Friday, March 12, 2010


We seem to have more issues with everyone else’s life than we do our own. Whether it involves someone we know, or don’t know, or know remotely, or wish we knew, or glad we don’t, or somewhere in between all these (it would make a very complicated Venn diagram); we want to talk and gossip and dissect whatever we know, have heard or can speculate on.

I think this is a major waste of brain power. Especially where this ability is already severely lacking in some people. You already only have a few brain cells, yet you want to waste it on other people’s lives. How about dealing with your own first? Also do you think those you want to inspect so closely really care enough about you or your life?

The main point of this rant is the prescribed life cycle of Pakistani females which primarily involves getting married and procreating. The involvement of opinion of female in question is actually not required at all. It is actually everyone else's perception of her and what she ought to be doing which is most important. Said female may be very happy doing whatever she is in fact doing. Whether it is studying, working or even just simply enjoying whatever point she is in her life. But oh no, she obviously does not know what she needs.

Age 18 - 21 (for a single female)
“So are you still single?”
“So beta what do you do?” inquisitive questions from Aunty jees with ‘marriageable’ age sons, or Aunties who will do their best to hook you up with ‘marriageable’ age males whether you like it or not.

Age 21 - 25 (if female is still not married)

“Are you still single beta?”
“Abhi tak shaadi nahi hui…” said sadly by Aunty jees who may or may not know female in question but are of course entitled to believe that it must indeed be a sad and horrible existence to be leading without a man featuring in it.

Age 21 - 25 (if female is married without offspring)
“Bacha kab ho ga?”
“Bacha jab ho ga na…" *dreamy expression* (Probably since they have forgotten what actually happens to new parents when a kid is born). All knowing Aunty jees know what’s best for a woman and her uterus. (Said to all 21 - 25 aged females they know; which is probably countless. Thus adding to the already explosive population growth. What’s one more right?)

Age 25 - 30 (if female has one child)
“So when’s the next one coming along?” *wink* *nudge*
Oh gee I don’t know really. Wanna keep track of period cycles?

Barely a year (if you’re lucky), after child number one is born, everyone is hungry for child number two. After all no family is complete with just one child. If your first is a girl, then you must have a boy to make the family ‘complete’ and vice versa. Not entirely sure how this works but maybe they have a magical way of deciding what the gender of the next potential child will be.

Age 30 (if still with only one child)
*Sad expression* “There must be some problem.” (Whispered). After all what woman in her right mind would only want to have one child? After all what more is there to life than to produce offspring? And look after them forever and ever until you are dead or close to it?

Age 21 - 30 (if still single)

Well you don’t want to hear what’s being said. You are a waste of space. You are a non-entity until attached to a male.

What I want to know is this; why does everyone from your closest family (who you might allow to question/nag/inquire about your lifestyle/choices) to the remotest stranger who you meet once every two years want to know why you are either not married or have only one child or only have two children (“teen tu honay chahiyay na”).


Do you not have enough going on in your own lives? Do you want to forget about your own miserable existence by transferring that misery onto other people who may not be miserable in the first place? Or perhaps you want to see people suffer as you have suffered by being forced into making choices that you didn’t want to make either?

Maybe I am happy with where I am. Maybe I am not. Maybe I want more. Maybe I don’t. But either way, its really got nothing to do with you, or with what you think, or with where you think my life should be, or what schedule I ought to be working on.

I have 4 words for these people. NOYB.

None of Your Business.

Feel free to add an F in between the Y and the B if you like.


  1. It is sad that women face a lot of pressure from society. The funny thing is that if a man is not married as well then everyone keeps bugging him to get married. I am sick and tired of my extended family members telling me to get married. Ever since I came back, the marriage calls are getting louder by the minute. I am too scared to meet any of my relatives now coz they are gonna suggest names of girls.
    I agree when you say NOYB. There is another four letter word I would love to use but its not appropriate.

  2. I know what you mean. Do you think maybe it's a cultural thing? This obsession with marriage and children?

  3. I think it is. People keep telling me that I am gonna be too old to get married and that no one is gonna marry a guy with a receding hairline etc. They want me to marry one of my distant cousins who lives in hill billy town. I told them bluntly that I want to marry an educated girl who is on the same wavelength as I am.

  4. Good for you! Stand your ground. After all it's no one's life except your own. It's easy for everyone to advise and offer opinions, but you've got to know what you want and need and just go for it :)

  5. ha ha ha... you know the opposite is true also - I have a few overly marriageable friends who keep bugging me k shaadi nai ho rahi.

  6. WOW! So true and relateable! I think all of us go through it. It's such a desi and universal thing (across sub-continent and among desis living abroad) and yes, I do say in my heart and mind NOYB! :-D

  7. sarcastically true!!lol lol...our society has nothing constructive to do..

  8. Not just a desi thing, I promise you. Already I hear murmurings from a certain older lady I'm related to, whose name I won't mention, about a certain younger lady I'm related to -- whose name I won't mention -- about how the younger lady had better hurry up and get married and start having children before she gets too old and her fertility is compromised. The urge to urge others to marry and procreate is both universal and culturally specific.

  9. Oh, and I think we all forgot to address the issue of relatives criticizing the existing marriages and child-rearing practices of those they love best.