The Age-old Ban

Photo (c) Dale Rogerson

The Age-old Ban

Words 102


“What a historic day*!” Rohan exulted. “We are free! The society has been forced to accept us.”

His wife swallowed. “Co…congratulations.”

Rohan looked at his watch. “Why aren’t you ready?”

“I thought you’d be out celebrating with…with your boyfriend.”

“Don’t think so much.” He snapped. “Get ready.”

“I…I don’t feel like…”

“Did I ask you?”

“Fine!” She stood up. “Let’s go.”

“Are you crazy? Go to a family function dressed like that? Wear the red and gold silk sari.”

“That’s so bling!”

“I don’t care.”

“Take Ma, she’s dressed.”

“She’s overdressed.” Rohan fumed. “With Dad gone, it’s time she wore sober colors**.”


*Earlier this month, in a (welcome and long overdue) landmark verdict, the Supreme Court in India overturned the controversial section 377 a 158-year old law against consensual gay sex. The judgement heralds a new dawn for personal liberty and a major victory for the LGBTQ community.

**In India, widows were (are) supposed to wear only white and red is the prerogative of married women.

Written for the Friday Fictioneers – a story in 100 words or less. Thanks to Rochelle for hosting the challenge and Dale for the photo prompt. To read the other stories inspired by this prompt, click here.

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41 thoughts on “The Age-old Ban”

  1. You know in our place widows are to wear white Saree. In particular one community. The current generation tries to change the old habit. I saw an aunt with colour Saree. She changed bcos of her child. I liked the changes.😀

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Rohan is like someone in my own family. Just because the husband died the widow has to wear white. These days a lot of women who lost their husbands wear colourful dresses and wear jewellery and are well turned out. Though if a widow wants to wear white then it is her choice.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. If one has faced discrimination or denied personal liberties will understand the importance of it. It is logical but not true always. Loved how you have covered hyprocisy under the umbrella of many societal issues. .

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Didn’t know those facts. I am happy India is moving forward. The story itself saddens me as does any in which one of the spouses comes across as overbearing and expecting all orders to be obeyed.
    Thanks for writing.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Oh! So Rohan has his freedom? Yay, Rohan. But the women in his life are still to be subjugated. Of all people who should understand the need for freedom and acceptance and equality, but it washes over him.

    Well, done, Dahlia! You’ve succeeded in getting me upset with your male character! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Beautifully expressed, though touching for lot of reasons, it is yet bitter, the value is not known inspite of being deprived of it at one point of time is saddening…but thats the truth…we have two faces…..bitter yet…

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Relationships are complicated and those in your story are no exception. I was so pleased when I heard the news of the decision taken in India but sadly the actuality take a lot longer than it takes so sign off a piece of legislation.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. “Did I ask you?”, … Everything is a man’s prerogative …ughh!! Well, nothing much changes… the evils of this patriarchal society!!

    The pic is so colourful, …. hope to see such colours shine in all women’s life !!!

    Liked by 2 people

  9. First of all – what a terrific take on the prompt.
    And what a story, Dahlia – it’s really excellent! You give us an upbeat start, and then overturn it with the overbearing Rohan (have we met him in one of your earlier stories btw?) with his misogyny. Not merely does he bully his wife, he bullies his mother too (although you give us some hope that she fights back).
    In 100 words I feel as though you’ve taken me right inside that family; dysfunctional though it is, it feels very real and (in an odd way) almost secure. The relationships are just so well done.
    Kudos, dear friend, kudos! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you Penny for an awesome comment. I always enjoy reading your analysis of a story (quite a gift you have!) and yes you probably have met Rohan earlier – he does dominate my stories 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Rohan needs to lighten up, it sounds like he likes his cake and always wants more. It is good news that India is relaxing some restricted laws, but it may take longer for minds to change.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. He is celebrating the overturning of section 377 yet he expects his maa to dress up in whites. Double standards! Very go9d take on the prompt, Dahlia. The contrast in thinking has been portrayed in a very subtle yet powerful way. The gay son still expects his maa to follow the age-old tradition, so typical, right?

    Liked by 2 people

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