There have been a number of intances, particularly in India, where divorce rates have continued to rise. There is constant criticism of impatient and intolerant youth who do not view marriage as a sacred relationship for life.
This critique led me to think of the real reality of the intolerant perception of youth (more folded towards divorce) vs. perceived as tolerant of the previous generation (Weddings between 1940 and 1999).
Let’s go to the basics first, it’s necessary to put a thought on why marriage came into existence and its evolution. Well the basic purpose of human being is like any other animal species i.e. to keep their own species alive perpetually. And human species have been religiously doing that.
So the human species, men and women have mated and eventually grew the next generation of same species in this world. However human species are quite different than other species. They have many other requirements apart from basic comforts of food and shelter that included different lifestyle needs. The maintenance of this lifestyle was not practically possible to maintain by a single female with a child(ren).
So then came the concept of Bondage (i.e. Marriage) where men and women first get societal bondage called marriage. Then only they were allowed to mate and plan to have a child. Here responsibility of Child had to be taken care by both Men and Women.
Along with that many societal norms/ rituals were built, where women decided to took responsibility of all household work like cooking, taking care of children, home, etc. and men took responsibility of all outside work like arranging for food, safety, shelter, etc. to give their family a basic lifestyle.
Men were earning bread, they had naturally more muscle power and as they also garnered more knowledge about the world, this made them more powerful then women. Gradually all decision power for more important decisions of family went on the men side. I believe Patriarchal Society was then started and evolved periodically.
This Patriarchal Society was well accepted until early 1970’s in India. Majority of women did not think of household work as non productive or degraded work and were happy with their own responsibility. And those few women who did not accept their responsibilities, lacked Power to revolt against Patriachy.
Slowly as human species started having access to technological and also cultural advancement like education to all, equal rights, telephone, television, internet, smart phones, etc., the power of knowledge also started to reach at almost equal level to both men and women. With access to knowledge naturally came more ambitions for human species. This was more self empowering for women due to their unexplored ways to lead their life.
Even today people from both old and young generation still strongly believe that self empowerment of women has only led to rift in the marriage. However I believe this is nothing but an unfortunate belief that will lead to more disaster in future.
The tradition of Patriarchal Society started thousands of years ago and continue to flourish till around early 1970’s in India. And the pace of women empowerment has just gathered momentum from last 40-50 years. And in these years where women started demanding equal rights as Men, it started a revolt in many men dominated communities.
Most of the rituals made during the old time were very apt, well thought off and highly logical. However in last 40 years where technology, education, knowledge sharing, etc was evolved at fast pace, the patriarchal rituals did not evolve that speedily. This resulted into conflict between men and women. The responsibility given to men and women was not given with the concept of giving power to one. It was given so that Men and Women can have better lifestyle and also can provide better life style to childrens.
Today as dynamics of culture are changing, Indian Society need to get out of Patriarchal Rituals. However it does not mean that men and women should change their responsibility. There are certain roles which are out of control of husband and wife E.g: The child birth can only be done by a women (Wife).
However there are things that are in hand of husband and wife. Those things are required to be discussed among themselves to create better life for them and Children’s. E.g.: “Parenting Roles, Financial Roles, Household Roles, Societal Roles, etc.,
I believe Marriage is the one beautiful social norm made in the society and would personally love to see this grow. However we need to assure that there is complete freedom of expression between Husband and Wife.
Well the perceived intolerant youth is definitely still prevalent in both Husband and Wife. A Husband’s attitude to not let go the power of dominance, is an unfortunate Indian culture E.g: “Men can go away with extra marital affair but women becomes impure” or “Men can shout or abuse or control their wife or Men belief that women are only made to do the Household work, etc.”.
Also perceived intolerant youth in Wife who wants to sometime snatch the power for so called feminism and not because of self empowerment or the common life goals E.g.:- “Wife going to work just for the sake of their right as Women even if it imbalance their entire Home environment and children development”.
If divorce are happening because there is no common life goals or there is no freedom of expression between the partner, divorces are also good. However Divorce, if happening for so called misled power snatching from each other creating conflict, than it is dangerous precedent for Human Kind.
Marriage needs to be part of satisfying some common basic minimum requirement of both the Partners. Marriage is not a burden of responsibility it is tool of support for better life.
It may then raise a question what one should look while searching their life partner. ?? And I think only three basic things.
- Goals of Life:- It’s very necessary to understand what others partner actually want in their Life. This need to be looked holistically without any prejudged biased feed. And if couple are able to relate to each other priority goals even though different then 50% compatibility is achieved.
- Sexually compatible:- This Point is often less prioritize because of Indian conservative nature to openly discuss about sexual compatibility. but I seriously think this needs to be actually seen before choosing a life partner. I have observed sexually active couple usually have better understanding between them. It is very important for couple to discuss their sexual choices freely.
- Psychological Wavelength:- Sometimes everything is good but couple finds difficult to cop with each other as their psychological wavelength are way too different. It’s the same way that we have very few best friends out of thousand people we meet. They are those who understand us and also whom we can discuss our thoughts freely. It’s necessary that your partner is that best friend.
Above three points will mostly suffice basic things to look at life partner. However it will only work if both partner will always seek to enhance their partner life in tandem with their own life.
Marriage should be honored with the practice of giving better life experience to each other. A Marriage, where no one is giving or taking each other rights, where both are equals, where women home maker as well as men home maker are both equally accepted. This definitely can make marriage sacrosanct. There is no wrong or right in any relationship as each relations are different. All relations cannot be compared to each other as each partnership had been done with one unique combination.
In marriages, other important aspect is childrens and Divorce/Rift after having children. This situation is very disturbing and create a wrong impact on children. Husband and Wife need to realize that there compatibility matters the most when they plan a child. Children till tender age look the world with mostly parents eyes. And if situation arises where disputes are increasing after that investment of a child, one need to try to have common minimum program till children crosses a tender age ( just like our Indian political parties – when no party has majority after elections and two conflicting party get together for development of their citizens and wait till next elections to fall apart. )
So to end, I firmly believe that today’s youth surely take marriage as sacrosanct as their elders only. No couple enters marriage with a goal of Divorce. However youth also needs to understand that there is very fast pace of Cultural and technological advancement. It is very important that with this fast changing tide they need to hold hands more tighter and work towards betterment of each other life and be a inspiration for Generations to come.
As we have started upbringing our daughters with a goal that would help her balance work and home life in future however most parents forget to up-bring their sons to also balance their work and home life in tandem to upbringing of our girls. As “Beti padhao (Educate Girls)” campaign is on run a campaign “bete ko ghar ka kaam sikhao (Teach Household work to Boys)” should also run side by side for better marriage future of our country.:-)
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