09/08/2015 8:53 AM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:25 AM IST

How To Move On Even When Your Divorce Doesn't

Collage of couple with relationship difficulties
Stuart Kinlough via Getty Images
Collage of couple with relationship difficulties

As a teenager, our gang of girls used to play the romantic game of "he loves me he loves me not", with, of course, the name of the boy changing every week. Now, when I see the endless waiting period for divorce in India I think we girls would have been better off playing, "he divorces me he divorces me not!"

When my clients, including extremely qualified women -- doctors, chartered accountants and the like -- come to me seeking legal guidance for a divorce I explain in minute detail all the legal courses of action available to them. I feel extremely happy exhorting the principles of the judicial system followed in India, how our laws are so fantastically drafted and perhaps we have the best Constitution in the world which enshrines and upholds our Fundamental Rights.

Then comes the deadly question, "How much time will it take?"

That's when I start fumbling for words and say, "Ummm... aahh... let's depends...and .....ummm ...Ok start over again..."

"Instead of lamenting over the system and heaping myriad curses upon it, why not rebuild your life in the meantime?"

The fact of the situation is that in a contested matter/case in divorce in India there can be no actual time frame for the matter to end, it's difficult to predict, like the weather, and I don't want to be the weatherperson who gets it right sometimes and wrong sometimes. That's because the system lends itself to a lot of delay. The courts are chock- a-block with current cases and the backlog is alarmingly high. According to data available on the Supreme Court website the total number of cases pending before it is well over 60,000. The total number of cases pending before the high courts is 44.5 lakhs and a whopping 2.6 crore in the lower courts.

Instead of lamenting over the system and heaping myriad curses upon it, why not rebuild your life in the meantime? How about actually living your life? Your life is not in the courtroom. The courtroom is just a subset of your life and should be treated as such. The court can only dictate what we do in certain aspects of our life and not in all of them. After all if you are a doctor going through a divorce the court isn't telling you to stop treating and curing patients. Similarly if you are a chartered accountant you know that you have to file your taxes and also your clients' taxes -- the court isn't prohibiting you from doing that.

Don't stop living and then blame the court for it. Because to me that sounds like an excuse for not performing and living your life to its fullest potential.

It's really not the court that has blocked your life nor stunted your growth because in simple terms your life is outside the court.

I think we make such a big deal about the court governing our life as though it is an ogre that will eat us up if we don't follow its tenets perfectly.

We've forgotten that the court is just a facilitator, guiding us in one aspect of our life.

Before you ask me, "How do you know" and accuse me of speechifying without knowing the ground realities, let me tell you something. Darling, I've lived it. I started writing books and studying law when my divorce case was still going on in court for 10 years. And so have so many others -- I'll definitely profile them in detail in forthcoming articles.

So stop playing the deadly game of "he divorces me he divorces me not" and get on to the roller coaster of life filled with happiness, joy, sorrow and then more happiness...

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