WOW | Men Speak

HOW DOES SOCIETY JUDGE A LIVE-IN SON-IN-LAW?

Compiled by: Pabita Dahal

Sonaal Rokka
Executive Director, Sel-Enterprise Group & Companies

 As an idea, it is logical if one believes in equality of gender. But in our country and culture, being a gharjwain is a matter of shame. I would also consider it so because I’ve always had a strong perspective that a man should only get married if he is financially able to take care of his wife. I’ve always been in favour of gender equality but being dependent for the roof over your head, your wife and your future generation is like being a blind man. I mean for how long? My father always taught me “There is no value for free things in this world” and it’s very true. In my view, you are always a guest at your in-law’s house and you would never want to live there for the rest of your life because you would never feel like it’s a place of your own. A man has always been a primary provider in our society. The wife’s contribution is the same or more these days. Yet a man loses the right of being the head of household and would lose respect in front of his wife if he lives in with the in-laws. In our culture, men who live with their in-laws are deemed as failures. A man would never be able to live peacefully knowing that the world considers him a failure. People end up living with their in-laws for a variety of reasons. Either because of financial difficulties or you love your in laws. Whatever the reason, it is never an easy life. You would want your own privacy or independence sooner or later, and resentment is likely to build. In my view, even if financial troubles force you to move in with your in-laws, there is nothing shameful in it if you are doing your very best to become financially independent again. Personally, I would never want to be a gharjwain. I’ve always worked to make myself worthy for the people I love the most i.e. my parents, my wife and my future generation. I love visiting my in-laws in the US but as a guest. They respect me equally considering that I would always keep their daughter happy and fulfill all the basic needs which a man should provide for his family.