Ettiquetes of Inviting your Relatives

It’s an extremely sorry state of affairs that relatives are being treated like beggars. Traditionally inviting someone to share your happiness is about honoring them and extending respect not because they don’t have food or are mendicants whom you wish to feed. One of my teacher’s at Alliance Francaise De Karachi in 1995 taught me a valuable lesson explaining that we french believe in inviting someone if you want them to come not for mere formality. Rich people in Karachi particularly have lost the sense of what it means to invite your relatives with respect. Sending invitation cards by chauffeurs and not bothering to come yourself or sending a small personal note, be it in the form of a call or text message and not extending respect to your close relatives has become a tradition. I distinctly remember handling my wedding arrangements all by myself whereas my cousin sisters along with my mother and at some places my father (God bless his soul) and mother both personally went to deliver the card starting from our very own servant quarter. If it is a distant relation you don’t need to worry about it and neither should they as it is acceptable. However if it’s your in laws or some close relative you should exercise more respect.

History repeated itself once again as yesterday the bell rang at midnight at my door whilst I was busy praying. My kids were very worried as to who could it be in the middle of the night. My mother was also not feeling well as it’s very late and we were not expecting anyone.  I ran downstairs in my night suit to see a servant waving cards. In the past we have had some medical emergency cases brought to us and God has always been kind to bless them with health through us.

Annoying as it is to break your prayers I received the cards and told the driver “Allah ke wali 12 baj rahey hain kuch to khayal karo” he said “sb mujhe pata hai lekin baji ne abhi bheja hai.” to which i replied “baji ko kehna agli baar itna late card naa bhejein”. Agitated I continued my prayers feeling slightly annoyed. Sometime later I received a message on my facebook messenger stating the following. “My driver came to drop cards and you started yelling at him for no reason. I understand it was 11:45 but it wasn’t his fault. Coz we have other important things to do during the day, that’s the reason we got the cards dropped now. Next time think before yelling at someone.” My question is whether the host things we are beggars or is seriously devoid of education. It’s hard to understand and even harder to accept that relations have come to this low level. Just because you have been blessed with some money doesn’t mean you have the right to insult your relatives. Personally I felt more hurt than insulted although for no particular reason but I leave the compensation of my insult and distress to God Almighty Who shall pay them in the same coin and I hope I’m there to witness it. I write this blog hoping that people will realize and will in future remember the true essence of inviting people. I have personally made it a point when it comes to relatives that unless the host calls or texts after or before sending the invitation card by driver or courier I would rather not go because to me respect is important not the food you serve long after midnight. So the next time you invite your relatives or in laws show some respect otherwise don’t bother.


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