The other day, while browsing through Quora, (an online platform for questions and answers), I came across a common question. Someone had asked, “What are the terrible things some daughters-in-law in India have to face almost every day?”
There were quite a few other questions posted too, e.g. “Why do a majority of Indian mothers-in-law mistreat their daughters-in-law?”
Someone from another country answered, “Why do you give a damn?!”
Well! For most Indian audiences, this isn’t a funny question. This isn’t a strange one either, or one most woman can ignore. If you are an unmarried woman or are already married, chances are you will stop by and read through the responses! And why shouldn’t you? Such is the plight of most daughters-in-law in India.
Why is any typical Indian Mother-in-law and Daughter-in-law relationship so strained?
It’s actually quite a complex matter to understand. Sometimes, it seems like most moms-in-law are boiling with anger for years – like a trait that is passed on from one generation to another. It seems that they have just been waiting for the right moment to take all their frustrations out on the daughter-in-law! The lack of a positive environment for new brides arises out of this systematic and gradual infliction…
Besides, some Indian husbands also have a different agenda in mind. In order to strike a balance between relationships, they dare not speak up (or back) to their mothers at all…
1. “It can’t be your way”
Most mothers-in-law have the experience of knowing how to raise kids, but then, times are changing. Today’s modern-day daughter-in-law shouldn’t be told time and again that they lack the tact or the patience. Besides, with time, things got to change. With the help of sources of information and knowledge, most daughters-in-law are willing and forthcoming in taking care (rather a charge) of their newborns. They want to raise their children the way they think is right. So, be it about raising kids or cooking meals or making use of your free-time, dear mother-in-law, stop telling me what I should be doing because most times even though I precisely know what to do, giving an ear to you doesn’t mean I shall follow you blindly!
2. “Why do you need a maid”
And why shouldn’t I need one? I was not raised and educated to be a trained housekeeper. I mean I don’t mind keeping my place clean and tidy or managing laundry, washing utensils and cooking (apart from 100 other things) and my job! But I do make an earnest effort to keep my home as clean and hygienic as I can and because I get tired, you better not question my decision of whether to seek external help or not!
3. “Your husband is my son first”
I agree that you bore the perfect man, and I am the luckiest girl alive. But let’s face it, despite the odds, I am the one who got married to him. So, stop getting emotional, please. However, he will always be there for you. I don’t mind him appreciating you more than me. Although, I’d be happy if he appreciates us both.
These could be the most common problems faced by most Indian daughters-in-law, however, there are plenty of other issues that are of a serious nature, such as dowry, demand for a male child, etc. The deal is that women must learn to set the emotional thermostats, stop the blame and complain, and look forward to a happy healthy future. These daughters-in-law are the future mothers-in-law. It is imperative to create social awareness in our typical society. Early negative conditioning of brains of the girl child (future brides) about unequal power relationships in patriarchal Indian society should be avoided at any cost.