For many years, the most common reason for divorce that was given in the case of women was that the in-laws and husband made the life of the poor girl a living hell. Before pointing fingers towards other people, parents should take the responsibility themselves — for getting their daughter married into a family which was not compatible for her. At the time of marriage, all parents care about is the guy’s wealth, his green card and looks. No one really bothers to talk about his attitude and behaviour in public. All that is expected of the girl is to adapt in a manner that pleases her husband even if that means giving up her basic moral values.
It is high time we stopped showing pity towards divorced women. Who knows, she may have got freedom after many years of psychological and emotional abuse? If Islam gives women the right to choose their life-partners then why do they have to surrender to their parent’s wishes? It is your life and you are going to suffer. It is very likely that parents will get away by saying, ‘Oh, it was not in her destiny to be married to him.’
The term ‘love marriage’ is still considered a social taboo. Parents become so furious at the prospect of a love marriage that they resort to blackmailing and curses. While it is important for them to guide their children in the right direction, they should realise that no marriage is perfect — whether it is a love marriage or an arranged marriage, it is up to the couple to make it successful. Most of the time, I observe the guy’s mother treating him like her property. The slightest bit of appreciation for her daughter-in-law invokes unnecessary jealousy and insecurity.
There are many dramas and movies made on the topic of failed marriages and most of them have one thing in common — the guy is shown to be manipulated by family members into divorcing his wife. For once, if the guy imagines his daughter to be in a similar situation like his wife, then I bet the rate of divorce will go down sharply. The crux of the problem is that everyone cares for their own comfort; the fact that our faith gives men the right to divorce and marry four times is used as justification for their disgusting behaviour.
The solution to this problem is hardly discussed in the media. I believe the most important step that can be taken to save girls from an arranged prison is to educate them so that they can lead independent lives. Instead of showering love on a guy who does not deserve you, love yourself so that you are able to get rid of a toxic relationship.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 20th, 2015
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