Sunday, December 20, 2009

Sister-in-law

I have got 2 older brothers, so I have got two sisters-in-law, one was born in 1974 and the other in 1981. I call them 'chi' or 'bac' on behalf of my son, and they call me 'cô Quyên' instead of their children. In Vietnam, in general, the relationships between sisters and sisters-in-law as well as daughters-in-law and mothers-in-law are not good. But in my family, the concept of in-law does not exist. I regard my sisters-in-law as my sisters. Moreover, they are more or less the same age as mine, as a result, we get on quite well with each other. The special thing here is both of them have the same first name: Huong. Both of my sisters-in-law are beautiful, well-educated, hardworking, caring and responsible. I think my parents are lucky to have daughters-in-law like them and my brothers are lucky too to have them as wives. But life is not as what we want.
I read somewhere that happiness is the same but the unhappiness is different in each family/each person. I really feel so sorry for my first sister-in-law, the person was born in 1974. She is married to my first brother with a son and a daughter. Her husband (my brother) is an aggressive man. Outsiders will think they are a very happy family: they live near but not under the same roof with parents, they have a son and a cute daughter, a dream for other families. But...
I heard so many sad stories about their family life. All of the stories relate to my brother's bad behaviour, which can not be changed even we give him so much advice. He gambles: yes. He is lazy (can't do housework): yes. He curses so often (even when he is not angry): yes. He hits his wife: yes. He is mean: yes. He shouts at family members (even with my mum): yes. He shouts at his wife even when there is no reason. I can say he is the blacksheep in my family, so different from the rest 5 siblings. My sister-in-law has to suffer him. Once I told her to get divorced. She said she accepted to live like that for the sake of her children. Poor her.
My family always stands by her but we can not do much to help her.
We are women, why is she so unhappy?