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Archive for January 6th, 2010

A distant relative just delivered her third child this week. Let’s call her SM.

Like the other two before, this one too was a girl.

Time to rejoice?

Not really.

At least not where SMs own parents were concerned.

From other corners of their family too, there seemed to be unhappiness about this birth.

Some even had the gall to proclaim that at least now, SM should have had a boy.

It’s so sick!!

This inherent desire to spawn the male species.

Why?? Why the obsession??

When SM had her second daughter, there were lots of heads wagging about how unfortunate the whole thing was.

All the other brothers/sisters from her husband’s side had one boy and one girl each, and how unfortunate it was that this particular couple had two girls. With lots of tongue clicking, the other women from SM’s husband’s side dissuaded her from going in for a tubectomy. And she gave in.

Big mistake.

SM took a third chance, in many ways, to please her husband’s side of the family. Quite futile, considering she had another daughter. And though she is in no way responsible for the gender of the child, she carries the guilt. Unable to enjoy the gift of life that God has placed in her arms.

The husband’s role here is very vague. From what I know of him, he is not the type of person who demands sons. He has been a doting father to both the elder daughters and I cannot doubt for a minute that it will be otherwise for the third one.

But I know that SM is disappointed. Greatly so. Her parents are disappointed. Somewhere in their mind, having a son seems to be a way of redeeming themselves in the eyes of the boy’s family. And now, they have this aura of having failed a particularly tough exam. As if they will be judged for ever, because their daughter could not have a son.

When SM had her second child, I remember, there were no sweets distributed. It irked me greatly. Though the kid is now loved and pampered, that first reaction to her entry in this world was hostile.

The third time around, its worse. People talk of the child in hushed tones. Almost as if pitying SM was the right sentiment to show. Nodding their heads and whispering as to how “unlucky” SM was.

When the MIL was going to visit SM, I told her to be cheery and to not let SM feel depressed (as most people would have already made her feel that way).

MIL was dubious. She said that if she indeed expressed any such joy, others would assume it as a slap on the face. They might think she (MIL) is rejoicing because SM didn’t have a boy.

WTH, I said!!! What’s with the baby politics???

MIL didn’t reply. But I guess I understand what she meant.

It’s a status issue to have a boy. And since I have a boy, apparently, I have the upper hand and am in a position to snub SM.

Disgusting, isn’t it??

I cannot help but think back on the number of people who used to visit me during my pregnancy and declare confidently that I’ll be having a son (Not many people were aware that I was expecting twins). Their exact words were, “Don’t worry, you’ll have a son”.

“Worry”??? Why??

 

What made them think that I didn’t want a daughter?

Who gave them the authority to be presumptuous??

To make decisions for me??

I know so many women who have only one daughter and are pleased as punch with them. They have no desire to have more kids. No “special” desire for a boy.

I applaud such couples. I applaud the women. They are brave. They are confident. They are not tied to the social stigma. And though other people (family, relatives) prod them on when they are going to have the next one, they have the guts to turn back and say, “Never”!!

As for SM, she has agreed to go in for the tubectomy. She is not in favor of having any more kids.

Good decision I say.

 

It’s not too late.

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