This post has nothing to do with that movie. It is more to do with the attitudes towards love for those born around the late eighties. I have previously written about this generation in another post here. I referred to us as the bridge generation. That was more from a technological perspective and here I wanted to explore the cultural impact at least as far as it applied to me.

Boys only or girls only convent schools were some of the most common and popular choices for most parents residing in urban areas of a large city. I grew up in Pune then also considered one of the finest cities in India from an educational perspective. I also went to one of these boys only convent schools. I think about my own son now and I certainly would not send him to a boys only school by choice.

Still, having secured admission to that particular school was considered a matter of prestige. Of course being in a boys only school did not mean we never thought about the opposite sex. As a matter of fact I think we thought even more about them than the coed school boys probably did. They were like forbidden fruit. It did not help that there was a girls only convent right across the street from our own school.

However this talk about school is only to serve as a context to some of what I experienced over the years from my parents. Now this generation was not overly orthodox when it came to their kid’s attitudes towards love but you could easily find parents on both ends of the spectrum. In urban areas at least I can say that arranged matches though continuing to happen are becoming more optional than they have been in the last generation.

My own phase navigating through this was mostly comical. There was time around the later years of school when my Mom took me aside and gave me a mini lecture because someone told her that I had been seen somewhere with a girl. Proceeded by something about how she could not believe this, as she hadn't raised me this way. This was both hilarious and frustrating in equal measure. Hilarious because it was so untrue and I felt utterly ridiculous trying to deny this.

The frustration was because of two reasons. Firstly I was trying to defend myself against something that could not have occurred in my wildest dreams. I felt a genuine anguish in trying to convince my mother that this was not true. The real frustration was that I was telling the truth. I so wished at the time that I was capable of something like that. Then I would have taken immense pleasure in telling the exact same lie.

Many years passed since that day and somehow I found myself of marriageable age as collectively defined by my parent's generation. The inevitable onslaught of recommendations from relatives to meet girls began in earnest. What started out as amusing escapades quickly turned into frustration for mostly my Mom. She eventually told me one day. This is ridiculous. Can't you make up your mind. It's silly that you can't find someone by yourself. I controlled both temper and laughter at the same time. Two emotions that were competing with each other as equals. I thought back to that incident from high school.

It would be easy to blame my mom's attitude then for the situation that I was facing years later. But there is little point to those things. My Mom was not an authoritarian by any means. If I had the will for it I could have defied her in these matters. In the end it mattered little. Through a match that was kind of arranged, I found and met someone I wholeheartedly fell in love with before I got married to her. That however is a story for another time.

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