You are worth it

“Not one drop of your self-worth depends on the acceptance of others.”

-Anonymous

No, this isn’t an advertisement for Loreal. Most of the times we forget or are forced by the society to destroy our self esteem to keep in line with the society’s expectations. I, like a good child always listened and believed everything that the society dumped on me. If they told me I’m fat, I worked on losing weight, if they told me my hair was frizzy and didn’t look good, I straightened it to fit the normal beauty standards, if they told me I shouldn’t wear certain clothes to talk to certain people, I restrained myself from doing it. I did everything they told, yet, the society never seems to be happy with the way I live.

I never thought it would be so hard to be an unmarried 30 year old girl in India. As I aged, I saw many old electronics and gadgets being replaced with newer, better versions. But somehow, the mentality of people has remained the same, if not, digressed over the years! Though people don’t tell me directly, I can sense the fear in my parents and relatives minds for not being married by the so called golden age of 30. Sometimes they feel that my pictures aren’t good enough, my qualification becomes an issue at times, my location is a problem many a times. There is always some or the other reason. I’m never affected by any such “so called” rejections because I have got nothing to lose here. I am very happy with the way I have lived my life, my personality, my achievements, my qualification and of course my appearance. If that doesn’t suit someone for any reason, that’s totally valid. But that doesn’t make me any less of a person.

When two people love each other and chose to spend the rest of their lives together, they get married. However, I have come to realize that people treat single people differently, especially after they have crossed the general age of 30. I don’t want to succumb under the society’s pressure and get married just for the sake of it. But why do I feel like a criminal for not doing what the society expects me to do at this age? I am not in love with anyone, nor do I have a genuine connection with someone at the present moment. Sometimes these things happen all of a sudden, the other times it can take up to an eternity. I don’t want to live my life, feeling like an outcast, counting my days till I get married just to feel like a normal human again. I really don’t know if I’ll be able to do this though. Like always, I’ll try my best to not allow such things to affect me, however, they do hurt me at times more than I can imagine. I am a human after all, any threat to my existence is physically and mentally exhausting!

To all the people who might feel the way I do at the moment, just remember,

  • YOU ARE ENOUGH
  • YOU DESERVE THE BEST
  • YOU ARE WORTH IT

Indian Matchmaking

#46/100

A few weeks back, Netflix came up with a show based on the Indian Matchmaking process that quickly rose to number one slot in India. I watched the show in one sitting and thoroughly enjoyed it considering it as a satire on the “arranged marriage” culture in India. Though many viewpoints and comments made on the show were horribly wrong, I managed to get a good laugh out of it. However, there were many who thought that the viewpoints expressed on the show were grossly inaccurate and shows our country’s culture in bad light.

Well, I can’t speak for the country in general, but my experience in this regard has been somewhat similar to the show. About 2 years back, I registered myself on a matrimonial website. Ever since I created an account on it, the only thing I wished to do was to delete it ASAP. Don’t get me wrong, I know there are many people who have managed to find their life partners through such websites. After being on it for more than 2 years (unfortunately I’m still a part of it), I have concluded that virtual dating/marriage is not my cup of tea. The process is so technical and mundane, it makes working in a corporate job a joy ride compared to it.

The initial few requests that I received wanted to match our “kundalis” (horoscopes) before initiating a conversation. Yes, it’s 2020 and we still allow the position of stars and moon to dictate the terms of our life. Then came a gentleman (at least he considered himself one) who tried very hard to show that he is the ‘quintessential modern’ guy with an open mindset. After barely talking for a week, he wanted to know if I had made up my mind to marry him, say WHAT? I didn’t give him an answer as I was unsure at that moment. A few more days in and he tells me that he is talking to other girls as well. Come again? Did I hear it right? I was extremely upset and wanted to call it off but he sweet talked me into believing that I was the only person he has connected with and he wanted to continue talking with me to know me better. Call me naive or extremely DUMB, I believed him and continued. After almost 1.5 months of daily calls and messages, I had made up my mind but he had another plans. The moment I asked him to decide about our future, he gave me a lame ass reply and ghosted me.

Yeah, this incident hurt me terribly at that time and I took a long time to recover from it. It took me a while to try my luck again with these websites. After a lot of misses, I connected with a guy who made it easier for me to converse with. We (rather I) had a lot of good conversations for week when he asked me a question which ended up becoming a deal breaker for him. He asked me if I had any addictions, when I replied in the negative, his demeanor had a visible change. He started conversing less and gave me to the point replies. Owing to my last experience, I didn’t want to leave without finding out the reason behind the change in his behavior. Turns out he found me too “perfect” for him and felt that I would change him if we got together. I really didn’t know what to say. I was glad that it ended and I got my closure.

After a long time of believing that I needed to be married to be happy, I’m finally at a place in my life where I’m truly enjoying (or at least try to) every tiny detail about my life. I don’t have the intense desire to be with someone who can change my life for the better. I somehow have found solace in my own self and realized that the only person who can change my life is I, me and myself. Ever since, I’ve had this realization, I don’t feel unhappy with such experiences or disappointments. I have found the strength to stand up for myself and know what’s completely right for me.

Meanwhile, my life in the “Indian matchmaking” scene is still the same. No matter how educated or successful you are in life, a girl is made to feel incomplete if she isn’t married. A distant uncle called my mother today to tell her how happy my cousin made him by calling off her inter-caste marriage, quitting her job as an air hostess and marrying a guy from our community. Apparently, my cousin had a “bad” image for hanging around with her guy friends and partying in clubs (seriously?????). He sent my mother a proposal for me. I found the guy decent enough to share my details with. My mother gets a call back in an instant, “Don’t let her know, but do we have any pictures of her in a saree or salwar kameez instead of jeans? And there we go again!!