Neena Gupta Says Masaba Suffered Because She Didn’t Have A Father Around. But Even When Indian Fathers Are Around, Are They Present?
We as a society are very discreet when it comes to our personal lives and I have been no different, until recently. In fact, how many of us openly admit to dating someone on social media? How many of us are vocal about our mental health? We fear being ridiculed because a lot of people are insensitive. But I realised I can easily turn a deaf ear to them and be less discreet because we need to stop pretending to have no emotions. Which is why, I have no qualms in admitting that my father gives me more space than I asked for or frankly, needed. He has been rather indifferent throughout and I can’t deny the fact that it has affected me. So when Neena Gupta opened up about how not having a father has affected Masaba, I felt that.
I wish I could tell Neena Gupta that she did a great job and it’s on our society that makes a big deal out of the whole thing. I wish at some point, it becomes completely normal to have one parent or same-sex parents. At the end, every child deserves love and it’s really not gender or number specific. If anything, single mothers raise strong, independent daughters and feminist sons and we could all be better for it.
On Having a Daughter Out of Wedlock
Neena Gupta, who had a daughter, Masaba Gupta out of wedlock with former West Indies Cricketer Vivian Richards said, “I would not have a child outside marriage. Every child needs both parents. I was always honest with Masaba, so it did not affect our relationship, but I know she suffered.” I understand that and I agree that it is always preferable to have both parents. But I wish I could tell her that marriage doesn’t guarantee that. For instance, my parents are married. I have a father, but I still felt his absence while growing up. I still feel that my mom has essentially raised me, maybe not completely by herself, but almost.
In fact, even today, most Indian families have a father whose around but barely involved in the actual process of bringing up the child. The fathers often task themselves with getting in the money, if even, but leave the responsibilities of dealing with the child to the mother. How many times have we seen fathers hand over the kid to the mother when the baby starts crying or has soiled its diapers. One too many times.
Sushmita Sen is raising her two daughters without a father and I believe she is doing a great job. I am no one to tell but I don’t think her daughters would complain of not having another parent. I think it all comes down to the norms our society has. Why is it that a family is seen as complete only if there is a mother and a father? In fact, where does this outdated concept leave same-sex parents? Family can be one person. Sometimes, family is friends.
On How Masaba Helped Her Break Taboos
We have been seeing Neena Gupta wearing interesting combos, and it is really a breath of fresh air. However, she said that she has always dressed that way, it’s just that people are taking notice now. But Gupta also said that it was her daughter who made her get experimental with her fashion sense. “Masaba has helped me break some taboos, like wearing off-white with white, or sneakers with a fancy gown. She’s given me the confidence to carry off stuff, which looks nice. It’s important that you’re not embarrassed when you try something new,” she said.
ALSO READ: Neena Gupta Said She Envies The Opportunities Younger Actresses Are Getting. But Are Things Truly Changing?
On Winning The Best Actress Award At 60
Neena Gupta has not shied away from speaking about ageism in Bollywood and like other societal norms, she has shattered this one too! She won the Filmfare Award for The Best Actress for Badhaai Ho and it shows things are moving in the right direction. “Imagine someone my age winning that award which many believed was only meant for the leading lady. If you were not young, you could at best get the supporting actress award, a category I believe in because we are all actors. If the film hadn’t worked, it might not have made a difference,” Gupta pointed out.