March 19, 2013

Cycles of Abuse: Kamala breaks through – 2

(This is the second in a series of posts on domestic violence and maternal health. Read part 1 and part 3.) Kamala* and her husband moved to Chennai after marriage. For her, it was a whole new world—though of a very different hue from the Disney movie song. With her family far away in Mumbai, […]

March 06, 2013

The non-criminalisation of marital rape

(Editor’s Note: As we get news on the GoI agreeing in retrospect to reduce the age of consent from 18 to 16 in the Criminal Law Amendment Bill, it maintains its stand on rejecting the Verma Committee’s recommendation to include marital rape (read more). In this regard, Anwesha Bhattarchjee’s piece below raises […]

March 01, 2013

Cycles of Abuse: Kamala breaks through – 1

Across the white laminated table, Kamala* smiles. There is a mix of impatience, anxiety and eagerness in her face and body language. Kamala is here to tell me the story of how she found herself in a violent marriage, the trajectory of that violence, the spiral of it, and—importantly—her emergence from it when she was […]

October 10, 2012

Gush & Awe: How American Politics Reinforces Stereotypes of Wifehood

    Some weeks ago, I watched two prominent women in the national spotlight, who spoke to American audiences in their roles as longtime partners of the men contesting the 2012 Presidential election. In speeches that were televised across the United States to an audience of millions, first Ann Romney and then Michelle Obama […]

October 01, 2012

Violence Against Women Awareness Month

    In October, we kick off Violence Against Women (VAW) Awareness Month on the blogosphere. VAW Awareness Month began as a completely voluntary, yet cohesive online campaign in 2011, when a group of dedicated bloggers/volunteers decided to band together and raise awareness about this social anathema that isn’t going away in a hurry. […]

June 04, 2012

Zithromax Doseage

Zithromax Doseage, On March 23, 2012, the Union Cabinet approved the Marriage Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2010, by which ‘irretrievable breakdown of marriage’ was included as a ground for dissolving a marriage under the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 and the Special Marriage Act, 1954.

The proposal for including ‘irretrievable breakdown of marriage’ as a ground for divorce was first made almost three decades ago in the Seventy-first Report of the Law Commission of India. As per the Report, "..the Hindu marriage should be allowed to be dissolved if the husband and wife have lived apart for a period of say five to ten years and the marriage is irretrievably broken down due to incompatibility, clash of personality or similar other reasons, as is permissible under many systems of law of advanced countries."

Likewise, as per the current amendments, Zithromax Doseage uk, either party can present a petition for divorce under this new ground. Both parties however have to live apart for at least a period of three years before filing for divorce owing to irretrievable breakdown of marriage. According to the Cabinet note, a wife can oppose a husband’s plea for divorce under the new ground stating that the divorce would cause grave financial hardship. The husband however, cannot oppose a wife’s plea for divorce under this ground.

New Zealand was the first country to accept the concept of ‘irretrievable breakdown of marriage’ in 1920, Zithromax Doseage. Since then several countries have accepted it as a ground to seek divorce, 100mg Zithromax Doseage. In fact, in the United Kingdom, it is the only ground on which one can seek divorce.

In India however, ‘irretrievable breakdown of marriage’ had not been accepted as a ground for divorce under the Hindu law until now. Zithromax Doseage mexico, The current grounds include, among other things, adultery, conversion to another religion, unsoundness of mind, a virulent and incurable form of leprosy, venereal disease in a communicable form, 20mg Zithromax Doseage, renouncement of the world, and not having been heard of as being alive for a period of seven years. Zithromax Doseage, The provisions for seeking divorce for cruelty and desertion were introduced only in 1974.

As early as 1967 however, a full bench of the Delhi High Court in Ram Kali v. Gopal Dass, 500mg Zithromax Doseage, had said that, “ it would be unreasonable and inhumane, to compel the parties to keep up the façade of marriage even though the rift between them is complete and there are no prospects of their ever living together as husband and wife.”

The Seventy-first Report had observed that the Muslim, Christian, and Parsi personal laws allow for divorce procedures that are much simpler than under the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955. The restrictions contained in the Hindu Marriage Act have led many people to convert to another religion in order to seek divorce, Zithromax Doseage overseas. The introduction of this new ground will aid those seeking to get a divorce in a faster manner. This new ground will also reduce the compulsion to produce evidence of acrimony and bitterness in a marriage, which is necessary when divorce is sought under some of the existing grounds, Zithromax Doseage.

The mandatory “waiting period”, usually a minimum of six months, for couples initiating divorce proceedings through a mutual consent petition has been retained. The original draft of the bill had suggested doing away with this waiting period altogether but this was opposed by a Parliamentary standing committee. Zithromax Doseage craiglist, However, the Court may reduce the waiting period based on the facts and circumstances of the case.

While the new ground seems progressive, what will its impact be on women's lives. Zithromax Doseage, Divorce can still lead to financial ruin for women. Advocate Sunieta Ojha, who has practiced family law in the Delhi High Court said, “By all means go ahead and amend the law to make irretrievable breakdown of marriage as a ground of divorce, 150mg Zithromax Doseage, but before that please amend the law to remove the concept of ‘maintenance’ and bring about a law for equal distribution of matrimonial property. Then and only then will there be parting of spouses in a dignified manner and without exploitation by one in command of all financial resources to dump the other. Without a law to ensure ‘rights’ for women in the matrimonial property (not merely a provision of maintenance) I am afraid such a move will result in exploitation of women.”

Considering the pressure from women’s groups, the Cabinet has agreed to amend the Bill to include equal share of ‘residential property’ to be granted to the wife upon divorce. This would include property acquired before marriage.

Yet, many disagree with the introduction of the new ground, Zithromax Doseage. Zithromax Doseage japan, As per Advocate Vipul Dharmani, practicing in the Punjab and Haryana High Court: “The introduction of ‘irretrievable breakdown of marriage’ reduces the scope of mediation. In my experience more than half the matters are solved during the course of mediation. Therefore the efficacy of this new ground will have to monitored closely.” At the moment mediation plays a vital role in divorce matters.

Senior Advocate Geeta Luthra speaking on how the role of mediation will change with the advent of this new ground said, “The role of mediation will be reduced to some extent but will not obviate it. Eighty per cent of women seeking divorce would want maintenance and custody of the child(ren) and mediation will play a role in settling these issues.”

In keeping pace with the changing times, 200mg Zithromax Doseage, the policy of the law now, seems to be that a marriage on the brink of dissolution must be dissolved with minimum financial and emotional turmoil to the parties concerned. While this may be a necessary amendment, in order to secure women's rights and ensure that they are not rendered homeless upon divorce, a comprehensive law giving women right in the property of the husband should be enacted.

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May 26, 2012

Retin A Cream Vs Gel




A magazine Retin A Cream Vs Gel, recently published a version of the following piece I wrote, and I wanted to share the unedited original here.


Following the repeal of Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code by the Delhi High Court on 2 July 2009 - in effect decriminalising sexual acts between consenting adults, irrespective of their genders - we are witnessing the beginning of what it means for India’s LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer) community to be able to live their lives and sexual identities outside of the closet. Alongside liberation rights, continuing struggles for respect, sexual health and an end to discrimination, the face of LGBTQ India is witnessing the start of a very specific market trajectory, similar to those in developed countries where queer rights movements have been established over a longer period of time. With a growing number of consumer products and services including designer stores, travel boutiques, publishing houses and clothing lines, 750mg Retin A Cream Vs Gel, the ‘pink economy’ – both nationally and internationally – is predicated on the idea that gay people, and in particular gay men, have larger disposable incomes to spend on specifically tailored goods and services. It is also argued (often rightly) by many that a growing pink-economy invariably leads to a greater visibility of the LGBTQ population, which is particularly pertinent in countries like India where the movement is at a relatively-speaking nascent stage, Retin A Cream Vs Gel. However, the wide economic and gender disparities within the country result in only a small percentage of the gay population having the power and freedom to spend what advertisers have termed the ‘pink rupee’ – coined from Britain’s ‘pink pound’ and America’s ‘pink dollar’ – causing some to question to what extent the pink-market is actually framed within and working in tandem with the ground-realities of queer India.

[caption id="attachment_2184" align="alignright" width="200" caption="Image courtesy D'Kloset Facebook group"][/caption]

Both the national and global roots of what has now come to be called the pink economy lie in gay male magazines –today two of the most popular in India are Bombay Dost and The Pink Pages – which historically began with the desire to connect queer activists and publicise liberation initiatives. Today however, diverse companies targeting queer consumers in India are sprouting up in at least a few urban areas, and span various markets in themselves. Often arising from the need for spaces for LGBTQ people to meet and interact safely, queer parties are no longer hosted behind entirely closed doors (and private homes). From Kolkata-based Pink Party Retin A Cream Vs Gel, , which hosts everything from club nights in hotels to picnics and movie screenings, to Gay Bombay, which organises queer events at popular nightclubs in the city, queer parties serve as both business model and social initiative. The growing demand for queer social spaces has also led establishments such as Delhi-based Pegs n Pints and Mumbai’s Banana Bar to organise regular nights for their LGBTQ patrons. However, it’s not only nightlife that’s singing successes for this nascent economy – retail stores explicitly catering to the queer community are slowly but surely establishing themselves in the more forward-thinking areas of cities like Mumbai, New Delhi and Kolkata. The years following the 377 judgement have also witnessed a rise in queer cinema, with mainstream gay films including Dostana (heavily-criticised by members of the queer community for its faux homosexuality, 1000mg Retin A Cream Vs Gel, but nonetheless bringing LGBTQ issues to the fore) and Dunno Y…Na Jaane Kyun, as well as film festivals bringing together both mainstream and underground queer cinema from across India and the world. It is difficult to estimate the scale of the pink economy within the country, given that the scattered businesses and initiatives are yet to be collated into a comprehensive survey. However, attempts to do so will have to first question what exactly it is that makes a business ‘pink’. Is it one that targets solely LGBTQ individuals as its consumers, Retin A Cream Vs Gel. One that includes advertising or products that may appeal to queer customers alongside their wider consumer base. Or one that provides a service that does not discriminate against sexual minorities. With these shades of rainbow-grey in mind, any exploration of India’s pink economy must consistently question the terms under which this emerging market is being defined, and most of all, who is doing the defining.

Walking through Bandra’s tiny, intertwined streets, stores like D’Kloset – a gay multi-designer store and Azaad Bazaar – India’s first official queer store (now temporarily closed) selling mugs, Retin A Cream Vs Gel india, t-shirts, and out, proud and loud items, seem to almost seamlessly blend into the area’s urban landscape of boutique labels and frozen yoghurt outlets. Retin A Cream Vs Gel, However, the very presence of these explicitly queer stores is testimony to the struggles of the LGBTQ community in Mumbai city, and their survival has depended on the ability of the community to rally against attacks of homophobia and prejudice they have regularly had to face. In fact, the sense of closeness and responsibility that queer business owners feel towards the wider movement is extremely prevalent across Indian metropolises (such markets not yet being established in smaller towns, much less in rural areas). Azaad Bazaar is fondly remembered by members of Mumbai’s queer community as not simply a shopping destination, but an important refuge for gay or questioning individuals to come together and meet in a truly safe and welcoming space. Blogger Tappy Tippy writes, ‘They stock my favourite fix of erotica compilations… heart-shaped rose soaps, Italian Nescafe, funky headgear for a perfect theme party…  I’ve come in to find common friends, get advice… [Customers got] support from everyone as they came out to their families and dealt with the aftermath within [Azaad Bazaar’s] walls.’ This integration between movement and market can be found even in some of the most high-end pink businesses. Sanjay Malhotra, founder of Indjapink – a travel boutique advertising itself as ‘exceptional experiences for men only’ – describes how educating people remains the most important aspect of catering to the gay traveller. ‘In every hotel we use and provide for a guest, I’ve met the owners, spoken to their staff – their butlers, their receptionists, everyone – I’ve made them understand what it is to be a gay man or a lesbian woman, Retin A Cream Vs Gel. They are gay-friendly in the true sense of the word, Retin A Cream Vs Gel australia, because we’re not just selling an idea as gay-friendly - we speak to them, we make them understand... It’s very important in today’s times to change mindsets, because ignorance cannot be a reason for a poor or offensive service anymore.’ In this manner, even companies predicating their success on the willingness of the upper-class gay man to shell out large amounts of money on tailored holidays, simultaneously work to cultivate wider attitudes of tolerance and sensitivity. However, with only an extremely small percentage of the queer population being able to access such holiday experiences, it is pertinent to ask just how far and wide the effects of this awareness raising are scattering their seeds.

Writing in the International Socialist Journal, Peter Morgan states, ‘Now to be gay or lesbian is not simply a statement of sexuality but a statement of lifestyle: it defines what clothes you wear, what magazines you read, what furniture you have, or what vodka you drink.’ As gay identities across the globe increasingly become defined by those who can afford to participate in the growing culture of pink-consumerism, Retin A Cream Vs Gel usa, the class distinctions within the LGBTQ movement deepen, where those with money to spend increasingly become the face of what is in reality a much larger and diverse community than those who comprise a country’s elite. As the face of gay India starts to take on the polarities of Hijras Retin A Cream Vs Gel, and HIV on one end of the spectrum and arty, well-dressed male fashion designers on the other, those who also critically participated in the struggle towards decriminalisation - working-class people and lesbian women with ties to the feminist movement - are often left out of the picture, creating profound class and gender divides in both perceptions and lived-experiences of what it means to be a part of queer India.

Across the globe, the pink-economy’s advertisers, entrepreneurs and business people view gay men as their primary consumers. This market model is based on certain ‘attributes’ of homosexual men - their inability (or lack of desire) to form a conventional family unit; a lack of pressure vis a vis bringing up children that lesbian or bisexual women still face (though to a far lesser extent than heterosexual women); and a wider economic inequality that continues to perpetuate higher pay for men across all sectors – irrespective of sexual orientation - leaving them with greater disposable incomes. Even putting on hold the assumptions that gay men do not want to have families and that those with extra money are rushing out in hordes to purchase expensive tailored products, the question still remains – at a time when markets and advertisers are aggressively courting women in every facet of their lives, why do lesbian and bisexual women remain largely outside the focus of pink companies. Shobhna S. Kumar - founder of Queer Ink, an online store for queer literature and publishing, which runs book clubs, workshops, and a crisis helpline - describes how much of this has to do with the largely protected and family-based lives that many Indian women are constrained within, Retin A Cream Vs Gel. ‘The issue is, if you buy a book from us, where would you keep it at home. Men tend to travel more, but women stay back at home. Even if we choose not to marry, we’re often stuck at home with our parents or older siblings.’ Without a room (or even cupboard with a lock and key) of one’s own, Retin A Cream Vs Gel ebay, the vibrant mugs, t-shirts and clothes – forget sex toys and sex manuals, banned in a country where female sexual pleasure itself is a crime – for sale to the queer community have no place in the home of the queer woman, whose daily struggle too often comprises the efforts she must make to hide her sexual orientation from those around her.

[caption id="attachment_2185" align="alignleft" width="192" caption="Image courtesy"][/caption]

The marketisation of the LGBTQ movement has wrought a transition from a sexual identity to a lifestyle choice, which closely mirrors the ways in which market trends have commodified various social movements over the last few decades. Retin A Cream Vs Gel, For example, advertisers and companies have reworked the principles of feminism, transforming a once-class conscious movement into the (purchasing) power to buy a vibrator and a designer pant-suit. In similar ways, the pink economy in its full-fledged Western avatar heralds the availability of gay pride- over-the-counter. For those who can afford it, of course. Furthermore, from Oscar Wilde’s dandies to leading homosexual fashion designers featured in magazines to stock gay characters on television shows, there has been a tendency to portray gay men as actors or artists; personas of wealth and flamboyance. Coupled with the growth of an economy whose aim is not only to respond to, but create, 50mg Retin A Cream Vs Gel, such clientele, an international public perception is formed wherein ordinary (working-class) people simply cannot be gay. With 10% of the male population and 6% of the female population worldwide estimated to be homosexual, bisexual, transgender, queer or questioning – suggesting, of course, that the real closeted figures are much higher – the myth of an exclusively wealthy queer community is just that: a myth, Retin A Cream Vs Gel. Discussing the ways in which the markets courting the queer community are developing within India, Shobhna talks about the question of who is – and is not – counted as having access to pink rupees. ‘The whole queer movement arose out of grassroots level activists – who still go to the police to get permissions, are visible on the road marching…So they also make up a power-base in terms of your everyday retail consumer. But we don’t see them as a [pink] retail consumer, because they don’t buy books, because they don’t go on holiday. But they go to your kirana store and buy rice and daal to support their families. Retin A Cream Vs Gel, So yes, the BPO-working, English-speaking gay guy comes to my shop to buy books, and is able to spend three thousand – so is that then the qualification to be part of the pink rupee?’ In this sense, the pink rupee is defined not by who is doing the spending, but is crucially linked to what is being bought. The purchasing power held by those members of the queer community who cannot afford to participate in urban, affluent retail markets means that the rupees they hold, despite their sexual orientations and the fact that they are indeed spending, will never turn pink.

Another example of the narrow definitions of what it means to be part of the pink economy can be found in the purchasing trends of the transgender community. Often largely excluded from enterprises such as retail stores and designer labels – despite there presumably being a potential market for drag or trans fashion – there is a tendency to see trans people as falling outside the realm of the pink market. However, 10mg Retin A Cream Vs Gel, as gay journalist Vikram Doctor points out, the services being purchased nearly exclusively by the transgender community are medical ones. ‘Yes, there is a market for doctors who do sexual reassignment surgery, and in that sense there is a [pink] market for trans people, and it’s a very defining market.’ However, given the largely unglamorous and taboo nature of this business, it is not profitable for those who are defining the pink economy – primarily those within the advertising industry – to see the medical services essential to much of the transgender population as a pink business, Retin A Cream Vs Gel. Doctor goes on to question whether the current forays down which pink businesses are travelling are truly responding to the needs of India’s queer communities. Stressing the importance of not homogenising the queer or even simply gay population into an amorphous group who, due to their sexual orientation or gender, invariably enjoy, purchase and desire the same things, Doctor states, ‘There are lots of gay men who are fairly openly out, and who’ve thought, “There must be lots of other gay men like us who we can do things for.” They see the gay community through the prism of themselves, but in fact the queer community is much more diverse.’ He goes on to talk about what are the most keenly desired but inaccessible products:  those related directly to sex. ‘I mean gay saunas, gay escort services and things like that, because there is definitely a market for sex-related services. Retin A Cream Vs Gel paypal, But there is no prospect of offering those services legally.’ In this way, critics of the pink economy question just what role these products, enterprises and initiatives have to play in the individual and collective lives of queer Indians, and to what extent they are a reflection of the needs of queer India. Retin A Cream Vs Gel, However, even those who are conscious of the potentially detrimental aspects of the marketisation of the movement say it may be too early to speak of its effects. Soraya - a Mumbai-based feminist and queer activist says, ‘Right now, the pink rupee hasn’t reached the level where it’s anywhere close to a kind of pink economy, so I don’t think that there are any cogent messages about its nature or effects we can glean. It’s still in its fledgling stages.’ While recognising the ways in which pink businesses tend to target the affluent, Soraya talks about the need to differentiate between companies that are helpful versus exploitative for the movement. ‘Right now, it’s nice that there are some queer businesses out there who are participating in the movement, as compared to bigger corporate companies who will target money from queer people without thinking about the overall community. This has happened a lot abroad.’ However, in India, it simply is just too soon to tell. As the relatively new pink market continues to foster its ties to at least some strata of the wider movement, it is indeed difficult to draw conclusions as to the ways in which this economy will develop in the future, Retin A Cream Vs Gel. If the parallel developments in the West are indicators of what is to come, Retin A Cream Vs Gel coupon, as India’s queer movements gain strength and visibility, corresponding market forces will either support or encroach upon the successes of liberation. Whether or not the pink economy’s current commitment to the cause will become diluted in a balance sheet of profit and loss is difficult to state with certainty. However, for those with little faith in the established trajectories of the market, the predictions are not very optimistic.


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January 29, 2012

Cialis Super Viagra

Cialis Super Viagra, “I MISSED MY PERIODS”. Shantanu looked up from his newspaper.” Does that mean you…?”

“Possible. Or maybe just hormonal imbalance like the previous time” I cut in without waiting for him to finish. I didn’t want any anticipation to be built up only to be disappointed later. We had been married for five years now. It had been a mutual decision to not start a family until two years after the marriage, Cialis Super Viagra. The passage of the years from two to five saw an increase in the questions from family elders. My in-laws were progressive people and that was a relief. They didn’t lament about passing away without getting to see the face of their grandchild. They were also not worried about the lineage coming to an end as their eldest son had already added two grandsons to the family. Cialis Super Viagra, Their concern was that late pregnancy might create complications for me and the baby to be born. In a polite manner they were telling me that I was nearing thirty and my body would not be the same as it used to be five years back. Sadly the biological clock ticked only for women while men’s potential was not time bound. A few years back newspapers had an article about a farmer in some remote village of India who at sixty seven had fathered a baby boy.

“I will pick you from college in the evening. We will visit the gynecologist for a test, Cialis Super Viagra. I hope it is positive news this time”, 750mg Cialis Super Viagra. I hoped so too. Much as they tried, my in-laws could never hide their ardent desire for another grandchild.



“Hello. Cialis Super Viagra, Hi Padma.Sure I will be there at four”.

Padma was a close friend and my obstetrician. Now that I had finally conceived I had decided to rely on her during the full course of my pregnancy until the delivery. Padma and I had been school friends. We had always been together till our choice of careers took us to different cities in India. The friendship however survived despite the distance, Cialis Super Viagra. After years we were back in the same city. I was more than happy to have her beside me. I trusted her skill and acumen implicitly. More importantly I trusted her as a friend. Cialis Super Viagra, I was in my fifth month of pregnancy and Padma had asked me to come over for a pre-natal check up. Cialis Super Viagra ebay, Shantanu and I had decided not to opt for an ultrasound examination. We wanted to keep the sex of the baby a secret to be revealed to us only at the end of nine months. It gave both of us something to look forward to apart from the obvious fact that a baby was on its way. Padma however felt that an ultrasound was important to get a confirmation about the health and well being of the fetus. I had read in the various journals that she gave me, that apart from determining the sex of the foetus, ultrasound also brought to light fetal abnormalities so that preventive measures could be taken, Cialis Super Viagra. I had wondered what ‘preventive measures’ could have meant.

“So how are you feeling?” Padma’s room was bright and surprisingly for a hospital, inviting. The walls were painted a light shade of cream and the white marble floor shone. The windows had white blinds which were drawn apart partially to let the sun rays in. Cialis Super Viagra, It was strange that the walls were not adorned with pictures of chubby babies which are a regular feature in maternity clinics. Instead there was one large, brightly colored Tanjavur painting of a cherubic baby Krishna with butter liberally smeared on his face and more in his hands. In one corner of the room was the ultrasound machine to the side of which was placed a bed. She asked me a few questions and then made me lie on the bed so that she could begin the examination.

I think I saw her squinting hard at the monitor, 40mg Cialis Super Viagra. Presently she turned to me and asked me to get up, Cialis Super Viagra.

“Why didn’t you show me the image of the fetus?”

“I will send the CD home. You and Shantanu can watch it together”. I felt she was ill at ease after the ultrasound was over. The word fetal abnormalities kept ringing in my ears. Cialis Super Viagra, Neither of us could meet each other’s eyes lest something untoward was betrayed through the gaze.


Two days later Padma called me to meet her at the hospital. She had wanted to discuss something important. I was prepared to hear the worst. As promised she hadn’t sent the ultrasound CD home.

“Lavanya you will have to listen to what I have to say with utmost patience and composure, Cialis Super Viagra. I am sure we can do something about it. Ok?” she looked at me waiting for a response.

“Stop building up dramatic tension and come to the point Padma”, I said trying to sound brave. 150mg Cialis Super Viagra, “You are carrying conjoined twins”. Cialis Super Viagra, Had I heard her right. Did she say conjoined twins. Siamese twins. Those things which are attached to each other.

“Lavanya did you hear me?”

I had heard her. She had said in plain and simple terms that I was carrying conjoined twins, Cialis Super Viagra. No amount of sophistication of terminology could cover up for me the fact that I was carrying a freak, two freaks in my womb.  My stomach was churning and I felt the morning’s meal surging up my system. I rushed to the toilet in time so as not to vomit on Padma’s clutter free table.

“Are you ok. Cialis Super Viagra, Take some water”, she made me sit down and handed me a glass of cold water. I was feeling sick. After waiting for a few minutes she began.

“Let me explain to you. Conjoined twins are a rare occurrence among human beings say one in fifty thousand cases, Cialis Super Viagra australia. It happens when the division of the fertilized zygote stops mid way leading to an attachment between the fetuses at the point where the division stopped, Cialis Super Viagra. The reasons for such an occurrence have still not been established but it is…”

“Oh shut up Padma. I am not interested in your medical jargon”. I retorted. My ears were turning hot and red. Cialis Super Viagra, I could hear my breath coming out in fast pants. My heart pounding at my chest.  The realization had still not sunk in. How can it happen to me. I lived a healthy and disciplined life and so did Shantanu. Was his sperm the culprit, Cialis Super Viagra. Or was it my egg. Was it bad timing. What if we had waited for some more time. Perhaps then I would have been among the forty nine thousand cases of normal pregnancy. Cialis Super Viagra, “Lavanya I understand your pain but …”

“No you don’t understand and you cannot understand till you have something similar taking shape inside you. Cialis Super Viagra paypal, So don’t pretend Padma”. I knew Padma was not to be blamed. How could she help the zygote not splitting into complete halves. Yet I went on ranting at her and she listened to it all patiently. I felt I was losing my sanity, Cialis Super Viagra. I was angry, sad and in shock.

“Look Lavanya as opposed to olden times, things are improving now. In your case the attachment is at the sacrum, at the base of the spine. It is comparatively easier to separate such twins and they have sixty eight percent chances of being successfully separated”. Cialis Super Viagra, “Separated. Do you think I am even going to give birth to it?”. Padma looked at me perplexed.

“I want to get rid of it, 10mg Cialis Super Viagra. Abort it”. Preventive Measures was the only option I had, Cialis Super Viagra.

“Are you crazy. Abortion in the fifth month is not a sensible thing”

“I don’t care. I will not go through the rigors of labour only to bring freaks into this world. Abort it. Cialis Super Viagra, God willing I will conceive again. If that doesn’t happen I will adopt. But just to make an example of myself I will not give birth to these aberrations. I don’t care to be called a model mother.”

“You stand the risk of losing your life. Do you care about that?” Padma’s resolve at composure had given way and she yelled at me hoping to make me see reason.

“Then what the hell should I do?” I barked at her, Cialis Super Viagra.

At last the plethora of emotions creating turmoil inside me settled themselves in my eyes. I cried. She held me tight. Cialis Super Viagra us, “I don’t want it Padma. Cialis Super Viagra, Just the thought that it is there inside me repulses me”, I said between sobs.

“Does Shantanu know about this?” I asked her.

“No I thought it best to tell you first.”

“Help me Padma. Please do something. I don’t want it” I wailed.

My wretchedness forced Padma to say something which wasn’t the best of things for even a human being to say let alone a doctor, Cialis Super Viagra.

“Lavanya there is a high probability that conjoined twins are still-born. I will not let you risk your life by going for an abortion. But in your case we can hope that the babies are…” she didn’t finish her sentence but I got the import of her words.

“What if it is not born dead Padma?”, I asked with tears in my eyes and a strange resolve in my voice.


Cialis Super Viagra,             “I am sorry Shatanu. The baby was still born”

“Does she know about it.

“Not as yet. She is asleep”.

When I woke up I saw Shantanu sitting beside me, Cialis Super Viagra canada. His eyes were moist, Cialis Super Viagra. He broke the news to me about the baby being still born. Baby. Padma had not betrayed me to Shantanu. I had borne an equally devastating fact inside me for months which I did not share with him. Cialis Super Viagra, Tears welled up in my eyes. He was crying at our loss and I was crying at my lie.

A year later our daughter Veda was born. The grief of the past began to be quickly forgotten from the moment of her conception. Padma had taken a transfer back to Bangalore. The communication between us which earlier was not dependent upon proximity had now almost come to a stop, Cialis Super Viagra. I knew part of the reason for this could be traced back to what had transpired in her consulting room two years back, to the culmination in the labor room.

 …Veda is growing up beautifully. She is the cynosure of her father’s eyes. 100mg Cialis Super Viagra, I am the disciplinarian. Cialis Super Viagra, As women we are conditioned to believe that motherhood is the most important thing in a woman’s life. Do you hate me for the choice I wanted to make. I don’t know whether they were still born or whether you just decided to keep them away from me since you knew I did not want them. It doesn’t matter now. When you told me I was carrying conjoined twins, the image of monsters sucking at my breasts became indelibly etched in my mind. I knew I could have never loved them even if technology could do significant miracles to make them appear as close to normal as possible, Cialis Super Viagra. In a country where the birth of girls is frowned upon how much chance would children with deformities have of an upbringing which is devoid of at times pathetic and at times failed attempts at treating them ‘normally’. Negligible if you ask me. I didn’t want to be the mother of children who were merely coping with life and the meager possibilities it offered to them. I didn’t want families, friends and neighbors to discuss them during parties in their cozy living rooms, or while driving down to work or during a trip to the grocery store; discuss them not for all that they could have achieved but for the obvious things they lacked. Cialis Super Viagra, And Shantanu, his parents, his brother and sister-in-law; how much support do you think they would have lent me. The onus is not just on the mother. Did you give that a thought. Or did you just have in front of your eyes a woman who was challenging and flouting the code of motherhood by wanting an abortion. …

I stopped mid way, deleted the email meant for Padma and signed out. So much time had elapsed that now questions and explanations had ceased to become important or even necessary.

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November 06, 2011

Clomid Which Days To Have Intercourse

Clomid Which Days To Have Intercourse, “The Singh household was, these days, rather precariously balanced on its head.

With six females in it, patriarch PP Singh had been feeling for a while that it was losing its male essence. For that is what it was: an essence. A house could be filled with a dozen women but if one man ruled over them all like a dark lord, frightening even at his most benign, the household would still smell male. There would be a faint odour of man coming off the furniture, 20mg Clomid Which Days To Have Intercourse, the curtains, even the kitchen. Even the women, Clomid Which Days To Have Intercourse. Like in his own childhood, all the women in the house had vaguely given off a ‘man’ essence. It was not a scent. Just a flavour. Clomid Which Days To Have Intercourse india, Patriarch PP Singh had worked hard to recreate that flavour in his own family. Clomid Which Days To Have Intercourse, The disappointment of not having sons had long since evaporated. And to tell the truth, he wasn’t even sure he wanted sons. Sons are trouble. If he had a teenage son now, he’d be creating a little scene everyday – today a motorcycle; tomorrow a car; then girl-trouble; or he’d be out all night, smoking and drinking. Maybe there would be police trouble, Clomid Which Days To Have Intercourse mexico.

Now look at all those boys arrested near Rakabganj, Clomid Which Days To Have Intercourse. Just think. They don’t even leave the gurudwara alone. Forty of them, sitting in jail, having their bottoms reddened. Serves the monkeys right. Clomid Which Days To Have Intercourse, But just think of their fathers. Clomid Which Days To Have Intercourse usa, The police calling up in the middle of the night: ‘Your son is in jail’. Going to the thana, paying money, doing ji-huzoori, licking the fat thanedar’s arse.

Na ji, na. Daughters were just fine, 250mg Clomid Which Days To Have Intercourse. And fine daughters they were too, Clomid Which Days To Have Intercourse. They had not given him one day of trouble so far. All that shit other people said – daughters are hard to manage; daughters need to be watched and god knows what else. He never had to.

People just did not know how to bring up girls. Clomid Which Days To Have Intercourse, Now, his Mrs… she had needed a little managing. Not much. A few whacks now and then. 1000mg Clomid Which Days To Have Intercourse, But over the last five years, her will had settled into his so completely, it was hard to get her up to any decision at all. Even to go shopping at Diwali, she would just grunt at him, which could be interpreted any way he chose.

His three daughters, Gitoo, Pinky and Silky, were big girls now and they knew just what to do and what not to do, Clomid Which Days To Have Intercourse. Gitoo was twenty-two, Pinky twenty and Silky nearly sixteen, Clomid Which Days To Have Intercourse coupon. But none of them asked for anything except money to go to college and a few nice clothes. These were all very reasonable demands and PP Singh was not an unreasonable man. Gitoo wasn’t top of her class but she was manageable. Clomid Which Days To Have Intercourse, Next year she would either clear the MBA entrance or she would be married. For Pinky and Silky, there was time.

But even since this new girl had entered the household, Clomid Which Days To Have Intercourse usa, PP Singh had begun to feel as if the reins were no longer so firmly in his own hands. Not that she was any trouble. She was quieter than his wife, if that was possible for anyone but the deaf and dumb, and more nervous in his presence than all the rest put together. Yet, his own pervasive essence had shrunk a little, Clomid Which Days To Have Intercourse. With Teena in the house, it seemed as if the other side of the gender scale had grown heavier, as if the house had been tipped on its side, Clomid Which Days To Have Intercourse australia.

For one, he no longer felt free to walk into any room he liked. Teena was his best friend’s daughter and she herself had asked if she could come and stay. She had taken admission in a diploma course in Delhi and had made a phone call to the Singh household before she moved. Clomid Which Days To Have Intercourse, All she had needed to say was: “Uncle, I need your protection.”

PP Singh took her into the household in a heartbeat. A young girl in a new city, far away from her own family – though he had to confess to himself that he did not see why a young girl should leave her own home and move to a new city – should not remain without protection. 10mg Clomid Which Days To Have Intercourse, Na ji na, he would not let her languish in hostels or paying guest accommodations.

All the same, she was twenty one years old – a young woman of marriageable age and not a member of his own family. So for the first time in his life, PP Singh was knocking on doors in his own house.

That in itself wasn’t so bad. What had really turned the household on its head had been the little rebellion about the dog.”


(Extracted from the chapter “Big Girls” in The Bad Boy’s Guide to the Good Indian Girl, Or the Good Indian Girl’s Guide to Living, Loving and Having Fun. To read further, you can buy the book here or here.).

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October 16, 2011

Zithromax Pregnancy



I HAD INDEPENDENT CONVERSATIONS WITH Zithromax Pregnancy, two friends recently, about the same topic. Both friends fasted/will fast this week, for Sharad Purnima and Karva Chauth respectively. Since I had never heard of the former and the only knowledge I can claim to have about the latter is a sappy scene from DDLJ, I got to thinking and reading more about the subject. I wanted one question in particular answered: Is gender-selective fasting (females, in all cases I read about) a covert form of oppression, and consequently, Zithromax Pregnancy craiglist, socio-cultural violence.

For ease of understanding, let’s focus on the more widely publicized karva chauth. The etymology of Karva Chauth is largely unknown, although bolstered by many possible hypotheses, Zithromax Pregnancy. One theory states that this was the time of year (on the 4th day of the dark fortnight of the month of Kartik) that travel away from home and military campaigns commenced, which led women to fast for their husband’s well-being. The festival also coincides with the beginning of the rabi crop cycle, 750mg Zithromax Pregnancy, and hence may have also been a form of prayer for a good harvest, given the transactional nature between deity and devotee in Hinduism, where striking bargains and ‘bribing’ deities is acceptable practice. While Karva Chauth is predominantly a Northern and North-western ritual, it exists in numerous variations all over India (it is less pervasive in the North-east), but always involves women fasting for male kin--specifically, spouses.

To understand the ritual, Zithromax Pregnancy ebay, I also read about the zeitgeist in which it originated. Zithromax Pregnancy, Since we do not know when exactly women began practicing it, we can assume that it was either during the Golden Age of Hinduism—when women were officiating priests and gender-specific practices like child marriage, sati, etc. had not crept into mainstream society—or it began during a time of uncertainty and oppression for women, when their marital status was all that kept them from a life of wretchedness and societal abandonment. In either case, it appears clear that Karva Chauth was adopted and implemented for women’s own preservation, i.e. 30mg Zithromax Pregnancy, less for their husband’s well-being and more for their own, since their existence was so closely tied to their spouse’s.

In 2011, my friend’s husband is not going to war. Both she and her spouse travel with equal frequency, Zithromax Pregnancy. And while both my friend’s happiness is certainly closely linked to the well-being of her spouse, her existence and survival is not. It is even less so in the case of the friend fasting for her brother. What then, Zithromax Pregnancy overseas, drives urban, educated women, one living in Bombay and the other in San Francisco, to go a whole day without food and water.

I turned the question over to them. Zithromax Pregnancy, “I am from UP,” one said, adding a sad emoticon to our screen conversation, “it is an important day there.” She explained that there was pressure to follow the ritual and it was hard to say no when “they connect the fast to someone you hold dear,” in this case, her brother. Both she and my other friend were a trifle apologetic about engaging in something that they understood at a cognitive level was illogical. Zithromax Pregnancy india, “It does embarrass me,” the other said, “that I who talk of women’s rights and the empowerment of womanhood so frequently, undertake the fast anyway.”  Would her spouse join her and abstain from food as well, I asked. “Oh no,” came the answer, “he can’t stay hungry.”

I get the power of social conditioning, 200mg Zithromax Pregnancy. If this is something you have seen female role models do and have been told it is an expression of love and concern for a dear one, you are likely to not push the envelope and err on the side of caution and tradition. What interests me is that neither woman gave much thought to what they were subjecting their bodies to (even if it is just one day—unless the doctor recommends it, is an entire day of abruptly denying your body food and water healthy?) and that there was minimal questioning of their partners’ non-opinion on the issue, Zithromax Pregnancy. I am aware that we are talking of an 18-hour time frame. Ramzan is a whole month of similar deprivation. But do remember that in the case of Ramzan fasting, both genders are expected to do it, 500mg Zithromax Pregnancy, and not for each other.

I will admit that it isn’t the fasting per se that bothers me as much as the social expectation that one gender must undertake it for another, while being provided compensation in monetary forms (jewelry, clothes, make-up, henna, etc.) Many of you may say there is no coercion and you undertake fasting of your own free will, but you may want to consider whether free will exists in a vacuum, 250mg Zithromax Pregnancy, without socialization, cultural pressures and gender-specific expectations creeping into the mix. Zithromax Pregnancy, How many of you do this only because your in-laws expect it. How many because you saw your mother do it. Because it's just the way it is and it's only one day and we may as well please "them" and be done with it.

My individual conversations with both friends were full of banter and joking about how they need to sneak in some gajar halwa and how a Parsi (I am one) must never be separated from her food, but on a more serious note, 40mg Zithromax Pregnancy, do give this action deep thought if you are undertaking it and question your reasons other than “because they say so.” There is love for your partner/brother/other male kin and then there is logic. And it IS perfectly possible for the two to co-exist. As women, let’s not do ourselves a disservice by blindly going along with what always has been. If you carefully consider your compulsions and still wish to abstain because you believe starvation on your part will help your loved one live longer and thrive, power to you. Don’t forget to tell me how you do it.

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