Calling men Joru Ka Ghulam if they listen to their wives or pay heed to their suggestions is a common practice. Husbands agreeing with their wives is seen as an anomaly in our society. Clearly, something is wrong with the guy. Usne apne vash me kar lia hai ise. In Indian society, husbands always have the last word in any discussions with their partners, or so men and women are brought up to believe. So we don’t know what to do with men who would rather listen to their wives.
Men are conditioned to be leaders, in and outside of their homes. They must take the final decision in any matter and their entire tribe should make piece with whatever they decide. Due to this, there is a common perception that men know better, at least than women in the household. So any man who listens to his wife’s advice is setting himself up to be seen as unintelligent or “manly” enough. As a result, many men who are supportive of their wives tend not to do so openly because of peer pressure.
They Are Supporting Each Other
What’s so hard is understanding that marriage is supposed to be both partners supporting each other and not just wives throwing unconditional support to husbands and not expecting anything in return. Both partners are equal hence no one should be ridiculed for supporting the other.
Many men want an obedient wife but turn the tables and a woman is demanding “too much” if she wants a husband who listens to her.
Remember when Virat Kohli took a paternity leave, how he was mocked and called ‘joru ka ghulam’ for doing so. Anushka Sharma taking a maternity leave is fine because she’s supposed to take care of the baby as per the constructed gender roles but Kohli stepping up for the same damages social construct. This also highlights the inequality in marriages and households. The partners are not expected to shower support to each other. It is seen as a woman’s job to support her husband in achieving success and fulfilling his dreams. But when a man does the same he is told that it is his wife “wears the pants” in the house.
Suggested Reading: Men Are Victims Of Patriarchy Too. Here’s How
Men Are Expected To Dominate
Any man who refuses to dominate his wife is shamed for not doing so. According to the norm set by patriarchy, wives are supposed to be subservient and submissive. Having their own opinions, their own voice, and taking their own decisions is not on the list. On the other hand men are supposed to control everything for women and if they fail to do so they are ridiculed. Imagine a man being shamed for supporting the person he loves and treating them as an equal.
Isn’t supporting his wife the bare minimum a husband can do? How does being supportive equals being a slave?
The Idea Applies Only To Women?
Joru ka Ghulam actually translates to ‘wife’s servant’. Obviously, no one should be anyone’s servant in a marriage but it’s absolutely of no problem to people when women are treated as unpaid labourers. Husbands who help their wives in household chores are labeled as ‘joru ka ghulam’ but wives literally spending all day cooking, looking after the family are hailed as goddesses, in a bid to romanticise unfair distribution of household duties.
It is high time we get rid of the power dynamics that hurt both men and women and stop shaming husbands for literally just supporting their wives. None of the partners is supposed to be a slave to the other. If a wife must support her husband, the same goes for husbands too. Supporting a partner doesn’t emasculate a man, in fact it liberates him from the clutches of patriarchy and helps him be a better husband.
Views expressed are the author’s role.