Since childhood, we were brought up with stories and fables of happy ending and, quotes saying,“And they lived happily ever after..,” or wait, hang on, did they?
For years the common narrative of marriages, being the sole purpose of a woman’s life has been fed and sold to us in the form of romance novels, movies, songs, soap-operas, etc. She must abide by it, even if things go extremely south, since it’s her duty to serve (courtesy: patriarchy of course!)
As per India Today, unsurprisingly, India has the lowest divorce rate, which go as low as being less than one percent, this in a country which has the highest domestic violence and depression rate. In India, one out of every three married women, face domestic abuse, and, yet we have so many happy successful marriages.
Are people really happy or have they forced themselves in wrong relationships just because of the stigma that comes attached with a divorce?
One such example is of Ross Geller from Friends, Ross Geller received much flak for going through three divorces in the sitcom. Now, imagine, a Rosselin going through three divorces or a Roopa or a Rubiqa. Society seems to develop a very cold exterior when it comes to judging females with history of failed relationships. In this situation, either of the two things happen: Regressive society makes it tough for you to quit marriage, therefore, you find yourself in a spiral of silence or worse, you, yourself endorse the normalcy in a toxic relationship. So how does this normalcy get propagated? It’s a complex work of the culture that is structured around it.The structure includes, triggering Indian soap operas, which apart from popularising superstition also endorse patriarchy on their lavish sets of never ending television series. Just in case, if you think, it’s primitive thinking and the novel millennial mindset which detests Indian soap operas and, the western culture, is way beyond it, then again you might want to reconsider. Calling it quits, is not only stigmatised for marriages but similar patterns are observed in millennial dating as well.
Notion of women being a therapy centre for poorly raised men is very much part of a popular culture even today. After book series, (later turned into a movie) authored by Anna Todd gained handsome popularity because it sold good, chast, pious girl Tessa Young and bad boy Hardin Scott. In yet another famous book It Ends with Us by Colleen Hoover, readers were left agitated when the protagonist left her abusive husband Ryan for the good guy Atlas. Most readers shipped the toxic relationship that protagonist had with her husband, over the good one.
Prachi Khare, Journalism student, Kamala Nehru College, who is fanatic about American TV drama Grey’s Anatomy, when asked as to why she shipped the toxic relationship of Meredith Grey and Derek Shepherd said,”It’s so engaging to watch the vulnerability of characters trying to sustain their relationships.” She further added, “I understand it’s fictional but I find myself like an idiot correlating it with my own life.”
The dangers of such content is that it subconsciously reinforces the wrong relationships, thereby, making adults be in wrong relationships albeit the fact that generational timeline has progressed. Hate to play the devil’s advocate, but the media is based on the preference of people’s taste and, a reflection of the society. Perhaps, we can be more progressive about our choices for structuring an environment which permeates healthy relationships, and is accepting towards the ones, which have failed.
Feature Image Credits: thedelhiwalla