On Marital Rape and Consent

Exploring Patriarchy Chapter 23 – MM was horrified at the lack of a law on marital rape in India. Read this article by the Times of India – Why Marital Rape Exists In Homes, In Data, But Not In Law. MM had only ever experienced caring and kindness in this aspect of her marriage, but she knew women who hadn’t. Women for who the bedroom was a place to tolerate. To endure. To dread. And to fear.

Life Second-Class – The Mother-in-Law

Exploring Patriarchy Chapter 22 – MM loved her mother-in-law (referred to later as MM’s MIL) for many reasons I’ve mentioned before in ‘Exploring Patriarchy Chapter 3 – Equality at Home | A Wonderful Woman’. A separation of living spaces goes a long way in helping mother-in-law and daughter-in-law love each other. And there’s one more important factor we often under-value, namely, the role of the Indian man.

Microwave Madam on Building-Uncle

Exploring Patriarchy Chapter 21 – Those of you who live in India will understand the term Building-Uncle even though it might be new to you. For those who don’t, in India, all elderly men are called Uncle wherever they go, and elderly women, Auntie. The Building-Uncle is my term for the uncle who lives within the same housing society or building.

The Stages of My Life | Definitions

Exploring Patriarchy Chapter 20 –

It used to be Baby ‘cos they saw I was young
the one they looked after when her parents weren’t around.
Then, it was Didi – the elder sister
a young adult woman without a ‘Mister’.

MM’s Story:

The role of the Indian woman is defined very differently from that of the Indian man. Her career, education or income level matter very little. What seems to be important to society is her personal choices. Or those that are made for her by her family. And by the God’s.

Respect Dis-Respects | We Have to Pay the Piper

Exploring Patriarchy Chapter 13 – People often think that giving to these rules is respect for the elderly. Forgetting there’s a price for it. A quicker decline for the elderly. And a frustration that affects personal relationships between the home manager and her family – especially her husband.

Poem: We Have To Pay The Piper

We have to pay the piper for all that we have got
if we don’t pay up when it’s due it’s gonna cost a lot.
He’s the one who sees the things we hide – the one who keeps the score
and when he thinks our payment’s due he’ll knock our every door.

Expectations of Love | Wanna

Exploring Patriarchy Chapter 12 – MM realized then, that her husband had a very sub-conscious idea of love that was based on his upbringing. Where his mother had served and fetched as an expression of motherly love. These ideas went deep and created expectations that were in direct conflict with his desire to see his wife rest when she needed.

Poem: Wanna

I don’t wanna be the woman behind the man
let my dreams flow down the sink as I wash the pots and pans.
I don’t wanna be the woman who’s burning up inside
and sees dirt in the smile of her sisters eyes.

The Mother Wound | This Gift

Exploring Patriarchy Chapter 5 – And because of the glorification of the mother that was so much a part of her family culture, she would feel deep guilt and self-recrimination. She would forget that being a mother doesn’t raise one to God-like perfection and take away one’s humanity – one’s fallibility.