So this note is likely to piss off many of you, but still. Can someone tell me why exactly Jiah Khan‘s ex-boyfriend is being blamed for her suicide?
So it’s the usual story. Boy meets girl, they fall in love, they are happy, then they break up. Then he sees someone else.
At which point over-wrought girl decides her life isn’t worth living. Seriously – this is a 25-year old who co-starred with Aamir Khan in a hit film and then later thinks her life is value-less without the continuing attention of some unemployed star-kid?! How the heck was she brought up? What kind of foolish adult mind thinks that someone else’s attention is so important that her own life pales in comparison? How dare her parents blame her ex for this ridiculous state of mind? Who gave her these values where “death before losing in love” is a virtue?
So she writes a latter saying she had an abortion when she got pregnant, presumably by him – again, no one told her about contraception? And even if they decided to forswear protection – it’s his fault she got pregnant? Wasn’t she equally part of it?
So yes, she had an abortion, she set her mind to have him, but he moved on after they mutually broke up – but she wanted him back, and he said no, so she took her life?
Of course we mourn for her.
But why would we – and the police – blame the idiot star kid who was her ex-boyfriend? I hear it’s on the charge of abetting suicide. Really? You mean if two people are together, and one wants to marry the other, and the other refuses, and then the first one commits suicide, then the other has abetted it? What rot.
So now after seeing this news play out, we have a nation of unstable 25-year olds going around forcing their partners into matrimony at the gunpoint of “do it or I’ll commit suicide and you’ll go to jail like Aditya Pancholi’s son”?
What about it being the other way around? Perhaps more like blackmail – “Marry me, or I’ll commit suicide?” And would that not be equally valid a crime?
So what’s a guy to do if he doesn’t want to marry a girl? Or vice versa actually. Report to the cops when he’s been proposed to? Take anticipatory bail before he says “No, I don’t want to marry you”? Call the counselling lines so they make outbound calls to the partner in advance of him saying no? Or in this case, even involve a bigger star, Salman Khan, who oversees their apparently amicable separation? And even then go to jail after all these precautionary measures?
Look, there’s no escaping the fact that a life lost is a terrible, terrible thing. But blaming the ex-boyfriend or ex-girlfriend for one’s lack of motivation to live when a relationship breaks is not the other’s fault. It’s your own.
No one grows up with a right to be loved. It’s a privilege you earn for yourself. It doesn’t come naturally. You earn it. And very often, love comes. And love goes. And love comes back. And goes again. And so on.
And, yes, sorry to break it to you but there is no one-man-one-woman-walking-into-the-sunset-together-forever Mills & Boon bullshit that happens either. If your parents or your convent schools or some M&B you read or a chick flick or a YashRaj or KJo film told you that it is the way and it will happen to you – please understand that those are pretty unreliable sources. For starters, it didn’t happen to the authors of such propaganda: the nuns and KJo are still single. The apparent importance of marriage is just propaganda – and you’re better off not depending on it. If it happens, cool. And if it doesn’t, that should be cool too.
Perhaps the best thing we can do as individuals and parents is tell the kids around that marriage isn’t the ultimate goal. It isn’t even an intermediate goal. Or even a tiny goal. Screw the TBZ ads and the whitening cream commercials. Ignore Chetan Bhagat and Shaadi.com. Marriage is downright unimportant in the overall course of things.
In India, you don’t need to be married to have a child legally. Or even to inherit and pass on property. Marriage is just a social custom where a bunch of old people shower rice on your head and believe they’re giving you their permission (or direction, in some cases) to sleep with someone. As you can imagine, it has little or no legal necessity or significance.
What is important is planning to live a full life for yourself, and working to make all your dreams come true – regardless of whether you have a partner with you for the course.
Sure, it’s more fun when you have a lover around. But not having one around isn’t a show-stopper. Life is compulsory. Marriage is an optional extra. Let’s tell the kids that.
Oh, and while we’re at it, can we please stop blaming that poor Pancholi kid for Jiah Khan’s suicide? Let’s stop the witch hunt. Get him out of jail.
And let’s stop glorifying suicide in the name of unrequited love.