Mallu mothers are culpable for crime against their daughters. It is time they are held accountable for the emotional and mental anguish they inflict up on their spawns.

She and I grew up together and I always envied her. She had what you would call a ‘real’ family, they had all the P’s. ( panam, pathras,..there were other P’s..but I can’t remember them now) Being the only daughter in a house full of boys, she was pampered and spoilt. I didn’t so much care about the money or prestige, but I envied the way her brothers took care of her.

When it was time, ie when she reached the grand age of  20 ..following the Suriani Kristiani guidelines, her parents found a suitable boy.. from a well to do family with the ancestral history written on palm leaves from the palm trees  St. Thomas himself brought.. or so they claimed. The fact that he held a foreign citizenship was boasted to all and sundry.

But there was one small problem… Nothing happened in the bridal chamber at night.. Her mother knew it.. and told is normal..some guys can’t perform under stress and all will be well eventually.. 2 weeks of the holidays(honeymoon) went by and nothing happened. Then he went back to his country of residence.

Her mother packed her bags for her and sent her overseas to live with her husband.. and still nothing happened..

25 years went by…. and nothing happened.

From day 1, he talked to her only when necessary.. and never came back home till midnight. (Her mother told her, that too is a normal behaviour for guys who were raised outside India)

I must write a bit about my friend.. The part where I told I was envious about the way her brothers took care of her…. it also meant she had no freedom at home.. she never read a single Mills and Boon.. Her brothers walked her to school every morning and picked her up every evening.. between school and home, she went no where and met no one and knew nothing about sex.

She had no idea about intimacy between partners.. she thought this was how it was with all married couples.. and worst of all, her mother convinced her, that she was the problem.. because women have it in them to seduce a man and she failed..

Sometime ago, while checking her husband’s pant pockets before doing the laundry.. she found a packet of condom and after 25 years… It was one of those tube light moments…it dawned on to her that her husband is gay….

Now she wants a divorce.. and her mother had the audacity to ask her

“at 45, you are still thinking of sex?” Instead of telling her, I am sorry, I screwed up your life, because I was more worried about what others think.. even though I knew something was wrong the first day of marriage.. Walk away now.. at least you have the rest of your life to live..

Intimacy is every woman’s right.. but not if it affect your family’s honour and prestige. Pathetic..








16 thoughts on “culpable

  1. Its interesting that you start of the post by saying “Mallu mothers are culpable for crimes against their daughters”. Do you think only Mallu mothers are culpable or only Mallu mothers carry out such crimes? While the case you have stated here is of a Malayalee, I suspect a number mothers in conservative countries, which institutionalize patriarchy, use similar (horrible) tactics.
    The gay husband is equally if not more culpable. He perpetuated fraud on his wife for 25 yrs.
    Women need to stand up for themselves as this Bangalore woman did when she discovered her husband was gay –

    • Meenu: When you peel away the layers of my identity..right at the core, you will find that I am a mallu orthodox Syrian Christian.. Although I am a practicing atheist and do not speak Malayalam any more, my identity has not changed. I can write only about what I know.
      I am offended by people who get easily offended when I choose to write about one particular community.. There is no exclusion or inclusion or omission..
      What I wrote about is very prevalent in my community.. and whether it is prevalent elsewhere is not something I worry about.
      Just to clarify, if I wrote Indian mothers culpable, then my Malaysian readers could ask, What about Malaysian mothers.. and it will go on..

      • Sarah, I am not particularly offended by your picking on the mallu community. I am in no way emotionally attached to or particularly fond of mallus and their regional/religious communities. Just pointed out what I thought was a logical flaw in your rather broad starting statement specifically asking for the mallu mother to be held criminally liable. Even in this specific case that you cite there appear to be multiple people who have perpetuated, aided and abetted the crime. The brothers who stood silent, the father, the husband who dragged his wife into a sham marriage and and put her through hell for 25yrs. Also your adult friend who appears to have been unable to walk away from a relationship that never was and deferred all action on the advice of her mom.
        Maybe you chose to zero in on the Mom as the culprit but I would think homophobia, patriarchy, poor self-image and the concept of societal image all fed into this.

        • Meenu: Mothers and daughters share a sacred bond… shared experiences make it sacred.. In this case, the morning after the wedding, the mother knew that her daughter’s virginity was still intact.. and she who has lain with her husband at least 6 times(in view of her having 6 kids) knew things were not right, yet forced her daughter to live a life of lie, because family’s reputation was more important.. As for my friend.. like many other Indian women who got married while studying and do not have a degree..with no job prospects and no family support, there was no place she could go to. I blame the mother because, if there was one person who could have saved my friend.. it was her mother..

  2. I don’t why this “honor and prestige” crap and doing for others approval is still prevalent in Mallu society (and in other Indian communities as well). All I find that it’s doing is that it creates ego and “holier than art attitudes”, hence ruining relationships between people since there is no individual respect. It’s the only way to uphold “culture and tradition” and excessive pride. I honestly have lost all respect most Mallu people who still believe in this garbage, which sadly is still the majority.

    • In honor-based cultures that elevate ‘sankar’ and traditions to a sacred cow status, people end losing their own individuality. There’s no room for self-expression. No room for self-exploration. You are what your tharavad dictates.
      Look what happen to Sarah’s friend and soon to be ex-husband. A young man realizes he’s gay. And rather than being true to his own identity, he submits to the tenets of his cultures and married a girl he will never love in the way she deserves. And the girl has been denied intimacy because, rather than searching for her own life partner, she is forced to marry a closeted stranger. Jai Hind.
      Unfortunately, diasporic Malayalis adhere to the same mentality. J1026, I’ve seen your other comments on this site so I’m sure you could relate

  3. Very unfortunate that sex is such a taboo topic in India. It is natural for reluctance on part of parents to have the “talk” regardless of what the child’s gender is. Usually in India the kids get the “sex Ed” from their elder peers or porn, boys more so because it is accessible more to them than girls. There should be sex Ed in schools so they don’t pick up any wrong info.

    Feel very bad for your friend – she didn’t even know what she was missing in life. Feel bad for that fellow that she married too. He felt the need to keep up a sham for the society despite ruining another persons life!

    • Goutham: I think Indians have to really understand about LGBT..
      I am angry with the guy.. he is a coward.. and his conduct was unconscionable. He really had no right to destroy someone’s life like this..

  4. Sarah: rather than blame individual (or the generic) mother (who were daughters), we need to understand and see if we can motivate all that form part of the society. This is not a problem that exists in the Syrian Christian community. Anecdotally, I know it exists elsewhere. It is a shame that sex education and discussion about sex is taboo within the family (both for boys and girls). I’m not hopeful that anything will be done or even how? Everyone is focused on technology and “smartness” of cities as is that is the panacea. Sorry for the rant. Thank you for your opinions, blog on!

    • Shibu: James Baldwin wrote, ” you think your pains and heartbreaks are unprecedented in the history of the world, But then you read”
      I am not here to understand and motivate a change a culture.. I am here to support those who think they are alone… especially the ones who has to live with the culture that supposedly dates back to AD 52..

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