“So how come you are single?” this is a query guaranteed to make me slap someone, one of these days. What pisses me off is the absurdity of this question. And I do tend to snap when someone asks me this question. Not because it is personal but because it is so stupid.
Yesterday a male colleague asked me this question. Normally I would have given a deliberately vague answer but I am a little fed up of the frequency of this question since coming to this company and so turned around and counter questioned him sarcastically.
"So how come your sister is single?”
He got the point and mumbled an apology.
What irritates me is the fact that I have to give him and others an example to drive home the point. Can’t they see that having a boyfriend is not common but uncommon for an Indian gal…even in the Metros. I can count on my fingers the number of gals among my college mates who have boyfriends, and these are long term relationships. Then why do they ask such questions? And it is not just me, but lots of single gals who complain of the same.
This incident set me thinking of this whole GF/BF thingie. For most of us girls, getting to know a guy and in the event that you hit it off with him, then going in for a steady relationship is not as simple as it seems. For most of us (please note the emphasis on ‘most of us’) a BF is a potential life partner and hence we tend to look for people from within our community or religion. This rules out 90% of the guys we meet. The remaining 10% are scattered and the chance of bumping into someone on your own is slim.
For guys the above-mentioned aspect may not be a consideration at all (or maybe yes, please correct me if I am wrong). There are a few gals who will get into a relationship just for the heck of it, or because it is cool and because you can go for a movie together etc. Quite ok if both parties are not serious. But for the rest, it is not that simple. Our society rules state that a girl should have a good reputation(whatever the meaning of the stupid term) in order to qualify for the post of wife. And since most Indian gals have to get married, it sort of puts a dampner on any hopes of having a relationship that may not work out (read as 'past history').
Besides we have parents to think about and touchy brothers too, who would not like to be informed by their friends that they saw their sister with a guy at the theater unless he is her steady/fiancé/husband/classmate/known colleague.
A few creeps also spoil the party for the good guys. These and a lot of other factors, makes girls vary of dating or having a boyfriend. Which is why so many young people are single today. Most of them are resigned to it, while many especially guys miss having female companionship.
Among my colleagues who stay in PG digs or away from families, many date regularly, chiefly because the fear of being caught or seen by the family is absent. Dating is slowly becoming an accepted thing, but the hesitancy to be seen together unless the couple is very serious is still the norm. There is hope yet. If not our generation, I am sure the next generation will have things easier on this front.