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An insight into Traditional Indian Families

Updated on August 19, 2009
An Indian family
An Indian family

India is a country on a quick road to modernization. Despite a strong western influence, most families in India are still traditional, as in following rules/conventions that have lasted for hundreds of years, and are often proud of it.

A traditional Indian family is generally large, with about 3 generations living in the same house, as in,

  • Children
  • Their parents
  • Their father's brothers and their wives
  • Their father's parents

Here are some facts :

  • The eldest son and his wife deserve the most respect, and it is often the case that he will be heading the family business.
  • The sons continue to live in their parents house, and are expected to take care of their aging parents.
  • The daughters, once wed are sent to live in their husband's house. Dowry system is still prevalent, with a considerable amount of valuables being given to the groom.
  • Arranged marriages are the norm, with parents deciding the groom/bride, often based on social status, earning potential, achievements et cetera.
  • The husband is usually more than a few years older than the wife, though this is fast changing.
  • A traditional wife is a homemaker (though educated) and is generally adept at house-hold work and manages the family's budget (skills learnt from her mother), as the husband entrusts her with almost his entire monthly income.
  • Most men and women are virgins until marriage. Close interactions with members of the opposite sex (other than the spouse) are often met with raised eyebrows from the society.
  • Religion is an important part of life. The year is full of festivals, and generally, the women of the house make the arrangements for the festivals, with the men funding them.
  • While saris form the main attire for women, shirts and pants/dhotis (a cloth tied round the waist, which almost reaches the feet) is what men wear.
  • Most traditional families rise early in the morning (around 5 AM), and begin their after bathing and mandatory prayers.
  • Mealtimes are when the whole family gets together. The family members, almost never eat alone.

So, now you know how close and well-knit Indian families are. Love is abundant, but is sometimes mixed with a tinge of other emotions. With modernization however, families are getting smaller and relationships weaker, but the values continue to hold, and are likely to stay that way for another generation atleast.


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