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Mumbai Couple Reverses Societal Roles, Proves Marriage Is All About Equal Partnership!

They were ridiculed for their choices by friends and relatives, but for this love-struck couple, the skewed gender constructs of the society were even more ludicrous!

In India, the idea of gender role reversal is something that baffles a majority of the population.

It’s 2019, and while the fight for gender equality and equal pay is still on, our society continues to believe that the husband has to be the principal breadwinner. Even if the wife is ‘allowed’ to work, she should be the one handling the household chores.

However, this couple based in Mumbai begs to differ and has always done things differently—right from the early days of their relationship, to when they finally wed.

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When Meenal Veejay Pendsay and Nand Kishor Kumawat met each other through the online dating app, Tinder, last year, sparks flew right away.

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“When I joined Tinder, I was ridiculed. But it was worth it because on the 8th November 2017, we swiped. For the next 6 days we spoke every day for 12 hours. He was from Jaipur & I, Mumbai, but we’d sleep at 4.30 am & be back on the phone by 8.30–we’d even eat together while video calling! Everyone thought we were crazy! On the sixth day I decided that I needed to meet him, so I purchased air tickets to Rajasthan. I lied & said that I was visiting my mom. He was speechless when I told him the truth. Seeing someone in person is different, but when we met, it was amazing. He was sweet chivalrous & perfect. Our connection was so strong that it didn’t feel new to be with him. I gelled with his family too! We spent all our time talking. The night before I left, he said, ‘I want you in my life–it as a friend, live-in partner or wife.’ And I agreed–I had no doubts. Our relationship only grew stronger. We met twice a month, in Jaipur & Mumbai. Earlier we both didn’t want to leave our homes. His job was there & my family was here. But slowly, he got used to Mumbai & decided to move here, which people found odd. He started looking for a job. At an interview when he said he moved for his wife, they laughed! But, he’s never expected me to compromise because I’m a woman–he didn’t ask me to leave my life here & that’s something I admire. We got ritually married in July. The day after he moved in, we performed a Graha Pravesh for him–it’s normally done for the woman… but, we’re equals. We consider ourselves as one so the roles of ‘husband’ & ‘wife’ never mattered. We’ve broken many traditions this way. Currently I’m earning & he’s looking for work. Many relatives have said he’s a ‘burden’ on me because he doesn’t earn. How does it matter? He does the chores & fixes things in the house, something I’m not inclined to do. He’s planning to start his own business, till then I’m supporting him. People have said nasty things about us because of all this. Truth is, we pretend to be modern & accepting but when the roles actually reverse, everyone gets uncomfortable. But we’re happy with the way everything is–we’re madly in love & absolutely nothing else matters beyond that.”

A post shared by Humans of Bombay (@officialhumansofbombay) on

In a society where the girl has to leave her home and job to be with her husband, Nand Kishor set a rare precedent by moving to Mumbai to be with Meenal.

They were ridiculed for their choices by friends and relatives, but for the love-struck couple, the skewed gender constructs of the society were even more ludicrous!

However, it was the unconventional manner with which the ‘Griha Pravesh’ ceremony was performed post their wedding, that broke all stereotypes.

The ceremony is usually observed for women entering their new households after marriage, but in this case, Meenal and her family held it for Nand Kishor.

“We’ve broken many traditions this way. Currently, I’m earning & he’s looking for work. Many relatives have said he’s a ‘burden’ on me because he doesn’t earn. How does it matter? He does the chores & fixes things in the house, something I’m not inclined to do. He’s planning to start his own business, till then I’m supporting him. People have said nasty things about us because of all this. Truth is, we pretend to be modern & accepting but when the roles actually reverse, everyone gets uncomfortable. But we’re happy with the way everything is–we’re madly in love & absolutely nothing else matters beyond that,” said Meenal in a Humans of Bombay post.

May their tribe increase!

You can read the entire post here:

When I joined Tinder, I was ridiculed. But it was worth it because on the 8th November 2017, we swiped. For the next 6 days we spoke every day for 12 hours. He was from Jaipur & I, Mumbai, but we’d sleep at 4.30 am & be back on the phone by 8.30–we’d even eat together while video calling! Everyone thought we were crazy!
On the sixth day I decided that I needed to meet him, so I purchased air tickets to Rajasthan. I lied & said that I was visiting my mom. He was speechless when I told him the truth.
Seeing someone in person is different, but when we met, it was amazing. He was sweet chivalrous & perfect. Our connection was so strong that it didn’t feel new to be with him. I gelled with his family too! We spent all our time talking. The night before I left, he said, ‘I want you in my life–it as a friend, live-in partner or wife.’ And I agreed–I had no doubts.
Our relationship only grew stronger. We met twice a month, in Jaipur & Mumbai. Earlier we both didn’t want to leave our homes. His job was there & my family was here. But slowly, he got used to Mumbai & decided to move here, which people found odd. He started looking for a job. At an interview when he said he moved for his wife, they laughed! But, he’s never expected me to compromise because I’m a woman–he didn’t ask me to leave my life here & that’s something I admire.
We got ritually married in July. The day after he moved in, we performed a Graha Pravesh for him–it’s normally done for the woman… but, we’re equals. We consider ourselves as one so the roles of ‘husband’ & ‘wife’ never mattered.
We’ve broken many traditions this way. Currently I’m earning & he’s looking for work. Many relatives have said he’s a ‘burden’ on me because he doesn’t earn. How does it matter? He does the chores & fixes things in the house, something I’m not inclined to do. He’s planning to start his own business, till then I’m supporting him. People have said nasty things about us because of all this. Truth is, we pretend to be modern & accepting but when the roles actually reverse, everyone gets uncomfortable. But we’re happy with the way everything is–we’re madly in love & absolutely nothing else matters beyond that.

(Edited by Gayatri Mishra)

Featured Image Source: Humans of Bombay/Instagram.

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Written by Lekshmi Priya S

Shuttling between existentialist views and Grey's Anatomy, Lekshmi has an insanely disturbing habit of binge reading. An ardent lover of animals and plants, she also specializes in cracking terribly sad jokes.