'Adjust' is not a dirty word in marriage

'Adjust' is not a dirty word in marriage

Statistics say that divorces are on the rise in the Indian scenario like never before. Whether Delhi, Lucknow, Chennai, Kolkata or Maharashtra - which currently holds the dubious distinction of having the highest divorce rate in the country; everyone knows someone who is either going through a troubled marriage and considering separation; or someone who is already separated and on the verge of filing a divorce or worse, divorced already! Sometimes, for the most frivolous reasons including bizarre ones like TV channels being changed very frequently by the husband!!

Even the government, for a change, seems to be taking the popular path and making life simpler for those seeking to go their separate ways! The Union Cabinet in a meeting chaired by Dr Manmohan Singh himself, approved amendments in the Hindu Marriage Act - making divorce easier; and providing rights to adopted children at par with biological off-springs among other landmark reforms.

But despite the stats and the ruling, no one who has crossed the line to being single again, will say that the decision came easy or pronto! A consideration to hold onto the bond of marriage has always been agiven in the Indian scenario and ‘Compromise’ and ‘adjustment’ have always played a key part before someone has taken ‘the’ plunge. And those who have stayed on in marriages have made their choices consciously. Even lawyers have routinely asked clients to ‘adjust’ before taking a final decision.  

Pratima Gupta, an eminent HC advocate and a mother of two, who addresses cases of divorce among others says, “Divorce rates have gone up because women don’t want to ‘adjust’ in a marriage anymore.  The problem is compounded because ‘I, me and myself’ is taking precedence over everything else. Compromise is a big word. If the grounds on which they want a divorce are trivial, I always ask them to reconsider.”

As a woman, Pratima has adjusted her career and home in 18 years of marriage even though the decision didn’t come easy. “For me,” she states emphatically, “its not a compromise. I enjoy taking care of my family and children. It was a conscious decision to work and manage family simultaneously.”

Mamta Saha who left her singing career to take care of her family. “I have been married for 30 years. I could not sing after my marriage and I am really sad about it, but women have to ‘adjust’ to see their family happy and take the decision in the right spirit.”

There are others too for whom the decision to keep ‘self’ on the back burner has not been easy but they have ‘adjusted’ and are still raring to go back to lives of their own - albeit while staying in their marriages. Madhu Mahajan, an entrepreneur who had a thriving career in garment export put it aside to take care of her children. “I was really happy and content in my job. In fact, I was on top of the world but then marriage happened! My husband wanted me to continue working but my mother-in-law had issues and so, I prioritised and adjusted my life to bring up my children. But now that they are grown-up, I want to start working again.”

The key to remaining in a marriage and living your life simultaneously has to be worked out by the woman, and ‘compromise’ or ‘adjust’ needn’t be projected as villains in the everyday play of married life.

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