Relationships – Hypocrisy and Double Standards

Link to my original post in my Blog Academic and Creative Writing Journal Vikram Karve: http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2017/03/mother-and-mother-in-law-dr-jekyll-and.html

Sometime ago – I met a lady at a family get-together.

Her daughter-in-law was dutifully following her all around – like the lamb in the nursery rhyme “Mary Had a Little Lamb”  

“Of course my son and daughter-in-law stay with me in our house – I believe in the Joint Family System…” the lady said when someone asked the daughter-in-law where she lived.

Later – I met the lady’s daughter and her husband (son-in-law of the lady).

I knew her “in-laws” – they lived in Sadashiv Peth.

“So – how is Sadashiv Peth…? I lived there in the 1960’s when I was a small boy…” I said to her (the lady’s daughter).

“I don’t live in Sadashiv Peth – I live in Aundh…” she said.

“Oh – so your “in-laws” have shifted to Aundh…?” I asked.

“No – my “in-laws” stay in the same old bungalow in Sadashiv Peth – but I stay with my husband in our flat in Aundh…” she said.

Later – I asked the lady: “So – your daughter doesn’t stay with her “in-laws”…”

“No. No. My daughter lives in her flat in Aundh. I advised her to stay separately – so she can enjoy her freedom – her “in-laws” are very old-fashioned – especially her mother-in-law – she will make my daughter’s life hell…” the lady said.

I smiled to myself at her double-standards and hypocrisy – the “Joint Family System” was good for her daughter-in-law – but – the same “Joint Family System” was not good for her daughter.

And – I remembered a story I had written sometime ago.

Sometimes – Truth is stranger than Fiction – or rather – there is a very thin line between truth and fiction.

Read on…

JOINT FAMILY versus NUCLEAR FAMILY 

HYPOCRISY – A Story of Double Standards By Vikram Karve

Part 1

JOINT FAMILY

“Is everything okay…? You don’t look well…” I said to her.

“I am okay, Sir – I am just feeling tired, that’s all…” she said.

“Tired…? Well – work has just begun…”

“My tiredness is not work-related, Sir…”

“Tell me – what is the matter…?”

“Sir – for me – it’s the long commute to work that wears me out – it takes me nearly 2 hours to get here to Hinjewadi from Kharadi – and in the evening – Sir – you know how bad the rush hour traffic is in Pune – it sometimes takes me 3 hours to get home – and then – even at home – there is so much work to do in the house – cooking, housework – I have to cook in the morning – and then again in the evening – sometimes I feel that I will collapse due to the exhaustion…” she said.

“Why don’t you shift nearby…? There are plenty of flats available in Wakad – just a 10 minute drive from Hinjewadi – you will easily get a good 2 BHK flat on rent well within your HRA – and it will be convenient for your husband too – his factory in Chinchwad is also a 10 minute drive from Wakad – in fact – there are some flats available for rental in my society – I will ask around – or – if you want – you can even buy your own flat in Wakad – I will find out…” I said.

“Thank you, Sir – but my ‘mother-in-law’ will not allow us to stay separately…” she said.

“Really…? Why…?” I said.

“Sir – my “mother-in-law” says that she believes in the “Joint Family System”…” she said.

Part 2

NUCLEAR FAMILY

Three years later – I met the same “mother-in-law” – yes – the very same mother-in-law of my erstwhile “Techie” colleague.

She was the same woman who believed in the “Joint Family System”.

By the way – I had changed my job – and – I was now working for another “IT Software Company” – also located in Hinjewadi.

Call it coincidence – but the woman’s daughter had recently joined my new company.

And – like her “daughter-in-law” – her daughter was also a “Techie”.

It was the company anniversary function.

The woman’s “Techie” daughter had come along with her husband – and she had also brought her mother and father along.

The woman smiled at me (the same woman who was the “mother-in-law” of my earlier colleague – and – the mother of my present colleague)

I introduced myself – and I told her that I had earlier worked with her “daughter-in-law” in my previous office.

“So – like your “daughter-in-law” – your daughter too must be having a tough time commuting to work to Hinjewadi from the city every day…” I said to the woman.

“No – my daughter lives in Wakad…” the woman said.

“Oh – your daughter lives nearby in Wakad…? So – her “in-laws” – your daughter’s “in-laws” – they live in Wakad – is it…? I said.

“No – her “in-laws” live in their house in Model Colony – it is too far from her office…” she said.

I was baffled.

The woman made her “daughter-in-law’ commute every day from Kharadi – which was much further away from Hinjewadi than Model Colony – where her daughter’s “in-laws” lived.

“Model Colony is not that far away from Hinjewadi…” I said.

“Actually – it is not that – I did not want my daughter to stay with her in-laws – they are too old-fashioned – so I told my daughter and her husband to buy their own flat and stay separately…” she said.

“But – I thought that you believed in the Joint Family System – didn’t you make your daughter-in-law stay with you as a Joint Family…?” I said.

“That is different…” she said.

I was susrprised – so I asked the woman:

“Different…? 

What do you mean different…? 

You force your daughter-in-law to stay with you as a Joint Family” 

But – you tell your daughter to live separately from her in-laws as a Nuclear Family…? 

I just don’t understand your views. 

Do you believe in the Joint Family System”…? 

Or – do you believe in the Nuclear Family System…? I said to the woman.

“You won’t understand these things…” the woman said – and she walked away.

EPILOGUE

Yes – I don’t understand these things – I just don’t understand the hypocrisy.

As a “mother-in-law” – she believed in the “Joint Family System” – and – she wanted her “daughter-in-law” to live under her command and she expected her “daughter-in-law” to serve her

But – as a mother – she believed in the Nuclear Family System” – and – she wanted her daughter to live separately from her in-laws”…

I don’t understand why women have double standards – one yardstick their daughters-in-law – and  another yardstick for their own daughters.

VIKRAM KARVE

Copyright © Vikram Karve
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Disclaimer:

  1. This fiction story is a fictional spoof, satire, pure fiction, just for fun and humor, no offence is meant to anyone, so take it with a pinch of salt and have a laugh.
  2. All Stories in this Blog are a work of fiction. Events, Places, Settings and Incidents narrated in the stories are a figment of my imagination. The characters do not exist and are purely imaginary. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

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No part of this Blog may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical including photocopying or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the Blog Author Vikram Karve who holds the copyright.

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Link to my original post in my Blog Academic and Creative Writing Journal Vikram Karve: http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2017/03/mother-and-mother-in-law-dr-jekyll-and.html

Abridged and Revised Version of my Story HYPOCRISY posted online earlier by me Vikram Karve on January 25, 2016 in my Academic and Creative Writing Journal at url: http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2016/01/hypocrisy.html and http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2016/02/joint-family-versus-nuclear-family.html and http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2016/06/family-humor-joint-family-versus.html

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