Friday, August 2, 2013

Are women the protected species?

   “I am a good husband,” boasted Susheela’s spouse at a party, “I don’t burden her with any problems other than planning the day’s menu! I control the finances and she doesn’t have to worry about anything.”
 All the women looked enviously at Susheela who was like a hothouse plant- delicately painted nails, beautifully done face and well-groomed hair.  It must be great to have a husband so concerned and protective. Tragedy struck a month later.  Susheela’s husband died of cardiac arrest.  All her friends rallied round and if it wasn’t for them she wouldn’t have been able to cope with all the implications of a man dying without leaving instructions to sort out affairs of money and business. 
Are women who have protective husbands really all that lucky?  I remember the case of Bina, an army officer’s wife.  They had two lovely children and were a happy family.  Bina was quite content attending kitty parties, coffee mornings and card sessions. 
Everything was hunky dory till the doctor diagnosed Kishore’s (Bina’s husband) sudden illness as kidney failure.  He told him frankly that he was living on borrowed time. 
Kishore and Bina were horrified.  Their children were so young too.  Kishore was the first to recover.  From then began his last mission.  He tutored Bina thoroughly on all financial matters, briefed her on the various procedures a widow has to go though to get her dead husband’s gratuity etc.  He trained her in the art of investments and other moneymaking possibilities.  By the time his end came she was a more confident woman though heartbroken.  He died a peaceful death having done his duty. Today, Bina has braved all the odds of being a single parent and putting her children on their feet-thanks to Kishore’s foresight.  
Women don’t need kid glove treatment from their husbands.  “I don’t let my wife work.  Why should she when I when I have the capacity to give her a good life?” “I hate my wife traveling in a bus.  I make sure she has a chauffeur driven car at her disposal,” “I have enough business worries at work. When I get home, I’d like to see a relaxed wife who has had an easy day.”…
Woe to the women who fall into the above categories Lucky is the one, who is married to a man who encourages her, helps her and is proud of her-being able to rough it out on her own if she has to do it alone.