Wednesday, January 7, 2015

If He’s Not Well, She’s There. If She’s Not Well, Who’s There?

Think about the time when your grandfather/father(-in-law)/husband/son(-in-law) was sick/unwell/indisposed.

It could be something major, like an operation, or something minor, like a fever. Can you recall who was there with him? Who nursed him back to health? Who fussed over him? Who ensured he had healthy food? Who gave him timely medicine? Who bore his mood-swings and tantrums? Who stuck through the bad and the ugly along with him?

I can’t say for sure what your answer is. But I can guess with a great degree of confidence that it was a woman in his life. It could be the grandmother/mother(-in-law)/wife/daughter(-in-law).

Now think about the time when your grandmother/mother(-in-law)/wife/daughter(-in-law) was sick /unwell/ indisposed. It could be something major, like an operation, or something minor, like a fever.
Can you recall who was there with her? Who nursed her back to health? Who fussed on her? Who ensured she had healthy food? Who gave her timely medicine? Who bore her mood-swings and tantrums? Who stuck through the bad and the ugly along with her?

I can’t say for sure what your answer is. But I can guess with a great degree of confidence that it was a woman in her life. And more often than not that woman is herself.

For the past several years, personal circumstances have put me in the middle of many such situations. I’ve seen this as a recurring pattern in a vast majority of the cases (Note: I don’t mean to generalize here, and agree that there could be several exceptions).

I brought this up with many friends in my personal network and there is general consensus. I followed this with a discussion with a very close doctor friend, and she confirmed this from her medical experiences too. She said that many times, even when women are in the hospital for any kind of medical treatment, they are usually on their own – to take care, recover, rest, recuperate, and get to their feet. Of course, the medical staff / help does their bit, but the onus of “fuss-free” recovery is on the woman.

In many cases, she said that if a man is the patient, some woman will accompany him – even for a consultation. But if the woman is the patient, many times she comes alone or with some other woman. One instance that she narrated to me was of an aunty admitted in the hospital. Her husband refused to visit her because he was ‘emotionally unable to see his wife in distress’. The aunty was mostly alone through her surgery and recovery. A few years later, her husband underwent a surgery in the same hospital. She did not leave his bed-side even for a minute and nursed him back to his feet in record time.

Something does not add up, right?

 For full reading, click over the the article on WomensWeb

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