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Why is the divorce rate increasing?

October 12, 2007

Divorce is on the rise. Whether it’s Delhi or Lucknown, Kerala or Punjab, Kolkata or Chennai, the upper classes or the middle classes, metros or semi-urban areas…the specter of divorce is now here to haunt us all. Why, just in Delhi the figures go thus:

1960’s – 1-2 cases per year
1980 – 100-200 cases per year
1990s – 1,000 cases per year
This decade…a jump to 9,000 cases per year

About Mumbai (update):

So far nearly 7,000 divorce cases have already been filed at the family court this year, and the number is expected to reach 7,200 by year-end — 60 per cent more than the 4,500 cases filed in 2005. Couples in the 25-35 age group accounted for 70 per cent of the cases, and 85 per cent of them were filed in the first three years of marriage.

A lot of us have tried to understand why the divorce rate in India has been low for so many years (post on divorce rates of the world) and why it was slated to increase. In this post I shall concentrate on the latter question…divorce rates in the context of modern society. Here are some pointers as to why divorce rates are increasing (not in order of importance) and you will find that some points are connected:

Greater societal acceptance of divorcees in urban areas and also a gradual acceptance of divorced daughters by families (not in rural areas) because families have started to believe that perhaps their daughter can have a life after marriage and without a husband.

The anonymity of big cities has helped divorced people avoid the glare of judgmental friends and relatives.
Financial freedom to walk away from an abusive relationships.

The sanctity of marriage is taking a beating. People’s attitudes towards marriage itself are changing…and as a result they do not work hard at it as before.
More DINKS couples (double income no kids) who are not held back by the fear of how the divorce will impact children.
Stress of modern life. Today’s working environment has changed drastically. The economy having opened up, most companies are facing intense competition and this leads to tremendous pressure on employees. Working late, 6 days a week, without holidays and with a boss who breathes down your throat can create a lot of frustration and tension. This can destroy a marriage, whether it’s just one partner working, or both.
Loneliness. Nuclear families have meant loneliness for the non-working partner, compounded by moving away from familiar environments. This can result in estrangement, affairs…
Change in gender roles. If the wife is working, gender roles change. Conflicts arising from sharing the work load at home adds to the stress faced at work. Tensions often arise if the husband imagines that the woman’s career is temporary or the woman imagines that her husband will lend a hand at home…

Professional rivalry. Whether in traditional India or the emancipated west, men are still not comfortable with the strong independent modern woman. Men might feel that they are ready for a working partner, and they can be…but not for a high powered career woman.

There is one more – compatibility, which kind of overlaps everything. Says Savita Pandey, acting deputy registrar at the family court in Bandra to DNA: (update)

Earlier, cruelty, desertion and harassment used to account for two out of three cases. But in the last two years, compatibility has been cited in a majority of the cases. This is linked to the fact that most of the cases this year have been filed by younger couples, who mostly complain of attitudinal problems while filing for divorce.

Problems with attitude can arise because most men prefer being the bread-winners. An article on a reputed site run by mental health professionals says that American men tend to do less housework than women, even if their wives are working. But the situation gets worse if women start to earn more than their men. The men start to help less at home!
This article in the nytimes explains how highly paid women in a modern city like New York find it difficult to find love because they aren’t enough men who are emotionally secure enough to be comfortable with a woman who is more successful than them. Women can be equally at fault because not all successful women can adjust, even if they find their ideal guy. They find it hard to respect a man who earns less than them! So it’s a catch-22 situation.

So what’s the solution? Well, women giving up their careers is certainly not one. In fact, I was rather disturbed when I read this article on rediff. It began thus:

Guys: A word of advice. Marry pretty women or ugly ones. Short ones or tall ones. Blondes or brunettes. Just, whatever you do, don’t marry a woman with a career.

The advice may have been given in a light-hearted tone, but how many are going to take it so? The article does however acknowledge that “the link between work, women and divorce rates is complex and controversial.” At the crux of the argument is that the very basis of marriage is based on some sort of labor specialization which can go for a six if both partners are in high pressure jobs.
That must be true I’m sure, but women cannot take a step back, or start to take up non-threatening jobs…it’s taken hundreds of years for women to reach here. They have aspired to reach here because the traditional ‘woman’s work’ has never got them the respect they deserved. I personally believe that nurturing kids is a job as worthy as that of a chief executive, but how many people will agree? It’s human beings that we are talking about here…and if things go wrong at a company, sure people lose money…but if upbringing fails the result can be disturbed people and unhealthy people! Or even worse.

All the more reason why dads should contribute to parenting…and that will also give women a chance to do more ‘important’ work. ;)

Well, whatever men want, the truth is that women are not going to go back to their traditional gender roles…in fact the opposite is happening. More and more women are going out into the big bad world…and it’s good. Modern industrialized society is different from an agricultural economy and women need to contribute.

So what’s the future? Whether for men or women, I guess greater comfort levels with the changed gender roles is a must! Women need to value and respect men who earn less than them and men need to put aside their egos when faced with a woman who earns more. Obvious huh…but easier said than done! I just hope we don’t have to wait for another hundred years…

Related Reading from this blog:
Men and women can be attracted to another after marriage, and some feel that mental attraction is not infidelity. Is it possible to have a close friendship with someone of the opposite sex without it affecting your married life? Read about it here: Whats worse for a marriage: an emotional affair or a physical one?
Other related articles from this blog: Do kids help a marriage survive?
Divorce rates of the world
Love can be arranged
Teens and dating in India
There is research which says that it is temperament which matters when it comes to a successful marraige. Read about it here:
What is the best way to choose your future mate?

86 Comments leave one →
  1. October 12, 2007 10:46 am


    “how highly paid women in a modern city like New York find it difficult to find love because they aren’t enough men who are emotionally secure enough to be comfortable with a woman who is more successful than them. ”

    Whatever the NYT says, single women in NY have evolved dating and husband-hunting into an art form that will put the cast of S*x and the City (asterix so I do not go into your spam folder) to shame. I have a host of articles about the strange rituals and I also have testimonies both from male and female friends in NY who rue respectively the aggression of NY women and the reluctance of men to commit to them. The latest of these – admittedly not a woman from NY but seeking a rich husband who can get her an Upper West Side flat (at least she is not ambitious enough to want an Upper EAST Side flat!) – was a Craig’s List ad which is very instructive:


    The reason why I select this point to comment on is that let’s not use NY women as a model of dating and potential marital longevity all over the world. They are a different species altogether.

    As for ordinary people, I think society pays too little attention to those who do NOT get divorced. Here in the UK too we focus too much on divorce, not enough on long-married or co-habiting couples who are bringing up wonderful children quietly and getting along quite well. Unless we understand what keeps people together – despite the same factors at play – we cannot begin to stem the tide of what bothers us, their going their separate ways.


    PS: India’s small % numbers mean nothing, considering the base is so large. It is the absolute numbers that count so this article on absolute numbers is much stronger than the one on % that attracted so much debate last time. My 2p.

  2. October 12, 2007 11:07 am

    Thanks Shefaly for that perspective on New York women. I guess you are right NY women will definitely be different frrom the women in other parts. Do we have an equivalent in India, relatively speaking for India I mean? I wonder about that…but I guess mumbai and delhi could perhaps qualify! As compared to women in other parts of India I mean.
    Yes you are right, the numbers are important as mentioned in this post, but I think trends are also important, which I am sure you will agree. The trend in India at least is towards more divorces, for different reasons, some of which I have outlined above.
    However I would definitely be interested to know how an average American guy and an average American woman is different from a New Yorker. It would be interesting to compare with India.

  3. October 12, 2007 11:44 am


    My rakhi bhai and bhabhi – both doctors – in the US say (and I am inclined to believe because they have served in the hinterland, not just in the metros) that the average American was a very simple person mainly happy with the basics of life (house with white picket fence, car which is probably a pick up, cable TV, ball games) etc. Their life is relatively uncomplicated, a statement which can be interpreted in many ways but I think this time I will be charitable 🙂

    Perhaps a young person in Mumbai is most like one in NY but I think mentally and psychologically they would still be on different planets.

    Comparing is difficult because what is the unit of comparison? Delhi City has a population of 14M, Bombay City of an estimated 12M while Missouri State has just 6M.
    Then how do we know what is like for like? Does UP correspond to Utah or Oklahoma? Is Karnataka like North Carolina?

    I suppose national estimates then become the default comparative.

    A quick and dirty way of estimating could be a Google search. Which suggests that the US’s 18 per 1000 divorce rate is not so bad but is falling. As is the rate of marriage. So it is a moving goal-post in two ways.

    References to India come up with Bangalore with a rate of 25 per 1000 which looks awful but then again in the US, cohabitation is rising which in India is still not a viable option except in some major cities. Nobody tracks cohabitation break-down in the US or in the UK.

    So much for statistics but I think India is the average person in the adage which says the wise man learns from others’ mistakes; an average man commits his own.

    On trends, I do not disagree with you but there is a caveat.

    I think we are in a transition phase and examining the phenomenon or seeking to change the trends may be a bit early. It will settle to a new equilibrium. Reminds me of a fridge magnet at a friend’s house:

    Cleaning the house
    While the children are growing
    Is like shovelling snow
    When it is still snowing.

    Likewise with extricating trends when the whole society is in transition. It would make a great case study though for social psychologists so your posts are very powerful.

    Thanks, Nita.

  4. October 12, 2007 11:56 am

    Shefaly thanks.
    However what I am interested in is this comparision:
    Compare NY to other parts of America and then compare this comparision with the comparision of Mumbai/Delhi with other parts of India!
    That is what I meant actually but I guess did not specify.
    Thats what I would find interesting.
    And as you said comparing stats can be misleading…sometimes just a feel of it from someone who lives there gives a good picture.

  5. October 12, 2007 3:08 pm

    “I personally believe that nurturing kids is a job as worthy as that of a chief executive, but how many people will agree?”

    Well, my mother would agree with you, Nita. For 35 years, she was the CEO of a successful small corporation. She once told me she thought the most important thing she had done in her life was raise three kids.

  6. October 12, 2007 3:53 pm

    Nita and Paul:

    I believe that we all live to bear/ suffer the fruit of our actions.

    If men never went to war, women would not have been forced to leave their homes and hearths to work and keep the economy ticking over. (On the flipside see the state of women’s equality status – in economic terms – in countries such as Switzerland which did not go to war, ever.)

    A bit like the genie out of the bottle, women now refuse to go back in. So alas, it is men who need to change and adjust to the genie’s presence around them.

    Nobody who had a mother – which means all of us – can deny the ‘worth’ of raising good kids. But bringing up kids will be considered valuable on par with having a career when it starts to be compensated, in monetary terms.

    Staying with the fables metaphor, _that_ is not just a bottle with a genie trapped inside it; it is a whole Pandora’s box!

  7. October 12, 2007 4:30 pm

    I was listening to a program on radio that mentioned breast cancer among women on the rise with the spread of western lifestyle across the globe, and as women marry late and/or have kids later in their life as they pursue a career in the workplace, or don’t breast-feed. I guess there are always trade-offs in life. 😉

  8. October 12, 2007 4:36 pm

    Guys: A word of advice. Marry pretty women or ugly ones. Short ones or tall ones. Blondes or brunettes. Just, whatever you do, don’t marry a woman with a career…

    I do not quite agree with this..

  9. October 12, 2007 4:42 pm

    Amit: Just the price of freedom! 🙂

    The HHS has a dedicated Office for Women’s Health and the rate of neglect that men’s health faces at the moment in developed countries should really be worrisome. To men. And to women.

  10. October 12, 2007 5:51 pm

    A question for those of you who are always in favor of a proactive Government:
    Why not enact a legislation that would make it illegal for a man to divorce a woman (in India, vice versa is not usual) after, say, two years of marriage?

    Isn’t a growing divorce rate going to alter the fabric of society, creating more issues of social balance, law and order (divorced women may be perceived as ‘free and available’)….?

    If we can address this issue by legislating and banning divorce, we would be protecting the futures of our children, too (considering that their mental make up, education, chance of drug addiction, etc. are all dependent on this), wouldn’t we?
    Just a thought.

    • Abhilasha Purwar permalink
      October 15, 2013 10:46 am

      Banning divorce. This is the funniest comment, I have read on any article till date. I must admit. What about when a partner gets abusive? Divorce is banned, What when your partner cheats on you? Sorry, in India divorce is banned. What when partner is a drunkard? Divorce is banned.

      Seriously, you will protect children by legislating and banning divorce. Did you common sense just go to hell ??

    • June 12, 2014 11:40 am

      Banning divorce is the most ridiculous thing I have ever had. In a bad abusive marriage what do people do then to get out of it?? Kill?? next best thing?

  11. October 12, 2007 6:09 pm

    Doc: 🙂

    Actually, before I read your response, I was thinking of your comment on one of Nita’s earlier post:

    //marriage is an artificial construct of the human mind, deviced originally as a means to keep man civilised and as an attempt to curb his rapacious nature.//

    Given that, why should divorce be looked at as a ‘problem’ in the first place?

    I was just trying to see if I could reconcile all these thoughts…

  12. October 12, 2007 6:56 pm


    The reverse is being discussed in Europe. A 7 year contract of marriage after which both parties review, with a view to renew or revoke.

    I believe that the construct of a mother-and-father family is itself worth questioning. We believe it because we have been conditioned thus.

    Plenty of children are now growing up in 2-dad or 2-mom families. Enough children in the past and now grew up in single parent families – I am not suggesting teenage motherhood for all but where one parent pops his/ her clogs. Many kids grow up with step-parents. Many have co-habiting parents. Considering a vast majority does not become machete-waving serial murderers, something must be working..

    And before anyone – not you, Rambodoc – tells me that 2-dad or 2-mom families are unnatural, please! Spare a thought for adopted children. They are also “unnatural”, aren’t they? No? Well then…

    The condition essential to the kids’ welfare is that parents get along, keep peace and the child feels loved and secure. Everything else is a social construct.

    The reason why we need 2 parents is so one can stay home sometimes to tend to fever or to attend sports days.

    As the smart kid in About A Boy says: “We all need backup.”

  13. October 13, 2007 12:08 am

    Numbers are increasing gradually because there was no provisions for divorce for Hindus and there was no such offence of bigamy for men .

    So women had no option to unlock the wedlock and had to suffer, and men could marry to another women if he wished (and could afford).

    Somewhere in 1954 the legislation made it legal to dissolve a marriage and restricted number of spouse to one.

    During 60-70 for Hindu society the divorce thing was new and was not way of life, but gradually coming generations accepted and the numbers increased.

    And whenever divorce talks take place, women get sympathy and men get blamed. It is not always, everywhere men are not at fault, but largely take the blame due to the assumed dominant positions.

    Nature genetically has defined roles for male and female of every species, and there isnt much to change, and humans are bent upon changing the roles and are paying the high prices, marriage is one and divorce is another.


  14. October 13, 2007 7:20 am

    Thanks to all who have commented.
    As for Doc, I feel he was being sarcastic, but he hasn’t confirmed that so I may be wrong.
    JV, thanks for the different perspective, and esp that info about our earlier days. Yes, I agree, earlier men could get away with bigamy and keeping mistresses (some still do it!)
    But I do not quite agree with you when you say that men are usually blamed. In my view women are usually blamed, though I agree this is changing.

  15. oemar permalink
    October 13, 2007 10:58 am

    I dont know if you will agree with me, but for some part, I do blame Ekta Kapoor’s soaps for these trends.

  16. October 13, 2007 12:34 pm

    Of course, sarcasm is the default mode of my computer keyboard. Just don’t blame me!

  17. October 13, 2007 7:47 pm

    Yes, you are right, I take the blame, that women , and not men, are usally blamed. 🙂

  18. amreekandesi permalink
    October 14, 2007 4:59 am

    Marriage is an institution that takes a lot of work. It is not all that easy living your entire life with the same person. And these days people (guys, and gals) don’t really care.

    Everything is easy in these new times. Why should they have to compromise on anything? Spouses are like jobs that people don’t hesitate from changing every few years. Unfortunate that it is, this is what seems to be the modern mindset.

    Amreekandesi, thats a cynical perspective of today’s modern society, but hope you don’t think that way! – Nita.

  19. amreekandesi permalink
    October 14, 2007 9:22 am

    Nita, i know it sounds very cynical. I was aiming more for sarcastic.
    Actually i personally know some people who have had major problems with their marriages. Going into details would take a long time, but really such incidents make me wary, apprehensive, almost scared.

  20. October 14, 2007 1:35 pm

    AD: It may be news to many in our generation but our parents too had difficulties but the difference was they worked it out. They used a familiar Indian word in their daily lives and lived that word – ADJUSTMENT.

    Now somehow there is a new word in the vocabulary and nobody wants to engage in it – COMPROMISE.

    I also think that the expectations of life are misplaced; people want everything without giving anything. It does not work – whichever century we may live in.

    But then again if selfish people do not marry and have children and then subject them to sadness, it woudl be much better. SO I hope marriage as an institution dies down.. No marriage, no divorce. Only break-ups, if that. 🙂

  21. October 14, 2007 8:15 pm

    Alternatives to Marriage Project. 🙂

  22. Vivek Khadpekar permalink
    October 14, 2007 9:26 pm


    //…But then again if selfish people do not marry and have children and then subject them to sadness, it woudl be much better. SO I hope marriage as an institution dies down…//

    I’m not quite sure what you mean, but if you are suggesting that people do not marry AND THEREFORE DO NOT have children … it doesn’t quite work that way does it? There’d only be a lot more children tainted by the stigma of illegitimacy.

  23. October 14, 2007 11:14 pm

    Shefaly: I once had a very stimulating discussion with a scholarly psychiatrist and marriage counselor over the words adjustment and compromise.

    Compromise – where you give concessions – doesn’t work towards saving marriages.

    Adjustment – where one accomodates one’s spouses values, wishes, desires, goals, whatever – does seem to work.

    Unlike conventional wisdom, he advises against compromise. I had a very lengthy discussion with him understanding what was adjustment and what was compromise – and ended up agreeing with him.

    If you elaborate on what you think is the difference between the two, I may be able to respond better. I was simply astounded by your comment talking about these two concepts.

  24. October 15, 2007 1:31 am

    @ Vivek: Our so-called liberal generations are still not liberal enough to have childen out of wedlock, so yes, I think it would be great if selfish people just do not marry and do not have children, it would be great.

    In more liberal societies, illegitimacy is no longer a stigma. Nearly 2 out of 3 kids in the UK are now born out of wedlock.

    @ Mahendra: My point simply was that while the vocabulary has moved on to more antagonistic (i.e. from adjustment to compromise), the actual behaviour is worsening such that the most minor adjustments appear to be anathema to individuals.

    To me, a compromise is more superficial than adjustment. If people cannot even do the superficial, how can they be expected to reach a more meaningful stage in their relationship?

    I see in my friends, there is a greater sense of I, me and myself, which is the first thing that people have to tone down to forge an identity as one half of a couple.

  25. October 15, 2007 5:43 pm

    just ambled here from somewhere in blogdom.

    From a circle of colleagues & friends who are divorced, a few random reasons:
    a) Empty Nest syndrome — Kids have moved away… on and they are faced with a situation where they have nothing to talk about.
    b) Economic Security to get out of an abusive relationship.
    c) Higher second marriage prospects than a few years ago — many of these have not given up on marriage as an institution — just check out any marriage site or matrimonial section
    d) Great friends & lovers but a ‘bad’ married couple — you won’t believe how many of them there are…
    e) And a new one — coming out by one of the partner’s. I know atleast two couples for whom this was a breaking point. One of the partners realised that they preferred their own sex.
    f) Greater expectation of sexual fulfillment — especially by the woman…..

    mind you, i work in the media… and most people that i know are in the media…. and that may skew this response… isn’t all India or even all media … and it isn’t usually one of these reasons but a combination…..

  26. October 15, 2007 5:56 pm

    Thanks Harini for encapsulating the reasons for divorce amongst the urban modern Indian!
    It’s the (e) which surprised me! However it would be interesting to se if these people actually come out of the closet, or remain in clandestine relationships.

  27. October 16, 2007 12:19 pm

    It surprised a whole bunch of people— because the couples in question seemed fairly happy – and obviously ‘discovery’ led to divorce. but i guess there could be a whole lot of others where life continues in the closet….

  28. December 10, 2007 11:17 am

    Nita wrote:-
    “Greater societal acceptance of divorcees in urban areas and also a gradual acceptance of divorced daughters by families (not in rural areas) because families have started to believe that perhaps their daughter can have a life after marriage and without a husband.”
    If an unemployed woman deserts her husband and returns to her parents’ home, here parents force her to go back and live with her husband because they don’t want to feed their married and estranged daughter and her children for financial reasons. Such cases are mostly seen in rural peasant class and urban lower middle class people. If women are employed and economically independent, they need not depend either on harassing husbands or parents.

    Yes absolutely. Economic independence is the answer! – Nita.

  29. manoj kumar permalink
    March 19, 2008 3:34 pm

    Marriage means two souls become one- that is sharing full responsibilty and duties ( real word is care ) of each other, which comes only if you love someone from the deep of the heart , how you will love someone , if someone shares your problems of any kind and help in it. you will automatically start sharing your responsiblty and care. But unfortunately this comes from the nature of human being by his or her brininghood from child, sanskara from parents.When yu find that you need care and you get more problems , yu find it difficult to love and one day love convert into hate. ….. then divorce. practically and generally girls being a soft body, soft voice and more caring mind should get love and care by mens and mens problems of life should be solved by his wife by giving care.. BUT now a days girls wants to get their problems of life should be solved and man should get care and love by women , women wants to love or hate.. and expects men should be soft body , soft voice and caring mind and in exchage girl will give love and care which is opposite by nature itself..

  30. Thenamelessone permalink
    April 10, 2008 1:15 am

    I just read this blog. As a mother of a bright ,well-educated,working girl , I have to say that my daughter is going through a divorce herself and the reason is her husband — who is well-educated and very well employed himself, was unable to tolerate his wife having a career of her own. When she was looking for a job, he told her she was not good enough to get one abroad, where they were living, and tried to push her towards a teller job . When she got a good job, he couldn’t take it. Between his mother and him, they mananed to abuse my daughter so much that she was forced to walk out of her marital home. She was doing her best to adjust to all their demands, but their demands were getting more and more atrocious. He even told her to give up her job and go back to India and the fact that he was unable to father a child — after he had accused her of being at fault — only increased the abuse she had to face at the hands of mother and son– and we were totally in the dark for two years about what she was putting up with because we live in India. Finally she told us after it got too much for her and , needless to say, we supported her fully in her decision to leave the marriage, though we are a traditional family with a younger daughter who is yet to be married. He got hold of her earnings and is still refusing to part with them, even though we don’t care to ask for alimony or maintenance. He is earning at least three times her earning and he belongs to a rich family in Delhi and his mother is very proud that she has two sons whom she pampers no end. Her constant complaint that my daughter was not taking care of her son the way he deserved to be.
    My daughter is an IIM grad and after quizzing her about her career goals etc. when ‘seeing’ her, they told her after marriage that taking care of the husband was more important than working . But they also wanted her to work and bring home the money.
    Incidentally, we are from Bombay and they are from Delhi. I know of quite a few cases now where the girl is from Bombay and the boy from Delhi, and it ended in divorce. I wonder why Delhi boys find it so difficult to treat their wives with respect.

  31. April 10, 2008 8:02 am

    Thenamelessone, it is a clear case of clash of values and you had a warning when they said before marriage that they did not want a career girl. It is clear why they wanted her to take up a teller job, it’s not a career, just a job.
    Then this boy who gangs up against his life partner with his mamma, he is clearly not a man.
    I personally do not think that a wife should be a mother to the husband, in the sense take care of him the way a mother does, but unfortunately that is what some men are are brainwashed into believing, by their own mothers. They have no idea that marriage is about companionship, equality or friendship and love. They think an ideal marriage is where the wife is at their beck and call, and looks after their physical needs. They fail to understand that this is how one treats an employee or servant. Often the mother herself has played this role to her own husband and to her sons. Such women are always far kinder and more loving towards their son than their own husband (from whom they get no love, but get treated like a servant). They get love from their son and are nto willing to let go when the son marries. By the way, such women will never be satisfied with the daughter in law, whatever she does. The jealousy and insecuirty runs deep. They have only one agenda. Ensure that their son does not respect or love the wife, as they had a similar marriage.
    I think it is a good thing your daughter got out of the marriage. That man would never have given her any respect because such men have no idea what marriage is all about. .

  32. Thenamelessone permalink
    April 10, 2008 3:11 pm


    Thank you for your comments. The problem was they did not reveal any aversion to her having a career before marriage. They behaved as if they wanted her to aspire for even more in her career, because if they had given the slightest indication of wanting a nanny for their son, we would not have gone ahead. In fact, my daughter did comply with all their wishes by doing all the housework and packing his dabba for the office and rushing home to get his dinner ready. All this when she had to leave for work at the same time as he, at 8 in the morning and living in London, she had to do everything herself, while he would refuse to help out at all. On the way home, she had to do the grocery shopping as well. He had the gall to complain to me about her not keeping the house tidy when he was the one throwing all his stuff all over the house , and he actually told me he was prepared to help in making the breakfast for himself or get himself a sandwich outside, provided she gave him 24 hours notice.
    Once she left him, he got busy forging her name and getting a credit card in her name and running up expenses on that. His mother actually told her that women are made for taking care of men and this is Indian society and my daughter could go out and try to change Indian society,because as the parents of boys , they were not going to change. He had such a bad inferiority complex, that if she spoke to any man in the normal course – at work or in a shop- he woould tell her that she had some interest in other men. If she spoke to the wife of his own friend, he would accuse her of complaining about him. When she spoke to a woman, he would even ask her if she was a lesbian.

    His mother was fully aware of everything and she was fulltime partner in his abuse. His father idolizes his wife and refuses to believe anything we say. Even in the credit card thing, the father’s reply is it is all a mistake and in any case, he is paying it off, so what is our complaint. The fact that his son is dishonest seems to make no impression on the father, who is himself a finance professional highly respected in his family and friends’ circle.

    So it is clear that the parents have what they believe is a good marriage, except that the father is ignorant of his wife’s true nature. They simply believe, like you say, that their son, being a MAN, deserves to be worshipped by any girl unfortunate enough to marry him.

    The more we have seen of this man’s character the happier we are that she got out of this marriage.

    And you are absolutely right about one thing ,jealousy. He was seething with jealousy because my daughter is pretty, smart and is well thought of by people she meets. He would express this through snide and sarcastic comments to her, putting her down in everthing– her family, siblings, her clothes– he would even tell her that we were in some way bad people and that her uncles and aunts whom he has never even met, were better than us. Basically, a jealous,dishonest control freak. IF only she had told us all this a year ago, we would have known him for what he was. She was not able to see what kind of a person he was, because of her age and lack of experience plus her belief that she had to make adjustments and make the marriage work somehow. Perhaps she was also worried about her younger sister;s future, which was what they were counting on, so they were shocked when she dared to actually leave him.

  33. April 10, 2008 3:56 pm

    Thenamelessone, It makes me sick to the stomach to read this, although it is not a strange story but common behavior amongst certain types of men, mostly mamma’s boys. A spolt selfish child, that is what this husband is and his stupid mother doesn’t even know how much she is harming him. Only an equally conniving and evil woman would fit him as a partner and eventually lead to his own unhappiness.
    I would not however believe that the father-in-law believes in his son’s innocence. I would rather say that he will support his son no matter what. In India there boys who mow down people and their dads give them another car!
    And all that stuff about Indian society is bullshit. Yes certain types of people are more like this, but there are enough urban liberal educated males around.
    My aunts have been career women. One of them is a successful doctor married to one and another is a successful educationist. There are thousands of successful fulfilled women in India and there are plenty of good men who support and love them. Your daughter I am sure will find the right match. I understand why she kept quiet initially, she wanted to give her marriage a go and I think it’s a good thing she did. At least she won’t regret that she didn’t give it a try.

  34. pad permalink
    May 2, 2008 9:00 pm

    No matter which nation/city/village/planet the people live. Woman is Woman and Man is Man. Man is looking for beauty and Woman is lookig for money. Don’t Indians realise all Indian Women are looking for working men or wealthy/earning men. Tell me 10 women who is ready to marry a non-working men. So the common thinking is money here, doesn’t matter NYC or Delhi or village. If a women in NYC looking for a sale of $500K a women in Delhi may be for 500K rupees and a villager 50K rupees. It all runs around money and living comfort. This is the way human lived for many 1000 years and will continue for ever. Girls wanted to marry king in those old days no matter they had 5 wifes. Those old days money was earned by physical work which was tough to do for women. Now mind work makes more money and women can make it who is called independent women. Don’t we see the divorce in Indian IT women are the highest?!!. Why?. As long as a woman have money they don’t need a man the asset they have beauty. Man’s weakness is beauty and sex. Men work hard and want an enjoyment. Rest like LOVE, FAMILY, KIDS are created by society . Soceity I mean here is religion, government etc. ————————————————————————– Bottom line- Men must work and make money to support family. Women must make kids and cook to support the family. If this is agreeed in the marrage process then NO divorce!!.

  35. Thenamelessone permalink
    June 2, 2008 5:06 pm

    In response to Pad,

    Really ? I suggest you go through the matrimomonial columns of any Indian newspaper and see for yourself how many Indian men want wives who are not working. Even the most highly-qualified, affluent men demand women who are “professionally-qualified, well-employed girls who will also be interested in taking care of the home and the in-laws”. By which they mean that the home will be looked after entirely by the wife and the husband will also expect to be taken care of by her – in effect she will earn, cook, clean and be a nursemaid to a family of grownups. She will also have to work hard at her workplace as she is a professional who is earning well, therefore she will be expected by her boss to work as hard if not harder than her male colleagues. How many people is she expected to satisfy and how many roles can one woman play, young as she is and is there anybody in the husband’s family who spares a thought for her?
    Things are even worse if the couple live abroad, because she has no maid ,driver or ayah to help, which is something her mother-in-law in India absolutely cannot do without.
    How many Indian husbands even butter their own toast or pack their own lunch ? Forget that, how many Indian men give up the pleasure of reading the morning newspaper in order to make their own morning cuppa or iron their own shirt? Notice I am not hoping they will even dream of making a cup of tea for their wives some mornings at least.

    With all this, my point is Indian men should make up their minds before looking for a wife, whether they want a working wife – in which case they had damned well share in the household chores – or whether they want a stay-at-home wife so that their duties are well-defined and they are satisfied with less money in the bank.

    They cannot have it both ways – the husband cannot expect a life of ease and luxury being pampered by both mother and wife, while his wife is leading a life of utter misery. What is she getting out of a marriage like this ? The day every Indian man and his mother stop thinking he is God’s gift to his wife, will be the day of salvation for Indian women.

    Pad, it is not true that Indian women marry for money. Whatever money there is in the household kitty, they don’t even control. They have no say over the investments or the expenditure made by the husband. No working woman is free to buy even a small gift for her parents or siblings unless she gets permission from her husband and in-laws. And God forbid that she should even dream of helping her parents with any expenditure, not even if is a medical emergency. Of course, she cannot question any money her husband chooses to spend, even if it comes out of her salary. I know many women who are not allowed to help their parents with a sister’s wedding, even if it is a small amount, whereas they are expected to take out loans if it is the husband’s sister who is getting married. All you wome out there, tell me if I am right or wrong.

    I know your response was to Pad but there is one point I want to make. I think whether a woman is earning or not is irrelevant. A man needs to butter his own toast and fetch his own glass of water and help his wife with other household chores whenever he has the time and within reasonable limits. – Nita.

  36. Thenamelessone permalink
    June 2, 2008 5:41 pm


    One more thing. Now my daughter is actually going through the divorce process after protracted negotiations. She waived all right to alimony, maintenance and share in their extensive properties and is getting back only what she earned – the amount the husband had transferred from their joint accounts without her knowledge. They tried to force us to record in the petition that they were paying this amount to her towards alimony and maintenance which we refused to do.Finally they had to agree to record that she has waived alimony and maintenance and all other financial claims.Even in repaying this amount, they said she should pay for all her expenses of food, rent, clothes and travel, but there was no mention of the ‘services’ provided by her by way of cooking, cleaning, laundry etc. etc. He even refused to let her take her things out of the house for a long time. Even then he retained all the expensive clothes and watches and household goods we had given ,while she returned everything she had got from them. But
    he actually tried to return a calendar of 2007 — in March 2008 — because it came from us !

    He had tried to foist her with more expenses through the forged credit card he had acquired in her name –which we can prove and which the (foreign) bank was willing to investigate and prosecute him for. But since we found out in time, he had to pay the credit card bills while pretending to us that it was a mistake on the part of the bank concerned. The bank of course is not amused since they are convinced of his forgery and criminal activities. He has committed several more frauds by forging her name. The son is working in the financial sector for an employer who will dismiss him straightaway if we lodge a police complaint.

    After all this, he is making up stories to his father who is turning a blind eye to the truth and is not willing to face up to the truth that his son is a criminal. His mother knows more than hsi father, but thinks her son is right to do all this because she thinks it makes her son look very clever in her eyes! In the court, they stopped bringing the father along because they are afraid he might get to hear some facts about the son from us and the mother spends her time in court giggling and looking very happy. Now tell me what you make of a mother like this.

    The whole family claims to be great devotees of Lord Guruvayurappa and Lord Ayyappa. Wonder what God thinks of having such ‘ devotees’.

    We also have his medical test report which clearly says he has a low sperm count and a low motility, which was why the doctors in a repute London hospital advised that he cannot father a child in the normal course. He stopped going for any further tests once this report came in. Earlier he tried to suggest to the doctors that my daughter was underweight and hence she was at fault, but the reports clearly said that she was perfectly capable of conceiving.
    The mother and son then both told my daughter that doctors are idiots and that they both know best and the mother even said as she was reading the “Narayaneeyam”, no medical advice or intervention was necessary.

    This sounds like a crazy family! And as for the mother I think she wants to marry her son herself and is doing all she can to break up the marriage. This is not strange behavior with mothers in India. A major cause of divorce in India is interference of parents, particularly the mother. However I feel that a man who cannot think on his own is not worthy. And I am not at all surprised that they are devotees of some guru or the other…I don’t know about this guru but most “gurus” are frauds anyway. I think you should be happy that your daughter got out of this marriage when she could…and that too without a child from this man – Nita.

  37. Thenamelessone permalink
    June 2, 2008 9:43 pm

    Lord Guruvayurappan is another name for Lord Krishna and is worshipped by that name by Keralites and many South Indians. Lord Ayyappan is the presiding deity in Sabarimala in Kerala. We are Tamilians from the Tanjore district in Tamilnadu. This family is a Palghat Iyer family – that is people who migrated to Kerala years ago. But the mother would say in front of my daughter that Tamil people know nothing about cooking. One of the many ridiculous things she said to which my daughter would not bother to reply.

    My younger daughter says the same thing that you have — this mother probably wants to marry her son herself !

    I am happy that my daughter left this man/this family, but the way they treated my innocent loving daughter is something I cannot forget or forgive.

    I have two young daughters myself and I can feel your pain. I always thought south indians were more broadminded when it comes to these issues but I realise that after all we are Indians and many Indian mothers want to cling on to their son, even if it means ruining his marriage. I am sure a year from now you will have moved on namelessone, you will heal and your daughter will heal too. – Nita.

  38. Thenamelessone permalink
    June 3, 2008 12:22 pm

    Nita, I am glad to tell you the divorce was granted today and the 6-month waiting period was waived. I thank you for your support and encouraging words.

    Normally, as you say, South Indian men are less under the control of their mothers and are more independent, but it seems to have been our misfortune that we fell in with the exception that proves the rule. But then again if the man himself is a criminal at heart, he can do anything without anybody’s support or backing. This is the kind of man who might one day even kill.

    All those wives who are putting up with physical or emotional abuse, Please DON’T. You do not have to “put up” with anything because you are not lesser human beings than men. Even if you have children, don’t stay in a bad marriage for their sakes. Your children will be happier with a single parent and they will grow up stronger and and have more self-esteem if you set them an example.

    Who knows , by leaving a bad marriage you might even be saving your own and your children’s lives.

  39. Diesel permalink
    September 8, 2008 7:38 am

    Hey, its glad to know a Tamilian is here(I am one(Iyengar))! Yes, I know of some distant relative who was treated in a similar way and she walked out. The guy was working in the Gulf and she divorced him and married another guy. The first guy got cancer and died. Even though we Iyengars(and Brahmins in general) are a bit more reserved when it comes to contemporary societal issues like this, we all agreed that the cancer was a punishment to that guy for mistreating that girl! In fact we were quoting that girl saying that women must be more justice demanding like her!

    PS: No I don’t condone the suffering of any fellow human or animal from any vicious or fatal disease due to his past acts or whatever. But I guess if it was God’s decision, then I leave it up to Him.

  40. raj permalink
    December 10, 2008 6:31 am

    Divorce rates are high for one reason alone – contraception – with more women encouraged to sacrifice their virginity not for marriage but for pleasure. We have payback == divorce. The mind, understanding and spirit of a person is effected by the sexual union and the younger people have sex the greater the effect. One does not forget their sexual partners – that spiritual sexual union holds on until death and if a man has slept with 100 women and his wife with 100 men – we have 202 people jumping into the marriage bed. No wonder couple can’t work it out. This is NOT a joke – its a fact. In the days of no contraception – we had more virgin marriages and hardly divorce to count now the number is becoming uncountable.

  41. Bobby permalink
    September 14, 2009 11:49 pm

    This article and the comments have made an effort to outweigh the pros and cons of divorce as opposed to divorce amidst a very close-minded culture (i.e. India). Our culture is in fact close-minded, where a select majority always describes the acceptable definition and the mass follows. This is in fact good if we want to preserve the traditional ways but at what price.

    I live in the United States now and I have married for love but within a year we have found out that it did not work for various reasons. The reason we decided to split amicably is to not waste our time in futile efforts of trying to work our issues and lost precious time knowing that the end result would be the same (us splitting). The pros far outweighed the cons and considering I live in the US it was much easier to forgo the divorce without fearing the backlash from society.

    Here comes the tricky part. After 3 years seperated from my divorce I fell in love with a girl who lives in India. We started talking and after sharing my past (at a much later time since I was afraid of the stigma) we decided to marry. The parents though were understanding they are having to deal with the social acceptance and very much afraid of our union.

    Why I am reiterating all this is? Simple the social acceptance is the lone factor of this low divorce rates. Women have always subdued themselves for a long period of time. Parents have instilled in their daughters minds that adjusting themselves to suit the husband is a priority. All of a sudden women have realized they are being treated unfairly for obvious reasons and so the revolt has began. Social stigma is the only reason divorce is not a norm in India.

    If it comes down to the individual feelings most men in India would never find a wife. We lack the sense of respect that a woman deserves. Even the ones I have seen that claimed love the only reason for their marriage have acted in a way to make sure the wife remains submissive. That is an unfair practice which when encountered by most women will lead to divorce when it becomes more acceptable in India.

    • September 15, 2009 8:06 am

      Bobby, when say:

      If it comes down to the individual feelings most men in India would never find a wife. We lack the sense of respect that a woman deserves

      I would like to modify it to:

      If it comes down to feelings most men in India would never be able to keep a wife. We lack the sense of respect that a woman deserves

      I agree with you about this, although I think that if men realise that the women were leaving in droves, they might change their behavior. It will take time for this to happen. As of now if a woman asks to be treated like an equal human being, society brands her as an unfit wife. The husband has the backing of society and his/her relatives. However I think if women choose their husbands carefully they will find that there are men who are not tied by their umbilical cords either to their parents or to their parents’ money and these men will make up their own minds about their wives. Any good human being will instinctively want to treat his partner as his equal. A partner who has desires and feelings, just as men do.

      • vasudev permalink
        September 15, 2009 1:30 pm

        suppose we say that it is not just men who are umbilically connected but also women then where would the equation be?
        would it also be right to say that both should equally cut the chords and become good husband and wife?

        • September 15, 2009 3:43 pm

          Ofcourse vasudev. But usually as the wife moves away and lives with husband’s parents, the chance of the husband’s parents trying to influence is higher. At least in India.

          • vasudev permalink
            September 15, 2009 4:14 pm

            while that makes a direct influence and nothing much can be done about it at least till some time, i have observed the existence of invisible umbilical cords even amongst those who stay away from both parents and are only husband-wife living alone or at the most, with their children. and the strongest cords are existent amongst the youngest couples (ex. newly married etc)

            • Vinod permalink
              September 15, 2009 7:11 pm

              Vasudev, quite true.

              In a highly patriarchal society like India, women are not allowed to develop into independent human beings. They are made to be emotionally dependent on their parents or husbands. With the nuclearisation of families, many women lose their self esteem staying at home. They then psychologically affect the child that is brought up. The child gets only intermittent love or finds the mother distant or finds that the whole relationship with the mother is about the mother. All this environments affect the psychological make of the son/daughter. They end up being unable to make decisions in their life – the perpetual ditherers, or they play the role of smothering uber-caretaker in their romantic relationships or are unable to commit to a relationship wholeheartedly. The cycle thus continues through the generations.
              If only women are made to feel complete human beings will Indian society have a better quality of relationships and families.

              • vasudev permalink
                September 15, 2009 10:44 pm

                vinod..quite a lot of what you said are the same opinions that i too hold. but i have a problem with women exclusivity: men are no better.
                as regards the children, women do not ignore them at all! the training for a later umbilical cord starts with the mother overshadowing the child and making it an over-dependant piglet, for later life long consumption: you know, like a free bonded slave, emotionally brainwashed and emotionally blackmailed. i would say the woman (mother) plays this role very well with the child, sometimes to the entire exclusion of the father (preferring child over husband).
                well..olden day unemployed women had many tricks up their sleeves (a general life insurance for self preservation). hope the employed and highly educated current day women change the trend and let their children learn and enjoy freedom. i hope they cut the umbilical cords themselves.

                • rags permalink
                  September 16, 2009 11:11 am

                  “i would say the woman (mother) plays this role very well with the child, sometimes to the entire exclusion of the father (preferring child over husband).”

                  Maybe if Indian men actually start helping with simple household chores and change diapers and keep their women happy instead of treating them like unpaid labourers, maybe then women might want to divert some of the attention they give their children to their husbands. This excessive focusing on kids happens because women lead unfulfilled lives with their husbands. So they direct their attention to someone who’ll actually appreciate what they do and treat them with respect.

                  • vasudev permalink
                    September 16, 2009 4:14 pm

                    i cannot help but feel ‘strongly’ along with you on the pertinent point raised here.
                    i know there is an ‘ignore’ or ‘un-appreciate’ factor emerging out of later day men actions which perhaps make the women withdraw towards their children for love and appreciation. this is a matter of unfulfilled love and emotional support.
                    but…why should the woman ask for love and emotional support from a man who is denied the same from his workplace, anyway? while i am not trying to make a ‘man-case’ i am also trying to point out the plight of men who are caught in between family and office (pressures from both sides to perform). no one appreciates the man anyway nor does anyone bother to emotionally support him either while a lot is expected out of him.
                    to whom should the man turn for support?
                    an uncaring boss whose only demand is more and more work?
                    an emotionally withdrawn wife who thinks her husband is uncaring?
                    or, to the ever supportive friend: the midnight bar?

                    • Bobby permalink
                      September 17, 2009 12:49 am

                      A man should know how to withstand pressures, isn’t he who claims to be strong while his wife be the one with the softer side. When you marry someone you have the responsibilty to tend for your wife, so no matter what is happening we should be the strength not the other way around.

                      Life sometimes is not fair but that does not mean he cannot try to be better than he wants to be. Don’t ever use barriers outside home (family life) as an excuse for behviour in the family. Suck it up and be a better man thats what men are supposed to do, not succumb to wordly troubles.

                    • Vinod permalink
                      September 17, 2009 8:16 am

                      Vasudev, from what little I know of women it takes very little to make them happy, not more than a sincere sentence or two in respect and appreciation. That is all it takes. After that, women give unconditionally.

      • Bobby permalink
        September 17, 2009 12:53 am

        I want to remodify your line nita,

        “If it comes down to feelings most men in India should never be allowed to marry. We lack the sense of respect that a woman deserves, and use every excuse available to support our uncanny behavior”

        Not a knock on men of India, we have had so much support overtime that we take those liberties like we deserve them. I will definitely cook for my wife even if I live in the US or India if she is not doing well or tired, how many will honestly do that. I know my dad never did (out of tradition, not out of disrespect). I have seen mom get up and do things even while sick because she has to.

  42. Bobby permalink
    September 17, 2009 12:44 am

    I am really glad I brought about life to this thread to continue some good discussion. Marriages in India for most part are conducted out of convenience, meaning parents either force, pressure or decide that it is time for the kid to marry.

    Ignore my tone here for a second and bear with me while I pass on this analogy. “Q/A: If you are not hungry but you end up getting a snack, what would you do? Ans: Most often you waste it”. So if you are really not ready for marriage you take it for granted. Does that mean if you love someone you are ready for marriage? Not at all.

    People do not realize the difference between love and marriage. The difference is rather so simple that it rarely is discussed or considered. “Love” is a feeling and “Marriage” is a responsibility.

    Now let me make it easy to understand, feelings can always be influenced, responsibility cannot. You always stand up for your responsibility so if you are responsible the umbilical cords you guys speak off will have no power over it where as these umbilical cords can always influence a feeling to make you feel a different way.

    Hope amidst this complicated banter I was able to convey my point.

  43. vasudev permalink
    September 18, 2009 12:02 pm

    ‘almost single’ by advaita kala is the best read in such a subject. she portrays the maladies of a 29 yr old working lady who is also single, about relationships, umbilical cords and loyalties all written very hilariously and interestingly a one-sit-&-go affair. ladies can read this girly book and nod in agreement, men can read this ladies book and ponder…

  44. Sam permalink
    October 7, 2009 5:36 pm

    Congratulations on wonderful blog.

    From the experiences of five of MY VERY CLOSE divorced (male) friends I think you have ignored certain issues. First of all you will have to take my word that they are perfectly normal human beings, just as unique as everyone is and couple of them are truly wonderful.

    Let me point out certain similarities in all these cases

    1. All the guyes are well educated sensible gentlemen.
    2. None of the guyes or there family members had any trouble with law before.
    3. None of the ladies were financially independent.
    4. Legal cases, sometimes u/s 498A were lodged by the ladies without making sufficient effort to reconciliation.
    5. After remarriage they are having wonderful lives.

    Despite the risk of generalization I can safely pin the blame on following factors

    1. Impractical or frivolous expectations of the ladies.
    2. Is there a concept of “reverse dowry”, where ladies try to extort money for various reasons.
    3. Girls family members (parents) look at own daughter as most precious thing in world while treating the boy like a scoundrel.
    4. Before the girls wishes the boys compulsions have no merit.
    5. Law is used as a tool to threaten and get what the girl wants and NOT as a rightful way to set things right.

    You may agree or disagree but i have written this based on real experience.


    • S.Indian permalink
      November 6, 2009 3:33 am

      I agree completely ..!
      I would say rather than Girls, their parents are root cause for the trouble. The invent of cellphone,internet-voice calls has been thoroughly misused by girl’s parents and calling up daily and sometimes throughout the day as live telecast ..!!

  45. S.Indian permalink
    November 6, 2009 3:25 am

    Hi all,
    One of the hardest question in my life now is to marry a working-girl or house wife type girl. This is a million dollar Quest among many in S.India. Various responses I get from each type of people, but I get more confused rather than getting clarity.

    1) I am working in a Software MNC and earning 30K monthly.
    2) I haven’t seen a working couple in my close relatives or in my big family, so I really don’t know how a working couple would be.
    3) I love my parents dearly ( not in front of them, but in my heart) , though they tell that they will keep away from my life after marriage , being well-brought up son to this extent I have to take care of them. Probably not in near future , but sure aging old is bound to happen.
    4) I am firm believer that , what you do , is what you get and that is bound to happen within ones life time.
    5) I am bit weak in my heart and I read lots of economic matters , where IT jobs are secure until U.S economy is staying afloat.

    my expectations

    1) My parents have started looking for a bride for me and so they, my relatives asked me this difficult question , going to marry working / non-working girl.
    2) Apart from my beauty, horoscope etc etc other blah blahs of other concerns, I want my spouse’s education atleast and anything above B.Sc.
    3) I don’t like Girls to stay in house and be idle. I strongly believe in “Idle mind is devil’s workshop”. I want to keep them engaged in something until she begets a child , so the best suitable one is Job ( Career NO ! , I declare to be very family-centered person ).
    4) I will surely help her in cleaning and some house-hold chores , but I know I cannot replace mother-hood and nurturing child as much like mother.

    Since I am in IT field, I have seen several Ladies , who leave their child at home with their Parents and keep on calling them to check child is ok or not.
    So what I infer from this is , once they get into job, they cannot easily jump out of luxuries of extra money by resigning the job , or leave their kids to caretakers completely.

    Facts now, many IT MNCs prefer to recruiting Girls over guys, because they dont switch frequently , don’t expect much raises , mainly resigns after 3-4 years once after getting married/child birth. So this means for company a lot. All MNCs are looking for cheap labour and hard – workers , who will be predominantly freshers/ less experienced of 1-3 years. And they brought in a policy such that , to replace 6 years experienced with 2 freshers. So that they can save more , extract more work.

    Working gal , immly I get thoughts about

    1) Ego of earning money.
    2) Fear of wife surpassing me wrt earnings. Whatever you say, your society, your family, esp your In-Laws , Wife herself looking down at you.
    3) her carrier ambitions/transfers and my location transfers will hit each other horribly.
    4) Surely Kids will miss our care. Or atleast we will miss or kids a lot.
    5) Buying food from outside on regular basis.
    6) Usage of Divorce word casually …, cos of Independence provided by the money and by the In-laws.

    With all these in picture , I am really in confused state. If I don’t have a job for a while, then family would be at stake in my current financial status. Whether to go for working girl or non-working girl ..??!

    • rags permalink
      November 6, 2009 2:20 pm

      S.Indian, don’t worry. You can always marry a doormat. There are plently of doormat like women in India who won’t raise the ‘D’ word even if they are abused. They have been culturally conditioned to behave that way and you don’t have to worry about ego problems, coz they don’t have one. India is the place for you. Have fun.

  46. zainab permalink
    December 3, 2009 8:06 am

    Wake Up to the grass-root reality ….. Its a woman who destroys the other!!! How many mothers ask their daughter to give in and submit … how many mothers-in-law run a daughter-in-law down for “negelecting” their son.. a bizillion , infact MOST!! When parents start to see their daughters potential, start to respect them for who they truly are and what they truly want to achieve for themselves… there perhaps wouldn’t be this dishramony and damage!!.. Women, be they daughters or daughters-in-law, need to be respected by the very women with whom they that every man can grow up seeing the respect a girl deserves!!Marriage is an equal -partnership … if a man ,by default ,garners unconditional respect …a woman has the right to the same ,equally ,as much!!

  47. manu permalink
    December 6, 2009 9:16 am

    i want to raise politically incorrect ..something that is not the popular statement…

    1. what is the objective of women doing a job ??? ….answer well “carrier” …now there may be some women who are really inclined towards having a good carrier (and those women for me will be automatically not a good partner/wife because from the get go carrier seems be their first priority..even for men , men who do not take family as first priority will loose on lot of things on personal front) most of them take it as a escape from their responsibilites , daily chores….being able to dress up every morning and go out ….put the kid in day care as soon as he is 2 weeks old …..and off you go….this is the reality..there is new trend comming up where women say we don’t want to have second kid…just to have this freedom…i have seen lot of female collegaue acknowledging it.

    we wrap these in good word , carrier , women empowerment and what not..

    2. if some ones is really ganku about no i want to do the job…well …my answer would be if you want to do job then you take care of everything..just like i would have if i was working …that means worry about our morgage , kids education,two for for you ,401 K,anything that parents need , any emergency all of it …..job should be a real job not 8 hour honeymoon or escape from your reponsibilites …i will stay at home take care of all house hold responsiblites .what happens is when you have to carry all these responsibilites you have to take a high paying job …no one will give that pay check without taking ‘oil’ out of you …i mean without making you work hard …when they see this , atleast women/wife will start appreciating what men does everyday.
    and ofcourse one thing i forgot …when she comes back i am going take out all my problem on him and for any reason if she does respond back ideallly i will blame her for not being immotionally supportive…

    there is reason why women were given the role of taking care of home..this is a more comlicated job than being a CTO of a company….and if a men find such women who does this , men should treat her with utmost respect.

    so for me non working women rates higher.


    • June 12, 2014 11:53 am

      Firstly get the spelling of CAREER rite. Second, when you have a working wife, be spared of the horrors of a extremely nagging wife.

  48. ann permalink
    April 5, 2010 4:55 am

    Males and also Females (who tend to reflect for some reason their protected world upon Males) really do not understand how differential treatment from day one is providing Females with such an advantage that is creating the Growing international Male Crisis.
    Males are given love, honor, support, respect, care, etc. only on the condition of sufficient achievement, money, power, etc. This is what makes Males very competitive; they are competing for feelings of self-worth as reflected upon them by society if they have sufficiency of those things. When they are doing anything they are being weighed and given only the amount of love, honor, respect, and support commensurate with those achievements. Those Males who do not have sufficiency are not only given less of those good things, they are given more aggression by society. This creates a lot more pressure on Males to either succeed in academics, which is good; and if they cannot, then they will search out a more protected and supported area in which they will have some feeling of love, honor, and respect from their peer group.
    Since our society is still following even in the information age, the belief Males should be strong, it still allows much aggression from an early age upon Males to make them tough. It also holds that Males should not be given mental/emotional/social/academic support, love, kindness, and care for fear of coddling the Male. This is so the Male can become a good little soldier to defend family and country. The problem with this idea is that it creates high average stress that impedes learning and creates along it more tension that leads more activity in Males and far less attention to mental/emotional development. This is why girls appear to mature faster, for Males are not given the same mental/emotional/social supports. This higher average stress and lack of supports accumulate to create a large deficit in learning for Males.

    Men are not afraid of successful women. They have much experience with and prepare for abuse toward them by society, including women who may perceive men to be weak in some way. The nineteenth century belief Males should be strong allows aggression toward Males who appear weak. Society provides love, honor, respect, (the essentials of self-worth only on condition of sufficient achievement, money, power, and status. Women, due to the nineteenth century belief woman should be protected are given love, honor, and respect simply for being women. The nineteen century belief they should be protected allows for much mental, emotional, social support to appear to mature faster than Males. By differential treatment Females are surging ahead. In addition, this overprotection by society also allows women to give verbal, silent abuse, and hollow kindness or patronization with impunity. The combination of allowed aggressions upon Males who appear weak in some way, lack of support for Males, more than adequate support for Females, and the protected freedoms of various allowed verbal abuse make a Male who appears weak in some way quite vulnerable to more abuse from successful women and more also from society.

  49. Nidhi permalink
    May 26, 2010 11:35 pm

    As per data/facts the overall divorce rate in India over the years has been around 1%.
    But in metropolitan cities like Delhi/Mumbai/Bangalore/Chandigarh/Chennai etc it has been 7 % .
    And in Metro cities/urban India in the last 5 years it has been more than 15%.
    It is expected to increase to 25% in the next 5 years.

    The primary reason is that men have not been able to change with the times.
    India has been a male dominated society and men have always EXPLOITED women.
    Earlier the women had no choice as she was dependent on the man for food/clothes etc
    and did not want to be a burden on her parents.
    Now that women are financially independent why should they be treated like slaves?
    They can now take their own decisions.
    It is God’s way of punishing these develish husbands and divorce them.
    They still want to marry beautiful/hot/professional women and then expect them to do daily house hold work. The men themselves want to roam around the world (onsite/etc)/client visits etc and expect their counter part women to stay at home and cook food.
    This is unfair .
    All women should unite and divorce such useless ,worthless, sick minded, fickle minded husbands.
    Divorce is definitely unpleasant but the only way for a woman to attain personal and professional freedom.Divorce in love marriages in the first year itself is very high(little less than 70% cases).
    Come on girls!! If u r feeling upset about you marriage for more than 6 months then its time to look for another guy.
    Believe me u will find lots of good guys who are single and willing to marry divorcee girls also provided the emotional bonding is strong.!!!
    Being a divorcee girl is no longer a taboo in indian society.
    Divorcee women are thought of as experienced , wise, mature and responsible women who were unlucky in their 1st marriage. Various marriage website’s have been based on this concept only..
    No need to fear.Come out and explore the world.
    Never anything great has been achieved without enthusiasm.
    Pls note:-Dont bow down to the husbands wishes nor get swayed away by his sweet talk.
    If upset for more than 6 months then go for ‘Divorce with mutaul consent’ .This is the best way to get divorce in less than 13(12+1) months of marriage.The earlier you get divorced the better for you.The earlier u can relax and start looking for better grooms and men.
    Believe me u will find lots of good guys who are single and willing to marry divorcee girls also provided the emotional bonding is strong.!!!
    Being a divorcee girl is no longer a taboo in indian society.
    Divorcee women are thought of as experienced , wise, mature and responsible women who were unlucky in their 1st marriage.
    As for reloigion, Hinduism never allowed men to ill-treat their wives.
    So dont think that whayt will GOD think?
    If a man ill treats his wife then believe me God will ensure that he gets divorced soon and does get a new wife untill he improves and promises not to repeat the mistakes he has done in the past .
    For those men who dont improve..they are doomed.
    Have faith in GOD and take the best decision based on the circumstances u r facing.
    Best of Luck!!

    • Not imp permalink
      October 2, 2015 6:47 pm

      Shouldn’t you be advising women to take a hard look at their own expectations, communicate better with their husbands, and then seek counseling? Why are you simply encouraging divorce as a solution to marital issues? *This* is the problem.

  50. Sunita permalink
    July 7, 2010 11:40 pm

    Indeed girls get lost in dating their boy friends and they have too many expectations
    from their marriages. Young dating mates never ask these questions, they just are keen on ‘I love you’ as
    if life ends there and then. Focus is only on the movie aspect of love i.e dating, love , sex and honeymoon .
    Noboday cares about the duties that come up with rights.
    Result is that within 1 year of love marriage it leads to depressions for girls and agression for guys..
    the result is that both get rude shocks and the emotional scars of a divorce are left on their lives for ever.
    In this day and age, it is imperative for both prospective partners to know as much as they can about their partners.
    Also I would like to add one question which young girls should ask their to be husbands i.e “Are you ok
    if I continue to work in a corporate office from 8am to 8pm ,5 days a week even after marriage”
    Believe me most men will say ‘No’.Also girls can ask questions that will their boyfriend (to be husband)
    help them out in kitchen activities or does he expect the wife to do all alone?
    Girls if guys dont cooperate even after a marriage then no point in continuing with them.The earlier to
    you get divorced the better for you.

    The earlier you can then start looking for for more understanding men and be assured you will
    find better ones soon..
    It seems that all women agree to these questions and know the
    importance of these while all men seem to be avoiding them for mysterious reasons…

  51. Sunita K permalink
    July 7, 2010 11:44 pm

    The answers(replies) to the marriage related questions need to be checked,
    confirmed, validated time and again.
    Men have a habit of cheating the ones they love.
    My interaction with guys(ag3 20-30) even those who have
    beautiful girl friends and wives suggests that if given an opportunity
    that their wives will not come to know..guys are willing to cheat within
    1 month of a love marriage also…(strange but true).

    • Not imp permalink
      October 2, 2015 6:44 pm

      Human weaknesses cut both ways. Are you suggesting women in India are not cheating on their boyfriends and husbands? Are you sure?

  52. December 28, 2011 10:52 am

    Congratulations 🙂 This post in one of the winners of ‘Tejaswee Rao Blogging Awards – 2011’ (TRBA 2011). We would like to create an ebook with all the winning entries in 47 categories on Feminism and Gender Issues in India (and one category on Animals Rights). Please do let us know if you are fine with your winning post/s being included in this ebook. ( Please click here to let us know).

  53. manu vs permalink
    July 21, 2015 7:09 pm

    Good work , it helps me to complete my project work on this topic

  54. Not imp permalink
    October 1, 2015 3:26 pm

    My friend divorced her husband because she felt “something was missing”. And this was a perfectly nice guy – healthy, well-mannered, responsible, respectful, and had no issues with her work and career. He was perhaps not of her intellectual level, and prefered watching TV over “romantic outings”. But she had plenty of opportunity to meet him and and figure that out before marriage – probably the first thing one notices anyway. So after 3 years or so she walked out on him, and within a year she was married again. She’s my friend and I will stand by her no matter what she does – but this shook me to the core as a man. I think (not sure) she didnt ask for alimony – but one cant presume that most woman wont. I think most will. So where does that leave decent men? Middle class urban women have become accustomed to expecting far too much – and getting it on the threat of divorce.

    • October 1, 2015 4:27 pm

      I think it is not possible to know intimate details about a marriage, not even for best friends. Therefore, best not to judge. If she hasn’t asked for alimony, thats great. And you cannot generalise about other women. Most women need the money. And every marriage is different. Every individual is different. I don’t think decent men are in trouble in India. If one looks at statistics and talks generally, its decent women even you should worry about if you care about human rights.

      • Not imp permalink
        October 2, 2015 6:34 pm

        Yes, let me moderate my language there. Not all women are “expecting far too much” etc. But also it is not a small minority – the incidence of abuse of divorce laws is certainly increasing. And “decent” urban middle class guys are the ones who suffer the most as a result of this trend. I still strongly feel that a lot of women (again, not all, but more than just a small minority) don’t want to talk about this part of the problem – much the same way as men, in a lot of sections of society, don’t want to talk about women’s issues. Acknowledging abuse of unbalanced divorce laws is inconvenient for most (not all) urban middle class women and their so-called “equal rights” demands. I feel you’re living in a bubble and talking to real people (outside your own social group) might lead you to reconsider your position.

        • Not imp permalink
          October 2, 2015 6:40 pm

          Also most “urban middle class” women who file for divorce do not *need* the money – they feel entitled to it. Big difference. I’m saying “most”, not “all”. Some might be in financial need, but most are career women who don’t need alimony – they just use the law in a vindictive spirit. “Make him suffer and teach him a lesson”. *Please* don’t deny this – you know in your heart that this is true – many women will admit this in an anonymous setting. Meanwhile, the ones who actually need it – women in lower socio-economic groups – are still not getting any benefits.

          • October 2, 2015 9:44 pm

            I am sorry, I do not know it in my heart. Nor in my brain. I am not sure how many women you have talked to anonymously but those I have talked to (I am a journalist or have been for many years) tell me horror stories of what they have suffered. More Indian women in India are (as compared to men) are financially in trouble when their marriage breaks up. I do not have statistics about urban middle class career women whom you are talking about so I cannot comment on that. Possibly you know better. I do not know it. Because the urban middle class women I know who are divorced live in poor financial conditions, with their estranged husbands not footing the bill even for the childrens education. They earn less than their husbands, and pay for the kids education while the husbands have moved on, married again. But still I cannot generalise. I am sure there are those women whom you are talking about. There are always bad pennies.
            We live in a patriarchal society and generally speaking Indian women are an abused lot. Despite that, I like and respect men. Because individuals are different. Those who are brought up in feudal, violent, biased environments will be who they are.

        • October 2, 2015 9:36 pm

          I prefer facts to opinions. I am not biased against any gender. There is a post on this blog about men’s rights, exactly what you are talking about.

  55. Kusuma Kumari G Nellore permalink
    February 14, 2016 6:38 am

    Divorces there are many causes 1) Financial reasons 2) Extramarital affairs 3) Pressure from in laws 4) Alcohol use by husband 5) listening to advise from other people who are freinds etc I feel every effort must be made to preventa divorce.

    • Git permalink
      July 21, 2016 7:02 pm

      The word marriage cannot be translated to Sanskrit word Vivaha. The word wife cannot be translated to just Patni in Sanskrit. Both words Vivaha, Pati and Patni has deeprooted meanings like Zen Master and Zen Disciple. Both Pati and Patni should behave like Master and Disciple provided the Master (Pati) has already crossed disciplehood(life of discipline, knowledge, culture and morality) and became a Master for the future disciple (Patni). The disciple should never leave the Master however hard it may be (even death may come!) because a perfect gets Enlightenment from the perfect Master!

      Pathetic!, that the World has never tried to comprehend this version of the Indian Past. Nobody understood the Meaning of Marriage and Divorce as well. Divorce was happening in past as well but in a different form but rare because we found rare disciple who cannot be tamed or ready to get tamed!

  56. Jack permalink
    August 12, 2016 2:39 am

    Career women unfortunately are causing many more Divorces more than ever before.


  1. Divorce
  2. Tejaswee Rao Blogging Awards II | The Life and Times of an Indian Homemaker
  3. I could not sing after my marriage and I am really sad about it, but women have to ‘adjust’ to see their family happy… | The Life and Times of an Indian Homemaker

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