Mish_T's Blog

Exploring the world within…

When life is lived on Hopes & Assumptions

“Give me some sunshine
Give me some rain
Give me another chance
I wanna grow up once again”
(A song from “3 Idiots”)

It is said life is unpredictable. We hope, we expect and we also assume things. Hopes drive the cycle of life, because if there is no hope there is no life. “Assumptions are the termites of relationships” Henry Winkler, an American Actor of the mid 20th century once said.

Amidst huge pain and struggle, we hope everything will be fine one day. And this hope keeps us motivated throughout our life.

One of my friends (dealing with separation and divorce process) once asked, “Is it wrong to expect from people whom we love or from whom we expect love?” Since she was expecting a favorable reply from me, I said, “Expectation is not wrong, but from whom you expect actually makes the difference. Depending too much on someone to fulfill your expectation can only lead you to too much of pain. Either expectation leads to dependence or dependence leads to expectations, expectation is the mother of all pains” I suggested her, “stop expecting from others and the time you do that, you will be less dependent and will be free of all the pains. But keep your hopes alive always, never let them die.”

In Hindi we say, “Umid Par Duniya Kayam Hai” (means – “The world is surviving on hopes”).

If we observe properly, we will find most of the time it is our assumptions and expectations that lead us to depression. Either we assume too much or expect too much. And when our expectations are not met we misinterpret and then misunderstand, and lastly we mess up everything in such a way following the mixed feeling of self-importance that we are trapped in our own assumptions and expectations. We feel neglected and unwanted and then our ego plays a big role giving birth to something called revenge. This is not the only case, at times, we fall prey to others assumptions and get trapped in others expectations too and then we become soft target of their revenge.

At once with tears in her eyes she broke out, “What independence are you talking about? I never asked for a single penny from him (her husband), rather I used to spend on all the household expenses. He never took any interest in home affairs. I paid for right from electricity and water bills to every big and small household items that is required to run a house and above all even the car he drove was gifted by my father and all the home appliances, furniture, etc, were bought by my parents and brothers. And I never questioned, as I always thought I am doing everything for myself and my family. What else? Wasn’t it his responsibility too? I never bothered spending for me and my husband and his family…it was fine with me if I was able to …after all I was doing it for my family…I only wanted him to give me a little time…”

She kept on saying, “On the contrary he spent all his money on his own family, friends and himself, never ever asked me if I need his assistance in running the house, forget about even gifting a single saree to me…whenever we went for shopping together it used to be on my own expenses… When I used to spend my money on myself and our house he objected but he never told me where he used to spend his money. If he didn’t like my enquiries about his expenses why did he object when I spent for myself? If he wasn’t well off then why did he even marry? I always thought as a whole and even his family, but he always thought for himself and his family, besides used to abuse my parents without any reason”

I could hardly stop her, as her tears were telling all. She continued, “Marriage is not at all good, if you get such a partner” and went on to suggest me, “Don’t ever marry unless you find someone worthy enough…life becomes hell…it is always better to remain single then getting into a bad marriage. What I thought and what I got…I never expected this to happen to me!”

I remember that she even left her job so that she can give more time to her husband and home. I was clueless. Though I could see the pain in her eyes but was not able to do anything for her. I really wanted to make her feel good and precious. I told her, “he never deserved you…so why crying for someone who never loved you”

She wiped her tears, took a deep breath and again continued with a smile, “I am very happy now, I don’t want to leave with him anymore… as now I know he never deserved me (she came to know about his late night online flirt sessions with unknown girls)…you are right…but my life is spoilt now…had a very bad experience…can never believe on men after this…”

I felt good to see her smile and then tried to console her, “He is not everything…is he…and he never loved you? So how is your life spoilt? You should be happy at least you don’t have kids with that man and it is over…A man who can’t take responsibilities of his wife…how he can ever take responsibilities of his kids! Didn’t you exist or enjoy your life before marrying him? If he can’t realize your value then it is he who has lost and not you…Never cry for people who never cared for you…”

I thought this is the right time to tell her why I told her to be independent. I said, “Independence has nothing to do with the money you earn and spend, it is more about how you deal with yourself and your surroundings and your attitude during crisis. Independence is not a monetary thing, but one should be independent mentally, physically, spiritually, socially as well as economically. When we become obsessed about others then we allow others to command our lives. Hence when you cry or even think about him even after his misbehaviour, you are allowing him to command your life. So do you think that you are independent?”

She gave a big smile and said, “You are right…I completely agree with you…I just hope that I stop thinking about him.” I said, “No, don’t say I am right, I may not be in every situation…you should have your own opinion about everything depending on various situations you face…you can’t apply the same rule everywhere and with everyone…it is nice to listen to others…but it is always better to take own decision based on the relationship you hold with a particular person.”

What I realized was, one should do one’s karma but should never get driven by others. We can’t force others to love us unless they bear the same feelings for us. And one very important thing as my friend had mentioned about all the gifts and expenses offered by her and her family, I believe love can never be bought. So we should never weigh love on the basis of money we spend on people we love, or money spent on us by people whom we assume loves us.

Most interesting thing about love relationship and man & woman relationship is, when somebody is emotionally attached then even though they can see their partners not taking responsibilities they continue to make same mistakes…and even after knowing all, they linger on with the abusive relationship…but why? Though they have enough reasons to hate their partners they continue to love and miss them and love them even more and more…Isn’t this strange! And this happens with not only women but men too, though women are affected in 90% of the total involvements.

It’s a rare case when only a single partner is wrong whenever the relationship goes topsy-turvy. If one partner is wrong, then somewhere the other one assumes and expects wrong, something which the first one never realizes or ready to realize or can say incapable of realizing. At times none of the partners are wrong but still neither one is able to feel the emotions that is going inside the other. Few people are egoistic, few are disgraceful, few are selfless and most of the people are selfish. But where do we draw the line to understand who is what and what is the parameter to label someone under a particular category. The one who is selfish in one relationship could be selfless in other relationships; similarly the one who is selfless in one relationship could be selfish in other relationships. Few people are neither selfish towards any relationship nor are they selfless but they carry a big fat ego of self-importance on their head throughout their life.

In my years of experience in observing people and their psychology, human relationships in the society and general thinking process and capacity of conceiving others pain and pleasure; I have realized we can never make anybody realize their mistakes. If a person comes to know about his/her mistakes then they will never do it. We all have positive and negative points but we never realize our negative ones. If a man or woman is unaware of his/her responsibilities in adulthood then we can never make him/her aware and if we force them it becomes even worse. We don’t have control in what others perceive about us and what effect can our words have on them. It all depends on individuals and their capacity to understand other relationships in their lives. And the first step is building trust in all relationships. Relationship is a two-way process sooner we understand better it is for us. Either we accept whatever comes our way with a false hope and compromise thinking it’s in our destiny or free ourselves from the baggage of complex relationships and take command of our own life and make our own destiny.

“We can’t change things which are not in your control,” I told my friend. …”Why to get scared? Become independent, learn to expect from yourself and not from others, be it anybody…Take up some hobbies and simply move on…time and opportunity never waits for anybody…Never assume that others will come and help you meet your expectations…no one will love you as much as you love yourself, hence no one else can fulfill your wishes as much as you can for yourself…you are responsible for your own life…no one else is…so stop crying and start afresh…whether you plan to leave all alone all life or move on with a new relationship…the only truth is you have a life to live and live it respectfully…”

I was discussing this with my sister when I received a call from one of my male friends (also dealing with bad marriage and now leaving separately). When I told him about the complex situation a man or woman faces in relationship, he narrated his story, “…there is a class of such people, and they think they can fool the world, few people get trapped and few like me simply move on, but yes…somewhere down there is a feeling that whatever I do …however good I am…now I will be called a divorcee…it doesn’t give a good feeling inside…but then now I am part of the brigade…” I never asked him what went wrong in his marriage because I never wanted to make him feel embarrassed. But when we talk, then in between he tells me one story at a time. That day he told me, “You won’t believe, she (his wife) on the very second day of marriage, threatened my mother to not to give her instructions and stop thinking about me as now she has come to take care of everything…”

As I went to my bedroom, my thoughts went down the memory lane. I recalled the days, weeks and months when my female friend was making preparations for her marriage. She spent a huge amount of her earnings to make her D-day the most happening one. She wanted to look best, dress best and feel best…nothing less than best! On the marriage day, her family welcoming every single guest and so was her husband’s family members. A grand marriage, cameras were rolling at every corner, amidst music that was played to the highest volume and dancers danced as if to break open the dance floor into millions of musical notes. Light, Camera…and then if I say ACTION…I won’t be wrong. Marriage took place amidst elaborate decoration and staring cameras and glaring lights…and everything that happened after marriage was part of ACTION. She is still fighting for her rights; if divorce is agreed by both then it will be CUT after ACTION…! Just like a movie shoot, “Light, Cameras, Action and Cut”… for another shot of her life if she wishes to give it a try.

I read somewhere Stephen R. Covey, Author and management-expert quote, “We simply assume that the way we see things is the way they really are or the way they should be. And our attitudes and behaviors grow out of these assumptions.”

We assume a lot beforehand and based on those assumptions we dream or we start expecting. We expect things to happen the way we assume…if it doesn’t happen the way we assume and expect we get hurt, our ego gets hurt and then we react assuming that our reactions will make others understand us better. We wish to show that we are upset through our reactions. If we are lucky we get understanding friends, partners, colleagues and family members, if we have hard luck then we are misunderstood. Misunderstanding leads to many more misunderstandings, and then it becomes like a chain reaction. If things do not happen as we assume we feel frustrated, broken and unloved…

I always found talking is a good solution. Discuss the problem, tell what hurts us most and try to find out what hurts others most. Try to understand the relationship and the purpose of the relationship and most importantly the person; give your relationship some valuable time; don’t jump at any conclusion at once and don’t start demanding from new relationships. Give space, we all are individuals; we think and feel in a different way, and we have our own living standards and own opinions about various things. Opinion of two people may not match, but by respecting what others say won’t damage the relationship. Give own views and at the same time value others views too. We should not thrust our opinion on others. We should not assume if I am or my family is like this and this, others family and others too has to be like me or my family. We should not try to expect from others without knowing what affordability one has got to fulfill our expectations. Life can’t be lived on hopes, assumptions and guesses and relationship can never work on the base of examples we see around us…we need to work on them in our own way if we really wish to make it worthwhile, because all of us are unique and all of us deserve special care. Give without expecting any return and when you get, don’t forget to return it …but even after all this pain and tears, if we are self motivated, if we are independent, if we are optimists…then nothing actually matters. We can’t only make our own destiny but also make others to believe us…

Anthony Robbins, American advisor to leaders quotes, “Some of the biggest challenges in relationships come from the fact that most people enter a relationship in order to get something: they’re trying to find someone who’s going to make them feel good. In reality, the only way a relationship will last is if you see your relationship as a place that you go to give, and not a place that you go to take.”

There is an old saying, “Don’t count your chickens before they are hatched.” But we still count…! We anticipate that once we get into a professional world, our life will become cool like pool and as soon as we get married life will be rosy and cozy. We expect that our sons will look after us when we are old or sick. We assume mother-in-laws, sister-in-laws and daughter-in-laws can never have good relationship. We expect our son-in-laws and daughter-in-laws to become our sons and daughters. When we see one man and one woman talk to each other we never assume them to be just friends or acquaintances. When we see women perform better than men, we assume that she must be very close to her male boss. Not only this, we never expect women to fare well in her studies and career. We assume when our sons will get married our daughter-in-laws will take care of us, as men we assume after we get married our life will become balmy beaches and women assume it to be a bed of roses. Men expect their wife to be 24/7 care taker and women expect their husband to be their ATM machines. Every time we plan of a change in our career we assume the new one to be a better than the existing one.

We assume that our honesty, sincerity and faithfulness would pay us returns; and above all amidst all the pains and gains, we continue to hope that life will be a sunshine one day…and this single hope of big happiness helps us survive till we breathe our last when we realize that it’s life…and it can’t be lived again…now we know the mistakes we have made, now we know the opportunities we have missed, now we know the life we have lived and the life that is lost…but the biggest of all the truths is we know it’s a single life, a single journey with no return tickets and it can’t be regained…


Filed under: Musings

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