Hearing about women in abusive relationships is not startling any more. Is this because more women are speaking up, or because abuse has become more prevalent? One hopes it is the former. The sharing of such experiences, besides being cathartic to the women relating them, also helps support and encourage other women who are going through similar situations but either don’t know how to seek help, or lack the courage to do so.
Kanchan Bhaskar’s is one such experience. Her married life started as it does for countless women — arranged by her parents, to someone her family had chosen. On the face of it nothing seemed wrong, but the problems began very soon after their life together started. One wonders how many marriages are in similar situations. How many women endure for years, decades, and even their entire life the abuse and brutality from their husbands?
For Bhaskar, seeing the reality of the man she had married was a rude shock. It is difficult reading, as one witnesses the uncovering of the violent, alcoholic brute that her husband turned out to be. Obviously, he was in need of medical help and therapy, but Indian families by and large being what they are, no one would ever admit that one of them, leave alone a darling son, was having psychological issues.
The inevitable conclusion is that Bhaskar had no choice but to leave the marriage, but it is never as easy as that. For one thing, she had three children to protect, to fight for. Losing their custody to their abusive father would open up another nightmare for them. Her husband’s family — like so many, again — were no help, advising her to put up with the brutality as they all did.
But this was not the answer. She had to leave the toxic mess that she and the children were in. And that’s when the long haul began.
Bhaskar tells her story in absorbing detail. Even as you cry at the anguish she undergoes, she also reveals how she found untold reserves of strength within her to endure and triumph over it all. The divorce, her job, bringing up three children, and the faith that helped keep her hold on herself through it all. It is a tale of grit, determination and also one of happiness. Kanchan Bhaskar fought for happiness, for herself and her family, and she achieved it.
Title: How I Set Myself Free From An Abusive Marriage
Author: Kanchan Bhaskar
Price: Rs. 695