In Focus 25th August, 2016

The Awara-Pagal-Deewana!.

Have you during your school days experienced your friends mourn for Rahul at his unsuccessful LOVE (?) for k-k-k-k-Kiran? Or, heard anybody wishing to find her love, the love which is like Kundan Shankar? Deep… intense…?  Yup! I did. But, what surprises me more is, in both these movies (and in many others of course!) these STALKERs were glorified on screen as HEROs with the lead-screen time and audience lauded both of them for their obsessed love, titled as- ‘An eternal love story’ (yes, you heard it correct!).

But have you ever thought about, what happens if we happen to meet these ‘obsession-is-true-love’ of reel life just in our real lives? SCARY! Yes.

Let me tell you my story. The story is about how this form of ‘love’ came to my life. I was about 17 years old, had moved out of my state, away from family for the first time and already had a lot to deal with everyday. My roommate’s brother heard my voice over the phone, and fell in love with me. Woww… what a voice I have got! My roommate and me were very close, had met each other’s families too. It was not at all difficult for him to get my number from his mother’s phone, like most parents, she too had my number saved in case of any emergency.

This marked the start of him calling me incessantly to hear my golden voice! A few days after this started, we went home for our vacations. Back then, the network reception was not good in my hometown, so all the communications were dependent on the good old landline phone. My TRUE_LOVE got that number too and started calling me. He used to miss me so much so that our landline phone started ringing atleast 20-25 times a day, starting from 5 am in the morning to about 11 pm at night.

I didn’t know how to deal with this situation. Moreover, I was used to dealing with all the problems in my life all alone. Further, I was also worried of my roommate’s (who was very dear to me) reputation, so I could not tell anyone in my family. Neither could I tell my roommate, thinking about how ashamed she would be if she came to know what her beloved little brother was upto. Both my parents were working so I had to bear all of this alone, at home. Whenever my parents would be home, I started keeping a coin under the receiver so that my TRUE_LOVE could not connect. As he couldn’t connect, for the worse, he came to my home-town driving 10 hours, alone. But thankfully he didn’t know my address to randomly pop up at my house door.

During all these calls, where I constantly kept trying to make him understand that I DO NOT love him, somehow he never registered what I was saying. Maybe some problem in the wires?! He sure did have a knack for analysis though. He analysed all the signs in this universe (we were of same age, his sister and I were roommates, some similar likings/dislikings etc. etc.) and almost convinced me to give it a thought that he and only he is the one for me. The conversation actually went on to include our family planning, without my consent and repeated NO. How many kids we will have, what will be their names, not to forget, their careers were also decided.

You must wonder, why was I even listening to all of his bullshit. Because I had to. At first when I used to just cut the call or keep the receiver disconnected. But then, my TRUE_LOVE started burning his hands or would cut his hands with blades. I didn’t believe it at first, but then, once after a little not-so-minor cut he was taken to the hospital and I got to know about it from his sister, with an expression of ‘God knows what’s happening to him’. I got scared of these body-arts (!) and started picking up one or two calls per day. I could think of only one plan- once I am back to Delhi, I will get another number and will not share it with him or his mom. And the best way to do this was to keep both numbers active. This plan worked. And, finally there was some peace in my life.

The peace didn’t last for long. My dearest roommate got married in the next few months. I obviously had to attend the wedding. When I was at her place, I got to know the real reason behind why I was given the privilege to feel free. My TRUE_LOVE was waiting for the opportunity to meet me at his sister’s wedding. This was the first time we met, saw each other, live. I was shown all the body-arts he’s done by cutting or burning his hands. He took this opportunity as a fresh start to our never ending LOVE. He very cleverly hid it in front of his sister, but almost everyone in their family got to know about his LOVE for me. He believed in- “ When you truly want something, the whole universe conspires in helping you to achieve it”. This scared me even more. I was just tolerating all of this and trying to control things so that the joyful atmosphere at the wedding doesn’t get spoilt.

Once the wedding was over, the very next morning I left for my home. And … alas! The never-ending calls started again! By this time, I had had enough. So when my TRUE_LOVE told me that he cannot live without me and he would rather die, in a firm and subtle voice, I told him to just go and die and leave me alone. Not the sentence, but the firmness of my voice was just right and he could not handle it. He kept holding the phone for a few moments, and disconnected with a “Ok, if you really wish so”. I won’t lie, I was a little worried of the consequences that may follow on the basis of his actions in the past, but I really couldn’t think any more. I just prayed to my God to forgive me if he really does kill himself.

After half an hour or so, I got a panic call from the manager of a hotel in front of his house. I got to know that my TRUE_LOVE had tried to jump from the terrace above the fourth floor of the hotel. The call didn’t seem to be a fake one. The manager thought I am his girlfriend (Of course! After all he’s done) and we’re breaking up. He very politely requested me to talk to my TRUE_LOVE and sort everything out. He also assured me that no one can love me as much as he does. There must be some kind of a misunderstanding. Amazing! Yet another assurance!

I didn’t take much time to realize the intensity of the situation and to plan my next strategy. This was my last straw and I was more than sure of the success. Not wasting another moment, I started talking to my TRUE_LOVE. With some love and compassion in my voice, I told him how I never believed in his love because I don’t think somebody can really love with such intensity and depth. After some more flowery lines, I landed on my plan, “Do you really love me?” “Of course, of course… I don’t know how to make you trust me, in my love… What do you want me to do to prove my love? Tell me, anything, whatever you want, I will do it… You will have to believe in my love… My love for you has been just growing more and more in this one year. Please, my love, just say it, what do you want me to do?”

Once he landed in this ‘Do-or-die’ state, I took my final card out. With the same voice, I told him, “Then please don’t call me from now onwards. (With some hope, which was necessary) If we’re really meant to be together, I will call you this time. But please give me some time to feel your love and realize what I feel for you”. And, WOOHOO… it worked! I received no calls from him after that. My roommate went to some other city after marriage which made sure that I didn’t get to know about him or those emotionally manipulative stories of him cutting and burning himself.

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2 thoughts on “The Awara-Pagal-Deewana!

  1. Glad you got out of the situation! It would have been a big mess for you if he had killed himself and blamed you as the reason.

    1. Thank you for commenting Shashank. The post is a brilliant example of how misplaced notions of love, consent often propagated through popular culture can have a negative impact on our lives.

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