Marriage is a necessary evil – this was the topic for the essay in Class IX. I was flummoxed by this topic. Well, life provided me with clarity by and by.
I thought I was a good daughter, obedient and docile. So I was until I began to see cracks in religion, society, and also my parents. Let me assure you, all parents do their best for their children but even they cannot go against social/religious norms for fear of ostracism.
The other shoe fell when one morning, my brother asked my mother to take him to see a psychiatrist because he was hearing voices in his head. Then I knew I was on my own; my folks washed their hands off my marriage after I was ‘shown’ to 17 prospective grooms.
I didn’t even know how to choose between two guys, I couldn’t go through 17! I was an adamant anti-dowry girl. I realize now that I had no skills in the finer nuances of baiting and snagging a husband for myself.
After 8 years of a futile semi-sex-love relationship, I had exiled myself to Pune. I was still the sunshine girl, holding my head up high, dressed well, faculty at Computer Point in 1989, where I taught DOS, Lotus, and Word, dBase IV – now extinct in the world of IT.
Torn Between Two Men, How To Choose?
If you are in love with two people, how to choose the right one? It can get tricky, but there is always a right person. There is always a tiny voice in your head telling which one it is. I know what it feels like to be torn between two men, so if you’re looking for advice, continue reading my story.
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What a dancer he was
I met Rahul at a guys-only bachelor pad for a weekend party. Pune was always a fun-filled small town with draught beer, weed and dancing in the Westend Hotel. We jived and waltzed up into the wee hours, and my word, was he a dancer!
When he began dancing, the floor would part to allow him and me to shine through. He was what I called a ‘magical elf’. He was a very slender and gorgeous version of James Dean with an Elvis hairdo.
By then, my Dad had written to me, agreeing to a love marriage. Well, he should have done this when I was 16, I mumbled under my breath rather petulantly. So I wrote to my dear friend Ashok, who was working in Bangalore- a gem of a man – and asked if he would be inclined to marry me.
I had known him from my MBA days at university, but I received no reply. I couldn’t blame him, if someone wrote to me, years after not speaking to each other, I would decline too. Meanwhile, Rahul was pursuing me quite aggressively and we started a live-in construct. I was afraid of being judged, but thankfully, our neighbors were not orthodox people.
One day, we were swilling beer at a pub in the city. Rahul looked a little downcast, so I asked him what could be so troubling.
‘Nobody will marry me’
His younger brother was engaged to be married, and he despaired that no one would marry him. I probed, so he said that it was because his father had committed suicide 15 years ago. I pointed out that his family was an elite, political, and well-respected one, and logically, if his older brother and sister and now his younger sibling could get partners, so could he…right?
He shook his head and said, “I want a civil marriage with no money or gold transactions involved .” A near-impossible event among the community he comes from.
I playfully said, “So marry me!”
He said nothing. Well, he was quite an introvert, so I didn’t expect him to say much.
Here is where the universe introduced the twist in my life… I never expected myself to land in a situation where I would wonder how to choose between two guys. Life can really be unpredictable.
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Finally, he said yes
Ashok also falls in the category of ‘shy guys’, and he had contemplated my request for marriage for 3 months, and decided to say “YES”. He enrolled our mutual friend Deepak to speak on his behalf, and then, the whole machinery of a wedding began spinning.
Hold on! Not before I asked Rahul for his opinion – would he marry me? My eggs were dying out on me and I wanted kids. I was 29 years old, I argued, begged, pleaded. I had even shown him Daddy’s NOC letter. He remained silent.
“I’m in love with two men”, I told my friend. But I didn’t know how to choose between two men. Rahul was taking too long to initiate something. It seemed like a case of unrequited love, so I wanted to move on.
I decided to go ahead with the ‘Ashok weds Anney’ plan. My dad came over to meet him. The wedding was fixed for February 15, 1990.
A few days before the ceremony scheduled at Ashok’s house, I packed my bags to leave for Bangalore. Rahul came to see me off, we shared a joint at the airport, and he suddenly asked me if I was pregnant.
I said that I did not know, in an off-hand manner and promptly forgot about it. My cycles were always irregular and I never stressed out about it. How would I know? There were no tests on pee-sticks in those days. And so the flight took off to Bangalore.
Then, the phone rang
Cut to Ashok’s parents’ house in Bangalore. We had gone shopping for bridal wear for the relatives who would arrive the next day. His mom displayed their traditional family jewelry and finery…told me that I would have to learn his favorite recipes.
And then the landline phone rang. It was 11 pm. It was a trunk call, there were no cell phones then. Rahul was on the phone howling like a sorrowful dog. And the conversation went thus:
He couldn’t live without me. I had to return to him, and if I didn’t, he would kill himself. Especially in the event that I was carrying his baby.
I said, if it came to that, I would look after ‘his baby’. He asked, “So would there be an abortion?”
“No, if it turned out that I was pregnant, then I would have my baby and Ashok agreed that he would gladly be a father to any baby of mine.” Rahul wailed that he’d kill himself. This made choosing between two guys all the more difficult.
Once again, I was stuck choosing between two guys. But the thought of marrying Rahul only lasted for a while. I knew Ashok was right for me. Or was he?
In the spur of the moment, my decision was made
I did not have the luxury of conducting a SWOT analysis of the situation, with the telephone receiver in one ear. I could not begin a new married life with suicide on the threshold…
Ashok warned me, “Anney, at every turn of life, he will threaten you with this outcome.” I decided on an impulse. I said I’d take my chances. In case I was carrying, it would have been an injustice to both men.
The long and short of it is, that this gem of a man, Ashok, bought me a plane ticket, and saw me off at the airport. He was shattered and embarrassed. I was sorry I let him down. So was his family, and so was mine.
My married life with Rahul lasted 5 years. But that’s a story for another day. I hope my story gave you an insight into how to choose between two guys. If you’re torn between two men, don’t just go with what your heart says. Listen to your mind too.
Don’t make an impulsive decision. Be rational. Listen to both your mind and your heart, and then do what you think is the more logical thing.
If you keep feeling on edge, like they don’t care about you or if they’re insecure about your friendships, they aren’t right for you. If they can’t trust you, then this relationship will never work.