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There was a recent news item about the first wife of a man beating up the ‘second’ wife. On reading it I went, ‘Oh no! Here we go again. The wrong approach to the whole issue.’

Even as a kid, I could never understand why the wife or girl friend of a man would get into a fight with the new, sometimes secret, object of his affections. Or even why someone ignorant and getting to know too late about the existence of the ‘first’, should get into a brawl with her to keep him to herself.

I would carefully observe the people sitting in the movie halls, eating popcorn and watching it all zombie-like, then going home and getting on with life with no thought to what they had watched. Other than to think perhaps, ‘That’s how it happens in this best of all possible worlds!’.

Is it?

Or have they been conditioned to think so by predominantly male writers of books and makers of movies? Besides what a boost to the fragile ego to see two women fighting over you? Well, technically, it is over the hero of the movie/book that the fight happens, but in dreams they are the hero, right?

And the women. What about them? They have learnt their prescribed lessons well too, one would think. If you find your man slipping away, fight for him by hitting out at the ‘other woman’ and keep him to yourself at all costs. Right? Dinned into you from the time you were born. If I have a rupee for every time I have seen a woman blaming the ‘other’ woman for all that has gone wrong with her life, whether in movies. books or real life, I’d be a millionaire many times over. What a con.

Every time I see or hear of such women, I want to yell at them, just like I wanted to at the women in the news item that I read:

No, no, no, sisters. You are doing it all wrong. Join forces. Don’t fight with each other. That’s what the idiot is hoping for and wants to revel in. Can’t you see that silly grin on his face? Wipe it off. Gang up and TOGETHER beat the sh*t out of the man who put you in this position.

So, yeah. Remember ladies, you can fight over a bauble, a sari, a favorite tunic, whether to go to the beach or to the movies, who gets the window seat, whose children are doing better, promotion, who dances better, who who cheated in the race, about climate change, which political party should win, who’ll cook lunch, yada, yada, yada. But….never, NEVER EVER, fight OVER a cheating man, unless of course it is both of you standing hand-in-hand OVER a man who wronged you and are kicking him into the dust.

© Shail Mohan 2019