I was almost raped on my wedding night.
I am sure it may not be this way for all weddings out
there. I am not even saying that this is the case for many
weddings. But yes, if you are getting into this, you
should always know that this is a possibility that you
cannot ignore, and which no one would ever tell you.
I hail from a typical middle class background, from a not-
so-big town in South India, and after I turned 22,
everyone around me was worried that now is the time for
me to get married otherwise I would never get married/
bring shame to my family/ marry after my younger
siblings get married/ run off with someone (yes, they said
all these things in front of me!) so, yes, I needed to be
married off to someone, who was not my boyfriend.
Now, there's a culture in South India, if a family doesn't
have a lot of money - girls are married to their cousins/
mother's brother, where the age difference is not too
much (say the mother was the eldest daughter, and
brother was the youngest, with a huge age gap). This
way, a girl stays'within the family', and also there is no
question of dowry, since they are family.
Similar to this, my wedding was arranged right after I
graduated from college, to my'mama'(mother's brother)
who was a few years older than me. My case was
complicated because I had a boyfriend already, and my
family didn't approve of him when I told them about him
(he was not South Indian, which was a mortal sin in my
parents'eyes). I tried to protest, but using the usual
emotional blackmail arguments, my father forced me into
the marriage - he was very sick at the time, and the onus
was on me to'fulfill his wishes'. (He's very much fine
now, but I am inclined to think he'll fall sick again when
it's my younger sister's turn to get married. Indian
parents force you to think this stuff about themselves).
I was forced to break off all contact with my boyfriend
(mobile, internet snatched away, I don't think I could
even have sent a letter, it was so bad) and forced to dive
head-first into the wedding arrangements.
The day of the wedding came, and after a really
embarrassing lecture from my mother, about my'marital
duties'since I was the eldest daughter and no friends had
been allowed to my wedding (my parents believed they
would whisk me away from the wedding if they came to
know), I got ready for the'wedding night'. I was already
feeling completely shitty about the whole thing, having
been cut off from every person that I wanted to be with,
being married to my'mama'in secrecy, and not even
knowing whether to think of him as a husband or my
mama, and just wanted to sleep hoping a new day would
bring a new start.
I waited for my husband to come and when he entered,
we exchanged a few awkward sentences about the whole
day being tiresome. I then told him"I'm feeling very tired, I
will change and go to sleep now"but I was not prepared
for what happened next. He suddenly kissed me, and I
was a little taken aback, but I just pulled away slowly,
and told him that I was not in the mood, and reiterated
that I was very tired. He ignored me completely, and
kissed me again, this time with more force, and when I
tried to push him away, he slapped me. This was followed
by the most horrible experience of my life, the details of
which shake me to this day, and I somehow escaped by
locking myself in the bathroom.
I knew I had nobody to turn to - he was my mother's
brother, and my father was sick. Even if these were not
the circumstances, I doubt anyone would have supported
I stayed in this abusive marriage for a few months, which
was the darkest period of my life. Thankfully, I was not
foolish, and I had a job to support myself, unlike a lot of
other women out there, suffering daily. I ran away, before
it was too late. Now, nobody in my family knows where I
am, and what happened. I am sure they must say the
worst things about me, and mention my name with
disgust and shame. But this is one decision that I made
with careful deliberation and I will not let myself regret it.
I am considerably happier now, very much single, with no
intention of getting married again.
I am happy to have put this behind me, but want to
extend my support for all those women who are in the
same situation as I was. One experience is enough to scar
you for life.
::::: PK ♥MâĎĎÝ :::::