Sandhya was an English teacher and in charge of secondary level in a public school in Lalitpur. She has two children aged 14 and 5. She was married to Laxman, a public vehicle driver when she was only 21. They both were in love, when they were only 15. After having a long affair of 6 years, finally, they got married with their parents consent. They both studied together but due to financial problem in Laxman’s family, he had to quit school and look after his family from a very small age. Because of his family problems, he started drinking alcohol soon after he left the school, to overcome and forget his family matters. But who knew, he would be habituated to alcohol.
Sandhya, on the other hand, was from a good family and completed her study and had a good job. Due to his continuous drinking habit, he used to hit Sandhya and did not even spare the children. He apologized when he was sober and said he did not mean to hurt her intentionally. Initially, she thought his controlling behavior was a sign of his love for her. But his alcoholism grew increasingly serious and Laxman, was more often than not, always aggressive and hit her even when it was not necessary.
One night, Laxman got home drunk and shouted at her because she had served only dal and bhaat. He hit her with the plate lying in front of him, which his baby son, hiding behind the closet saw it. He got so afraid that he could not speak straightly to his father after that and developed stammering problems. Gradually Sandhya realized that Laxman’s drinking habit was growing badly and it was not right to be beaten again and again. So, she decided to talk to him when he was normal and not in drunk state. But instead of understanding her, he had an argument with her and laid his hands on her, even though there was no point in doing so.
As we know, our country is running in this so called patriarchal system, where men are kept as the head and act as the only decision maker of the family. Here, men do not like successful women. Sandhya even went to talk to her father-in-law about his drinking habit but as we know son is a son, even when he does any mistake. Despite of his son’s weakness he blamed Sandhya saying, ”You did not serve your husband well and I do not want to interfere in your marital issues” because they stayed away from Laxman’s parents.
On the other hand, being a well educated and well informed wife she should have seeked for help by calling the police or sending him to rehabilitation centre for treatment. This was a kind of weakness from an educated person’s side, sitting back being victimized again and again, not being able to refrain from it, due to societal and familial pressure. On the other hand, there was a deep love, care, emotion and a connection which they built from a very small age.
After all those physical and psychological trauma she had been through, she finally decided to leave Laxman. Being his wife and for the respect of their family, she did not expose him in the society. She couldn’t treat him because she thought he had a untreatable complexes, as every single time she tried to help, she would end up getting beaten again. Finally, she went to live with her parents thinking that Laxman would stop drinking alcohol and realize Sandhya and children were more important than alcohol.