The in-laws can be a different clan to deal with. But the distant relatives? Don’t even get me started on them. There is so much variety that you can’t decide whether to be angry at them, pity them, curse them or just ignore them. In my case, I have come up with another ingenious solution: to confuse them, so that they leave me alone while they are dealing with their confusion.
I remember the first time I visited my distant relatives in my husband’s hometown. As you must all know by now that I am a working woman, married now for three and a half years and a mother of a two-year old. So this trip was just a few weeks into my marriage and we went there to attend an event. One of the aunties held me by both my arms and asked, ‘you should have given some good news by now’. My first reaction was to just stare at her thinking I haven’t even figured out where the spoons are kept in the kitchen in my house as yet and you want me pregnant already? Well, you should have told me you want it so desperately, I would have prepared something even before the wedding.
But what I told her was, didn’t you hear the good news? She said, ‘no’ to which I replied, ‘because there isn’t any. You will hear when there will be.’
During the same visit, another one advised me in an ordering tone that I should leave my job and focus on my house and family and that there was no use of my job. I asked her if her daughter-in-law – who was a working woman too – has left her job and is now focusing on the family. She walked away quickly.
I mean, when are we going to end the mindset that if a single woman is working, she is definitely looking for a guy or getting an education or working should be till the time you have scored yourself a husband. It’s time we start living and focusing on our own lives and let everyone decide to do what is best and suitable for them.
When I was expecting my daughter, every single aunty in my in-laws was hoping for a boy as if the baby boy won’t need much looking after and will grow up without any pain. Even three months after having my daughter, one of the aunties said, ‘maybe it is a son and they just want to give us a surprise when we see the baby for the first time.’
I mean what even. Don’t they listen to themselves when they say such things?
And when the girls are all grown and achieving high in life, then they start calling them ‘our daughter’, ‘daughter of our family’, etc. NO WOMEN, she is not yours. You all wanted a son all along.
A few weeks ago, another aunty visited us and after greetings the first thing what she said to me was to have a baby boy immediately – as if it is this easy – since the gap was perfect. I am sorry but who are you to decide on my behalf? When I told her the gap was natural and it will happen when it is meant to, she haw hayed and bragged about her grandson her daughter has just had after three and a half years gap. Mind you, my daughter hadn’t even turned two at that time. What hypocrisy!
We need to stop deciding on others behalf. It is my choice when to have a baby. It is my decision whether to continue working or leave it for my family or for my own sake. I will do whatever I deem important and beneficial for myself and my family. You can take all the advises and apply them to your life and make it heavenly for yourself.
So distant relatives, there is a reason you are kept distant. Please stop interfering in my life.