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Patriarchy, Marriage and Children

Chakma binding ceremony during our wedding reception

I look at the whole partiarchal society in a slightly different way now, as I just got married two months ago (anniversary on friday). Everyone expected me to take my husband's name- which to some extent I may have done- neither of us are sure as I was so late on the day and lost the paperwork. I am keeping my name for work purposes, as I have built up over 20 years worth of contacts as Ina Hume, so i don't want to lose those connections, however small it is to have a new name.

But the thing that really got me thinking, was the fact that so many of my friends are not married but have children with partners, and all of them have given the father's name to their children without thinking twice. Some are no longer with the father's and so have a different surname to their children who they live with for at least part of the time. It seems strange that even in western countries, women give all these things away in the personal realm without thinking, but are still feminists in the professional sphere. We need to question all forms of patriarchy and why things are the way they are, and challenge things if they perpetuate sexism and the disempowerment of women.

I love my husband dearly and he will support me whatever I want to do. And, not changing your name is something that men can also feel emasculated by, especialy if their friends or family's are not so progressive. Luckily my man is secure and he accepts his radical feminist, forgetful wife. (The question is did i forget or was i late on purpose....)

My husband and I also had a traditional Chakma part to our day. This invovled, both of us being bound with material as we sat on the ground, then my relatives held him down and his would have held me down (but his nephews were AWOL) and then we both tried to stand up. Chakma lore says that whoever stands up first will rule in the marriage. And I, with the help of my nephews and niece and wily ways stood first. So, there are some traditions I do like....


Zippy's picture

Lol Ina, There is humour in

Lol Ina, There is humour in your last part. You stood up first! I wish there was such a tradition in my culture. I would tear all the material and spring up! LOL...

But seriously, I do like your observation that, "It seems strange that even in western countries, women give all these things away in the personal realm without thinking, but are still feminists in the professional sphere."

It really is food for thought.

"A human is a human because of other humans"

Ina Hume's picture

Women stand first...

Hehe Zippy-you are right, it is a nice thing to have this tradition in our culture. I have also noticed that it is nearly always the women who try their very hardest to stand up first. It was the same at my cousins lovely monsoon wedding. Although, his poor wife, had a huge and heavy number of relatives to contend with. I think she would have stood first if it wasn't for some larger in-laws holding her back. I think it is symbolic of the interactions not only with your husband, but also with your in-laws.

Most women i know, from both the cultures i belong to, feel the need to compromise in marriage to some extent. I think this can be the secret to a happy marriage when it is about the personal negotiations we make with our partners. But i don't agree with laws that say, the children belong to the man in cases of divorce, or things that actually make the woman vulnerable in marriage and beholden to the man. We should stay in marriage because we want to, not because we have to.

Take care,

Ina's picture

Hindi Jokes

Shayari makes it so simple, fill your emotions into it and guess what your love accepts you whole heartedly.Hindi jokes In todays fast paced and stressful lifes,it is important to seek some sort of entertainment or stressbuster. are an easy way of releving Stress.Ha...............haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa///

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