Where has all the love gone?

Author: Mary A. Vinayak

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“Your bag smells of India”
“You need to buy clothes. Yours are very outdated Dad”
“Your handbag looks so cheap Mum”
“The house smells of curry. I will do the cooking from now on Mum”
“You always keep food in the wrong containers in the fridge”
“How did you manage to finish the jam so fast?"
”Mum please do not come during the holidays as you spoil the kids!”
“Mum, Dad, you collect so much junk in your house in India”

We plan a trip to foreign countries, tell our relatives and neighbors we are going to US or UK or wherever. We carry all sorts of things that our darling children ask for not only because we love them but also because they are going to give us a good time on our visit abroad, that we need to come back and talk about.

We reach our destination and see happy faces greeting us. The babies are delighted if they remember their grandparents. The older members look happy while scrutinizing us and our styles which may not be in vogue over there. The first few days seem to be pleasant. Slowly the fault finding starts. The conversation reduces, there is nothing much to talk about anymore.

Many parents go through these experiences and start longing to return home where they are treated with respect and live with dignity. It is an eye-opener for many Indian parents. It is heart breaking, but this is what I have observed although parents rarely talk about it except to their immediate families. Instead they praise amazing USA or UK or wherever else and how well our kids are doing and how they looked after us, at the same time harboring heartache and disappointment privately.

There was a time in their lives when the children loved the smell of home and home food, they thought their parents were so stylish, they loved to be spoilt and the junk in the house was what they used to play and enjoy with. The above comments were not made by their parents to them in their growing years!

So where has all the respect and love gone?

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