Hubby is “wired” even while he's unwinding at home;
Daughter's Wii keeps her company in the loo;
Son surfs Net and plays video games to refresh himself;
Poor wifey! She is one of those homo sapiens, who inhale oxygen, while the rest of the family eat, breathe and sleep technology.
Welcome to the new Indian family.
Shyamoli Arte pauses mid-way while talking and looks expectantly at the clock. On cue, her husband's phone buzzes with a text message. She sighs when her husband flips open the cellphone and then shuts it back after checking the sender's name.
“I call it the “witching hour”. My husband's friend texts him ludicrous jokes at 11 pm. Every night. And yet my hubby has to reach out for the cell. His refrain is 'What if there's a message from my client?' I don't know what causes me more heartburn – A husband hugging cellphone to his ear for business calls or his insane friend who has a wrong timing,” fumes Shyamoli.
Six months into marriage and Manjula Arvindan forgot she had a husband.
“I married a non-fussy man. Every day he had a quick shower, a quick breakfast and then he was off to his work place. I had the entire day to laze around, to watch movies, to sleep, to shop. But, no one to speak with. In the evenings, he followed a similar routine: a quick shower, quick snack and then working on his laptop. I won't call him my husband, he was a flat-mate,” she remarked dryly.
Having made up her mind that she didn't want to share her life with a flat-mate, Manjula tried various ruses.
“I nagged, I got angry, I shed a few tears. But, it was like water rolling of the duck's back; I didn't succeed,” says Manjula.
But taking up a job, and sitting next to her husband with her laptop working into the night seemed to do the trick.
“Till that moment Arvindan hadn't registered his wife's presence, but he did notice a “colleague” working on a laptop. He's changed now. Arvindan does work at home, but he also reads books, and we go out more often now,” grins Manjula.
They breathe technology
Thirty five-year-old Sonia Vaidya was born with a phone. She's continuously yapping away to friends, families on her i-phone and updating her pictures, thoughts and ideas on the FB wall.
“My husband checks i-tunes every five minutes as if he discovers a new album each time. He also keeps uploading music every five minutes. My nine-year-old daughter Anisha is obsessed with Nintendo and Wii. They accompany her when she goes to the loo. Technology and gadgets are essential to us, more important than oxygen,” says Sonia.
So isn't she ever jealous, angry or upset with the husband who prefers the gadget over her?
“Well, when my husband ignores me for long, I ask him to “choose” - Choose between ipod or me. Of course, I know that after spending time with me he will go back to uploading music. I can't keep away from my phone for long either. In fact when there's special occasion, my husband and daughter want to know if I have uploaded it or tweeted it,” she beams.
Intruder in the Bedroom
A click of the TV switch alerts Swaty Sharma to her husband's presence. She pulls the bed cover over her face while her husband Manas settles down to watch TV.
It's like a reflex action. Upon entering their bedroom, Manas has to switch on the TV and is lulled to sleep with the idiot box chattering away in the background. Swaty, who can't sleep with the flickering light, lies quietly in the bed till Manas starts snoring. She then tip toes across the room and switches it off. She waits for couple of minutes to see if Manas's stirs. When he doesn't, she pulls the bed cover and nods off to sleep.
It's a Deal!
Simran Shetty and her husband have a pact.
“My husband is a games addict and he can play for three to four hours at a stretch on week-ends. I am not an addict so I can't understand his fascination. So, we have decided that he can play with his toys when I am in the kitchen. But after I have finished with my kitchen duties, he has to stop playing,” she says.
Well, one problem has been sorted out. But, there are other issues too.
“We share different tastes. I am a movie buff, and he likes to know what's happening around the world. We don't have a TV at home, so while I watch movies on my laptop, Ashish browses news websites. If we are at home on week-ends, we often sit next to each other with our laptops watching movies and news and talking to each other. Not chatting!,” says Simran.
PS: Dear Wives,
Do not despair. Insist on being the “apple” of your husband's eyes. Beat the machine at its game.