There was once a argumentative wife. She used to argue with her husband at the drop of a hat. If the husband wanted to go to the market the wife would argue why? In case the husband said he is coming late from work she would argue why? If the husband wanted to have a particular dish she would argue why? If the husband wanted to sleep she would ask him to be awake, and if he wanted to be awake, she expected him to sleep.
Soon the husband started feeling extremely dejected and even suffocated. He did not know how to tackle the situation. Depressed, one day he decided, that for peace in his life, henceforth, he would convey to his wife, only the opposite of what he actually wanted. So, on the days he wanted to go to the market, he would say to his wife he wanted to rest at home. When he wanted to have a particular dish, he would request for some other dish. When he wanted to sleep he would express he wanted to be awake and when he wanted to be awake he would express he wanted to sleep. This brought down the confrontation levels at home. Soon, he started getting whatever he wanted without much of a bickering.
This carried on for some time, giving the husband some relief, as he would readily give-in to his wife’s defiance, which in fact, was his own preference.
But the wife was intelligent enough to gauge the change. After a few weeks she noticed a fleck of unusual peace and calm on her husband’s face. Then after some time his face had a glow. He was looking happy as he was meeting his preferences. This made the wife suspicious and even uncomfortable. She understood that the husband was asking for things that he didn’t want, so that, he actually gets what he wants.
But driven by her hubris, the wife continued to disagree with her husband on most issues as it was working out well for her ego. When the husband felt like going for a movie she accompanied him to the market. When he wanted to come home late from office she disagreed bitterly. When he wanted a particular dish, she cooked something else that only turned out to be her husband’s preference. So, while the arrangement in a manner of speaking was working out for both, it had also become onerous for both.
Soon, it escalated into a cold war that continued for some weeks. Now both were uncomfortable, but were not willing to talk it out because of their egos.
Soon the husband started feeling, each time, he has to only tell lies, to his wife, to actually get, what he wants. On the contrary, the wife began to feel, each time, she only has to slyly contest her husband’s lies to actually give him what he wants.
One day the wife thought of changing her strategy. She decided to agree to whatever the husband asked for. When the husband asked for tea she gave him tea. When he wanted to see a particular TV-channel she allowed him to see that, without any argument. When he wanted to wear a particular shirt she said okay. But this turned out to be a setback for the husband as he now started getting things that he didn’t want, because, the wife had mentally agreed to give the husband whatever he asked for.
So the husband too, thought of changing his strategy. He now started asking for things that he actually needed. For tea he would ask for tea, for a cold drink he asked for cold drink, for a particular movie he asked for that movie only, so on and so forth. And, he was surprised, he had now started getting what he wanted.
In all of this there was no square conversation between the two about the cold war that was brewing between them, but yes, their eyes, often met, to welcome the change. Time flew. After a few years one day the husband asked the wife about the change in her attitude. The wife replied. When you started telling lies about things you wanted I found you peaceful and your face suddenly had a glow. I then decided this peace, calm and glow shouldn’t come on the spreads of lies rather it should come on the holy wings of truth so I re-engineered myself.
Moral of the story: Bury the ego. Give space to your spouse. Don’t drive her, or him, to a situation, where she, or he, starts telling lies. Look at your spouse’s face, each day, for the loving expressions that are more vocal than the tongue.
By Kamlesh Tripathi
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GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE
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ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY
(Is a book on ‘singlehood’ about a Delhi girl now archived in Connemara Library, Chennai and Delhi Public Library, GOI, Ministry of Culture, Delhi)
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(Co-published by Cankids–Kidscan, a pan India NGO and Shravan Charity Mission, that works for Child cancer in India. The book is endorsed by Ms Preetha Reddy, MD Apollo Hospitals Group. It was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2016)
TYPICAL TALE OF AN INDIAN SALESMAN
(Is a story of an Indian salesman who is, humbly qualified. Yet he fights his ways through unceasing uncertainties to reach the top. A good read not only for salesmen. The book was launched on 10th February, 2018 in Gorakhpur Lit-Fest. Now available in Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)
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(Published in January 2019. The book contains 50 poems. The poems describe our day to day life. The book is available in Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)
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Short stories and Articles published in Bhavan’s Journal: Reality and Perception 15.10.19; Sending the Wrong Message 31.5.20; Eagle versus Scholars June 15 & 20 2020; Indica 15.8.20
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