Ok Enough ! I have read, heard and seen enough laments about how women loose everything after a marriage. The men are often portrayed as evil, conniving sons of b*****s who have nothing better to do but make a woman’s life hell. This here is our side of the story, the average Indian guy.
Lets see, the average Indian boy, is born into a middle class family by some wicked twist of fate and biology. Our parents are all evil and dont abort as often as is propagated (abortions are usually due to medical issues not after screening the gender).
We are usually sent to school where we get our asses kicked by girls in terms of everything academic, and by bigger, meaner boys in terms of everything sporty. We are often nicknamed here, and that carries on well thru adulthood until the grave (Note: The name need not be one we like, but we get used to it). Our parents usually get really pissed when we get beaten by anyone, but more often than not its a girl, hence the phrase ” You got beaten by a girl.” This usually is the only phase where we hate girls. And we make it pretty evident by pulling your hair, fighting with you, throwing things at you etc. But by the time we grow out of those ugly shorts, we have learned to restrain ourselves.
Then we go to college, that most magical of lands. We often get our first heartbreak here. Women who rule our hearts and turn our minds into mulch, don’t seem to be aware of our existence. We learn to drink and smoke here. Mostly from conniving friends and seniors who just want some fun (it is kind of a tradition, one we learn to appreciate). Here some of us get lucky and find a girl who seems to think being with someone like us is not such a bad deal. Most of these end after college, as the women chase bigger dreams. Before you say that is because we dont compromise: We are willing to compromise, if we have any clue where we were headed. Our futures are pretty hazy at this juncture and that hard found job cant be thrown away. All the women here are well remembered, most wistfully, some lovingly and we sometimes name our girls with one of the names from this past.
We are raised, trained, to be the bread earners. We are ashamed when a woman has to pay, because we learn its not the chivalrous thing to do, not because we think woman shouldnt. Most of us know how to cook. We have lived away from family and have had to enter the kitchen more than once. Our menu is not limited to toast, eggs and maggi. We just dont like admitting it. We save it for a surprise for a woman we woo. A home cooked candle light dinner is something we consider the best of all dates. Most of us dont ever have one.
Then comes career. We have no issues with a female boss or a colleague. We often appreciate the fact that a woman adds a different side to our arguments. We also love it that we get to see a person of the other sex around. Yes, we like both the intellect and the presence of a body that smells like sunshine. We are awkward in our interactions, because mainly we just dont know where to draw a line. We dont know what is ok and what is not. And we dont want to lose our jobs on some insane charges of sexual harrasment. We just go along, trodding the well worn boring path, saving money for a car, a flat, and many other invisible somethings in the future. Women who we come across are completely appreciated for that added dash of color they bring to our lives.
Then comes marriage. Ok Lets be honest. We are not the best of the lot. The only criteria we are judged on is usually some invisible reputation that our forefathers left behind and the package we earn. We also face the unrelenting aunts and nosy uncles who make us feel impotent because we arent married. We are constantly questioned about our choices, our dressing sense, our next salary hike/job change, our plans for the future, our drinking habits, our account balances. Any woman who through some stroke of fortune considered us good enough to be friends with disappear here. After a lot of third degree questioning, they find someone they think is a perfect match. By now, most men have no clue what they want. So much psychological wear and tear plus emotional blackmail happens that we leave everything in the hands of our makers. Our parents cant be wrong can they?
Finally a girl, luckily or unluckily gets approved. Please note, we understand the rejections. We also have been rejected. Then comes the whole band, baaja, baaraat. The girl gets to dress up as an angel while we get a new suit. We dont complain. We consider ourselves lucky that a woman gets decked out with so much effort for us. That probably is the only thing we notice. All other times we are just smiling our jaws off and trying to figure out how much the wedding has cost us. We hold big bachelor bashes coz married life is supposed to make us responsible. Because that might be the only night we can black out and sleep on a friends couch with no worries about whos at home.
Yes, we worry. We arent experienced in dealing with women. The ones we have dealt with seemed pretty capable of taking care of themselves. We would love it if you also had a job. We dont mind doing the dishes. We will happily do grocery shopping. The only problem is we have no clue how to. Our dishes were done by a maid that often went absent for days. We shopped only on the nights we cooked and often forgot something and invented new combinations in the kitchen. We do clean our houses, we just dont do it as often as women do. If you also dont mind a mess, let it be. If you need a patient listener when you come home from work, let us know. We dont sense that something is wrong as well as women do, mostly because we dont knw the body language. When you cry, it breaks our hearts but we often dont know what to do.
We arent color blind but we dont know what color matches you. You always look beautiful to us. We hate shopping for exactly this reason. We dont know curtains, we never needed them (we often covered our windows with bedsheets). We seriously dont notice when you put on a kilo here and there. We are often busy trying to hide the fact that our pants dont fit anymore. We dont mind you having friends who are men. We are often a lil jealous coz we arent that cool. We hope against hope that you wont mind us drinking. That male bonding to us is like shopping to women. Stress release. We would love it if you can share a drink. We just havent seen many women drink. So dont be surprised if we gape when you say yes to a shot.
In finality. Men dont take you for granted. We do seek your approval but we dont know how to express it. We love you in a million ways but just dont know how to show it. We often dont notice new earrings or jewellery coz we were never taught to look. We are also just learning, bear with us. We really do appreciate that you put up with the crap that our parents sometimes dish out. We get angry often for no fault of yours. Its ourselves we are cursing internally.
PS: If i missed anything thats coz I am a total idiot. Also, please note that i have wonderful female friends who drink with me, dance with me and are just the same to me as men are. But the above situation is the more common Indian man, before I saw Bangalore. If the above doesnt meet your stereotype that is because, we are not noticed. If you differ to something, leave a comment. If you think I need to explain myself somewhere, I wont.
Update: I just realize this is going to get a lot more attention than earlier expected. But please think about it before reacting. Its true if you are willing to open your eyes to it. ” According to your faith, let it be to You” ( I am an atheist but cant help quoting something so apt here)