I think marriage might be a beautiful thing, as I have heard people always say.
But, It’s the timing I suppose.
I got married at a very young age. 23 I was. I had dreams. Passions. Desires from life. It was young love. So I came across a guy. He approached me. I was recovering from a breakup at that time. I was 19. He was 5 years older to me. We chatted for a couple days and he straight away proposed me for marriage.
Taken aback I was, but in a romantic way. Young blood. I told him I cant right now, I am too young duh. Long story short 2 years after that we got engaged. In that time I had really fallen in love with him. It was so sudden, I didn’t have time to grasp what was happening. He sent his parents over, my parents, being their very liberal self, thought it was cool if their daughter wanted it, they trusted me with my decisions. Always had. One day, just a week after his parents came over, I got back home from university and my mother tells me we have fixed your engagement date, which was literally just two days after. I was scared even then. I didn’t say anything because everything was just happening and my parents thought she is old enough to know what she wants and I did not want to present myself otherwise infront of them.
But the truth was, I was not. I didn’t know what I was doing or what will happen. I had NO idea what a marriage was. Or that it could be difficult. I had seen a perfect marriage of my parents, my mother had the most supportive and sweetest in laws.
People I meet now and see the life I am living now ask me the first question that is: WHY on earth did you marry so early.
Truth is: I don’t know.
It was because nobody stopped me, nobody told me I was too young to make these decisions. I was the eldest of my siblings and my parents treated me likewise. On the day of my engagement it was mutually decided by my parents and his that the wedding will take place exactly 2 years later. And it did. As soon as I started my last year of bachelors, I got married.
The day I got married, I knew I was on my own now. My husband didn’t have a job then. He said he wasn’t a job person and wanted to invest in his own start-up. I, not knowing what actual adult life was like out there, agreed with him. He took all of our wedding salami and invested it his start-up. 3 years down, its still a startup and he only earns enough to pay for his office rent and travel and occasional (read: rare) night outs. I was still in my college thesis year. I took up a job. It was a freelance thing, I got paid 10k a month. I was happy. It was ALL I had. My university travel expanse, clothes, food and all other basic necessities, my art supplies and just about everything, I had to do with my own money. I even supported him. All the couple friends we had (he had), whenever we would go to the invited parties, I would buy the gifts and all. I would sometimes sacrifice my own needs just to save money to buy presents for my siblings on their birthdays because I didn’t want my parents to think that I was having a hard time financially.
Most days when I am outside, I don’t even have money to eat. Once or twice when I did give them the hint, my mother clearly told me : Tou phir kyun ki thi shaadi? Wo le kar gaya hai aapko tou ab uthaye kharchay bhi. And I being the understanding supportive wife, didn’t want to give my husband any more stresses and wouldn’t ask for money.
He didn’t have any, even if I asked. And also because I didn’t like asking for money. 3 years down, it is still the same.
For the first two years of my marriage, I cried every single night straight. A carefree happy-go-lucky, always having person and turned into a tear factory.
My mother in law gave me a very tough time (still does) the reason being that we were living in their house, we didn’t pay any bills, groceries anything, and according to her I should be thankful and lucky for that and in return be a physical and emotional slave to them. I got a job as soon as I graduated. The night before my first day of job, my mother in law hated it but couldn’t stop me because my husband supported me in my career, said that me starting a 9-5 job didn’t mean that I don’t look after the house chores now, I had to manage each and everything despite. I made the breakfast, cleaned the rooms, the kitchen before leaving the house. Come home, cook dinner, make rotis, clean up. Take her out for her market chores. Do everything. My husband gets home late, so it was just me. And I did. Because I was young and easily intimidated. I would be so tired and frustrated at the end of the day that I wouldn’t talk to my husband. We never got to spend our alone time. Somebody once said to me, Give it all and then see what happens. So I did. I gave it my all. I still am giving it, my all.
Apart from all of this, my MIL was a very dominating person. In short, I didn’t met my friends, didn’t go to my parents often. Even as a couple, we would go out so less. I wasn’t expected to even stay in my room for long. Only because it would upset my mother in law. And eventually it would upset the whole environment of the house. And I didn’t want to do that. And my husband was too scared to upset his mother. Although he knew and acknowledged what was happening was not alright. Hence a very happy, bold, talkative and outgoing person like me was suppressed to be the version of herself that she absolutely hated. In this time, I lost most of my friends, because I was just never there and that slowly made me friends distance themselves.
Many times I told him I didn’t want to live like this. That it was not who I am. But it always ended up in a fight. And the only reaction I got was that He knows and accepts this nut is in a position where he cant leave his parents. So with time, I stopped talking. Stop sharing my feelings.
Because I just knew it would only lead to a fight and nothing else. But he always assured me things will get better. All I wanted and still want was to live with him. In peace. I love him. I cant imagine living away from him. But you can never have it all I suppose. So I decided to just go with the flow. And accept and work towards being an independent person so i could be in a position to make my decisions.
But also, as I grew up, I started realizing how different the both of us were. I was a completely different person than him. I wanted to connect to him. But the things I was into, they meant nothing to him. There wasn’t anything mutual that we could connect on.
I was different things from life. He wanted different. And once I realized that, I automatically started drifting away. I regretted not having discussed life goals or future plans with him before the marriage. I wished I had known what he or the environment he lived in was like. I wish I had thought through what marriage meant. People warned me before that I was getting myself into some really tough stuff at a young age. But probably I always wanted to show everyone that I was a strong, multitasking, independent woman who can handle it all.
Because I got married at an age where I was naïve and hadn’t really discovered myself, it was hard for me now that I was getting to know myself more. I didnt even know what the importance of money was in a relationship. The problem was, before I got married, I had JUST started building dreams. I had just started planning what I wanted from life. And then marriage happened. I did know what I wanted from life but just didn’t get the time to plan how I will do it. I would see people my age around me achieving so many things that I also had planned for myself. And as much as I would envy them, I would just be pitying my own self. And that made me distance myself from my husband. Because I blamed him. I loved him but suddenly stopped liking him. And I grew lonely. Very lonely. I had no one to talk to. I would cry myself to sleep every night. Would play the regret and blame games with myself all the time. I didn’t want to leave him. I didn’t want to upset my parents. So I took all onto me. Between managing our finances, struggling hard to support myself and keep up with the lifestyle I had grown up in my parents’ house with so they don’t get any hints of my situation and maintain that strong and smart image of mine everybody outside saw, I got tired and worn out physically (gained a lot of weight) and between not having anyone to share my feelings with and losing control over myself for distancing from my husband, left me emotionally introvert and lonely.
Fast forward to now. I have stopped blaming him. Because as I grew older, I realized you can’t blame anyone. It was my own decision. No one forced me too. So I now have to live through it. My passions haven’t died. They are still there. And I am still maybe just waiting for that one miracle to happen that would change my situation. I want to work towards achieving, if not all then maybe a few of those. But I believe I have become emotionally cold. I am still capable of love. But I have just stopped letting affectionate words move me.