5 years in this home with my husband and I am still treated as an outsider at times
22 Jan 2016
Indian social system has ingrained in a girl from a very young age that she has to adjust and accommodate to her in laws and husband without expecting a reciprocal behaviour. However, times are changing. Many women are coming ahead and asking why they should be subjected to such a behaviour?
Neetu, aged 32yrs married for 5yrs, came for an online consultation to us few days ago. Her complaint, was that her husband and in laws expected her to accept them as her own family. She was expected to manage the daily chores, take care of her in laws, manage her child and also be a good obedient wife to her husband. Her husband was loving and cared about her. But there was something that still made her feel extremely sad. Neetu herself was not aware of the fact that she was so disturbed and dissatisfied in her married life because she was treated like an “outsider” in her so called “own” family.
It was noticed while in counselling, that Neetu, was particularly sad the days she felt that her family members including her husband did not include her in their “private conversations”. These conversations were sometimes about her married sister in law, family inheritance or any money matter. On multiple occasions she was asked to go out of the room while they would be talking amongst themselves. Her husband would choose to ignore Neetu’s question even in the comfort of their bedrooms.
This was affecting Neetu a lot. Why was it bothering her so much? Were her in-laws or husband ill-treating her? Did this prove that her husband did not love her?
I am sure many of you would find it difficult to understand why was Neetu so upset while there was no major issue. Let me explain to you how Neetu and many wives like her feel, when they are not made party to important conversation of family. Neetu had multiple negative emotions. She felt she was not as intelligent as others in family and unwanted by her family. She felt that she was as good as a domestic help, who was expected to finish her job well, other than that she was an outsider and was not supposed to poke her nose in family matter. She was not smart enough that she could understand the intricacies of various conversations that her family had. This all had serious impact on her self-confidence, compatibility with her husband and relations with her in laws especially mother in law. She always maintained a distance. Taking care of her in laws and thinking of them did not come to her naturally. She felt this was an attempt by her family and husband to put her down.
Outcome of “I am an outsider” feeling on married women and her life are:
1. Feelings of frustration: it’s not easy on first place to leave your own home, parents and surroundings and come to live with your husband and his family. There are a lot of expectations as a wife and daughter in law. In this environment when you are not welcomed and treated as an outsider, women end up feeling frustrated. And it’s a constant struggle to live there.
2. Feelings of being cheated: When you are not welcomed in family matters and are asked to stay out of it even by your husband you feel cheated by him.
3. Negative impact on self-esteem and confidence: Many times family members and husband’s tell their wifes “teri samaj main nahin ayega”, “tu kya jane paise ko kaise sambhal na hain”, “yeh hamare ghar ka mamala hain”. This hurts a women’s self-esteem and self-worth. She feels, she has been unable to prove herself in this environment.
4. Negative influence in married life of husband and wife: feeling of being treated as unequal to husband strains relations between husband and wife.
5. Negative influence on relationship between married women and her in laws: a lack of reciprocal acceptance makes married women frustrated, angry and sad in the in laws house.
If you are going through a similar issues and are unable to manage it, do visit us. We could help you to deal with this situation.
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Tags: #home #myown #notreally #wife #woes