Many years ago, or maybe even today, parents plan, even worry, about what to teach their daughters to make them more “marriagable”. Cooking, stitching, manages the households, loves kids, very ‘adjusting nature’, takes care of her parents (a suggestion that she will do the same of her in-laws) are things that I heard to describe girls I met 20+ years ago…going through the Indian arranged marriage circus.
Some things have changed for sure. Parents are talking about their daughter’s education, her job, her career aspirations….so that’s a change.
But a brief exchange of messages with a friend got me thinking…..as the world around changes, as the role of partners in a marriage evolve, as women begin to make more conscious choices about the man they want to marry, are we preparing our sons for marriage ? Are we ensuring they remain eligible ?
Should a man in the “marriage market” 10 years from now also be able to cook, stitch, like kids, manage the household ?
Is this what I should be teaching my son? I hope not. And I hope no parent is thinking like this about their daughter either.
Men, and Women, should learn to appreciate each other, accept each other. They should be more empathetic, more willing to adjust. They should learn to enjoy the greys of life together, laugh and cry together. Men will need to accept that in many ways, women are no different from them. And in many ways, can never be like them. This is a dichotomy that men have to learn to appreciate.
A Suitable Boy shall be one who is not just a Man, but also willing to step into the shoes of a Woman. A Suitable Boy will perhaps be one who is willing to make the same effort for a successful marriage that he expects his spouse to make. A Suitable Boy will be one who is willing to make the same career sacrifices that he expects his wife to make.
A Suitable Boy will be one who is not looking for a spouse, but a partner. A Suitable Boy will be one who understands that this is a 50-50 partnership, not a 51-49 !