Have you ever avoided attending family functions or gatherings because of intrusive aunties and their annoying questions? It is as if they have no sense of personal space and believe if their right to police the lives of young people around them. In fact, they believe they are doing society a favour by ensuring that young people keep living by social norms and don't stray from the course. Just why are desi aunties obsessed with marriage?
Well, if you are a woman who is on the hit list of aunties who are constantly poking their noses in your personal lives then definitely you must have felt the need to bury your head in the ground when asked, "Beta when will you marry?" According to society, there is a marriageable age for women and any woman that passes that age has done a great disservice to the samaj and her parents. She suddenly transforms from being a sought-after bride-to-be to a burden on her family. Many desi aunties believe it is the mission of their lives to ensure that women do not ever become a burden by the virtue of staying single. But can the aunties just let young women be?
It's Our Choice
Why is it so difficult for aunties to understand that marriage is a personal choice? Some women want to marry while some do not want to do that at all. Also, at what age to marry is a personal choice. You enter your 20s, and these aunties will come with rishtas for you. “You are of the right age now. If not now, then when will you marry?" When we are ready aunty.
"Who will marry you when you are 30?" Any guy for whom young age is not a parameter for his life partner. "You don't want to get married? Who will look after you for the rest of your life then?" Well guess what, aunty? We can do that for ourselves.
There's No Right Age
There is no such thing as an 'appropriate age' for marriage. Society ends up controlling women and telling them what to do in different ways. 'Marriageable age' is one of those. It literally dictates when to marry and burdens women with unwanted pressure and taunts.
Suggested Reading: Padhai ke Baad Shaadi: Dear Society, Can You Stop Imposing Marriage As Goal?
As soon as a woman crosses the legal age of marriage, society thinks its time she should get married. But what if we look forward to more years of studying and exploring new avenues? Women who want to marry at that age, that's their choice. But that doesn't mean it is the only valid choice. Stop telling women that there is a right age to marry and that if they pass that age, they are unfit to marry.
For Us Settling Down Means Something Else
There are certain things I want to accomplish before I get married. "Don’t you want to settle down and start a family?” But what does 'settling down' mean? What if settling down for us means settling and having a stable career? What if settling down doesn't mean marriage and having kids.
Also choosing our careers over marriage doesn’t mean that we don’t want to do it at all. But, we all imagine our lives a certain way and everyone has different priorities. We want to settle our careers first and we have different goals for our future. We want to be financially independent first and then think of anything else or maybe not think of anything else. Can you please leave us alone?
Stop Pressuring Women
Aunties really need to chill and stop pressurising women into &list=PL7q0plMPm0wvyd-gLBLB56QvkvSCphFhT&index=4&t=165s">marriages. They need to understand that women want to be mentally prepared for a life-altering decision like marriage. Something as demanding as this doesn't just work on the norms that they have lived their life by. We need to be prepared for it.
So dear aunties, our shaadis are not your responsibility, the only thing that we want from you support in our choices.
Views expressed are the author's own.