Episode 16 – Desi Divorce Discussion – Build A Support System
December 05, 2023


There has been a gap in publishing podcast episodes and it’s all my fault. I have been busy with other things but when  a young woman contacted me after reading my book and offered to share her story, I knew, it was the sign I was waiting for.

This is the thirteenth interview in the Desi Divorce Discussion series, where I speak with Danya who had to face obstacles when she decided to marry her college sweetheart and then again when she realised that the marriage was not working out soon after. If you consider the fact that all this (the wedding and the subsequent divorce) happened with the Covid-19 pandemic in the background, you can understand how difficult and isolating the situation must have been for Danya.

They say love knows no barriers and in the first flush of romance, a lot of differences remain hidden from view. But marriage and its attendant expectations and responsibilities can create a deep rift fairly quickly. In Danya’s case, the early days of her marriage involved moving to another town and adjusting to a family very different from the one she had grown up in. Despite seeking support and trying to make it work, when the time for a decision came, Danya waited for permission of some sort to walk away. She tells the story in this episode.

What is striking about Danya’s journey is her willingness to talk about seeking therapy. Not just to make her marriage work but as a way to understand herself. It wasn’t until she started working on herself that she realised many of her beliefs and motivations. She could also see how societal pressure, first insisting that girls get married followed by the pressure to stay married despite the untenable situation affects the ability to make decisions.

How has divorce changed her? “I am more mindful now, of the questions I ask people,” she says. It is common for friends, relatives and acquaintances to ask about your spouse in casual conversations. Even an innocuous question like this becomes a loaded one for someone going through separation and divorce. There is a difference in being genuinely concerned for a person and making small talk just because it’s expected. It’s a fine line that all of us need to be cognisant of when we begin conversations.

Sharing her mental health journey with others has made Danya feel liberated and her frank sharing has given permission for others to seek help. Just like the episodes of this podcast that enable others to step forward and speak up.

We spoke about building support systems, a key component of moving on and becoming stronger after a divorce. Therapy is not something you do when you’re at rock bottom. Just as going to gym for physical health is done on an ongoing basis, taking care of mental health is also an ongoing endeavour, Danya emphasises.

If you have not been married for long and are wondering what awaits you if you leave your unhappy marriage, do listen to this episode and get the perspective from someone who has been through it.

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Connect with me at https://www.ranjanirao.com. Follow me on Instagram @ranjaniwriter, on Facebook @ranjaniwriter and on Twitter @ranjaniwriter

To submit a question or be featured as a guest on my show, email hi@ranjanirao.com or drop a comment below.

Photo credit:  Neil Thomas on Unsplash

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