Arranged marriages in the South Asian society is a traditional and still an overwhelming majority of the people in India will marry in this way. While romantic love is key topic in Bollywood movies and folklore and there is also no legal recognition for an arranged marriage, still most of the people are married in an arranged way.
Before I went to India I never thought about this topic, and at the moment I started to think about it I thought it would be a bad thing to have an arranged marriage. However I want to share you the following story that changed my thinking of an arranged marriage.
As usual it was a very hot afternoon in Tindivanam, around 40 degrees Celcius. I was stuck in the school today, no visits to villages today because it is Saturday. Today I got a request to talk with a teacher from one of the villages so that she could improve her English.
I was early and was waiting in the boiling class room with another child. In the mean time I was playing with him some games and taught him some English as well. After 15 minutes a woman around my age entered the room. She was a bit shy but apparently she was the teacher I was waiting for.
The beginning of the conversation was a bit struggling, but she became more talkative over time. Especially when we talked about cultural differences and if I had a girlfriend she started to talk a lot.
Apparently her parents are searching a husband for her. I wondered what her feeling was in this situation. She knew she would be married by the end of the year, only she didn’t know who will be her husband. Her parents proposed two people for her but she refused them. One wasn’t rich enough, the other one lived in Singapore and she doesn’t want to move far away from her family.
…her parents love her.
So at the moment that your parents arrange your marriage you are able to refuse a potential husband. Another thing she explained she doesn’t think arranged marriage is a bad thing, is because her parents love her. She is certain her parents will find someone for her that will take very good care of her.
This last sentence changed my perspective about arranged marriage. Arranged marriages don’t have to end up in a bad way because your parents try to arrange the best possible marriage for you. However I am still happy that I can live my own life and decide my own faith. Wouldn’t be happy to know that I will be married within a year and I don’t even know my potential wife.