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Mother, writer and daydreamer. Also chocoholic and chick-flick lover. But mainly mommy. To two boys, at that! When not escorting my Elder One (EO) to karate class, I'm trying to get in as many cuddles as possible from my Younger One (YO). And when not doing either, I'm hard-at-work trying to maintain a steady relationship with my laptop. And as for the Man I Married (MIM), well, let’s just put it this way – even though we share a bedroom, our most meaningful conversations are held over the cell-phone!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Love, Marriage and Other Modern-Day Disasters

Edited to add the bit at the end, paraphrased from my comment to Passionate Goof's post.

Last week, I saw a movie and a reality show finale that had me questioning my views on love. I thought I’d share them here and wonder aloud, and request you all to do me the honour of sharing your thoughts as well.

Ok. First, the movie. No prizes for guessing that it’s “Love Aaj Kal” that I’m talking about. I didn’t like it. There. I said it. I didn’t like it.

I won’t diss it totally; there are some things I liked about it, but only in hindsight. Like the fact that Deepika’s character, Meera, was shown to be a career-woman and that she was ambitious. And not in an evil, greedy, money-hungry way that most movies will depict career-minded women, to be. She was at a good place in her life, career-wise, and she chose that over a relationship that very possibly would have fizzled out after six months. She chose a certainty over what seemed to be a non-certainty at the time. And she wasn’t vilified for it. If anything, her choice seemed the most natural thing in the world. You know what the weird thing about this is? It’s the fact that so many blogs have talked about this very fact and hailed it to be a great step forward in the depiction of ‘real women, making real choices’ in a reel land, and yet it escaped me. That’s because her action never ever really struck me as being note-worthy or out of the ordinary. If anything, it was so natural, so RIGHT, that it didn’t make me sit and take notice. I glossed over how ground-breaking it might be. It was only later that I realised that “Wow, this is a slice of reality. Something that we are not only comfortable with, but also, something that we know to be regular and not at all extraordinary.”

It’s this practicality that’s kinda killing me though. Do love and reason go hand-in-hand? Is love supposed to be a well-thought out, logical reaction to a certain situation that presents itself before us? And if it is; if we start being logical about love from the very get-go, what prevents us from being logical right through the end? If so, then why didn’t Meera stick with the safe, secure, good-looking and madly-in-love-with-her, Rahul Khanna-character? Is it fair to ruin somebody else’s life so that you can wait for someone else to come to his senses and realise that he’s in love with you after all? Umm, what if that don’t happen, mamma? Wotchya gonna do then?

I know, I know…her arguments in defence of her actions made sense, but girl! Suck it up!! You could have done a lot worse!

I know a lot of people who agree with me. And yet, there are many who laud a Meera’s actions. They say, isn’t it better to get out once you know you don’t love a person, rather than drag on a relationship and be miserable? Ok, but what about the hurt and pain that you’re causing the other? Do you have the right to do that?

I don’t know. It all seems so confusing. I personally know of a few people who broke off engagements and relationships because they fell in love with other people or were in love with their ex-es. One of these worthies broke off his wedding twenty days before D-Day, months after all the invitation cards had been sent out and all the preparations had been made!! I mean, who does that?!?

Why am I so riled about this? Well, a little incident from my past. One of the MIM’s ex-girlfriends flew all the way from Delhi to Bombay, to convince him to change his mind, dump me and marry her! It didn’t happen (obviously!!), but what if she had managed to convince him? What would I have done? Drowned my sorrows, had indiscriminate sex with random guys, come out stronger six months later singing “I Will Survive”? Or would I have been broken, dejected and sworn-off men forever? Or would I have married the first guy who would have answered my matrimonial ad on Shaadi.com?

I left the theatre after watching ‘Love Aaj Kal’ feeling very irritated. Is this what our generation has become? Selfish to the point that we don’t care whose feelings we are trampling as long as we get what we want? Also, has marriage really become as easy as a fake orgasm…switch on and off as and when needed? Get on and off the train whenever and wherever you want…there are no scheduled stops anymore?

And our parent’s generation. Was it all so simple and pure for them? You fall in love just once and that too forever? How strategic to use Rishi and Neetu Singh as Veer and Harleen Singh, btw!! The symbol of romance and marriage gone right, direct from Bollywood !

And then of course, there’s another take on ‘love-shove’ and all that, by the tremendously loud and garish Ms. Rakhi Sawant. Say what you want about the woman, but what she did was pretty path-breaking. Centuries after this age-old, ancient Indian custom had come to a halt, Ms. Sawant chooses to revive it, and on television no less! While we all laughed, had fun, commented on the bad acting and said whatever we wanted about it being scripted and all, it doesn’t take away from the fact that what Rakhi did, was very empowering to many, many women, subjected to the torture of ‘being seen’ by guys and their families before marriage and then rejected, for not being fair enough, pretty enough, too educated, too fat, too skinny and what-not. Rakhi’s ultimate choice was a logical, practical one…the best kind to make when love ain’t sniffing at your door.

Which brings me back to my dilemma? Is love practical in today's day and age? I mean, here's what I think...I feel that the 'live on love and fresh air' variety is not only a rarity in today's world, isn't it too good to be true? Doesn't it even sound impractical? But that's not it. It's this -- marriage springs you many a googly. Painful and unexpected -- enough to shatter your heart. So I can't help but wonder, if many of us had weighed our love on a scale of practicality, would we have gone on and married our spouse nevertheless?

12 comments:

Passionate Goof said...

I am risking being ridiculed here, but I indeed believe do love is the cure for everything in life. What is life all about, if not about being happy? And all the money in the world cannot bring us happiness, is what I believe.

About leaving someone who dearly loves me, I would never do that. i just cannot imagine hurting someone that way. But then again, i have never been in such a situation, so maybe it is not right for me to say.

I am old world, absolutely, love over everything, always and always!! But I don't make evil of people who choose otherwise, because they alone know what will make them happy, and I am sure they choose what is the best for them.

Monika,Ansh said...

Oh it is M4. I sometimes feel like I am from a whole different generation coz when I fell in love in college, I did not think even once about the family I was going to stay with, the kinda careers/ money they had, how conservative they were etc. & today I see my younger cousins weighing all this out before committing to "love" . It sometimes makes me feel silly but one look at Abhi & I know that we were always meant to be together & I am a hopeless romantic.
But to each his own I guess.

Iya said...

hey, thanks for coming and leaving ur mark on my blog!!
well i am a total romantic so not the greatest person to comment on this. Also, i have been lucky in love so my views will be biased..
i do believe that everything seems all right is the heart is in the right place..

Anonymous said...

Hi,

Love needs to be pragmatic in this era because of the high costs associated with breakup. So there is nothing wrong in foresaking love for career opportunities if people feel that career move has a higher utility than love. We can get love ( there are 7 billion folks on the planet), but not a plum career move at our convinience in this hypercompetitive world.

The statement you made about rejecting someone's love is not valid as loving someone sincerely/honestly does not necessarily mean you are entitled to their love.

The Rakhi Sawant series is just an attempt to skim the audience who seem to be enamoured by the reality TV concept. Anyone looking for more than a laugh at the expense of the participants involved is has totally misunderstood the concept of the show. Seriously how many people honestly expected a wedding?

Regards,
SK

Annie said...

I believe there should be a person-filter in your life and you dont need to answer the door everytime someone comes knocking... but once love comes into place, it shouldnt be vulgarized by 'logic'... Secondly, I always believe if there is a will there is a way. Everything can be worked out and love is never a hinderance...

Telling someone you love them, leading them on, waiting for them to fall for you, for whatever reasons and then bailing ... that should be a punishable offence. I have been a victim of that, and its an emotional rape. Taking advantage of a person and leaving them scarred for the rest of their lives, and incapable of ever trusting another person, let alone fall in love again...

The whole concept, so rampant nowadays, is thanks to the decadance of all things sacred in todays world...

I know I am ranting, so I'll stop here!

Indyeah said...

live on love and fresh air variety as you said on GM's blog :) yes , here is proof before you:))
alive and kicking:D

didnt know a thing beyond the person and it didn't matter either:)
This love is for keeps:)
says the eternal romantic in me.. give me love anyday..above all other things..

have not seen love aaj kal yet so cant say anything about that..

is love practical in today's day and age?

it has had to be I think...though haven't gone though this personally but the examples I see around me make me believe that perhaps it is a requirement of the changing times..
there are ofcourse still those who break free and look only for love...but they are a rare species:)

Monika said...

u know acc to be love has always been logical... i sound strange...

the only true selfless love stories have been of heer ranjha, romoe-juliet etc rest all have me somewhere first

though i am die hard romantic but also see the practical side of it... and i am one of those who think she did the right thing by walking out of the relation if u cant give it 100% she should not have married in the first place i agree but better late than never

sigh i dont know what i wrote :)

Mama - Mia said...

oh well! i have seen a close friend scarred because his wife realised after 6 months that she is not meant to be in a marriage! who does thta? how can you NOT know that you dont WANT TO BE MARRIED?

Ofcos in cases where the differences are too many and hampering the other persons emotional needs, then its best to walk out, rather than stay on.

and i quite dont garee with Rakhi Sawant empowering women! behaving like a man is not a sign of feminism really. i dont feel empowered if i adam tease, do i? what is wrong for one gender is equally wrong for another and getting back in the same coin... how does it make us better, really?! :)

meanwhile i beleive in love and everything that comes with it. and yet, there is absolutely nothing wrong with looking at the practical side of it all. i didnt, but i dont grudge those who do! :)

cheers!

abha

Ki said...

Hello. :)

Of course love is practical today! But that's why it fizzles out more. Because practicality is often a slap in the face!

Ask me, my boyfriend is movig to France for work. I just have to suck it up and move on.

Ugh.

But romantic that I am, I believe that we will make it work! Unlike stupid Saif and dumb Deepika who ruined many others as well :P

dipali said...

You know, M4, I liked the movie a lot for exploring these facets of modern day relationships. As long as they were together, the protagonists didn't really seem to take their relationship very seriously, it was largely subsumed by their personal ambitions. Even in the early scene where Jai's friends ask him if Meera is his girlfriend, he is slightly ambiguous about it. Meera does take the separation more seriously, but since Jai has shown his desire to break up for practical considerations, she decides to act nonchalant about it, even though you can see her pain.
And of course they remain good friends, but in different countries.
It's only after Vikram's proposal does she realise that she can't have both men in her life.
I am personally glad that she walked out of her marriage at that early stage itself rather than being a half-hearted wife to Vikram.It was foolish, it was unkind, but better then than later.
It does reflect contemporary realities in a fairly honest way, while reiterating the need for sincere, true, honest, soul mate kind of love.

GentleLavender said...

I vote for love coz I chose love as my way. Interesting discussion. Great writing.

Look forward to reading more.

The Ketchup Girl said...

hmmmmm. I dont see why one needs to mix love with anything. I mean with love doesnt everything just come together? I never saw a reason why deepika and saif needed that 'breakup' when they left eachother (speaking of which, i cringed eachtime they used that word- somehow sounded so bloody shady- hum break up karlete hain!! Sheeesh!)Long distance relationships don't work? says who? I had one. I am married to that man. But Mamamia, it was just a movie. Chalta hai yaar. Picture abhi baaki hai.