Marriage Rocks! A Prescription for a Happy Wedded Life is an antidote for all those who consider marriage to be a 'poison'. Marriage is actually a double-edged sword - everyone dreads the pains and nuisances associated with it, at the same time being more than willing to be slain. This book aims at obliterating all such stereotypes bracketed together with this institution. The idea is, basically, to intimate the readers with the duties and responsibilities that one needs to fulfil while going through the married life and also the steps that could be taken to make this journey a smooth sail. In the Indian scenario, a myriad of relationships come as a package deal with wedding, dealing with which often fades its beauty. This book would ensure that your wedded life comes out of its sombreness, and you emerge victorious like a phoenix, proudly saying, Marriage Rocks!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Dr. Jaideep Singh Chadha graduated from the Indira Gandhi Medical College, Shimla in 1972. He did his Post Graduation in Internal Medicine from the Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences, Chandigarh in 1978. He has authored three other books Please, Mom! It's My Life, The Funny side of Golf and Vinculum.
He lives in Chandigarh with his wife, Gurminder. He was recently honoured with the 'Vijay Rattan' award.
Part-1 : The Birth of an Institution
Part-2 : The Chemistry
Part-3 : Children
Part-4 : Fallout of a Rocking Marriage-II Sibling Rivalry
Part-5 : Empty Nest Syndrome
An Excerpt from the Book
By all means marry. If you get a good wife, you will be happy. But if you get a bad one, you will become a philosopher.
...so said socrates
Till now, we have solved the basic question. Why did man and woman become what they finally became? The questions that still linger on are many and we will take them up as we go along.
The first one has to be:
If they could not live without getting married, then why not live peacefully?
The other day I saw the x-ray plate of a very beautiful woman. I compared it with the x-ray plate of a very ugly man. Both were equally ugly and may I add, equally scary. So, when God put unequal amounts of soft tissues on the skulls, and other parts of men and women, they began to look different and needless to say, women definitely had a better score. Not all though! That was probably why men put women on pedestals, making them into the art form that they are considered today, all the while forgetting the x-ray look.
But women were equally attracted to the males of the species. It was the chemistry between men and women that was responsible for the whole thing. If they had let it be till that point, nothing would have mattered. But their attraction usually ended in the institution called marriage. The basic attraction was all because of hormones secreted by various parts of the brain, phenylethylamines, or PEA, the oxytocins, the pheromones, the testosterones and the oestrogens. Humans, males or females, are totally flabbergasted at the way they behave, the moment they see their counterparts. These emotional sensors are not even in the brain. They are in the nose, say the scientists.
There was a school of thought promulgated by Aristophanes in the play by Plato Symposium, which suggests that in the beginning, there was only one body which housed both the male and the female. This arrangement gave great satisfaction to the humans because of their self-sufficiency. In their over-zealousness, they planned to attack the Gods themselves. Zeus punished them by creating separate bodies for the males and females. This caused intense pangs of separation in the humans. Zeus, then, relented and introduced the activity called 'intercourse', something which has made men and women busy.
There is no need to be confused. You have help at hand. A master, if I bestow this title upon myself, has presented himself at your doorstep. I intend to solve all mysteries that have ever crossed your mind on this issue.
Ever since Romeo and Juliet looked at each other and fell like a ton of bricks, producing tremors in Mangolia, behaviour has changed. So has the attire! Dress designers could not have had it better since the 'Planet of the Apes' hit theatres. In fact, things changed in almost all aspects of the game. Be it in the field of lavishing presents on each other, or going to eating joints, or flaunting their transport or modes of entertainment. Society also gained much because the lovers had to be dressed in the best, culinary habits had to be the best and the best in the rest whatever that may be. In those days, stationery used for expression of their innermost emotions had to be the best. These days, stationery is no longer in vogue. SMS and e-mails have taken over. But in olden days, people in the business of producing these articles for the art of expression of love, had to be one jump ahead of the lovers.
Women marry because they think that their husbands will change one day. Men marry because they think that their wives will never change... Both are mistaken.
And people all over the world continued to get married.
The rules were the same for the ones who were involved in a situation where the marriage was arranged. The couple could marry only after reaching a particular age. Despite those age restrictions, cultures of the world differed. Indians were definitely different. They had child marriages and made the two pine for each other till they were of a certain age. I am sure some of them were attracted to others of the species during this waiting period followed by chaos. Then there were people in India who decided that the woman was married to one man but available to the rest of the clan. The woman would never know who her real husband was. I believe such customs do exist even now. Anyway, we were talking about the age at which these youngsters were admitted into the institution of marriage.
The philosophers decided that humans should be matured by the time they reach 18 years of age. Hence it was decreed that 18 would be the age at which boys and girls would be eligible to marry. Suddenly there was a riot of parents running to get their children married when they turned 18. this magic figure of 18 was later chosen as the age when they could have a driving license, have sex and vote. Children could not wait for 18 to arrive!
"You know what I did before I married?? anything I wanted to"
Here comes the question you knew was comingÃ‚Â…. What made you make that decision to marry?
I put this question to many people, both young and old. You know what the majority of them came up with. Such profound wisdom about the most important turning point of their lives!
They said, I really don't know!
I told them that "I don't know" was not a valid answer. They came up with the following excuses:
* It is the done thing, no?
* My parents wanted me to marry.
* I wanted stability and companionship; a husband to look after you.
* I wanted children and a family; a wife (or a husband) to look after you when you grow old.
* Society does not accept single people.
* If you do not marry, what else can you do?
* If we do not marry; sexual frustration would creep into our lives. We will keep looking for sex everywhere. Our minds will be so preoccupied with it that our productivity in our work will suffer.
I looked at my own reason for getting married. I was barely 23. One look and I was hooked. But when I volunteered for the 'dekho', I had already decided that I needed to get married early. I have never analysed the why of the need to get married at all; but now that I am writing this book, I am forced to look back. For me, I think being married was a forgone conclusion. I think my reason was to have a person who would be mine and I would belong to her. That sense of belonging was very important to me. Your parents are not just your parents; they are also the parents of your siblings. Your siblings are not just your siblings; they have other siblings too. So I wanted someone who would be just mine.
Now the question was when. That was decided by the fact that my family medical history was so ominous that the chances of my not being around for too long were fairly bright. Most men of my family died around 50 due to one reason or the other but mostly because of heart attacks. My own father died at the age of 45 because of leukaemia. That was the clincher. I had to get my first born settled before I copped it.
And, you? Let me make a guess. In your case, you saw, you fell, she kicked you in the head and you said, I do!
I agree it happens that way sometimes. But mostly, the hormones work up and the mind starts working with a single-minded dedication to 'get' the girl. The girl does not have to be the girl of your dreams. She has to be a girl. Period. Sheer peer effect! Your friend is going out with a girl and you don't have one, and you have to equalise the score. Without realising the pitfalls, you want to go out with one. It is to 'get' the girl; marriage is nowhere in the agenda.
In olden days, quite a few boys and girls waited for their parents to get them hitched to a suitable partner. Not that the hormones were not working then. They were, but not overtime. They were still controllable. In our times, girls and boys did not even shake hands when introduced. They just said 'hello'. Hence physical intimacy was a little slow in developing. These days, they shake hands. The physical thing has already come in as step one. So the step two becomes much easier. Step three and four are just a stone throw away. Not so easy though! One has to work hard at it.
Let me guess some more. To court the woman, you had to be at your best all the time, which obviously you were. Your language had to be impeccable. Your purse perpetually loaded with money, your own or borrowed. Your visual field was totally devoid of peripheral vision. It was more like that of a donkey with blinkers. The world thought you were pathetic, but you had other ideas. How do I know all this? I went through all the procedures with flying colours. I was a pro. In fact, sometimes I thought that it was I who invented the art of wooing a woman. Right? Wrong! This had already been invented by Romeo and his peers ages ago.
Rodney Dangerfield had written the all-important words, which fell on my retinal blind spots. I say spots because other normal and intelligent people have one blind spot. I had a dozen or more, of them. So no matter where the image fell, there was a blind spot waiting to gobble it up. Imagine, if only darkness did not arrive only at night, but was there throughout the day always. Then we would not have been able to differentiate between gold and lead, young and old, man and woman, Mercedes Benz cars and a bike, and the rich and poor. The moment it becomes daylight, we can suddenly see the differences between all these things. Suddenly we can see women, and women can see gold, and men begin to see Mercedes Benz cars, and all our troubles begin.