Heart to Heart with Malvika

Published On: March 7, 2017 11:00 PM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

Stand up for yourself
Dear Malvika,

I gave birth to a beautiful baby boy a month ago. I went through depression and stress because I was forced to get pregnant by my family. I have been having problem to accept my new role as a mother. Despite all the stress, I find my baby beautiful and I love him but I just feel that I won’t be able to be a good mother and keep questioning my identity. What should I do now? How can I be mentally healthy and accept the joys of motherhood that people talk about?
It feels sad to hear that you were forced to be pregnant. There are government policies about women’s reproductive and sexual rights and here you are an educated woman, I believe, having to go through with this pressure. Having or not having a baby is a free choice and one should have the rights to do so. Becoming parents takes up all the energy, physically and mentally. And both parents should be ready to take on the responsibility. We have a saying here, “Bacha paye pachi sabai thik huncha” (Everything will be fine, just have a baby). Which I believe is completely wrong.  Women all around the world go through post partum depression which can sometimes be suicidal if not dealt with properly. People go through counseling and have to take medicines too. I planned my son’s birth. Yet when I found out I was pregnant, I was shocked, insecure and felt that my life would fall apart. There were so many times during pregnancy where I questioned myself whether I would make a good mother or not. After my son arrived, I fell right into my role. The first 4 to 6 months is not easy.

There will be many times where you will doubt yourself. You will make a lot of mistakes; they won’t sleep and cry a lot. And that makes you feel like you are not doing something right. But do not worry; every mother goes through this phase. I read a lot about pregnancy and baby and that helped me through these difficult times. Even though I did not have the experience, I had the knowledge. And I would also request you to do the same. I downloaded several apps on my phone which gave me every day information such as the baby centre and the bump. In around 4 months time when they start smiling and searching for you, then you will be the happiest person on this earth. So take each day as it comes and focus on your baby, eat healthy and plan for a better life. 

Dear Malvika,
I am 25-year-old woman and have been working at well renowned business company for almost a year now. I have always had a friendly relationship with my boss. I never suspected his intentions but recently he has been calling me at late hours and sending me flirty messages. At first I ignored it but recently it has been bothering me a lot. I want to go to HR and complain about it but I am scared that they might fire me because I didn’t stop him from texting me earlier. I am really stressed at the moment because his texts are getting too personal to respond. What should I do? Should I just resign or complain to the administration?

What is more important to you? Your dignity or your job? After you have answered this question to yourself, the next step would be to confront your boss. Tell him strictly that you are very uncomfortable with his behavior and that you want him to stop it right away. After this if he still continues then please keep the texts as evidence and present it to the HR. If his behavior changes against you and he gives you a hard time at work, then you will still need to go to the HR. So the only choice your boss has here is that he needs to stop harassing you.  Harassing with sexual advances is a type of violence.

Never ever keep quiet about such violence as they can lead to severe consequences later. There are strict rules and regulations about workplace harassment, try and find out what they are. Do not think about what people will say when they find out. You are the victim here. And stand up for yourself. Good luck!

Photo Courtesy: Playbuzz

Dear Malvika,
I am a 20-year-old girl and have been in a long distance relationship for 3 years. Lately I feel like my boyfriend has been distant with me. He has been saying that he is tired and going to bed early. Not messaging me even once and not answering my phone calls when I call him. I have addressed my concern about this but he has been making excuses saying that he is just exhausted. I get that he can be exhausted but he could at least answer my phone calls. What should I do? I have invested 3 years of my time on him. Am I overreacting? What can I do to make our relationship better?

Has he taken up a new job lately or signed up for extra courses, if he is studying that is? If that is the case then you have to be supportive. But of course if he cannot pick up the calls then he should be able to text you back. Long distance relationships are always tricky. And women’s instincts are, well, one of a kind. The only solution here is communication. He has to be able to tell you what the problem is. It is not fair with the distance that you guys have. If this continues for a longer period of time then you will have to make a major decision. 

Dear Malvika,
I am a 25-year-old man. I recently got married to love of my life. We had been dating for 6 months before we got married. Things had been going good up until recently when my wife slapped me just because I wouldn’t pass her the TV remote.  I never took her for a physically violent person. Since that day she has been abusing me and trying to physically hurt me for no reason. Can it be that I got married to an abuser? Would people believe me when I tell them my story? Should I get a divorce?

Seems like your wife has issues that need help. Anger issues can lead to physical violence. And you have to sit down with her and talk to her about it. With all the emotions that we go through, every individual deals with it differently. You can support her and motivate her into talking about what is bothering her. If this is hampering your marriage, then you should let her know. Do not talk about divorce right now. See, marriage is not easy. Being in a relationship and being married are two different things. And sometimes people show their real self after marriage, which is a very scary aspect. But they are the person that we loved and got married to. Try counseling and communicating. That is the way to move forward. Of course in the end, if nothing changes after several tries , then there are some decisions to be made here. 

Malvika Subba is a media personality, social activist and former Miss Nepal. She is also the CEO of Idea Studio Nepal.

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