Category Archives: Men’s rights

Men’s Rights II: The denial

This post is in reference to my previous post Men’s rights: An undisclosed topic https://perspectiveindianlife.wordpress.com/mens-rights-a-undisclosed-topic/

I have received several responses to my previous post, and I am thankful to people who appreciated me for bringing this topic to light, but many of them seem to have gotten a bit defensive about it.

I have received responses like “But my parents are not like how you portray”, “my relatives are not like how you portray”, “not fair to generalize all relatives and parents”, “educate and explain them and in a calm state of mind and they will understand”, “after all, they are our parents and care for us”, and many such responses with either seem to rationalize their behavior, or trivialize this matter.

My response to all the above points are: Read the following post carefully!

Yes, I may agree, to some extent, with the point that not all relatives are like what I had described in my previous post. But such relatives are rare EXCEPTIONS. Majority of them are like the way I had described earlier.

If they were not such rare exceptions, how do you explain the marriages of almost every man (and woman) you know by by age 30? How do you explain such low participation of women in workforce? How to explain every married couple you know, producing children, buying a car, a house, all the EMIs, and everyone seeming so stressed out about it?

Yes, I do agree that some parents may be more “liberal” than others, as they claim. But one must understand that even with “liberal” parents, they are not strong enough to resist the pressure of society and their relatives, which makes them bully their children to conform to society out of fear of their own people.

Even their definition of “liberal” is very inaccurate.

In their dictionary, the definition of “liberal” means parents “allowing their” children to step out of the house, or “allowing” them choose a spouse for themselves. But NOT liberal enough to let their children decide if they want to remain single all their life, or marry at any late age they prefer, or even play the role of a homemaker (in case of a man).

Why do parents give an ultimatum to their children to find a partner by age 30 or else force their children to marry a person of their (parents’) choice (a partner belonging to the same race, community, religion, caste)?
Why is there a deadline age to find a partner?

The most gullible response was “educate and explain them and in a calm state of mind and they will understand”.  This response makes no sense whatsoever because a human mind is like a clay in youth, which turns into a rock as age progresses.

You can use the explaining and educating method on a young person who is open to new ideas and values; while, an old person is like a rock which is so solid in its values and thinking, that it will crush (metaphorically) any young person with new ideas because old people don’t want their very life and existence to look like a joke. So, there is no repairing the previous generation. They have formed their thinking. Combined with their entitlement, there is simply no “explaining them calmly” or “educating them”.

They have become a part of the patriarchal and hierarchical system so deeply, that they will fight to protect it. Just like those agents’ role in the film, The Matrix.  All I can say is: Save your own clay-like mind from getting bruised by these people who have a rock-solid minds.

Note: Now if we think about it, this situation is quite comparable to the film The Matrix where the patriarchal system is built, for which, on the one hand, our parents, relatives (including our cousins) act like agents, who will fight to protect this system as they are so dependent on it; and on the other hand, there are those selected few people in our current generation, like Neo and Morpheus, who are trying to break free from this “system” designed to enslave everyone, and will strive to help others break free from it.

The last response disturbed me a lot and the reason for my writing this post. The response was “after all, they are our parents and care for us!”. This is probably the biggest bunch of lies told to oneself to prevent the mind from going to insanity.

This is textbook definition of “rationalization” where a man is extremely discomforted by the reality to such an extent, that he will come out with excuses so that his mind can find the current situation, much more tolerable.

Men are going in denial because their conditioning, since birth, is so deep that reality check will hurt them the most. It is almost like they will start questioning the very ground they are standing on, which can be quite traumatizing.
I understand their psychology, but that is no solution. It is almost like taking medication to suppress symptoms while not understanding the disease causing it.

The worst result is even if a man understands this mess of patriarchy, still ends up becoming a part of this mess himself due to pressure. It takes a great deal of effort and strength to assert your rights, even if harmed in the process. But not everyone is able to stand up against this patriarchal system so they end up joining it. The external forces and internal conditioning is so severe that the man has to become a part of this patriarchal system.

He ends up internalizing his pain and frustration and end up making it seem as if it was “his individual choice”. If asked, no man will admit that he has become a part of this patriarchy due to pressure (internal and external).
No man wants to admit that he is being used as a puppet by the collective ego of the society. It would be shameful for a man to even think on these lines as his patriarchal role will ensure that he never complains.

So, going in denial mode and rationalization is the only quick fix to make it less unbearable. He will end up looking it at like the “best thing that ever happened to him” and will “reform” others too, thereby continuing this vicious cycle.

Your young adult male best-friend(s) or your “chuddy buddy” who is now listening to rock music, smoking pipe, has ear studs, trying to appear “cool” and “modern” will turn to the same language as his entitled relatives 15 years from now.

You will find this very same “chuddy buddy” with his wife and kids, and questioning you about your “future plans” in a rather patronizing, self-righteous way.

His reaction will be even more shocked when he finds out that you are still single, and he will try to either shame you, or portray his life as such an “aspirational life”. lol!

After a certain point, where does one draw the line between social conditioning and personal choice?

It is going to take at least couple of generations to understand this kind of oppression and mental gymnastics a man is made to do until he is able to truly think by himself and take complete control over his life and make decisions at his own will.

To my readers, please read this article carefully so that you understand what message I am trying to convey to my audience.

Agreed this is a deep topic but the more informed we are, the more informed choices we can make and understand the real disease, not try to cure the symptom!

Men’s Rights: An undisclosed topic

Men’s rights in India is so brushed under the carpet, no one knows it even exists!

A man’s life in India is oppressive too. It is since birth this oppression begins. A different kind of oppression, a more covert kind yet a powerful kind of oppression.

Since their birth, men are taught not to cry. They are shamed if they display any emotion. Do we, as a society, realize if this emotional suppression takes place time and again, these young boys will grow up to be emotionally stunt men and their suppressed volcano-like emotions will explode at the least deserving person?

We then ask questions like why India is has a record number in spousal abuse, domestic violence and assault. We fail to connect the dots.

There was a video clipping of describing the same. The link to view the clipping: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Nj99epLFqg

That is just the start of it. Indian parents perceive their son like a golden goose who will earn according to their (parents’) expectations and support them in old age. His worth depends upon his academic and professional success. If he fails to earn up to his family expectations, he will be mocked upon, yelled at, nagged upon until he is able to “earn enough” or “becomes man enough”.

Parents and relatives play the maximum toxic role in stripping away their son’s rights. Men are also deeply conditioned by parents and relatives to take care of them (and his wife) in old age and play the provider role, at the same time, women are so dis empowered thereby making them incapable to even provide for themselves.

The abuse of men is not so over-the-top, as women’s, which makes it difficult for them to recognize this abuse.

Once the man grows up, with education and a decent paying job, he is FORCED to marry a woman just so that his parents can find a free slave for themselves who can also provide dowry. He has no right to choice: Not even the right to marry the person he loves, not even the right to remain single all his life.

Note: In the UK, forced marriage is a very serious crime and parents can be arrested for upto 10 years.

It just gets worse for a man, he is BULLIED and FORCED by his parents (and parents are bullied by their relatives) to marry the girl of THEIR choice. Parents will ensure to disempower their daughter in law, make her leave her job or create situations which will make her leave her job, so that she is dependent on their son and them (his parents) for financial support.

Which explains why India has the lowest women work force participation: http://qz.com/176658/india-has-the-lowest-workforce-participation-rate-of-women-among-the-brics/

Now, even the man is burdened with supporting his over-demanding parents, his disempowered wife, and his children which he probably didn’t even want to begin with. The man is put through great deal of stress due to the financial burden of all these people. Even earning Rs. 2 lakh per month is not enough to fulfill the family’s requirement.

Both, men and women are slaves to their parents’ and their relatives’ entitlement. 

The pressure of parents on a son doesn’t end with marriage. It only begins. He is then pressured to buy a car, a house, produce children, provide them (children) fancy education, all due to the demands of his parents and relatives. 

All this puts any human in a great deal of financial stress and burden of loans as this article has mentioned: http://www.subramoney.com/2012/08/children-in-parents-ego-emi-traps/

The provider role in so inbuilt in a man that even if he tries to help his wife in the household chores, he will be shamed even for that by his parents and their clan of a thousand relatives. Also to prevent the couple from bonding. God forbid of he turns into a homemaker and his wife the breadwinner! Imagine the stigma and the shaming then!

Why doesn’t a man have the option to be the homemaker and his wife the breadwinner? Why can’t a man have the option to pursue the career of his choice? Why can’t a man marry the person he loves? Why can’t a man have the option to even remain single all his life? Why can’t a man have any autonomy over his life’s major decisions?

Are we so patriarchal that we forget the happiness of our own son?

In addition, Hindu culture has immense amount of rituals and customs which cause a great deal of financial drain (for the man), emotional drain (for the couple), only to see the 42-year-old enfeebled parents and relatives gloating in joy.

Romantic partner:  A son’s romantic partner is considered as the biggest threat to the parents’ control over their son. So, even if his parents have chosen a partner for their son, they simply cannot stand the growing bond between their son and his wife and will strive to create distance between them. They will overburden his wife with housework to such an extent that she has no time to bond with her husband. If ever the man will try to bond with his wife, he is shamed and called “joru ka gulham” or slave of his wife.

Even if the man tries to stand up for himself and his spouse against this abuse, he is either yelled at by his parents, or sent on a guilt trip. We often hear remarks by parents like “biwi kaan bhar rahi hai”  your wife is poisoning your mind.

Parents get extremely insecure that their control over their son, and his loyalty, will be divided with his wife. So, she will always be treated like an “outsider”.

Note: I am not saying that taking care of someone you care about is wrong. But given this situation, parents’ entitlement and their abusive nature, they deserve nothing short of a kick on their asses.

If the man starts abusing and assaulting his wife, are we to blame the man completely? I am NOT condoning domestic violence under any circumstances; but, we as a society, need to take responsibility of such broken men and reflect upon ourselves and not let the next generation become the victim of this cycle of abuse.

We need to encourage our men to come out of their denial and conditioning. We need to encourage our men to question their parents and even fight for their own rights. We need to free our men from the burden of this provider and patriarchal role which they are forced into. We need to educate our men of their rights, specially the right of choice, which they probably don’t know it even exists.

As I stated in my previous blog, this cycle of abuse needs to end at some point.

Also, for further reference, please read this article:
https://indianhomemaker.wordpress.com/2014/12/24/27-ways-in-which-patriarchy-harms-men/

Talking about women’s rights alone is not enough when the other half is abused too.

Change begins now. Change begins from us!