and their commitment phobia.
Random conversation with a friend: We had been going around for 2 years, parents had been told, everyone knew we were getting married, but he was not ready to set a date. Took a lot of arm twisting and pressure from the entire family before he started talking Wedding.
Random conversation with another friend: I feel my biological clock ticking but every time I talk about having a baby, he tells me we have lots of time, we should focus on our career. Let’s visit having babies a couple of years from now.
I have had so many such conversations over time. And have also had the pleasure of hearing the other side. So let’s walk through some of the things the men around sprout.
– Baby? How old are you? We will talk about one when you turn 30. That’s the age people say one should have a baby right? Why because having one before that will be a cardinal sin..right? Oh God, what will people think? She had a baby before she turned 30. So old-fashioned Indian of them.
– Why do we need a baby? When we are so happy together. Oh the burden of responsibility of another human being is sure to break your back.
– We won’t get to travel after we have one. Because as soon as you have a baby, the airlines refuse to issue tickets to destinations. You are even refused to drive outside the city limits.
– We won’t have a chance to go party when we want to. The fact the you have not spontaneously picked up and gone partying in the last 5 years does not count. The fact that even the hope of one will be taken away is what is of importance here.
If you really read between the lines all this means is that they are scared about the loss of freedom, they don’t have a clue on how to handle the change.
So he resists with endless arguments, which she take intense pleasure in demolishing with the much acclaimed logic that the Men folks so gladly prize. When all else fails, the poor He start looking at each other for company. Then the unthinkable happen. One of their own kind caves in or has an accident (err..the wife got tired of waiting and stop taking the Pill one day, without telling. Oh OK accident did happen in one case that I know. The wife was in more shock than the guy). She has all the more ammunition and a knife to hang on the his neck.
The conversation goes something like hence:
She: Let’s make a baby
He: What’s the hurry
She: I could stop taking the Pill
He: You would not?
She: I would
He: I will not come close to you
She: We will see
Impasse..Basic instincts + other friends in the same boat + water works on her part..the hold out does not work for too long.
Ever month hence, as her despair rises, he rejoices. Till comes a day when she shrieks with joy and he looks on with hopelessness. The end of a dream. End of the world as he knows it. She puts on weight, is overjoyed about little flutters and kicks. He can’t feel a thing, no matter how many times she holds his hand on the stomach. She makes a list of things to buy. He can’t seem to gather the enthusiasm about spending money on an unknown. She buys little clothes. He can’t get himself to assemble the crib, the finality of it he can’t digest. She smiles with joy, holding on to her belly. He struggles with stating the simple fact that he feels nothing.
Then one fine day, just like that, push comes to shove. He holds the baby in his hands. And promptly falls in love. All it takes is a tiny bundle in his hands and he is smitten like never before. Even mouths words like, ‘Why did we wait so long? Let’s have another one real soon.’
All is suddenly right with the world. Rainbows are in the sky. Spring in the air.
Till, till she comes and says ‘Let’s make another baby’. Oh boy. Back to square one. Let’s start right at the beginning.