‘Kaisa Hai Naseeban’ is a terrifying watch, even for someone like me who is desensitized to many taboos that trouble our society. The concept of shaadi has always been a deeply rooted culture in Pakistan – it’s what everyone talks about, and it’s the most popular societal topic that we all openly embrace. However, marriage is often a facade and what lies behind is darkness; marital abuse is that darkness and it’s unsurprising, what with us living in such a profoundly patriarchal society. We often hear about many cases where women suffer for years in silence, and it’s an incredibly dire state of affairs.
‘Kaisa Hai Naseeban’ strips away all pretenses and embraces the harsh reality many women in Pakistan face.
We often forget just how important and vital the visual medium is; entertainment is ambiguous in this regard because while it can drown us in an array of emotion, many times we’re left reeling from the shocking stories we watch that stem from reality. This drama sheds light on an innocent girl Maryam (Ramsha Khan) sold off like cattle, into holy matrimony with a sociopath Ahmed (Muneeb Butt). She’s married off and immediately moves abroad with her abusive husband.
1. Blood relatives won’t always have your best interest at heart.
Maryam’s phuppo is also her mother-in-law and takes her son’s side throughout the drama.
2. The drama teaches you about how financial independence is key – even in a marriage. Maryam’s salary is not her own.
She cannot leave, and Ahmed won’t allow her a ticket to buy.
3. Never give anyone who has an abusive nature a chance. Leave immediately.
Maryam was so close to leaving, but her mother-in-law convinces her otherwise, telling her that if she leaves then no one will respect her (I still don’t trust her).
4. A sociopath or someone who suffers from bipolar disorder is stuck in a cycle. They cannot be changed unless they themselves are truly willing to.
Ahmed is stuck between beating his wife and then crying his heart out, begging her to forgive him.
5. Superiority and control in a marriage are NOT okay.
6. Maryam is not strong – if you’re in this type of situation you have to gnaw your way out and not settle continually; you need strength.
7. You have to speak out and when everyone around you is telling you to run – you run.
Maryam’s colleague constantly telling her to leave her abusive husband but she still doesn’t. She doesn’t even tell her mother, with whom she’s very close to.
8. If you are being physically abused, then suffering in silence will do you no good.
9. Gaslighting is a common trope throughout ‘Kaisa Hai Naseeban’ where Ahmed constantly tells Maryam lies about herself that she eventually believes to be true.
Gaslighting has left Maryam unable to trust herself at most times.
10. Ahmed uses his malice and happiness to connive against Maryam for his own personal interests; be highly observant and try to notice if these traits exist in your partner.
11. KEEP EVIDENCE OF YOUR ABUSER IF YOU CANNOT LEAVE. Maryam is bound for financial reasons, but documenting moments whereby Ahmed abuses her is important.
Are you watching ‘Kaisa Hai Naseeban?’ What are your thoughts on the show?