If you are desi, you probably are aware of all the politics married life brings. I bring you the amusing side of these politics (and leave the dark shady side for another day when in serious mode)
Let me elaborate
1. Post wedding the man is typically meant to fatten up. This fattening up demonstrates contentment, peace, happiness and comfort in married life. Women who get fat are just fat. Or at a push just plain old greedy.
2. If the girl is seen to lose weight post marriage some assumptions are made. The most common ones being negative such as they (the inlaws) are not treating her well and/or he (the husband) is not good to her.
3. Newly wedded brides are meant to adorn themselves with sumptious clothing and hoardes of tinkling gold jewellery. This is typically demonstrated through wearing gold bangles as earrings and necklaces tend to be hidden under a scarf or clothing. Her wrists are not to be seen “bare” as jewellery is the only adornment married women can take pleasure in without appearing to be wringing their husbands wealth dry. Hawk eyed aunties tend to notice “bare wrists” and comment accordingly.
4. Lack of visible adornments lead to comments such as the husband of the girl being too poor or skint to buy his wife jewellery. The more bangles the better and the more yellow (gold) in colour they are the more happier (or jealous) aunties get.
5. Everyone is really interested in viewing the marital bedroom of the newly weds. And tend to do so uninvited. This is usually to see what furniture the girls parents have gifted her as part of jahez. And guess a figure in monetary terms to ascertain how wealthy or otherwise the girls family is. In addition to this accounting, they perform the dual task of deducing how tidy (or untidy) and other general housekeeping habits of the the girl are. Comments and either praises or negative remarks are spread amongst the gossiping waddling aunties.
6. The mother in law is seen to be the matriarch of the home. And as part of “bringing in daughter in law’s” into their home, their usual duties of cooking and cleaning are expected to cease and to be taken over by the DIL(s). This is so the MIL can wield her authority and status in the home and focus on preening what fading looks and un-dyed hair she may have left. Part of this is to appease sentiments and expectations of the aforementioned gossiping waddling aunties who consider it sacrilegious for any MIL to be tending to household tasks when there are DIL’s to dump the work onto.
7. Son’s are considered to be mummy’s boys even when they reach the age of 50 and have a receeding hairline. Or lost all their hair. The mother expects her boy’s to consult her on any decisions, even bypassing any discussion he may have had with his wife, if he even bothers to do that. This sustains her position in the home as the leading matriarch and gives further strength and sustenance to instill an authoritarian rule.
8. DIL’s are there for 2 purposes: To be maids and to give birth (preferably to male heirs)
9. DIL’s bad habits are only bad if she does them. If the MIL’s own daughter has the same habits they go un-noticed or considered to be part of her childlike naivety even if she is hitting 30.
10. The son is never to move out of the parental home unless under extreme circumstances such as death of the inlaws or a job elsewhere. Even job doesn’t cut it as a reason – even lamenting from MIL can turn most good things around
Anything else people want to add to the list? Are these generic items applicable to most people’s situations in other cultures? How is it like in your culture – perhaps this is something which transpires right across the board!