Intro: Dear Ms. Padukone, Good that you have decided to enjoy absolute freedom, but I hope you remember that things in a relationship are reciprocal. Mapping to your way of deciding and living life, I can assume your partner too will get all liberties in terms of changing partners and establishing a family.
Dear Ms. Deepika Padukone,
In past few days, your video ‘My Choice’ and your ‘path breaking’ views on life, freedom of deciding things in terms of love, sex and marriage and so on has become a rage. And being a typical Indian woman, I too have few views and questions. First of all, let us not relate your views to your professional identity. Let us consider you as a normal woman like me or others going to office every day, or staying at home, looking after their work, families, relationships and much more. Now, let us analyse our lives from a generic perspective. Many of us wake up early in the morning, take a walk or read newspaper or get indulged in our day-to-day chores straight away. We cook, look after our children, husband, elders, and work in offices or at home and do multi-tasking. I know, to many so called feminists, it sounds annoying and they consider us as morons who keep working without getting any reward or appreciation. They do not even think once that Indian men too work hard for their families. They too do a lot of things to keep their families happy. I will come back to this too, for now let’s discuss your thoughts.
You must be feeling great in being free of all restrictions or responsibilities. But there are few things you need to retrospect before you choose this way of life for yourself and suggest others. Making love to your choicest person, one or many, getting married or not, coming late in the night and so on should certainly be of your choice, however, I hope that being a believer in gender equality, you must be applying the same rules to your partner too. In such a case, I hope you will not be having any problem when your partner will sleep with somebody else, or come late in the night, or one fine day will declare that his some other partner is expecting, and will leave you. Good that you have decided to enjoy absolute freedom, but I hope you remember that things in a relationship are reciprocal. Mapping to your way of deciding and living life, I can assume your partner too will get all liberties in terms of changing partners and establishing a family. Considering you as an intelligent woman, I hope you must have thought over all repercussions that would come out as an outcome of this so called freedom.
For many women like me, who believes in true gender equality, freedom comes with great responsibilities. I too decide on how to live my life, but my approach is holistic. Being the woman of my house, I develop the cultural environment of my home and hence enjoy my freedom considering the same. I have my spouse, parents, in-laws and children who look forward to me in terms of everything. They love me, care for me and form my little world, which makes me feel content from within. It is my reward and the biggest appreciation. That big grin on my family members’ faces is very precious to me, so is the faith my husband has in me. My freedom is related to my spouse’s freedom. As I said, I believe things are reciprocal in a relationship, I cannot afford to see my man sleeping around or changing partners, that’s the reason I never breach his trust. Trust indeed forms a typical Indian family, full of love and togetherness. There are problems too. Tell me one relationship, which does not come with problems. All you need to do is to manage them. And, in your case, what is the guarantee that in spite of enjoying absolute freedom, you would live a completely happy life?
One more thing, have you ever thought what if your mother would have also thought in the same way? Think what would have been your family then?
Dear Ms. Padukone, our culture might sound ancient and conservative to some, but you need to understand, it is the same culture which holds all of us together, makes and keeps families intact, it is our culture, which keeps elders respected and children loved. West and its individualistic culture seem very attractive to many like you, but check the reality factor. We do not want broken families, people and souls Ms. Padukone and hence let us be the typical Indian women, who drive many lives, with proud and dignity, with complete freedom.
Dr. Anshu Joshi
(The writer is a doctorate from JNU, New Delhi and a political analyst)