Self respect comes first!
As a woman in the Indian society, one is always looked upon as "an open opportunity" if distressed. This is the experience from my journey so far.
After quitting a toxic and abusive marriage, I somehow managed to sustain a living for myself with the help of my parents and some close friends. My ex husband who was an alcoholic and a drug addict had caused havoc in all of our lives, for my daughter's custody. Holding my grounds firm, I finally got through another worst phase and soon one of my dearest friends proposed marriage to my parents, coz he felt that the lil girl deserved father's love as much as any other child.
Soon convinced, my parents persuaded me to give in. Surprisingly, the past reappeared all over again but in a new way this time. Sadly, both the families had some common links and absurd non sense with regards to me and my character were published all over. My mother in law disowned me and developed a hatred even before knowing me. My sister in law shared rumors by adding up to irrelevant information that was not even true. Just because the common link came through her she contributed to add up to the hatred and discontent to the extent that they never wanted me to get pregnant with their blood so pushing me away was easy.
I tolerated all the ill they spoke about me in my husband's absence and the way they behaved with my child. Keeping mum was the new sane.
But eventually the day came when I was finally pregnant and refused to tolerate their shit anymore.
I then decided that raising 2 children all by myself was way easier than being put down at every single step of life. This time my husband was in my favour and finally I gathered courage to speak up for my dignity.
One thing I learnt is only when we learn to stand for ourselves does the world around follow. Self respect comes first!!