Sunday, December 13, 2009

Trials and Tribulations of being DINK

Been feeling weird since I got back from vacation. Work has been crazy and despite the long, busy hours and a recent holiday, I feel the need for a change. It could be the travel bug as I am extremely restless and want to travel, meet new people and hear their stories. Or could be coz Joy is not around for entertainment during the holiday season. Maybe, I have been taking too many things for granted.

There is something about the little things that you do as a couple - Joy lending me a patient ear to all my problems, be it work related or domestic issues such as when the cook or the maid do not turn up and it drives me insane. Or the late night excursions to appease my sudden craving for ice cream or even simple things as the weekend shopping trips.

Been reading a friend's blog on unmarried women over 30 and a link she posted on how they can be more resourceful and self sufficient than their married counterparts. Gets me thinking. The world can be so judgemental about a lot of things from single women, divorces, extra-marital affairs (despite Tiger Woods remaining the world's greatest golfer) and so on. So many issues, society likes to talk about and pass judgement on. That's the way of this world. :)

In India, parents worry about getting their daughters married before they are 30. It does not matter that their daughters have flourishing careers and have done so well professionally but if you are not married, you are "not settled" however great your accomplishments. I personally feel, it is better to be single and happy than be in a bad marriage.

Well, single women are not the only one with their woes. Joy and I decided long ago even before we got married that we want to be DINKs. But who is to listen and respect your decision. Nosey relatives, interfering neighbors all land up and try to give us advice on the pitfalls of not having kids. Some of them are downright nasty and act as if they are superior simply because they have a brood of mannerless brats that is no neighbor's envy, others pass comments saying "you will repent in your old age and you won't realize it now but later" and others assume "that well you will change your mind later on". An ex-colleague was really nasty and told me with scorn that I am not a woman since I am not having kids. And that same colleague went on to a marriage where she was a virtual prisoner and had to cut off ties with all her friends and family.

People dont understand that if we have lessons to learn, it is for us to learn. Even if we do regret our decision so be it. But I don't think it is upto any person to tell us what is right or wrong and impose their ideas on us. Aah, the expectations from others. Joy and I have learnt to take such comments in our stride. We keep trying to come up with innovative reasons as to why we are not having kids. From population control to being impotent to bad genes, we say anything that catches our fancy at that point of time.

If people have no respect for a mutual decision made by two adults, then so be it. We can be difficult too. ;-) And the strangest thing is that it's usually the women who interfere and give us unwarranted advice. Me thinks a part of them are jealous coz they envy our independence. We love the emotional, mental and financial freedom that comes with it so each to his own.

Please note that this article is not for my lovely friends, family and wellwishers who have been so supportive of our decision. I still love your kids. It is only for those who have been nasty, interfering and judgemental about our so called barren state. ;-) Whew! I feel so much better already as if I've got a load off my back. Now am off to work. Part II of this article may be published based on more comments. ;-)