There was a time when dowry was meant to be the share of parental property given only to a daughter at the time of marriage to ensure her economic equality in her new home. Today, it has become an instrument of oppression. Sadly, this has no bearing on their education or economic status of hers. The greed for money and material seems endless when it comes to marriage.
Today, this has become the most common practice, especially among Indian families. Women are mercilessly tortured, molested, and even murdered for not getting enough dowry. Although we have had the Dowry Prohibition Act since 1961, and have stringent laws on punishment for the groom and in-laws if a woman dies within seven years of marriage. Yet, the killings and harassment continue even in this modernized 20th century.
Effects Of Dowry on Family
Today, marriage seems like baggage or just never-ending trauma due to the inherent Dowry system.
The Demand for Dowry can lead to:
- hatred towards female children,
- misguides the parents to kill the female newborns,
- instigate forcible abortions,
- develops cracks in the unity of the family,
- spoils relationship between couples,
- and brings death to the young bride
The skirmishes within the family engulf every member and take shapes to different dimensions, such as the division of families, separation of couples, divorce, court cases, loss of happiness, and personal feuds.
Most of the time, the groom’s mother and father forced the bride to bring expensive items like jewelry, furniture, mobile phone, cash, etc., if failed then it further ended up in massive arguments and unwanted remarks from the groom’s end.
What Parents Can Do?
Anyone who is getting their son ready to get married must understand that involvement in Dowry can only make things worse for them.
The relatives along with in-laws must refrain from passing awkward and degrading comments, rather take a morally upright stand or the responsibility individually to discard this old-age system. Doing this, the devilish Dowry demanding practice will be curbed or routed out naturally and help simplify married life more peacefully.
All parents must act responsibly and encourage others to discard such an evil practice and make humble efforts towards the Noble Cause of getting their children wedded to live and lead a happy married life, with peace of mind.
Dowry is a blot on society and instead of worrying about it so much, these are the thoughtful yet precious gifts we wish parents would give to their daughters before and after they get married.
- Self-worth, so that she can walk proudly out of the marriage if it turns abusive or unpleasant.
- Confidence, so she can make decisions on her own and prove everyone wrong.
- Desire to achieve more and think out of the box without constraining herself into stereotypical thoughts.
- Awareness of when she’s being manipulated or gaslit, and knowing her rights as a woman and a human being.
- Self-respect, so she knows that she is equal to her husband, and by no means inferior just because of some unfair perception of gender.
- Unconditional support so she can chase her dreams, and pursue her passions without worrying about being just limited to just a good homemaker or wife.