It is after a couple of months of married life that I started to understand that “Love is a beautiful feeling, but marriage is a different ball game all together”. By the time you realise it ‘it’s too late to withdraw’. I had married after a brief courtship happy that I understood my would be wife so well but ‘Ek mahine mein hi aankh khul gayi’, within a month of marriage I was asking myself ‘Yaar ye woh hi hai?’ (Is she the same girl I married?). As the initial euphoria of marriage diminishes and the routine catches up it requires a sustained effort to maintain the ‘Happiness Index’.
Understanding her mind…
I am fully convinced “Stree ka dimaag bhagwaan ke samajh nahi aaya,Tum kaun? (Even God failed to fully understand a woman’s mind, what makes you think you can?) Waise purush ka dimaag bhi kam khurafaati nahin hota? (even man can go wild with imagination). It is only after marriage I realised that the same word can be used to convey different meanings just by the tone and tenor used to deliver it. Do not try too hard (to understand) just flow with the current.
A newly wed lady generally expects her husband to accompany her for shopping and like a good man he resists but finally gives in. I tried different methods and logic to make good my escape; “What will I do there? You have fun with your friends, they can help you with suggestions too”. But all of it came to a naught and the heart just melted when she said “ What will I do there alone, we will go when you have time, I can’t go with others for shopping, yours’s is the only opinion which matters to me”. “Your opinion matters” sounded like music to ears, I had not heard these or any such similar meaning words since ages, I felt so elated and just agreed to accompany her for shopping.
Once in the market the typical dress selection process started; she will pick up three or four different dresses and ask me to select one out of those for her. I was trying hard but failed miserably to meet her expectations; she kept summarily rejecting all my choices. It is only after two three such visits that the truth behind ‘Your opinion matters’ dawned on me. The aim of the exercise is twofold. First is to keep you constructively engaged and not allow your mind or the eyes to wander around. Second, is to test how well you understand her taste. Once she flashes three/ four dresses in front of you and asks you to select one, you do not have to waste time looking at the dress, just look into her eyes where it will be written in ‘Big Bold Letters’ which one she wants you to select. Just learn to read the eyes, stop wasting your time trying to understand the mind. Even God will not be able to help you if you are not able to get your act in place after two or three such visits.
Accept the complete package….
A marriage is a package deal. You got to accept and get used to the complete package she comes along with; culture, traditions, relations, habits, pets, and the list goes on. It is a package she has lived with and will continue to do so and the earliest you get used to it is the better. Accept a fact; you might have had the longest possible period of courtship but still you will not be aware of at least 50 % of this package (do not ever call it a baggage even by mistake). I had a short three months courtship period, so my ignorance level was bit higher and I had to put in that extra effort to establish ‘my space’ in the home. It’s like ‘Mera number kab ayega’ (will I ever get attention?). Thank God, mobile phones had not been invented yet, so the relations, friends were not ‘just a call away’ and we faced ‘that much less interference’.
Mobile manners matter….
There are studies which show that at least 20 % of the relationships start online through smartphones. But it is an established fact too that smartphones have been responsible for breaking many marriages too. ‘Phubbing’, chatting (especially using a dating app) can be legal grounds for divorce in extreme cases, mobile phones can always be a cause for ‘raising doubts’ in a relationship. It may sound illogical, but it is a fact that a message on a spouse’s phone which is taken as normal when received from a same sex friend may be viewed differently if received from someone from opposite sex. It makes good sense to control the urge to scroll through a partner’s smartphone and if possible, even keep the landline away from the bedroom.
Stories will not sustain you for long….
Story telling is an art many have tried to master but most failed. Loopholes are bound to appear, and you are sure to lose the ‘plot’ if you get greedy and stretch your imagination beyond believable limits. A ‘client meet’ every second day may not stand a ‘logical’ scrutiny. Ladies are very good readers of mind and body language and the best of the actor will fail the ‘Reality’ test in front of a ‘Discerning’ wife.
Everyone loves to be appreciated. Do not ever miss out on opportunities, to appreciate the efforts, howsoever small they may seem, of your spouse. As the marriage moves past the initial years and life settles down into a routine, chances of a tendency of taking the spouse for granted are always high. This may not be a good sign. You got to keep making efforts of re-inventing self and re-discovering each other to keep the relationship lively.
Emotions are sacred….
There are chances of rehabilitation for any type of crime but there may be a ‘No go’ in case of ‘emotional cheating’. Play all games but never with emotions. Emotions are to be respected and no one can be allowed to step into that sacred space between a husband and wife.Be there when she requires emotional support specially during pregnancy/ childbirth. Your sheer presence around at such times matters even if elders from either of your families are there.
Management of home and taking care of the family is the joint responsibility of both husband and wife specially in present times when both husband and wife may be having professional careers. Do not ever neglect this responsibility. My son spent good part of his ‘bachpan’ (childhood) playing with files in my office.
Happy ending is the best…..
And they ever lived happily thereafter till; that is how we all would like all life stories to end but despite the best of efforts and genuine concerns life doesn’t always go the way we want. There may be circumstances/ situation which may force two partners to take separate paths. If that happens, all efforts must be made to ensure a ‘smooth and clean breakup’; bitter endings are not good for anyone.