Sikh Men – A Lost Identity

This topic has been growing in my mind for sometime.

There has been a growing unrest in my mind about the fate of Sikh Men, The Sardar ( Turbaned & Bearded). We have become a rare being. Even in Punjab, which once used to be land full of Turbaned Sikhs. Everyday I feel more lost than what I am today.

Why is this Identity Important? This Identity was given to us by our Guru, Guru Gobind Singh Ji, keeping in mind that when there is oppression or unjust, people would know whom to go to. A person who is unique and identifiable in crowd. Person whom on seeing you would not know his emotions. Person who is saint as well as a Warrior. Even today Sikhs are by default trusted and believed. Such is this beautiful Identity.

But where does this stand in modern world? In this fast modern world we are slowly loosing our Identity. People dont have time for maintain hair beard. Modern World considers beards as sign of being dirty! Few years back it was sign of Manhood. How the times have changed. Turbans were considered as Crown on Head, now Caps have replaced them. The question that ate me was why? Why is this identity being lost? I get only one answer “Social Acceptance”.

Sikh Men feel a need to be accepted by the society. Society standards of good looks is clean shaved, smart cut men. When I say society, I mainly mean women. We don’t exist in their quest for love. Everyone Idolize to find  Clean Shave actors and sports stars. I have never heard anyone say, I would love to find a Turbaned Sikh Guy. None. Their might be some women who do say so but their count in very very marginal. And the worst part is Sikh Women too dont want Sikh Men! Have we fallen so much. These women have brothers & fathers who are Turbaned Sikh men and they fancy Clean Shaved Men. I need not go far. I find these examples at my own home. There are Modern Sikh Moms who don’t want to take pains of bringing up their child as Sikh. They cut their hair in a young age. Why? Just because you are too lazy you take away your child’s choice? There are plenty of examples I see everyday. These Modern people would claim themselves to be Spiritual but not religious. They would say they believe in good Sikh values rather than keeping the Sikh looks. I think it is all crap. You are too lazy to follow ways of Sikhism that’s all. I think its high time that someone say something about this.

Please note, I do agree now a days people just fall in love, and the look does not matter. I know most women would say that. But If I introduce a woman to Sikh man & Clean Shaved Man, both of them are equal in every way. Good Character, Charismatic, Smart, financially Good. I m sure 99% Sikh Man would end up being friend and Clean Shaved man as Boy Friend. Are beards and Turban sign of you being ancient? No it is not. But that is what is happening today. Sometime back I was at 5 Star Hotel in Delhi. A woman there was feeding her child pointing to me saying that bearded man take you and run away. I m happy that the kid ate her food. But what happens to her psyche, from very beginning you are training her to be afraid of people with beard?

I know just this blog is not going to change anyone’s mindset, but I m still going ahead with it. Slowly slowly Identity of my religion would die. I m sure of this. My only humble request through this blog is, To Sikh Men is be proud of your Turban and your Sikh look, Turban is Crown on your head. To Sikh-“Modern”-Women, give Sikh men a chance. Let me end by few lines from a Song : “Har Sardar Nu Kudi Ta Mil Jandi Hai, Par Har Ek Kudi Nu Sardar Nahi Milda.

Hoping for a better future.

Jagdeep Singh Virdi

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Pain, Hate and Licking Wounds – Separated Story

Growing up, I always wondered and sometimes still do, why do people fall out of Love? How come one fall out of love? I always believed in a weird logic, give me a stone, I will fall in love with that. Now my present state, is my biggest wake-up call for me. Life always will not be like we want it to be. It is harsh and hurtful. And it is definitely not a Movie. We just don’t find love so easily as shown in movies, and life just does not end in 3 Hours. Even if we do find Love, if we don’t treasure it we are going to loose it.

If you would have read my previous blogs, you would know why and how, I landed in present situation. Before marriage, Before I came to know my wife was schizophrenic, and did not Love me at all. I was a hopeless Romantic. Now I question each and everything around me.

The day I dropped my then wife in train, I came back removed my ring, chain and Kada. They did not mean anything to me. I was angry and hurt. I never in my any nightmares did I imagine, that I would be separated and divorced so soon. Last days, I asked her Did you never love me? Why did you say yes to this marriage? But I did not get any answer.

In coming days, my head filled with hate & pain, and no one around me. I tried to keep myself occupied. I drank everyday for 3-4 Weeks, after I came from office. I used to be person who was disgusted by people who drink in sorrows, would say Drinking would not solve the problem. And now I was the one doing the same. I would not lie, sometime I even thought to end my life. My parents faces would come near me when I thought of this. I could not do this to them after all they have been through. So I drank myself to sleep for sometime. Then one day when my brother came to my home, asked me why I have been doing this and asked me to stop. And after that I slowly stopped.

But I had to keep my mind Occupied, I started sketching again, if not sketching I was cooking, if not that then I would start blogging or watching TV Series or Movies. I tried my best to keep my mind occupied. It is hard but not impossible.

Now my mom and dad are living with me and this has been one of the best time I m having since I got married. But still the memories come back, and they hurt. I still dont know what to do with these flash of memories. Why should I remember her. When she was never part of my life. Now we are packing all her things she left here. And even though there was no love, I feel really bad and hurtful. It is like a part of me leaving me. Maybe this part is a wound and some how I dont want it to heal. I start digging each time it is healing.

This one experience has fucked my head so bad. Hoping for better tomorrow.

Jagdeep Singh Virdi

The Cursed One III

Since my last post  on same topic and heading, which was sometime in November, 2008. A lot has happened. There have been many women in my life. When I say there have been many women in my life, dont be fooled by it. It is always that I had liked someone. And they did not even realize I exist. Some rejected me, some did not know I exist, some even got married, some have kid. And some turned out not in right state of mind. This time I will not be writing any names, people who know me can easily figure out who they are. 🙂

Let me give you count, there were Five more before I came to Bangalore. No I m not a womanizer, I just fall in love too easily. Since I have been in bangalore, did not find much here. I think the count of my crush is two right now. That is it.

Oh not to forget, I got married and now getting divorced in a span of 3 Months. This might not be a record in the history of Marriage and Divorce. But It is definitely a record in my family history. 🙂

Why is it so difficult to find love, why cant Life be just like Movies? Two people look at each other and fall in love. Half the way in life, we are singing songs, running around the trees. And by Interval we have kids. Life would have been so simple. In real life finding someone is so freaken difficult, and once you find them. You see there are 10 more people behind the same girl. And you know she is always interested in playboy than an honest good guy. That is Life. You dont get the girl being a good guy.

Jagdeep Singh Virdi

Rise of Racial Attack in Bangalore [ Attacked for being from Punjab]

Bad times are just not leaving me. Trying to come out of a broken loveless marriage is hard and now this happens.

Past some years there have been raise of Attacks on People from Other States in Bangalore. We all saw news when a Manipuri Man was almost beaten to death. I never thought one day I would be in same position someday. I m peace loving guy, I never got into any fight in my life. People who know me would attest this fact.

On 28 May 2015, I was working late, I left office around 11:15PM, wanted to buy some food before I reach home. I wen to a bakery at Panatur Road. I had asked the lady there to get me 6 Eggs and Chips Packet. I was unaware who else was there with me there. I was catching up with an old college friend and messaging her. All of sudden my head hit on the wall, I fell down with my turban down. I did not know what had happened, by the time I regained my consciousness, I was hit again. I asked them why they are hitting me. All I could hear was something Punjab (I dont understand Kanada) After some blows on my face and jaw, they hit my stomach and pushed me down. I told I would complain to police. They hit me again. There were some other locals who came and stopped them. Today my face hurts. There are no marks but it still hurts. I dont know why they hit me or what I have done.

After I left the place I went to Police who were on parole near JP Morgan, Panatur. I asked them to help me. The Policeman said these are local people sir, we are hearing lot of complains like this. He asked me if I noted down any number. I told him I just escaped from them and came. Asked them to come with me but they gave me a number instead and told me next time call this number. And asked me to note something next time. What should I do escape from Drunk Locals or note down some bike number.

I want to raise awareness to people living in my area Panatur, Kadubeesanahalli, Bangalore. Try to avoid Panatur Road late night.

Jagdeep Singh Virdi

Married to Schizophrenic [ Part 7 ]

With my dail routine surrounded with helplessness and her routine, The distance between us grew. I did not want to sleep in my own bed now. I moved to the second bedroom in my apartment. I thought she would be ask me why am I not sleeping in my own bed but she did not. I did not know what should I do to trigger the Love in her.

In Coming days, as per request from my parents her mom came to stay with us. Though I did not ask her to stay with me. My parents were afraid how would I handle her alone. What if she does something to herself. Problem with schizophrenia is that nothing is set in stone and suddenly everything can go wrong.

When her mom was here I did try to tell her my problem. And show her the way she behaves. Does not wash cloths, brush teeths or come close to me or talk to me at all. She ignored everything, she had reply to all my questions. Everything was alright in her eyes. I dont blame her, for parents their child would be normal only. During her stay here, I showed her how her daughter behaves, I showed her she has not been washing her cloths at all. Once front of her I asked did you brush your teeth? She said Yes, and when I went to brought back her brush it was dry. Mom still had reply for that, she said she brushes her teeth when she takes bath.

I dont know how critical Schizophreniai is, and not sure if the person wantedly or unwantedly does not want to wash cloths or brush her teeth. But no matter what Mom should have realized the seriousness of the situation. Anyway I wanted to take her to Doctor again, this time to NIHMANS, Bangalore (National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences) It is the best Institue for Mental Health in India.

First she was not ready to see the doctor she screamed and left the Hospital. But when Taxi Driver explained that this is very nice Centre Government managed Institute and doctors here are very good. And the doctor she met previously has changed only then she was ready to meet the new doctor. We gave all the information to doctor. We had 5 sitting with doctor. She did not co-operate much, nor did she say that she had any problem. According to her she was alright and did not need any counselling or medication. I explained he habits and behaviour. The did Psychometry Test.

The test was held in 2 days, after the final test. She came back and called her father to book tickets for her. She was going to leave before Test Results come. Test was completed on Saturday, She left Bangalore on Monday. It took one more week for the result to come.

Finally Doctor had told me

  1. Test was inconclusive.
  2. She did not open up with doctor and they could not determine much.
  3. They did say something is surely wrong with her.
  4. She will always be dependent, never be able to take her own decisions.
  5. She was suddenly brought to a different condition and environment, which might have triggered all this.
  6. They told it would minimum take 6 Months of regular counselling but nothing is guaranteed that she will be alright after that.
  7. They should also review diagnose by previous doctor who had diagnosed her with schizophrenia and test he had done.

I had made my mind that this is not going to get me anywhere. No Marriage is better than Loveless Marriage. Now waiting divorce. This was by far the worst time of my life. Down Broken. Waiting for new beginning in life. I dont know why even after so much happening. I miss her sometimes. I feel bad that I would be leaving her, and I m worried about her future. I had asked her mother few weeks back if they are taking her to doctor. They were not. I dont understand why they are spoiling her life. They must try to take her doctor and should go for counselling. Prayers  for her and Hoping for better tomorrow.

The End.

Jagdeep Singh Virdi

Married to Schizophrenic [ Part 6 ]

Continued …

What do you do when you come to know that person you are just married to is suffering from mental illness? I was in state of shock. What do I do now? What hurt the most was It was not that they just discovered she is suffering from this illness. They knew it very well and deliberately hide that from me.

Now that I knew she had been cutting her hand, I wondered what would have happened if the cuts got deeper? I had to show her to a doctor once. We should her to a doctor my Brother in law already knew. He did not diagnose anything. He said all is well and let us leave. But all was not well. I was not satisfied with the diagnose. I wanted to take a second opinion and the best place to do that would be NIMHANS. It is the number one institute in India for Mental Health.

The Next night I talked with her, and told her I want a second opinion, as I m not 100% sure if that doctor as diagnosed anything at all. She told me she would die but not go to see another doctor. I was freaked out by her answer. I told her why do you have to say something like that. She started laughing and said I will not see another doctor.

I was scared that she might do anything to herself. And as we all know about Indian Judicial System, they would be on the girls side no matter what. So I asked Mom and Dad to leave. I did not want them to be pulled into this if anything unfortunate would happen. After my parents left, she was lot relaxed. she had all the time to herself after I leave for office.

Lately she had a new routine to her life, (mainly after her parents left)

  1. She would get up go to bathroom be there for 45 minutes on an average. (Never brushed her teeth)
  2. She would cook breakfast for me and wait for me to leave.
  3. Take bath. Which I m sure took minimum of 1 hour.
  4. Sometime cook lunch if she feels like or just have something from fridge.
  5. By now time would be 2PM
  6. She would then start praying. (She had 3 books that she read again and again)
  7. She would keep praying from 2PM to 7PM ( Until I return from Office)
  8. When I m back she would give me tea and then start cooking Dinner.
  9. I tried to be with her in Kitchen but she did not like that at all.  I would offer to help her so that we could spend sometime together but she would refuse.
  10. Dinner would be ready by 9PM, and we would be done by 9:30PM
  11. I would always ask her what shall we do now? TV, talk to each other? Her reply would be standard, I have some praying left to be done.
  12. By 10PM she would again take her scriptures and start reading them again.
  13. She would not stop until I ask her to stop. And once she stops, she would go straight to bathroom for another 45 mins, On the pretex to change her dress to sleep. 45 mins to change? Actually she would just wait for me to go to bed and sleep.
  14. She would always try to avoid me coming close to her on bed and off it too. If I do come close to her she would get up and go to bathroom. If I ask her what is wrong? She would say I m not comfortable.

…. to be continued.

Jagdeep Singh Virdi

Married to Schizophrenic [ Part 5 ]

Continued …

The first week of 2015, was a living hell for me. The new year did not bring hope for me, but even more frustation, anger and helplessness. From very 1st day the problems started. We planned to go for Aamir Khan’s PK. I did not know my wife then was not feeling well. Nor did she say me anything. She did say my Mom that she is having head ache. But was ignored by her because she is never interested in going out any where. Maybe since she lost her way once, she tried to avoid going out all together.

We left for movie, she still did not say anything to me. That she did not want to go. When in theater, she just like any day moved away from me and sat. The movie had not even started and she started sleeping. I just lost it. I got up and left the theater and asked her to come along. I told her lets go home and take rest. On the way I told her she should have said me that she is not feeling well. How would I know she is not well unless she says something. I told her I did not understand her behavior, why she is doing like this. To be frank, I did not believe that she is not well. She just did not want to go out with me. I told her I cannot take it, I dont understand her, she ignores me, does not talk to me or my parents. Does not sit with me. Does not allow me to hold her hand. What would happen if I hold her hand. The initial period of Marriage are the gold moments. Most of the couples enjoy them the most. Less responsibilities, Excitement of being with someone. In our relation nothing was there. The more I tried to be with her more she ran away from me. I told her I cannot take this anymore, she has to give me reason why she is like this.( For which her standard answer was I need time). I told her if you could not fall in love with me in last 10-11 months that we have been talking, you will never fall in love with me. When we reached home, I remembered that Mom and Dad have our keys.

We returned to the theater saw the remaining movie. She was still least interested in it. It was as if someone has forced her to sit here. After the movie, we went back home. My Mom and Dad had taken auto and we reached soon. After reaching I could not hold it in myself. I cried and begged her to tell me What have I done that you are treating me so badly. One of the worst feeling one can ever have is to be ignored by someone. I did not understand then if she was doing it deliberately or unknowingly. I was in constant stress. Even after crying and begging to her, she did not show any remose or any emotion. She just stood there unmoved by my emotional outburst. (I have seen my TV Series, Discovery Channel Epsisodes about Psycho Killers who have no emotion.) At that moment, looking at her eyes with no emotion, made me wonder and brought some strange questions in me. Is she normal? When my parents came they were pissed too, my mom asked if you did not like my son why you did not say so. Why are you not accepting him? She just asked Sorry and told that she will change her. I too asked my parents she is saying she need little time, lets give her time to adjust. My Dad was certain even then, nothing is going to change. Something is wrong. We are just not clear what it is.

Next day things were normal, what ever happened at night was forgotten. We all behaved as if everything is alright. Then the day after that, In morning she announced she is not hungry and will skip breakfast. (This she did every now and then) She said she is not feeling like having breakfast. We let it go. Then during lunch time she again said she is not hungry. I called up her mom and told her that She is not having food, She talked to her mom and said she will not have dinner too. Now this was wrong, we asked her mom and dad what should we do, we did not understand why she is behaving so. Her dad told me please let her be the way she is from tomorrow onward she will have all meals. I still wondered why would a father be OK, that his daughter not have food for the whole day? Why? Is this normal? Did she do like this before too at her home? I did not understand that. We did not say her anything, she did not have food or drink anything for the whole day. In bedroom at night I could hear her stomach growl, I asked her are you hungry, should I get her something to eat. She rejected. And told she is not hungry.

During this time we were under impression that, she is not happy that my mom and dad are staying with me. So we planned that mom and dad would stay with my sister(who also lives in Bangalore) for some days. And see if there is any change in her behavior. On our way to my sister’s place, I noticed some cuts in her hand. I asked her what are those? she said nothing. It happened while cutting onions. I told her they are not cuts made by Knife, but they are cuts made by Blade. After sometime she agreed and said she will not do again. I asked her are their more cuts in her had like this? She said No. When I held her hand and saw properly. There was one more big and deep cut in her hand. This sent my alarms off the roof. I called her mother Immediately. Told her what she had done. I told her I dont understand why she is doing this? Has she done like this before. This was the first time her mother told me that she was depressed after her college, as she did not get any job and she stopped eating. That time they took her to Psychiatrist and he had given some tablets to take. Later I talked with her father and he told me that he will send some tablets. If you give her that she will be alright.

Then came the day when I finally got her tablets. And everything became clear to me. The tablets she had been taking was Oliza 7.5 mg. I checked what it is used for and this is what I got “Olanzapine is used to treat the symptoms of schizophrenia (a mental illness that causes disturbed or unusual thinking, loss of interest in life, and strong or inappropriate emotions). It is also used to treat bipolar disorder (manic depressive disorder; a disease that causes episodes of depression, episodes of mania, and other abnormal moods). Olanzapine is in a class of medications called atypical antipsychotics. It works by changing the activity of certain natural substances in the brain. Olanzapine comes as a tablet and an orally disintegrating tablet (tablet that dissolves quickly in the mouth) to take by mouth. It is usually taken once a day with or without food.” Everything made sense now. Why she is the way she is. I went and told my parents to be calm with her and not argue or say anything to her. Let her do what ever she likes. The very next day I requested her father to send me her prescription for her medication, in case we want to show her to doctor. When I got the prescription. It became even more clear, there it was written Medicaiton for “Schizophrenia”. It also had date in it sometime in 2013 and there was another date in form of File Number and it was 27/02/2008. She had been sick for so long and her parents never cared to tell me anything about it.

The Mystery of her behavior was solved now. I finally got a closure and understanding what she is suffering from. I felt cheated and betrayed. And pity her.

…. to be continued.

Jagdeep Singh Virdi