I was a pampered child, born and brought up in a small town. After finishing my studies in 2007, I moved to Bangalore and started working there. A few years later, my parents found a suitable match for me. They chose a well-settled guy with a good family background from Kolkata. I met him for about 15 minutes and this sealed my fate. Everything was fixed.
Marriages are made in heaven if they go well but the opposite if they don’t.
End of the honeymoon
I got married in December 2010 and my beautiful life ended. The initial honeymoon period was good. We went for a honeymoon to Goa. It ended quickly and we came back to Kolkata. Real life began. My in-laws, who pretended to be very sweet before the wedding, suddenly turned rude.
During the initial days of my marriage, when I needed my partner the most, he was too far from me. My husband, who was supposed to be with me at night, watched TV in his mom’s room. He came into the room when I fell asleep. He didn’t like talking to me.
We didn’t have any physical intimacy, because according to him I didn’t smell good.
After marriage, we lived like roommates, the only difference being change of married status. I felt lonely and depressed. I was just a maid in the form of a good daughter-in-law to please everyone.
My in-laws’ dominating nature and their rules were applicable to me, not their son. My husband was a complete mama’s boy. His mother still cared for and pampered him like a kid, which was too much to digest. My marriage was just nominally with my husband. In reality I was married to my in-laws. I had to love them, take care of them, please them and in return I got accusations and sarcasm.
It was frustrating
I was fed up with my life. My husband didn’t even look at me. He spent all his time outside the home in office or with friends. In a new city, with no job, I had to be with his parents and live my life according to their wishes. I got frustrated with my suffocating life.
Related reading: The prevalence of the ideal daughter-in-law stereotype
I lost my job, my identity, everything, after marriage. The least I expected from everyone was acceptance, love and respect. Unfortunately, I got none.
During the initial days, I talked to my parents on the phone and cried. They told me to try to adjust. I was emotionally drained.
It was then I decided to take charge of my own happiness and live my life the way I wanted.
I started looking for a job to keep myself engaged. In 2015, I got a job in a company near my home. You can’t imagine my happiness as I got the key to uphold my own freedom. At least I could spend a few hours as I wished. My in-laws and husband opposed my job, saying the pay was very less. Actually they were worried about the daily household chores like cooking, cleaning etc. I assured them that I would do everything before leaving the house and after coming back.
I started work, making sure that my housework wasn’t affected. Everybody in the house today is happy, and even I am happy and content with my work. I can get fresh air outside instead of the suffocating atmosphere at home.
I took charge of my life
The best part when I started working was the drastic improvement in my relationship. I could feel the change. I felt more confident and updated to showcase my skills. Even my husband realised it. He saw how well I managed working and household chores. We started talking about so many topics after coming back from work. We have dinner together, watch TV and discuss things together. This reduced the communication gap and increased the physical intimacy between us. He learnt to accept the similarities and respect the differences. Yes, I got acceptance, love and respect after seven years of my marriage.
Related reading: Why I became happier when I stopped trying to please my in-laws
I realised how difficult it is for a woman to survive when she isn’t accepted. Don’t ever lose hope. Be yourself and never allow anyone to mistreat you. You are not born to please everyone. Work for yourself and be independent. It’s not only to earn money and be financially independent but also to live according to your own choice. It keeps you updated and you can take your decisions wisely.