Arranged Marriages are Made in Heaven
Do you believe in love at first sight? How about “marriages are made in Heaven”? If marriages are made in heaven, why are there so many divorces and abuse in relationships? I grew up in a world filled with fantasy stories of Cinderella and Snow White. I always thought that a guy would show up one day and sweep me off my feet. Nothing like that ever happened. As years went by, I started wondering if love would ever happen to me.
Eventually, peer pressure and family pressure took a toll and I agreed to an arranged marriage. I had nothing against arranged marriages because I grew up in a culture where it was a norm. However, what I feared was getting to that attachment and feeling of love that is shown in love marriages through movies.
Debates on whether love marriages are successful or arranged marriages happen everywhere. Neither one has ever won, but both have their own pros and cons. Love marriages are more common in western culture while arranged marriages in eastern culture.
When you had a love marriage, the boy and girl have already gone through many stages prior to marriage that an arranged marriage couple has to go through after marriage. They already had an opportunity to know each other better and understand each others vices.
A couple in love had many dating opportunities and know what they can stand of each other. They also have had many arguments and fights to come to some compromises and adjustments. This all happens prior to marriage so that after marriage they would just need to move to the "honeymoon phase."
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In arranged marriages, you are basically starting from scratch. The foundation of an arranged marriage is many adjustments and compromises. There are no expectations from the other individual since you don't know each other to begin with.
The first year is like being boyfriend and girlfriend when you are figuring each other out. Unlike a relationship prior to marriage where you have the option to opt out, you would think twice after marriage. This is when there would be compromises and in some cases settling. You would fight to keep the marriage alive.
In arranged marriages, the couple comes from a similar background so they are more likely to share the same views of what marriage means and what they define as family. Often, couples who have their marriages arranged by their families have similar religious, financial and social backgrounds.
Another benefit of arranged marriages is for women. It provides them more security because many people were involved in her marriage. As it is said in India, "Marriages are not between two individuals, but of two families."
The couple get support and guidance from the extended families. In some traditional societies (still quite common in India), couples live with the parents or at least very close by. During time of need, a couple can count on their parent’s or in-law’s help for physical, emotional and financial support. Parents are also there to babysit and take care of their grandchildren while both spouses are at work.
If there are positive aspects of arranged marriages, some negative aspects also exist.
If you had families involved in the wedding and the extended families are there for you when you need them; they are also there for you when you don't. Family members would want to know everything about your married life. These unwanted external interferences tend to meddle in marriages, especially in matters of finance, having children and meeting family obligations. When the in-laws interfere and impose their views, it causes tension between the couple.
Unfortunately, women tend to stay in abusive relationships because they feel obligated and feel they need to maintain their parent's pride and respect within society. This can be dangerous for everyone involved. With education and independence for the women; they are learning to fight for their rights and freedom.
Whether you have a love marriage or an arranged marriage; in the long run it does not matter. Every girl wants a beautiful wedding, what every woman wants is a beautiful marriage. Meeting your life partner is becoming harder so finding one either on your own or by help is a very small matter. It is finding a partner that suits you best for life that matters the most.
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