CHICAGO, IL – Lily and Rahul Ghosh are under assault by everyone in the Indian community to decide whether their newborn child will become a doctor, a lawyer or acquire an MBA. Mrs. Ghosh gave birth to their daughter Sonia last week and the pressure has been building daily.
“It’s been a very hard week,” said Mrs. Ghosh, a lawyer. “I’ve barely gotten any sleep. Little Sonia is fantastic, she actually sleeps in 4 hour blocks and nurses like a champ. But every time I try to rest I get a text or call from someone asking if we’ve decided what she’s going to be yet.”
“No one told me it would be like this,” said her husband Rahul, a proctologist. “I was mentally prepared for black tar poops, catering to Lily’s every need and a complete lack of rest. But this pressure is on another level. And all of our other friends with babies are from Western families; they’ve been flabbergasted.”
“This should be their babymoon, that special first week with their new baby,” said Lily’s best friend Monica McElligot, a Lamaze-certified childbirth educator. “And it’s being ruined by all this pressure on a child whose only jobs right now should be to eat, poop, sleep and be loved. It’s so hard to watch. I’m thinking of stealing their mobile phones to help them out.”
Rahul and Lily’s parents were not available for comment but their uncle Parvinder Bhatia spoke on behalf of the Indian community: “This is just their friends and family showing how much we care about little Sonia. Her mother and father have made us all proud by becoming a lawyer and a doctor. We expect nothing less from Sonia. And this caring from everyone is good for Sonia’s future. If she ever talks about becoming a writer or yoga teacher, we’ll be there to talk some sense into her.”
“If they really cared about her they’d just leave her alone,” said Lily. “She has all the potential in the world. There’s no need to pigeonhole her, now or ever. She can be anything she wants to be. At this point, I’m hoping she gets a liberal arts degree just to piss everyone off.”
Mr. Bhatia disagrees: “That’s youthful inexperience speaking, she’ll realize the error of her ways. We just hope we can change her mind before she can figure it out for herself. But the fact is that Indians in America are not successful by accident. We have always held education in high regard – but the Americans are starting to catch on. Just the other day I saw a bus advertisement that said School doesn’t start in kindergarten anymore. We can’t let the goras catch up to us. If they are going to start before kindergarten then maybe we should start before a child is born.”
Mr. and Mrs. Ghosh aren’t sure whether they are actually related to Mr. Bhatia or not but are fairly certain he is speaking for the community at large.