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Socializing as Newly-Weds


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Wife serving foodMeghna was very confused. Her husband had promised when they were engaged to each other, that after their wedding, most of the local population in the small town of J—— where he lived and worked would be inviting them to dinner. “You need not cook dinner for the first two months at least,” he had told her. “People will keep inviting us. And after that, you will have sufficient experience to call them back in batches.” When he saw the skeptical look on her face, he added, “I will also help you, of course.”

Meghna was satisfied. Going to J——-, where neither her parents or in-laws lived, and setting up home was quite a daunting prospect for the M. Sc. Life Sciences gold medalist. “Its great that I have such an understanding husband,” she thought to herself. “Its also wonderful that he has built up such a vast number of friends and goodwill in the town where he studied and began his career.”

A few weeks after her wedding, Meghna’s thoughts took a very different turn indeed. “People start visiting us at seven fifteen in the morning,” she complained to her sister. “He has so many friends – all I seem to be doing is making tea and serving snacks. Often, somebody comes just as I am about to eat, and I have to lessen my own share. As to the two-month long list of dinner invitations – so far, we have gone out once to eat at somebody’s house. He is usually so busy at the factory and comes so late, that we can’t step out. I’m feeling completely bored of cooking because I’m running out of menus!”

After the wedding, it usually takes both bride and bridegroom a little time to adjust to the idea of being a ‘couple’ where they were just ‘single’ earlier. How a couple fits into society by meeting other couples and families, whom they call for dinner and whom they visit are important factors in establishing their social identity. Such socializing for newly-weds is not just a light-hearted spot of partying. It is serious business, and most people do take it seriously.

Sometimes a man has stayed a bachelor for so long, and wants to please so many of his friends, office seniors and relatives, that he can wear his wife down by calling all and sundry to eat at his home. Sometimes a wife is so possessive and sets such a strict agenda, that a man does not feel free to entertain the guests he wants, and the couple are in danger of social isolation. In between these two extremes are most sensible people’s attempts at ‘settling down’:

• Calling people on a priority basis – most important, less important etc.
• Keeping entertaining to manageable levels – twice or thrice a month.
• Combining socializing with others with quality time spent discovering each other – making sure of a ‘getaway’ weekend for every second party thrown.

If your wedding is only weeks away, be sure to plan the socializing part with the mutual consent and approval of your husband or wife. The public face a couple shows to the world is often a measure of their consideration for each other.

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