| March 26, 2017
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When wife shops, you drop

When wife shops, you drop
It’s been almost two and half years since I got married and people still ask me how married life feels as if I’m a newly-wed. I don’t know how to answer that question. And the funny thing is that it’s mostly those who are married who ask me that question. Why are married folks more interested in other married folks’ lives than those who are single or not yet married but walk around as if they are already married?

Single folks never inquire about my married life. They are too busy either looking for love or are already in a relationship that demands all their attention – they have no time for such curiosities. However, they are not in a hurry to get married. Good for them, I say. But married folks have already experienced the good, the bad and the ugly side of marriage and I guess they want to know if their married life is better or worse than that of those who are being asked the question.

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Before I got married, a favourite uncle of mine who has been married three times, not at the same time of course, gave me some pretty good advice. He told me that if you learn to say ‘Yes’ to your wife, your marriage will be successful. But if you say ‘No’ more than ‘Yes’ then your marriage will crumble and crumble fast. Heeding his advice, I have also learnt to say ‘Yes’ almost always to my wife and so far it’s going good.

Like all women, my wife also loves shopping. We went to Thailand last year and we had to spend two days running around the market to buy cheap stuff. My father used to tell me that when it comes to stuff, do not buy cheap stuff because it will tear and break down in a year. Buy expensive stuff that will last a decade or sometimes half a century. But of course, people want cheap stuff nowadays and nobody has the patience to save for a year or two to buy the good stuff.  

But that doesn’t mean you need to buy a Louis Vuitton bag just because it’s a branded expensive thing. If you can afford it then good for you but if you can’t afford it and really do want it then start saving or just get a knock-off from across the border. Although I am against buying counterfeit stuff but sometimes it feels great to wear a fake Rolex as it makes your confidence level go off
the roof.

I still wear the coats and pants my dad bought in the 70s. But the new suits I bought a few years ago will not last me another year. I tell my wife that she should not buy more but less. Why do you need three new trousers when you already have eight in the closet? I can understand women want to buy new stuff in the summer and again in the winter. But why do women need 24 pairs of shoes, 18 jeans, seven kurtas, at least a dozen saris and like a room full of make-up kits. No, I am not talking about my wife here but you get the idea.

We, men do not need a room to fill up with all our stuff. Well, if you are a metrosexual man then that’s a different story. You will need to spend more on grooming products than women do. But for us average Ram, Shyam and Hari, we just need enough clothes to last us a week. I have only four jeans, three pants, two shorts. I have six shirts, seven t-shirts and eight undergarments. As for shoes, I have only one slipper, two sports shoes and three formal shoes. My philosophy on shopping is: If you can’t wear that item of clothing at least once a week, then why buy it?

My wife is not an expensive shopper. Her friends have kurtas or lehengas or whatever they call it that cost like half a lakh rupees. Why on earth do you want to wear that and that too for one wedding party and who knows maybe once in your life time?  I think all women clothes designer should make clothes that have a different color on the inside and you can just wear that reversible piece for two different occasions rather than just buying an expensive sari and wearing it once and then let it sleep in the closet until the next Haley’s comet shows up.

But why is shopping related to a successful marriage? Well, if married women are not allowed to shop then there will be trouble. And after they come home with their shopping bags, they should be complimented for their bargaining skills and their taste as well. If you fail to do that, then your wife will go to the mall tomorrow and shop some more.

So whenever your wife tells you that she needs to go shopping, she is not asking for your permission to allow her to go out and splurge on the latest arrivals in the market. She is just letting you know that she will be spending your money, her money as well, and even the money you saved to buy that GoPro sports camera next year. And as a married man, you have to learn to live with it. There’s simply no two ways about it if you want to stay a married man.

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