She was my dream girl, my first crush and first love, too. She was smart, educated and intelligent. An envious combination for any girl to be desirable. We met in a coaching centre where we both prepared for the country’s leading B-schools. The attraction started there and soon I started dreaming about her.
As it happens, we both were planning for a high-flying career in the top-notch corporate world and both were determined about our goals. What I liked about her was her conviction for her desired objective. The casual meeting and discussions in our class soon became a routine outside our classes too and soon we were in each other’s arms. I still remember those rainy days when we both held each other’s arms and roamed around romantic spots in Kolkata, discussing everything from the global economy, history, literature and social matters. We did discuss our personal matters too, but that seemed too trivial at that moment.
But we were probably destined to be separated soon. That is why I got into a good B-school in the first attempt and she did not. I remembered, she always had a grudge that it is engineers that clear most B-schools easily but non-engineers like her cannot. She wanted to change that situation. But at least in her first attempt, she could not.
As I joined my B-school and started living in a new city, we started speaking less. Remember, this was not the age of mobile phones. So, none of us had mobile phones. I had to make phone calls using landlines from once-popular STD/ISD booths. But our frequent meetings and brief stints of romance on Kolkata streets soon all became history. Those memories only remained etched in my memory and every moment I wanted to live with those memories and wanted to make those real again. But I had to wait at least two years before I could do anything.
Even in my hectic MBA schedule, I have remembered her always, wanted to come close but couldn’t. Every moment I imagined I could be with her. After about six-months when I called her, she informed me that she got a job in a reputed English medium school as a science teacher. I was very happy. She was highly capable of such posts and with her new job, I wished her all the luck. My inner desire to marry her increased even more.
After almost one year of my joining the MBA program, when I was thinking that she was being happy and content with her school teacher’s job, I was surprised to know that she cracked CAT and was joining one of the premier B-schools in India. Even though I had no doubt in her capability, I was surprised because I at least expected that she would tell me when she took the exam or when she qualified for interviews. She gave me the information all of a sudden that took me to complete surprise.
For once I had a very unpleasant feeling that she was hiding her efforts all those days from me and did not share any of the good news until she was finally selected. But that was the time not for me to suspect her intentions as I still believed that she loved me. So, I thought she wanted to surprise me at once.
After her B-school
Once she joined her MBA curriculum our contacts almost stopped. I was getting overly anxious to meet her but she was nowhere to be contacted. She vanished in thin air all of a sudden. Soon, an opportunity came to me to go to her institution from my institution on the occasion of a joint educational program. I was in the second year of MBA then and was very enthusiastic to meet her.
After a lot of difficulties when I finally met her, I was ecstatic but her icy cool attitude and lack of enthusiasm surprised me. I was almost heartbroken. I expected her to be ecstatic, but she was not interested. Completely cut-off from me.
I wanted to know the reason repeatedly but did not get any answer. I didn’t know how our relationship could get over so soon, but that was a reality.
I tried to pacify my inner soul by saying that since MBA in these premier institutions is very tough, maybe she wanted to focus on her studies and career then. But when for months she didn’t try in any manner to contact me or was not responsive enough when I tried to contact her, I was heart-broken and pulled myself away.
Life goes on
After almost a no show from her, when I understood that she was probably not interested in the relationship, I moved on and got married. All through my life I wanted a simple happy life and didn’t really want a very flying lifestyle despite being highly-educated.
But my marriage also didn’t last for long. After about six years of my marriage, when my marriage broke down too, I was heavily depressed. I fought hard and regained my dignity and won my peace of mind in the name of a peaceful divorce.
By then I have joined Indian Men’s Rights Movement and established my blog The Male Factor. I was determined to fight for men’s rights and dignity and punishment for errant females who were no more interested in any relationship. My blog was established in the MRM space, and many men felt motivated to share their stories with me.
I have also taken up research and analysis on various topics related to men’s rights. Before my attempt, no media or educational institutes have taken up these topics or dared to talk about the politically incorrect men’s rights. Any man who ever spoke about men’s rights in any forum was branded as a chauvinist, misogynist, potential rapist and what not.
Being a highly educated person, it was shameful to support men’s rights and being branded as one of those. However, I have continued openly fighting for men’s rights using my own name and established the blog The Male Factor in-spite of all odds. My friends left me, and I received innumerable threats and slurs, but I was determined to fight it through.
My open fight had a great risk associated with it. Making all women my enemies. There is hardly anyone who understands the difference of being anti-feminist and being anti-woman. However, I was determined to take the fight on me. So, with this decision of fighting with my own identity, I have invited a lot of additional trouble including that of personal attack.
Pleasant Surprise, Again
After almost one year of my divorce, my first crush contacted me on social media. She seemed ecstatic after coming back to me. For almost 12 long years I had no trace of her and since she found me out on social media and voluntarily came back to me, I was very hopeful that we could unite again.
By that time, I was a known MRA in India and my blog was well-established in the world of gender justice and MR activism. My Facebook was abuzz with my articles written for men and even on Twitter I was vocal only about issues faced by men. So, when she contacted me she knew very well that I was an MRA and a known one. In our initial discussions she was amazed to see what I have achieved, read my blog, many articles and her approach was very respectful.
I have never known her as a feminist. I knew her as a logical person and after she went to the top-notch B-school my respect for her capabilities only grew. Soon, we were together again. I came to know that in those 12-years she also got married to one of her classmates and got divorced. She had her own reasons and qualms about that relationship and I was in no position to decide on anybody’s personal choices without knowing about the other side’s perspective. I decided to only continue loving her and seek a probable partner.
But Things Changed
However, our equation soon changed. The woman who I respected for her in-depth business knowledge and senior position in a global corporate, the woman who was initially all praises for my blog, soon started criticizing me for writing for men. I have asked her for logical reasons and asked her to prove me wrong on any of the articles I have ever written, but she didn’t.
All the time she criticized me and my work was based on one argument that “not all women are like that”. Problem was that I was expecting logical, data/research driven answers from a highly qualified woman high in the corporate ladder, but all I was receiving was some baseless arguments that many women are suffering too.
Soon her criticism increased, and she started pushing me to stop writing on The Male Factor. No matter how I wanted to reason it out with her and know her side of arguments, she kept saying, “I don’t have time to waste my time for replying to your crap”.
Problem with me, being an extremely logical person, I don’t put down anything (including feminism) just like that. That is the reason, I started learning of Vedic Indian Philosophy and started understanding Indian customs rather than saying everything as crap. My Vedic India series is a result of all that study. Similarly, my Modern Feminism series is an attempt to learning about feminism before criticizing feminist theories.
So, my expectation from a logical and sane person is s/he would first understand the theories s/he wants to criticize and then criticize these theories with logical reasoning. However, in my case, the person on whom I wanted to depend on the most, the one I loved despite several odds, kept on forcing me to stop writing for men and wanted to close all arguments saying, it is all crap – The last thing to expect from a woman who is a leader in a multinational company, not only extremely educated and smart, but is good in scientific knowledge and understanding as well.
Are Educated Women, Really Worth It?
As she was highly educated, I had faith in her. So, I tried to reason it with her, asking for slamming any article of mine with proper research and logic and she failed. When she couldn’t give me any explanation but kept demanding that I stopped writing – that gave me another life, I had once asked her if feminists have planted her to close down my blog. But she didn’t reply. Later I thought it maybe that all women are feminists and there need not be any feminist group that could have planted her against TMF. I know that my blog has ruined many dreams of many feminists but planting a honey trap for me seemed a distant thought.
But if she did anything to my belief system, that was completely destroying my good feeling about educated women. I thought, since they study the same books as we men do, they will be logical. However, her behaviour only told me, no matter how educated a woman is, she still wants to get a special status.
I remember, that she expected expensive gifts from me when we went shopping (for her). My problem was, I didn’t expect anything from her except her love but she expected. It was a fact that she earned double than what I was earning that time and she was already a billionaire. Problem was I felt she didn’t need any of those gifts what she wanted from me, but still, I was expected to give her all those gifts to show my ‘love’.
So, when she had expressed her desire that I gifted her an expensive watch, I directly asked her the question, “do you think I need to give you gift to show my ‘love’?” Her point was all girls expect gifts from their boyfriends, but my problem was I didn’t want to show off in the name of giving gifts. The material value of such gifts fades soon.
It is important that all educated and highly placed women think about it. Otherwise, this expectation of getting gifts will mark all of them as parasites. I know my MRA friends will tell me that when she left me (or stopped all connection with me) for the first time and got married to another higher placed man, why did I trust her at all when she came back to me. But that was because I still had faith in her education and she didn’t identify herself as a feminist. However, over time when she started unnecessary arguments and slamming down my efforts for no reason, I lost my respect for her education and status.
Relationship – The Golden Duck
One of the marriage counsellors and a known Bengali writer once told me that increasingly vanishing mutual respect between men and women is the reason for the increase in divorce rates in India. It is important to understand that respect is earned through our behaviour and expectations. When women, especially educated and well-placed women expect that their partners should respect their choices and give them enough freedom to follow their path in life when women increasingly believe that even after marriage, two individuals should retain their individual identities; women themselves don’t follow the same rules.
One marriage counsellor once told me that ‘love’ is like a golden duck, that never existed. It’s all about the mutual benefits that we get in our relationships. Like Bhagawan Sri Krsna said in Shri Bhagavad Gita, “everything around us is Maya (illusion), only Krsna is real”. Aren’t our relationships increasingly proven to be fads?
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