Shahria Khan Dina(Translated by Marufa Yasmin Antora):
Almost all of us are known to the sentence ‘when there is a pain all over the body, where should I apply the medicine’- while reading the grammar part in our childhood. But in the case of our social context, we already have invented medicine for the cure of all kinds of diseases. Well, are you surprised? Wait, I am not talking about those medicines leveled as ‘leech oil’ sold by the so-called Ayurvedic practitioners sitting on the footpath. Moreover, it’s also true that if the people of a country use the ‘leech oil’ in expectation for the cure of ‘whole body pain’, then the people of that country surely have a serious problem. So, here is the cure for all the diseases in this country- ‘marriage’.
Your daughter is not doing good enough at studies?
- Marry her off!
- Your son is not working or so?
- Marry him off!
- Your son is an addict?
- Marry him off! Everything will be alright.
Does your daughter/ son have behavior or understanding problems?
- Marry him/her off!
This medicine which is prescribed by the relatives, neighbors and other social beings- does it have the ability to cure all the diseases? Will everything be alright after that? Just like the last scene of any Bengali movie or like the end dialogue of any fairytale ‘’… and after that, they lived happily ever after’’. Do things really happen like that? Or, from right here starts another story – a real horror story where bad luck visits the lives which were fairly safe until then, and some innocent lives pay for it?
In this country, marriage is literally a hide and seek game of so many truths and lies. And also a “show off game” of a fake pride. Here the reason for marriage is based on the amount of wealth, not the consent or the mental conditions of the girl or the boy. So, after getting married it remains unknown who is staying all night awake by thinking about the poems or who is living the dreams of making a robot. The boy likes the Himalayas while the girl likes the Sahara Desert. Nobody really cares! As a result, they grow apart mentally.
Or in some cases, suppose the boy is an addict but his family has kept this as a secret. If the girl is not that clever or smart, and if it’s an arranged marriage then it would be so late when she will get to know about it. And after knowing the truth, she will have nothing to do. When the daily fights occur, there again appear the so-called social well-wishers just like before. And this time, they come up with different advice- ‘Hey, you better take a baby, everything will be alright then!’ After that if nothing goes right as expected then they found all the ‘’The faults lie with the wife, she couldn’t keep him(husband). She didn’t give him enough love that’s why such a good boy like him couldn’t stay in the house.’’
This advice of making everything alright is the first step of the mess. If you notice it properly, you can see it from your student life that your neighbors and the relatives know much more than you about your study, subject and the institution. It doesn’t matter if you are interested or not but you will be informed anyhow that the children of the far relatives of YOUR relatives are much more worthy than you.
Then there are countless questions- “As you have completed studies, why you are not getting a job?” ” Ow, you got the job… then why you are not getting married?” ” Wow! You got married…why you are not taking babies? ” “Well, you have one baby… why you are not taking another?” This ‘why’s’ will go on like this. We all have thousands of problems in our lives, then also we give others easy(!) solutions to their problems.
It’s important to learn not to give a damn to the customary questions and to the so-called social advice. ‘Oh no! They have done that and so I too have to’ – it doesn’t have a meaning. The life stories and the social positioning of each of our lives are different. We all don’t think the same way. And obviously, I know it better; how I have lived my life and what kind of shoes I had put on at that time. It’s totally my wish, how I will organize my life. And yes, that too I will do as per my own wish of course, not because of any pressure.
A sincere request to the guardians, take the coal-tar for free if necessary but do not marry off your children by listening to the free advice as to the solution of any problem. Rather than solving anything, it creates many more problems. Because in this case, the family is likely to fall apart. The worst thing is -the kids born from failed marriages suffer the most. You literally do not have any right to ruin other’s lives.
Getting married is not the only purpose of the life of a human being. If anyone has any kind of mental or physical problem, then it’s not mandatory to get married. Not by hiding any faults but if you get married after letting your future partner know about all the good and bad sides of yours, then a heartfelt emotional connection will develop and it is actually a proof of respect and purity towards the relation. When two people will realize and will have the ability to run the relationship then only they should confess and take a step forward saying ” Yes, we want to form a family and we want to spend the rest of the life together”. And the marriage should take place only after that.
Still now, in the social context of our country – if a person is mentally challenged, or fraud or an addict – the only treatment is to get them married and let them have children! Why people have to get married and form a family when they do not have the mental, physical or financial ability to do so? Will ever the society takes the responsibility of ruining the lives of so many people?
Shahria Khan Dina has completed BSS and MSS in Economics. She is fond of traveling and listening to music in her free time. She describes writing is one of her greatest passions that bring her happiness, as it allows her to express her thoughts on issues she feels concerned about.
Marufa Yasmin Antora is a humanitarian; works with the youth foundation named Light of hopes. Previously she worked as a school teacher and now she is working in Dhonichitra with the designation of a writer. She is also working as a translator in Sesame Street Bangladesh- a project of USAID. She always tries to promote human welfare through social reforms and that reflects on her works too.
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