We Are All Sad Today, and That is Okay

This is a Happy Place, and it will stay a Happy Place. For my own mental health, and that of the people who come here, we will resist negativity. But resisting negativity doesn’t mean resisting sadness. We can be sad, together, and acknowledge that we are feeling sad. And then we can, together, comfort and cheer each other. Choose to make this a place of peace, safety, and love.

Over the weekend, 23 year old Aryan Khan was arrested in a drug bust at a party. Because of who his father is, he has been refused bail again and again, despite not having any drugs on him. And despite numerous other people at that party being released or never arrested to begin with.

There are other places you can go on the internet to talk about the details of the case and express support publicly and so on. This is a place where we can come together and say “I am very sad about a family that I have never met in person, more sad than makes logical sense, but I know this is a place where I will be understood”.

Years ago, when Yash Chopra died, I had a church committee meeting the next day. I was feeling sad and thrown and frankly mourning. And then we went around and did “check in” at the meeting. And one of the committee members talked about their sister starting chemo, another had a friend who was sick, and so on and so forth. And I felt guilty and embarrassed about saying “I am upset because a movie director I have never met died”. So I didn’t say anything, and I missed out on having community support and understanding.

Today I am sad. I am sad because a young man I have watched grow up from a distance is scared and in pain and in jail. I am sad because two parents who I care about deeply, despite never meeting them, are dealing with the unimaginable pain of their son in this position and it being their fault. I want to bring them a casserole, or send them a present. I want to do what I would do if this was a couple in my church or my neighborhood. And I am sad because I can’t do that either.

All I can do is sit here and feel sad. So this is a place for us all to say “I am sad today” and for all of us to understand what you mean and give you hugs and love and support and not make fun of you for it. No rumors, no drama, no negativity. Just love and support and understanding.

(and yes, I will be censoring comments. But please don’t make my job harder by making me read icky comments before I censor them!)

24 thoughts on “We Are All Sad Today, and That is Okay

  1. We all are with Aryan and shahrukh at the moment and I believe like always the king will come out through this also. Btw lovely post. I feel so proud to be one of your followers n admirers.

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    • Thank you! And yes, we are all with them. Can’t give them casseroles, but can send encouraging thoughts and good wishes their way.

      On Mon, Oct 4, 2021 at 12:55 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  2. Hi Margaret, thanks for writing this. I know what you mean – it feels weird to me to be feeling sad for people who seem so privileged and that I have never met, but for me, that’s also kind of the point. Principles mean that it’s wrong to keep Aryan in prison despite no drugs being found on him, just as principles would mean that it would be wrong to release him if drugs were found on him. I hope it works out.

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    • (I slightly edited your comment, nothing you said was wrong at all, I’m just being extra EXTRA careful today to keep things positive)

      Yes! But ultimately, I can feel sad for anyone. Sad things are sad things, no matter who they happen to. Wealth and privilage can cushion the blow but the blow is still felt. I am sad about celebrity divorces, about rich people getting cancer, about all kinds of things that hurt no matter who you are in the world.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. As a parent I keep imagining myself as Gauri so scared and worried about my baby, because to all of us, our 23 year old son will always be our baby. Parenting is this odd balance of keeping on top of things and letting go and in the end all you can do is love and support. It’s kind of like how on Shah Rukh’s Bday we all seem to get emotional, I feel the same way today except more sad. It doesn’t help that I have what I think is a sinus infection and I had a small surgery last week and I’m just feeling blah. Anyone ever have a post surgery depression? I think it’s holding on to all your feelings and then letting them go after plus anesthesia. I just want a shoulder massage and to watch British bake off and feel no pressure of any kind. Thanks for making a space for us.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I haven’t had post surgery depression, but I have had post sinus infection depression. Like my body is expending so much energy fighting the infection, everything else just starts to feel too hard and too sad. I’m sorry you are in a bad place today. Curl up in bed, snuggle with your ridiculously large dog, and wait for DCIB to come out with more happy cozy posts.

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  4. Thinking as a parent wanting the best for their children’s future this is so hard. What do you do to try to adapt? Aryan isn’t allowed to go to parties anymore, or at least not in India? It’s safer for your children to live in a foreign country?

    If this isn’t going to far, seems dumb and shortsighted too. If this were a film, it could be the back story of a character who’s driven to spend the rest of his life creating great art that complicates reductive narratives and forces us all to see each other as human. Not to mention you’re creating a lived experience of injustice in a generation that had grown up more sheltered and privileged, and has access to resources their parents’ generation didn’t have until much later.

    Hoping it all resolves soon and with everyone safely back home.

    Liked by 1 person

    • And it’s also at a point where, as a parent, you have to respect your children’s autonomy. His parents can try to send him out of the country, but Aryan can just come back on his own. Or refuse to leave in the first place. Or he can decide for himself to leave and never come back. It feels very similar to a question among my social group of parents and kids, how can you tell your child not to go to a dangerous protest when you used to go to them yourself? At what point do you just accept that this is how you raised your child and they are going to put themselves in danger because you did, and because they believe it is morally right?

      Also, Emily, such a fun question for you as your son starts middle-school! Try to freeze him in time if possible.

      On Mon, Oct 4, 2021 at 1:51 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • Yep! Right now we’re at the phase of does he get to ride the public bus by himself, but the bigger stuff will be coming at us sooner than we’re ready, I’m sure. 😅

        Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m grateful about the way you expresse your sadness. I can relate to yours because it may be like mine,,,it’s just something in my chest, region of the heart…and like you I just send my loving thoughts direction south-east, to Mumbai.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Thanks for this. I feel sad and also feel stupid for feeling sad. I just feel bad for all of them, especially Aryan. He was the one famous kid who didn’t want to be unlike everyone else. He never called the paps, didn’t do magazine covers, made 1 post on instagram in a year max, and minded his own business. He didn’t want to be an actor because he couldn’t live up to his dad and didn’t want people saying bad things about him. I think he genuinely just wanted a quiet and private life. All that has come to screeching halt in just one day. His face is being flashed into millions of home almost 24/7 since this began. Cameras have caught him crying in the car. He’s being called terrible things and his image is being destroyed before his public life can even begin. It’s just heartbreaking.

    And there’s SRK and Gauri. What must they be thinking and feeling? So powerful and yet so powerless to help their child.

    Liked by 1 person

    • (slightly edited your comment to stay as positive as possible)

      Well, at least Aryan doesn’t have a career to be ruined. If he wants, he can get out of this and come back to America and work as a TV ad director or something for the rest of his life. Get a nice house in the suburbs, get married, he doesn’t need to be a movie star or anything else if he doesn’t want it.

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      • Sometimes I think the whole family should move to London or Dubai. Make shows and movies for Netflix and Amazon where there are no box office fears. And live the rest of your life in peace.

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        • From SRK and Gauri’s standpoint, they’ve fought for so long to have their family and choices and identity accepted as just as Indian as anyone else, and taken on responsibility for promoting and pushing the industry forward, it must be hard to imagine leaving as anything other than defeat. For the kids, though. I wonder what their choices look like from behind their eyes.

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          • Speaking of, did you know Malcolm X and MLK’s daughters are now friends and creative partners? There’s gotta be a lot for them to work through together.

            On Tue, Oct 5, 2021 at 12:47 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  7. I’m sad, in part because I don’t understand. India isn’t my country, I don’t have firm grasp of it’s politics, legalities, and processes. But SRK’s family is my family, because I’m his fan. When I told my husband the details that I can find, his response was “Well, aren’t you glad you’re not in India.” But I’m not glad I’m not in India, India makes the best films, has the most amazing music and outfits and actors. Recreational drug use is basically legal in my state, but this man’s son is in jail for days when nothing was found on him. I’m confused. Sad and confused.

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    • It is an odd situation. I’m not going to pretend that I care as much about people outside my circle as those within it. I am a deep believer in “think global, act local”. But somehow fandom has made this family feel local to me, just like the family down the street, and I am having a hard time separating myself from them and remembering that all those I know and love in real life are still safe.

      On Mon, Oct 4, 2021 at 6:47 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  8. Well expressed as always, Margaret. I think that Aryan has the love and support he needs from his family to move on from this a stronger person. Sending good thoughts to the family and all the DCIB family too. ❤

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    • So glad I have the DCIB family right now!!! This is why I started the blog, so I wouldn’t feel so lonely in my fandom. And it worked!

      On Tue, Oct 5, 2021 at 9:20 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      Liked by 1 person

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