Free Press Journal

Burdened with house-work


Burdened with house-work

I am a 50 year old woman. My son got married last year with a girl of his choice belonging to a different religion. As parents, we did not object and accepted the match lovingly. The wedding also went off well. Now the issue is that my daughter-in-law is a working woman and both her and my son are out most of the day working. This results in all the household work coming on me. I have to wake up early and cook for them and pack their lunch and also cook dinner for everyone as they come quite late at night. All the other responsibilities like maintained, dealing with house helpers and other chores also feel on my shoulders. As I am growing older I am unable to manage these responsibilities efficiently. If I share this feeling with them they feel I simply complain and that it’s no big deal and the wave it off in small talks. I worry about my and their future too. I feel in my absence how will they manage. How do I explain them?  

Ans:  As a mother it is in your nature to be caring and nurturing towards the children. Once children grow up it becomes their prerogative to shoulder responsibilities and become independent in life. What might be happening in your situation is that your son and daughter-in-law have taken up the responsibilities outside home but within the house they haven’t. If you feel that the pressure’s too much and despite you communicating with them there is no solution, you can maybe start delegating responsibilities. Being assertive and taking a stand on your actions will also help. Plan vacations, outings so that you don’t remain within the house and end up doing more than your share of work.

Attention seeking

I am 25 years old girl. A year ago I lost my grandfather in a cardiac arrest. Ever since then, my grandmother has become very edgy and feels insecure in her relationships. She seeks attention and affection all the time from each members of the family. Off late, she has started creating scenes where in the entire family has had to leave everything they were doing and be by her side to comfort her. Is there anything we can do to help her feel more secure without disrupting our daily lives?

Ans: You need to empathise with your grandmother. She is going through bereavement right now. You need to give all the help that she needs to get her out of the grief. Help her with change of environment like travel for a while. All the members at home can talk to her at fixed hours in turns in that way not all are running to give her attention and it’s more predictable for her that someone is going to be around. Help her to develop some purpose in life like following her path through self actualization with help of any means that suit her like religion, spirituality, or social service. But monitor her behaviour; if this emotional instability persists you can seek professional help of a psychologist or a psychiatrist to rule out any chance of depression.

Passionless marriage

We had an arranged marriage. It’s been two years now, but we haven’t had any special moments, at least I haven’t felt anything special or love towards my wife. In fact, the more I get to know her, the more I realize how different we are and the lesser reason I find for us to be together. Now, I have started considering of alternatives and even doubt if we should stay together married for the rest of our lives.

Ans: Since it’s an arranged marriage, it can be predicted that you may not feel intimate immediately. There are stages of relationship, initially it’s all rosy and you are flying with infatuations and fantasy. When you wake up one day feeling that you married a wrong person is when your fantasy has gone down and you get to know the person on ground levels. You get to know their weaknesses and feel that you aren’t compatible at all. You’ll both think differently and have differently opinions. But this too is a passing stage. If you stick around even in this state by beginning to accept the person for what she is, this is a stepping stone to next stage. You then look beyond mere compatibility, then comes unconditional love. Even if you think of getting out of this relationship and you try again with someone else. You might have to go through the same stages anyway. More or less every relationship goes through a rough patch doesn’t mean you run away every time it doesn’t work. If you had liked her when you agreed to marry you can give it a try to work it out.

Escape Route

I am 48 years old woman with two grown kids. My husband and I met and fell in love when we were school, studying together and we have practically seen each other grow up. Recently I found out that he’s been having an affair for the past one year. I confronted him and his reason was boredom with the monotony of his life. This excuse I just don’t seem to digest and we are having fights every day about this same issue. He says he started with a fling to find some excitement but has fallen in love with her but at the same time he doesn’t want anything to change between us too. He doesn’t want a divorce. I love him and cannot find the strength to make a decision on what to do. I can’t trust him anymore and feel the things will get very complicated with my children too. What should I do? Please suggest?

Ans: It may be hard to decide, but ultimately there is no better person to decide your fate than you. This kind of issue is laden with many layers which need to be addressed by both you and your husband. Perhaps you should seek professional help and/or marital counselling to see if these issues can be resolved with extended discussions. Trust is the foundation of a successful relationship, so see if that is reparable for you in the long run. Finally, make sure your kids are doing fine. Children are more intuitive than we think. Make sure you pay attention to any behavioural cues that indicate stress or tension.