Nalla (Nelli) Mapille

(The ideal son-in- law)

After reading the story of Kolarseeme Mattuponnu, I have decided to tell my story. I am a son in law, and I can describe the process of becoming an accomplished son in law. While the daughter in law settles in her role, she starts extending her power of influence on other matters of importance, such as selecting the suitable groom as the son in- law to the family.

It is not easy to become the son in law. There are multiple layers in the selection process which I was not aware in the beginning. While the elders focus on the horoscopes and the family antecedents, the power group gets into the details. They have their sources of checking: first basics — salary, height and weight, habits and appearance. This appearance attribute is very subjective, and a lot of debate would happen until the final selection. At the secondary level, the parameters such as assets and properties he owns and the dependency index ( how many persons would continuously depend on the individual). At the tertiary level, the savings potential, care index( this would include how much the individual can spend money and time on the wife) and detachment index ( how quickly the individual would disengage from his parents). While there are no specific inventories, these ‘Mattuponnus’ have the great knack of cracking the assessments reasonably quickly.

Once I became the son in law of the house, I realised that there is a ladder to climb to acquire the status of Nelli Mapille. It is like a Maslow Pyramid starting from basic stuff. It is a five-tier model.

  1. Psychological needs: This measure reflects how I can take care of my wife. Items like coming home early, taking my wife to movies, visiting my in-laws during weekends, showering the in-laws with gifts on various occasions take a priority.
  2. Safety: At this level, the physical and emotional safety of my wife is the key. She needs to know that she is the only person in my world. All the others in my life are secondary. I think of her 24/7, rain or sunshine.
  3. Love and belonging: This is a crucial layer where the quality of love and attention to my wife become essential. I need to go through daily tests to demonstrate my passion, starting with the gestures when I leave for my work in the morning. I need to ring up my wife at least two to three times a day. I also need to be available when she makes random calls in the day.
  4. Esteem: My job title and promotions at the workplace are essential to my wife. She must be able to talk about my growth with her friends and relatives. I need to acquire symbols to show this layer — an independent house, the latest smartphone and at least one 1500 cc car.
  5. Self -actualisation: This is a critical layer for me to become “Nelli Mapille”. I am in the listening mode and agree with whatever my wife says. I do not argue with my wife on even trivial matters. I show my unquestioned loyalty to my wife at every step. My in-laws will be in my focus, and I continuously think about their health and well -being. I need to talk to them daily, and I am available at five minutes notice for them when required. I am at the pinnacle of my relationships.

To summarise, getting a certificate of ‘Nelli Mapille’ is not easy. It is equivalent of getting a Bharat Ratna. Once I achieve this status, I shall become the talk of the town. I am a role model for others to follow.

I encourage the “ Mapille” aspiring to become a “Nelli Mapille” to read the brief roadmap enclosed.

I can only provide some ideas, and finally, it is all your effort!

All the best!

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Dravida Seetharam

Dravida Seetharam

Life long learner with interests in reading and writing