Arranged Marriage or love?

Most Indian Women at the ‘Marriage age’ are faced with this question by relatives- ‘are you going for an arranged marriage or love’? This question haunts many young women of today. Most of my single friends are irritated by the probing relatives keen to marry them off soon.

For a well-educated, qualified working woman in their mid-twenties in urban India, she has a choice to go for a love marriage. There is no correct answer to this, cos love can happen anytime, and if it doesn’t you can opt for an arranged marriage too. The unnecessary pressure exerted on young girls of today sometimes makes them make wrong decisions. 

Let us look at the ‘Arranged’ Marriage scenario… does it really work? Many of my friends feel that arranged marriage is terrifying for most of the women and leads to various issues which may end up in divorce. So they are quite happy to be called a ‘single’ rather than ‘separated’ or ‘divorced’.

Here are few facts to corroborate what I just said-

-         Divorce rates in India – 1.1%

-         Global Divorce rate for arranged marriage- 6%

-         Percentage of women forced into an ‘Arranged’ Marriage before 18 years age- 48%

This doesn’t imply that arranged marriages are unsuccessful. Not by a long shot. Most of our parents went for an arranged marriage and they are currently in their golden or platinum jubilee. But with the changing concepts of society, stress and changing roles of working women, rules of marriage have changed too.

Couples in an arranged marriage may come to an understanding and acceptance, but there are several couples who live in the same house and do not communicate. For the sake of society and to avoid the legal-financial hassles they stay married.  Inspite of this, arranged marriages are still popular but there is a difference now.

According to the NDTV survey, 74% of Indians still prefer arranged marriage. The conventional thinking of marriage still exists. Men usually want his parents to get him a ‘perfect partner’ based on the family culture, religion and lifestyle. But I ask these men… are you looking for a perfect match for yourself or for your family??

Indians are still conventional in thinking of marriage as a set-up in which a person should fit into the family.

Further, this preference is high in Rajasthan, Haryana and UP showing a statistic of 88 percent, while for West Bengal, New Delhi and Tamil Nadu this is 59 percent. This clearly shows a trend in the changing face of marital beliefs and highlights the fact that atleast a few states have begun to come out of the veil of traditions.

With the changing concepts of society, stress and changing roles of women any kind of “Marriage’ has become a challenge. It takes effort, patience and understanding from both partners to make it work. As both are educated, independent, financially secure and opinionated Marriage is a work in progress for many.

Will you still go for an Arranged Marriage???

My personal belief is that marriage must be arranged by two individuals where they can decide if their personal beliefs are supported by the other. Where they can mutually form a relationship based on love, trust and respect. While I harbor respect for both kinds of marriages, I choose the path where both partners especially women can maintain their individuality and maturity.

New trends must be allowed to accommodate the old or even reform the old if the earlier patterns are on the way to becoming archaic.

New trends must be allowed to accommodate the old or even reform the old if the earlier patterns are on the way to becoming archaic. Both styles of marriage have advantages and limitations. Regardless of which style one chooses it would be wise to learn from each and adopt the values and skills that each has to offer.

 

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