be definite shortage of women. If you don’t know yet, the population ratio for girls and boys between the age of 0-5 years was 911, as per the Census 2011.
Moreover, there is no account of more number of women being murdered or disappeared by victims of women. If statistics are taken into account, the number of women disappeared or murdered is quite high than the number of men murdered. But hey, who cares, right? Let’s latch on to the fear that the male population is declining.
Again, what do you reply to people who do not want to understand the realities of life? For whom, it only matters that women never do anything wrong to men and laws are so neutral to men and women that problems of men in real life get all the attention? Otherwise, a tragedy of a man’s life is a woman who is not punished for the atrocities she commits on the man’s life.
In spite of all this, a lot of men are struggling to get married in India and their struggle is so important that if they don’t get attention, then women are abominable. In next 20-25 years, when there will not be enough number of women for men to marry, what will Indian men do? They will certainly not accept that women population is less than men. But unlike China, they will not be able to purchase women from other countries like Pakistan either.
To men who see women desiring to have a better life after marriage as something hateful, please start living with your own in-laws, i.e. your wife’s parents, after marriage. Further, start changing your surname to your wife’s, then you can certainly claim that a woman looking for more capable husband is wrong.
At last, even today, men in the IAS, IPS other big roles do not come cheap to women marrying them, even if women themselves are equally capable as them. Men are never taught to look inwards and now, with new world, they will never look inwards. All they will do is vilify women and abscond their share of responsibility to be human in a real sense.