Much ado about marriage
Any fool can say that a fairness cream ad is discriminatory and the fair skin vs dark skin gobbles up media space like a paid for advertisement. So does any kind of discrimination because it is a controversial word and most often has some story attached to it. I thought I had heard or known about all kinds of discrimination until I fell victim to the MWS or the Married Woman Syndrome.
MWS is when a person assumes that a married woman has no life on account of the marriage and willfully assumes that she will be unavailable for parties/get-togethers’ walks/ gym just to name a few. It is like being treated like a social outcast. A married woman who swallows up her dignity and asks why not me will be invariably greeted with pitying looks and ‘‘We thought you will be busy and would want to spend time with your husband’’ and whispers which you assume sounds like ‘‘ See, I told you, her marriage is in the rocks ’’ So that’s why when the husband has a night out guzzling beer with his buddies, the wife watches reruns of Friends. Single friends become merciless. They become your placards that say ‘‘ Sorry, she is married (underlined thrice) ’’. Every woman likes to get an appreciative glance or a compliment and that would be quashed by the talking placards. A colleague of mine introduced me to a particularly good looking DJ as ‘‘ Hi, I am so and so and Oh, she is married ’’. The DJ frosted like a popsicle and I spent the rest of the evening drawing circles with my mock tail straw, feeling like the third wheel of the bicycle. Being a victim of MWS means, you get a ‘Married’ tag with your name or worse you become married and soon they would even expect you to say, I am Married, applying for the post of Wonder why married rhymes with buried? Coincidence? Just when I thought I heard it all, my classmate from college calls me out of the blue and says ‘‘ Hi Aunty ’’. To my hysterical scream as to why ‘‘ Aunty ’’ when we are of same age, He quips,‘‘ But you are married ’’. Needless to say the conversation ended there.
Recently after a particularly good job interview, on retrospection I wondered why I didn’t mention that I was married. Was I scared that I would become a victim of MWS and watch my single counterpart walking away with the plum job only because of the assumption that she could put in longer hours? Single women are portrayed with independent ‘‘ she knows what she wants ’’ tags. There are even polls about what single women think, how they manage in this big bad world and how to them men are like extra baggage. Whereas any mention about married women and they talk about the ‘saas bahu’ serials. Married women get stuck with the stereotype that they have to don and drown in a sari with the cliched embellishments like gaudy black beaded chains and orange sindoors. When the single woman gets to make a point in the boardroom, the married woman gets to cry and sacrifice for the sake of her family. I wish somebody would tell the serial makers to stop propagating the MWS.
Maybe all married women should hold hands and start a METMA ( Married women for the Ethical Treatment of Married women Association) and stop watching the married women bashing serials or they could put on their discriminatory shoes and tell their single friends ‘‘ Yeah, I am smart enough to get a guy ’’. On the brighter side at least MWS is better than having a boyfriend with the MMS facility.