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Mathru Devo Bhava, Pithru Devo Bhava / In-laws Devo Bhava - part I

Discussion in 'Snippets of Life (Non-Fiction)' started by Sobhi, May 31, 2010.

  1. Sobhi

    Sobhi Senior IL'ite

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    Hello Ilite’s

    Hope all of you are doing good.

    I have somethings going on in my mind for a long time now and I feel its time I pour it out here in IL and listen to what you people have to say to these feelings.

    We get to listen to the title of my post many times in our lives. When we use this sentence what is that is meant or expected from any child towards his/her parents?

    What makes me ask the above question? I want to truly understand what it means.

    If we take it literally, then we have to comply by what our parents say without questioning or argument. Then we cannot develop as individuals making our own choices, taking responsibility of what we do. Basically don’t grow out to be independent individuals, but mere followers of what is being told to us.

    Does it also mean that our parents are always right?

    To put my story behind this post to make it clear, here is what has happened.

    Due to some situations in my childhood and due to the environment in which I grew up, I started to take decisions concerned with respect to me from an early age onwards since the time I got into my graduation. Things like wether I want to do engineering or medical and what subject I would do majors in and so on. Also when it came to managing my finances with what was provided to me and so on……

    I had some ideas for life and how I would be living or wish to live. So when I got into my first job, I did not feel the need to give away my salary to my father and ask him what I need to do with it. I used to do my own financial planning about where to invest how much and so on. After discussing few times, I felt staying in town my parents had less exposure compared to me w.r.t the number of choices available.

    But me not surrendering totally to their wishes was a disappointment to them. This caused some differences between me and them and slowly now things are at a better shape compared to earlier.

    The other part is once I had my baby and started going to work, I asked my parents to stay with us. Then again some differences popped up due to the lifestyle issues. They are more on the conservative side and would expect us aswell to live like that. This led to new kind of problems between them and us. With great difficulty and adjustments now we are sort of coming out of the problem.


    The idea behind telling all this and raising the question that I have put across in the beginning of the post is

    Like us our parents are also individuals. Being their children, growing up in an environment better than what was when they were kids, exposure to many more things that they had and important than everything else we being a totally different individuals shouldn’t we deserve our space.

    Why is that if we don’t agree to their views, don’t surrender to them and lead a life what they feel is right they get offended. We have to listen to the title of my post again and again from so many relatives because they express their disappointment to all the relations around.

    For me the title of the post tells that we need to take care of our parents as they took care to us when we were kids. Take care of their emotional, medical and other expenses. Provide them support and care.

    But what do we do when all this is around and hence they don’t seem happy that their kids are doing enough for them but are more worried that we are not living our lives according to their wishes and the fact for not complying to their wishes is that we are earning too much and hence it is termed as “Arrogance”.

    Most of you or some of you may have gone through same situations. What do you say to this.

    Being Independent individuals is a Sin?

    Regarding Inlaws, will comeback with a part 2.

    Regards
    Shobha

     
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  2. varalotti

    varalotti IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Shobha.

    I am really proud of you, girl. That was what I have been wanting to write. You have taken the words from my heart.

    When we say that our parents are to be revered the reverence is only to their position. I will have to take care of my parents in old age. I will have to provide for their well being. Agreed.

    That does not mean that I will have to tow their line, whatever they do. We live as a joint family and many times I support only my wife. Many times she will be right. Not that my mother will be wrong all the time. But she is trying to impose the 60s value system today. That simply won't work.

    Once when I was arguing with my parents they told me that was it not wrong to argue with your own parents? I told them that you should be really proud now. For you have given your first-born enough intelligence and independence to take his own stand and defend his stand even against his parents.

    When my daughter got her first job I offered to do the financial planning for her. After all I am a CA and am doing tax and financial planning for the whole town. But she told me that she will take my help only for her tax returns. The rest she would manage herself. I felt very proud of her.

    Let me reiterate, Shobha, our father and mother are individuals, in their own capacity, and as imperfect as we are. They are also prone to errors. When we say Matru dhevo bhava it only means that we should rever their position. Even now when my new book comes I place them at their feet and get their blessings. But when they say something against my wife or daughter I don't think twice to argue with them and to fight with them.

    And if they do something wrong, wrong it is. And as a child I have the right and even a duty to point that out.

    I will take an extreme example to drive home the point. Suppose an evil woman asks her son to burn his wife for more dowry. Should he obey her words saying 'Matr Devo bhava.'? Or should he shun her like evil?

    This question has been answered aeons ago by Bharathan who shunned his own mother Kaikeyi and is considered a great man because of that.

    Sorry for the long post, Shobha. But I am happy I got these things out of my system.
    love,
    sridhar
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2010
  3. Sobhi

    Sobhi Senior IL'ite

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    Hello Sridhar Sir

    Please dont be sorry for your long post.
    I was longing to have your thoughts or feedback on this and very very happy to read what you have written.

    There have been 33 visits to the post but not a single reply. Thanks for making it very very clear to me.

    I mentioned about my parents in the post. Similar kind of story exists with my in-laws. In my DH's family only we are the one's who are comfortable settled. There is always a comparision and they expect us to provide the same comforts to my SIL and BIL. We still see to provide maximum that we can to our SIL, but for BIL we expect him to make his own destiny.

    He has been the Chellam of thier parents and we see a great lack of responsibility at his end. He is on and off the jobs every 6months though he is married and have a daughter. My DH parents support him financially even now.

    I have to force my parents to stay with me bcz my MIL doesnt want to take the responsibility of a kid. She is just 53, no major health issues but still makes a big fuss for small cold , cough and expects people to sympathise with her always. She wants to stay alone. Even away from my FIL. He works in TN at this age struggling to provide for my MIL's comforts. Though we provide for the basic necessities and asked to move with us which my MIL doesnt want.

    Since we have bought a new house last year and my IL's arent staying all my DH's relatives kind of scarcastically makes this point that its primary responsibility of taking care of parents more than visiting temples and so on.

    Iam getting really irritated by all this. My MIL avoids being with us because she likes staying alone so that she can wakeup at her own time, no need to cook for a family and so on.......

    I think you should have got the essence of problem iam trying to state.
    Let me stop here. Iam really feeling light by sharing all this with you.

    regards
    Shobha
     
  4. radhikrish

    radhikrish Silver IL'ite

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    Dear Shoba,

    That was a really well written article on a very relevant topic, which is some way or other happening in almost all houses. Luckily for me, I can say that my parents are to a certain extent, progressive in thinking, in the sense, not poking their nose on their children's (including my brother 's and sister in law's) day to day affairs and how they live their life. But same cannot be told about my inlaws. They demand protocols, wanting us to call upon them every week. They think this as a matter of right (especially FIL) , with the result, it has created more rift in our minds. Though my dh does all this as a duty, when he knows that his father demands all this, the love and affection surely reduces .

    I am waiting to read your part 2

    Radhi
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2010
  5. Sobhi

    Sobhi Senior IL'ite

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    Hello Radhi

    Thanks for leaving your comments. Its very encouraging.
    Since there were not many comments i had dropped the idea of part 2.

    But will post it tommorow. Its going to be one long post................

    regards
    Shobha
     
  6. mithila kannan

    mithila kannan Gold IL'ite

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    Dear shobha,
    We have two daughters.Both of them are married and have settled well.Their lifestyle is different from that of ous.In our youth the money power at our disposal was less.So we always spent carefully and that habit continues today.
    My daughters are doing well financially,their expectaions from life is different so thay spend according to that.

    We have shifted to Bangalore to be near our daughter,but have taken a nice flat on rent.Iam a very independent person and hence living in the same house with my daughter may not suit both of us.
    What is important is that children love their parents.They want to take care of their parents in their old age.They should be kind to them and even if they disagree with them on any issue,they may explain their stand to them in a civilised ,jovial manner.

    love
    mithila
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2010
  7. Priya_Mommy

    Priya_Mommy Gold IL'ite

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    Shobhi,
    You read my mind. I too faced similar kind of experience when I had my baby. Thank God, my parents came into our way and slowly started living like us. But still if they go their native, they behave like themselves. Yes, we respected their individuality, so they have started changing day by day and slowly we are coming out of the entire problem.
    I am eagerly waiting for Part-II
     
  8. Sobhi

    Sobhi Senior IL'ite

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    Hello Mithila Mam

    Thanks for coming in and sharing your thoughts on this.
    Like you iam too a very independent person by nature and doesnt like to be told to do things in a particular way.

    I had a strong desire to lead the life my way and also to plan for my family and how I would like my future to be. Yes my parents major part of life has been in a small town and the thoughts are entirely different.

    I used to loose temper when there was strong resistance from them and slowly analysed the scenario and now its much better from both side.

    By God's grace they too have nice financial stability without my help and also in good health. They have struggled all thier life meeting family commitments sacrificing for their brothers and sisters. So I tell them to enjoy now visiting different spiritual places and indulging in some amount of luxuries. Though there is some change but not a major one.

    Ultimately it boils down to the fact that both need to give them their respective space without have way too high expectations.

    The ultimate bond between the parents and kids need to be emotional, not based on other things.

    regards
    Shobha



     
  9. Sobhi

    Sobhi Senior IL'ite

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    Hello Priya

    Thanks for dropping by.

    Yes at my end to things have smoothed out, but we have found an intermediate way to live with each other for time being under the same roof peacefully and happily.

    There were times when i didnt want to come back home from my office and repented the idea of having had a baby without quitting the job.

    We had bought a new house and the EMI was frm my sal, so there was no way i could quit my job. Only God knows what was that i was going through that time.

    Iam a bit emotional person and it was hurting me a lot when my own parents had become the cause of worry for me.

    But there were lot of learnings that i took from that episode of life.

    Will post part 2 tommorow.

    regards
    Shobha
     

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