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You may call me M'am :)

At Edinburgh, Scotland. You can see the Edinburgh castle behind me


Hi there,

How are you today? I think my yesterday's post  sent everyone who was calling me M'am, in a tizzy. If you want to call me M'am, please do 😃. I realised after reading all the comments, how uncomfortable I made many  of you.  I think everyone is still stuck on 'age'.
(If you have't read yesterday's post, I have linked it; Highlighted word is a link)

Most people in India have been taught to respect age. So if someone is older, it feels very disrespectful to call them by their name. I get it.

I had lived in India for over 30 years, post which I moved to UK. It was in UK, that I was immersed in a completely alien world.  I was so used to my  children's friends calling me aunty. I still like it when my children's friends call me aunty. In UK, they would address me by name. There were kids who were anywhere  between 5 and 18 ! It was amusing  to be addressed by name that way, as I wasn't used to it. Then I realised how much it bridges the gap between two people. Your age truly doesn't matter. Why should age define a connection between two people? Why can't a 70 year old be friends with a 5 year old?  I had a  paradigm shift in my thinking.

In UK, I was just Preeti to everyone. I wasn't anyone's mother. I wasn't anyone's wife. I wasn't anyone's sister/daughter. I mean, of course, I was all of those things, but what was most important was the society didn't define me by those roles. It was very liberating for me. I was 'just me'. I also realised Indian women are completely brainwashed by a very patriarchal society. We're also cast into strict gender roles. In India if a man makes a cup of tea, that is enough for other women to say "Oh my god. Your husband makes tea? You are so lucky." I used to feel irked about this even before moving to UK. In my home, my dad used to cook as much as my mom did. Cooking was not exclusively a woman's domain.

At the ITV  network studio in Birmingham when I was interviewed

Living in UK , however, did change my perspective on a lot of things. I fell in love with UK. I also made some lifelong friends who are British.

Kindly note--I am not in anyway comparing the Indian culture to the UK culture and saying that is better or this is better. They are two different worlds. So please don't come at me with your metaphorical cultural knives.
Also, before leaving a comment on this post, please read the last post as this is part-2 of that.


 Many of my books have UK as a setting. In fact my latest book (which was ready to be shipped out when the lockdown was announced) too has a boy whose parents migrated to UK, when they were very young. The boy has ben raised in Britain. The only thing Indian about him is his name. He travels to India fro the first time, as sees India from a completely Western perspective as that was how he was raised. It is a gripping book. Do read it when the lockdown ends. (You can't order it now.)



As always, thoughts  and comments welcome. If you are reading this on mail or an aggregator feed, head over to my blog please.

That's all from me for today.
Till tomorrow
Lots of love
Preeti
**********************************



Comments

  1. Happy that I can address you as Ma'am. Sometimes, you look like a straight forward person and at few times your are strict with your words but at times you are so lovable with your words. It's hard to understand you Ma'am. It takes me even ten minutes to write comment for your post because I should be cautious with the words I write.
    Bit Afraid....

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    1. I am always straightforward. I mince no words and say what I mean! I guess I don't fit into any boxes and I am glad I don't :)

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  2. Dear Preeti,

    In the previous post, you commented about stopping the adulation. Its probably stifling for you and I completely get that. I respect that too :)

    This post gives me perfect clarity on whats in your mind. I loved the way you said its liberating to not be identified by these roles.

    I have seen many Indians finding it difficult to live in a foreign country and more difficult to getting adapted back to India :-) So all the more eager to read the book

    Cant we get the new book on kindle :-(((

    Love,
    Deepika

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    1. Thank you for reading my responses too! <3 We can't release the book on Kindle before thr physical book comes out as that would be unfair to thousands of bookstores who are waiting eagerly to stock my books. (already bookstores are in danger as you might know)
      Love to you!

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  3. If its liberating for you... and it is liberating for us too.. from the age patriarchal conditioning..
    Preeti it is! (how in office do we easily accept the first name culture.. time to put it out in the real world)


    - Milauni

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  4. I would love to call you 'Preeti', if you don't mind. 😍🤗 I think there is always something to learn from other cultures too. There is no harm in adapting it, if it is correct.
    My father and mother share the household responsibilities almost equally. Even my husband helps me sometimes, though not daily.
    You are looking gorgeous in the Scotland photo. I was thinking your height is somewhere around 5'9". Recently, I got to know that your height is 5'4" through your TikTok video. Actually you look very tall.
    Lots of love to you too. 😍💝

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  5. U r absolutely right mam..and I do respect of your perception on Indian society ..as v all know that v can change the mind of the people but v can take a step towards the change...Gud day man

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  6. Respect. Preeti it is :)

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  7. I've been addressing you "M'am" ever since I discovered your book and followed you on social platforms. The previous post and this one's an eye-opener that how simply addressing a person, creates or destroys a bond. Really happy that you've accepted to get addressed as "M'am" :)
    It's true that we're all struck in different age groups. Though I've tried to address you by name, I couldn't. It felt inappropriate.

    Thank you, M'am :)
    Love,
    Vidhya

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  8. Good afternoon, i like to address you as M'am, due to your writings which tend me to give respect for your words. love you m'am for your different perception of writing which never fails to boost me up... this is Sonia, even i forget to mention my name till today....have a good day mam.

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  9. It's so nice you touch such simple topics of day to day life in your blogs ❤️ I'd love addressing you Preeti and not ma'am for one calling someone by their name instantly brings a smile on their face and two addressing someone by their first names instantly breaks the ice before conversing especially in a professional set up in my opinion.

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  10. Hi Preethi,

    I lived in London for 13 years before moving to Bangalore 4 years back. Before moving to London all my schooling and college was in Tirupathi. In the IT industry i used to work in London , the best thing was no discrimination based on age. You could be 45 and still choose to be a developer or do coding/testing instead of being a manger or team head. I feel same thing is not possible in India. All the developers mostly will be in there 20's and you can't be comfortable or they will not be comfortable :). I thinks that's when calling by first name makes it easy. This is my personal experience. However living in India has so many advantages that too when your extended family is near by. You can be with them for every sad , happy big small events. As in your book Life is what you make it.

    Thanks so much Preethi , I look forward for you post and now I eagerly wait to comment.

    Cheers,
    Sudha

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  11. Hii mam,I love your books soooo much that u can't tell you.you have inspired me to start reading ...I just love you mam

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  12. Hi Preeti. When you wrote about UK, I suddenly remembered about my childhood in States. My friends would call my parents by their first name and I would do the same to their parents or our neighbors. It was only during our visits to our Indian Family Friends or an India Association get together that I would address the adults as Uncle and Aunty. As I live in Mangaluru, many people address me as 'Mai' and I cringe when I hear it because the person might be just two or three years younger to me. I think the best thing to do is ask the person how they should be addressed. Thanks for writing about your life in UK. I feel that one should always live in a country different from their homeland. Take care. :-)

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  13. lovely post Preeti :) Really appreciate everything which you do.. ..thank you so much -Sneha

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  14. Hi Preeti,
    I love to address you as Preeti as I feel a closeness there....But yes, not all Indians are like that, they need respect for age & not for what they are....But I am a bit different....Respect shd be gained by our deeds & actions & not by our age....Not calling their name & calling mam or sir or uncle etc...is not the real respect...According to me respect is given when we allow others to live their life & respect their view point even if it is straight against our perspective, if it doesn't harm others....In this way we can respect even small kids & not respect even elders....

    Ha Ha....but this is not accepted in my family & hence had lots of relationship issues but now am learning to give respect to whatever they expect of...am still learning to respect just because someone is elder to me by age....

    & also male doing household chores is seen as if they have done something very great & hard & is a very great sin....

    We need to go a long way in this....though changes have started here & there....
    Thanks Preeti

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  15. Hello ma'am. Could you please share names of some bloggers who post regularly in any niche? I really wish to follow good blogs besides your blog.

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  16. Yeah You are right, Age belongs to the calendar not to humen, we have a journey that is life...
    You look as your name preeti...
    You are beautiful darling, really adorable...

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