Jun 15, 2010

Series: This NRI Life; Post:1

Introducing a new series"This NRI Life" I have requested some of the readers &  fellow bloggers to write a guest post for our blog. Here's the first post I have received. Stay tuned for more to come.... If I haven't contacted you in person, but you are interested in writing a post, please contact me at nrigirl@hotmail.com.

About the Author: I would say "A" is my very first blogger friend. I have come to appreciate him a lot during my blogging life. He is always ready to comment on my posts which is such an encouragement for a budding blogger like me. He is a world traveler and from time to time amazes us with travel snapshots & quizes. I enjoy his posts and requested him to write a guest blog for NRIGirl. He has covered a serious topic here;  making us to think before judging anyone...  Please join me in welcoming our Guest blogger, "A"!
You may visit his blog when you have a moment: “A” Simple Blogger of Simply Speaking.
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NRI Women: Are they really liberated?

“Rupa is a loose character. I am not sending my daughter to her for Art Class,” Sunita said assertively.
“Why do you think like that?” Anjali asked
“She separated from her husband and moved out. She is getting divorce, “Sunita replied.
“I can go and setup her new apartment,” Sunita’s husband interjected.
“Divorce is not a crime. We don't know the details,” Anjali tried to be objective.
“Well. She had called police two times earlier and accused her husband of violence and now she has moved out. She must be at fault,” Sunita continued to be judgmental.
“What did police conclude?” Anjali asked
“Probably police warned her husband but she is a bad example for Indian society. It is always woman’s fault. She needs to be more tolerant. Everybody has arguments,” Sunita replied

No. Sunita is not an uneducated woman living in a small village of India in 1960s.
Sunita is a Non Resident Indian born and brought up in the USA with a Bachelors degree in computer science and working full time in computer industry. She has two children including one daughter. Her husband is a businessman and they live in a million dollar house.

Despite her education and presumed broad minded attitude, Sunita looks down at Rupa because Rupa moved out to formalize divorce. Sunita does not know Rupa’s differences with her husband. She does not want to know either. She has disposition in her mind that in a divorce situation the wife is always at fault.

The social worker helping Rupa knows that she is a victim of domestic violence and finally stood up for herself and made a decision to get out turbulent marriage and humiliating life. Rupa is a first generation immigrant who came to the USA with her husband. Emotionally, financially, socially controlled and physically tortured by her manipulative husband for fifteen years in an alien country, she finally found a job and left him. Of course she tried to correct the situation by involving her and his parents in India but she was told to be obedient. All friends are common family friends and that makes it difficult to involve them.

Lack of support system, expectation to be an obedient and ideal Indian wife, limited true friends and excessive dependence on husband can suffocate NRI women in an unhappy marriage. It is not hard to imagine the misery if the unhappy marriage is coupled with physical and mental abuse.

Being in the USA does not lessen the extent of the issues. Stigma attached with separation or divorce is similar to India or in some cases worst because of clinging to old age values that treat woman as a household item. There are other women like Rupa who stood up for themselves and became independent. There is a large percentage who may still be suffering.

A large number of Non Resident Indian women and men still think like Sunita. Is it right? Can we change it?
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This post has been contributed by “A” Simple Blogger of Simply Speaking. “A” writes on variety of subjects including issues related to family life, short stories and travelogues.

10 comments:

SG said...

You are right. A large number of NRI men and women still think like Sunita. Very unfortunate.

NRIGirl said...

It's a reminder that we need to think differently from the common crowd and start making a difference in the people we may come in contact with.

Let's not forget, the stigma is for NRI men too... I wish such men & women who have suffered, abundant love in their new lives.

A said...

NRIGirl,

Thanks for kind words. Excellent idea to start a series and thanks a lot for giving me an opportunity to write on your blog.

NRIGirl said...

It's a pleasure A!

Nisha said...

Well said, A !
Your story truly depicts the typical Indian case abroad. But the thing is how do we educate these people? Education & literacy are definitely two different things.

A said...

Nisha, educating these people is difficult. One can teach kids but once the mind is set, it becomes hard to change the attitude.

Financial independence is the way to go for women.

NRIGirl said...

Well said A! It is an absolute necessity for the happily married girls (& guys) too.

Setting aside an emergency fund that you can access anytime (without having to run to your husband/wife) is a definite MUST. Can't stress more.

~ NRIGirl

Anjuli said...

What a great post- and I loved the way you introduced it with the eavesdropping on a very probable conversation. My dearest friend, Milli (NRI) who was living in Africa- suffered the same exclusions because she found it necessary to escape an abusive marriage-- I was always amazed that even though she was thousands of miles away from the situation- she was still under a 'stigma'- and getting to know her made me realize how wrong the stigma was!

Great post!!

A said...

Anjuli,

Thanks.

vivnau said...

a blog on indian political icons
http://decaricatured.blogspot.com/

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