She Hosted A Party Celebrating Her Divorce. Why Is Society Making a Fuss?

Indian woman divorce party
Indian woman divorce party : A viral story about a 45-year-old Indian woman in the UK throwing herself a ‘happily divorce’ party with lots of unicorns and a finally divorced sash, raises questions on why are divorces seen with a pitiful gaze when it is just a freeing moment for some?

Compromise, culture, pity, shame or morality are a few of the words from a dictionary of what society thinks about divorce and god forbid if you are a woman divorcing your partner. But in a century when many women are finally getting economic independence, why is the subject of legally leaving a partner looked down upon by society? Why are we still looking at them with a pitying gaze?

Thankfully, there are few women who are starting the trend of being gay about divorce, unapologetically. One of them is 45-year-old Sonia Gupta, who threw herself a party after getting a divorce.

She wanted to celebrate the end of her 17-year-old marriage with her family and friends. Gupta, who got married in 2003, was living an unhappy married life in the United Kingdom.

Even though her family did not feel the same joy, they did not restrain her from celebrating hers.

In an interview, she said that some people believe that one’s life ends after divorce, but her life just began. She has learnt a lot in these years of marriage and has become a stronger person. She always wanted her old self back. She felt like she has broken free from prison and can now live her life the best way.

The idea of getting stuck in an unhappy marriage comes from a long past of- what will people say? The attitude of friends and family changes as they feel pity. Disregarding what the woman involved in the relationship or divorce feels.

It also comes from the masculine ideal of a woman’s body belonging to her husband as property. It being continuously perpetuated by the popular culture like cinema is of no help either. Scenes from Dil Dhadkne Do come to mind, when Priyanka Chopra’s character talks to her parents about divorcing her husband and the look they give her or Shefali Shah’s character being extremely unhappy in her marriage but letting emotions pass.

The film Hindi film Thappad starring Taapsee Pannu, accurately shows what a woman keeps enduring till the time things take a drastic and fatal turn. Even then, her friends and family keep telling her, ‘Par divorcee ka tag to uss pe lagega na‘ (the tag of divorcee will be put on her).

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A still from the film Thappad.

Why is getting a divorce so pitiful? So shameful? Why is it something to be sad about? Why cannot a woman feel happy about her separation openly? Why hide it anymore? These are a few of the questions that one should be asking themselves.

Things are not that sad when it comes to divorces. Most women are embracing it and publicly rejoicing too. So did copywriter Shasvathi Shiva in 2019. She posted, “DIVORCE IF FFFFFINAL,” on her Facebook feed. In an interview with the Economic Times, she said that if the divorce happened in 2018, she would have been this happy publicly. But now, she is going to throw herself a party.

Shiva took time to normalise divorce for herself through the help she found in a Facebook group, Worthy Women & Divorce and another group called I Am Happily Divorced. These groups help women in terms of legal advice and an effort to normalise divorce for them.

According to an ET report, over 110,000 users on Facebook have openly stated their relationship as ‘divorce’. Though women comprise a fifth of it, they surpass men with celebrating divorce over ‘divorce party’.

It is a delightful sight to see many women finally free from the shackles. The hope remains that people shaming or pitying women for being happy with divorce understand that marriage is not a sacred, sanctimonious and ultimate tie-up. One can choose to be happy with a floating unicorn balloon and ‘finally divorced’ sashes.

(Feature Image Credit: Party Grab/ Views expressed are the author’s own.)

Suggested Reading: 

If You Are A Woman Waiting To Break Shackles, These 5 Poems By Priya Malik Are For You

5 Laws You Should Know If You Are An Indian Married Woman

Know Your Legal Rights: Rights of a Woman Separated from her Husband

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