The Double Standard for Dowry

(Guest post by Babar)

We all know dowry as the gifts that the family of the bride give to the bridegroom, but we never talk about the untold misery and the millions of rupees that the family of the bridegroom spend in buying jewelry for the prospective wife, we don’t speak of the millions of rupees that the family of the bridegroom spend in purchasing bridal clothes for the prospective wife, we never mention the cost of the expensive engagement ring, we don’t discuss the price of gifts for the bride’s family and of course, the entire life that the man spends like a human ATM.

We don’t call the millions of rupees a man spends on jewelry, bridal clothes, engagement ring, gifts, etc. before his marriage on his prospective wife dowry. We don’t label it as an evil system that robs a man of his hard earned wealth. We don’t condemn it and call it wrong, a burden unnecessarily placed on a man in this day and age of economic problems. We all know that male suicide is over twice the rate of female suicide.  Yet we are happy to continue with the system of emptying a man’s pockets for his marriage, even landing him in debt at times, yet we only cry when the bride’s family has to give some gifts to the groom.

Blatant double standards, to say the least.

A man’s prospective marriage today has become a business deal. He is always asked how much he earns, which car he drives, how much money he has stashed in his bank account, whether his house/flat is his own or rented, etc. A man is reduced to the sum of what he owns, how much he earns, how much he has, etc. After marriage a man is constantly tortured by his wife with comparisons to other men and what they own. He is taunted for a better house, better car, better job, etc. Countless men are forced to take loans with interest which cause anxiety, health problems, sleepless nights, etc.

Men who are not financially well off are seen as somewhat inferior, as women and their parents hunt for rich grooms. Matrimonial ads always ask for ‘well-settled’ grooms. Women always marry men richer than them. A man has to be ‘well-settled’, own a house, car, have a huge saving and then feed his prospective wife for the rest of his life, spend on her shopping, cosmetics, clothes, trips to beauty parlors, restaurant visits, vacations, etc.

In this day and age, people are getting married later than ever witnessed in past generations, and some men don’t want to marry at all! Women wonder where all the good men have gone. The explanation is simple: (a) the demands and monetary burden society places on men at the time of marriage has deterred them from marrying, and (b) the ease with which a man can become a target of a false case of domestic violence or a fake case of dowry are severe disincentives for a man to even consider marriage today.

Not to mention getting ripped off of entire life saving in case of a divorce in alimony payments, child support, and having to part with half of one’s property in many cruel lawsuits.

The laws, media, and brainwashed members of society are biased in favor of women and they do not try to understand the cruelties inflicted on men with an unbiased mind. Society has burdened men with monetary obligations and has turned them into lifeless ATMs. Male suicides have shot through the roof and yet we keep supporting our biased views and double standards.

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