Whenever the issue of oh so ‘frowned upon’ divorce is brought up on any occasion, anywhere in Pakistan, the usual response by the elders is of absolute pride, that thank god we as a culture are extremely lucky in this department as compared to the West, where the divorce rates are an all time high.
Now, although, no doubt it is a thing to celebrate if somehow our couples are leading a joyous life and don’t “need” divorce. The problem however is that, most people are driven by the taboo that divorce itself creates and not by, whether they want to continue in the marriage or not, even if it means in toxic and sometimes physically and psychologically hurtful ways.
When the elders tell you, that real women are those who endure, it indirectly means that no matter how your husbands turn out, you are the ones who have to make the ultimate sacrifice. That why they say “Naseeb Ache Hon” (may the odds be in your favour) to women only and reinforce it in every freaking drama serial , because they know, that if ‘Naseeb Ache Na Howe’, breaking the marriage altogether is out of the question. Which could only mean one thing, women are meant to suffer, and they should be rather grateful if their spouses turn out good.
However it is not to say that only women sufer, men sometimes can be unhappy in a marriage, but they know they have to make it work somehow because, ‘society’. Women sometimes even stay in marriages where domestic violence is common, that is when our customs, although understandably are promoting family values, in extreme cases they are not justifiable whatsoever.
Agreed, that one should not give up easily in relationships and compromise is an essential part, but don’t end up disguising a toxic relationship under holy compromise, moreover boast of the fact that we are a happier society because at least divorce rate is low. That only means we are good at pretence?
Statistics mean nothing if the story behind is not honest of your experience. Let us be a happier society by getting rid of unhealthy practices, mirror our truths and learn and find our own good balance, doesn’t necessarily have to be inspired by the West.
Don’t just endure to prove your womanhood, maybe take unafraid steps against taboos and alter the course of society for a change. Leave gender bias behind, and let that be the proof of your integrity.