In recent years, many Indian men and women, who have traditionally had arranged marriages, have decided to pursue their dreams and marry the person they love. Like arranged marriages, love marriages also have their set of joys and problems.
Most of my friends have said that I am a pretty good advice giver on such issues, so I have decided to post my experiences and advice on this blog, so that others may also benefit. Anyone who wishes to add other advice and solutions to the discussed marital problems, may post their views in the comment section.
Mr.X married Miss.Y two years ago. After marriage, domestic fights began with her in laws and the wife could not manage with the husband's family. The wife wanted to live separately and soon after the couple shifted to a separate house in the same neighborhood. The wife does not like the husband to visit or speak to his family and continues to squabble if he does so. She also objects to the amount of money he gives his family. He says he fulfills every need of this wife and there is no 'money problem' from his side.
Mr.X admits his wife has no contact with her family since she married him. He also says that his family members, mostly his mother, have said 'bitter' words to her on some occasions. Both are well educated. The quarrels are intolerable and he needs help. What should he do?
The main reason for such a marital situation is the fact that the wife is missing her family members and is not able to express it in the right way. Even though both the husband and wife may have initially married against their family's wishes - right now, the husband still has contact with his family while the wife has not spoken to her family for two years. This must be making the wife slightly jealous and sad that she got the worse off deal, family-wise, from the love marriage.
It may be noticed that these marital squabbles usually happen around major festivals or birthdays of the wife's family members. This is when Miss Y may reminisce about the happy times she had with her parents and siblings. She may miss them a lot and be unable to tell her husband of her feelings.
The solution to this marital problem is for the husband to somehow get her to contact her family. This can be done through email, ecards, sms, phone calls, letters and so on. The husband should either tell her to contact them or if she is too scared, he should contact them himself. Her family must be missing her too and not phoning her because they may be scared of her reaction. However, someone has to make a start and be the first person to call. If her family is rude and hangs up, don't worry.... call them again after two or three weeks...and don't give up.
In such a marital scenario, both husband and wife must forget their ego. Remember, you are much greater if you make relationships than if you break them.
Dealing with Money Issues and the 'Mother'
The things the wife wants most from her husband, is his TIME, CARE and SUPPORT. If a husband is unable to offer quality time during which regular conversation takes place and he appreciates and compliments her, then the wife will demand material thing like movie tickets, restaurant dinner, jewellery, money etc. In reality, she just wants her husband's attention and not his money. Example: She does not really want to see a movie, she wants her husband to spend time with her by taking her out for a movie and have a conversation with her, like when they were dating.
The wife needs her husbands support. She left everything for her husband when she chose to marry him, so he must remember that he is the only person she has and trusts. A husband can show his support by coming to her aid when his family says 'bitter' things about her. Don't ever tell her to ignore it, saying that your family has always been like this and to bear the 'bitter' comments in silence. Mr.X may have known his family since childhood and may have developed a certain immunity to their behaviour, but Miss Y cannot be expected to do the same in a short span of time.
If the husband is unable to support her in times of such 'trouble', the wife will begin to believe that he has stopped caring and does not love her anymore. As a result, she may either become very possessive or she may leave the husband.
Getting Rid of the 'Bitter' Comments
The simplest way of getting rid of negative comments and bitter feelings, is to never spread the comments around. Never tell her or her friends about anything negative your family has said about her when she was not around. Also do not tell your family members of anything negative she says about them. This will only add fuel to the fire and cause more marital discord.
When it comes to positive comments, please spread them around freely. If no one has said anything positive, make up some imaginary positive comments/compliments. The husband should tell his family that his wife keeps saying positive things about them. This will create a sense of goodwill and they will begin to act positive towards her. He should do the same with his wife also.
The usual squabbles of wife with mother-in-law and sister-in law may still be there - but at a much lower level. This is because women usually interact and squabble only with other women. They keep away from male relatives. All things get better with time. All the couple needs to remember is to give each other the same love, care and support that they gave before the marriage.