Saturday, May 14, 2011

The Sick Sad Indian Wedding

Typical Indian marriages are beautiful. They smell of henna, roses and marigolds. They are a glittery and shiny affair.  But behind the scenes, they are usually fishy.  While the wedding day is as glamorous as Bollywood, the story behind the wedding is a miniature model of the real sad and smelly streets of India. Explanation follows.

·         Arranged Marriage!!??
For two decades, our parents keep teaching us not to talk to strangers and one day we find out that we are married to one.  Arranged marriage is a weird concept that is still accepted and followed by a whole lot of people from all classes of Indian society. [Please note that we are not talking about its success or failure rate, only its strangeness].
This is the mini episode from the series “Indian parents are always right and their children are dumb”.  “Engineering, not fashion designing” and “Girls with Boyfriends are spoilt and wasted” are some other episodes from this series.

·         How old is She?
In rural India, girls are ready for marriage at 12. In towns, their families wait for them to turn 18 or else they might be jailed. In cities, they’ll start worrying about her marriage as soon as she is done with college.  Here is the irony. No matter what place and no matter what her age, a girl is never mature enough to decide what guy is right for her.  If she is 25 and unmarried, the neighbors will start getting panic attacks. If she manages to stay unmarried till 29, she’ll probably never get married.  
This is an episode from the series “Paraya Dhan: Girls are Born to Marry”.  “Amount of dowry is exponentially proportional to the girl’s age” is another episode from this series.

·         How old is He?
23 is no age for a man to get married. He has to build a career, become stable, self-sufficient, self-dependent and mature and capable enough to handle responsibilities, and that’s not until he is 27. Okay. So what if a girl and a boy went to college together, and fell in love with each other?  Simple! They’ll never get married to each other because the girl’s family will want her to marry at 25 but the boy’s family will not agree because he is still too young for marriage. [This is an excerpt from a real story]
This is an episode from the series “Naam Karega Roshan: Boys are Born a Boon” from which is another episode called “Amount of dowry is exponentially proportional to the guy’s salary package”.

·         Inter-caste? Make faces. Inter-religion? Faint.
The boy is tall, dark and handsome. He doesn’t smoke, doesn’t drink and is medically fit. He is a banker and earns a reasonable salary.  But they can’t marry their girl to him because he is not from their caste. But why does it matter? Well, because the relatives, the cousins, the neighbors, the maid, the colleagues will ridicule it, talk about it and make faces, or even a more lame reason – “it has never ever happened in our family”-bla-bla-blah.
This is a ridiculous episode from the disgusting series “fake honour”. To this series belongs another sickening episodes “The Untouchables”.

These are a few points that I could recall at the moment and posted hastily because I was angry about it. But I'm sure a lot of Indians can add more to these. For people who think this doesn't happen anymore, consider yourself very lucky. And for those who have fought for their right to love and happiness, I completely admire and applaud you.


Felicity said...

Hmmm. This is something that's been on my mind since quite some time now. You've put it exceptionally well. Enjoyed reading.

You should write more often. :)

Nice dp.

Anonymous said...

Hmm... A very good post. But not all arranged marriages are bad.

I have 2 girls and I dont have any problem in getting them married to good guys from another caste, if it is okay with his family.

People like me too exist here... so dont blame all Indians..

Tanvi said...

Felicity, it's been on my mind and it feels better after blurting it all out. Thanks for visiting, reading, supporting and liking :)
Also thanks for the compliment on dp. *blush*

Stranger, there are undoubtedly a large number of successful arranged marriages and there's nothing bad about it. Only, the logic isn't too clear to me, especially in cases where it is forced.

Your daughters are lucky, and even my mother says it's okay to marry into another caste if the guy and his family are good. So, completely agreed. Not all Indians can be blamed :)
Thanks for visiting.

pRasad said...

Superb post :))...Totally agree :)

I feel it's strange to get married with the person you don't know completely. If love doesn't happen to you, at least enough time should be given to know the person you are going to marry..
I liked the sentence-' Inter-caste? Make faces. Inter-religion? Faint.' true !

Anonymous said...

"""Stranger, there are undoubtedly a large number of successful arranged marriages and there's nothing bad about it."""""

Why Strange......Its Truth.....

love your post......But things differ with place to place, Economic conditions, education structure, Family background. like if someone have money he will definitely give to his daughter either a boy ask or not. But it creates problem for poor people.

People writes according to their emotions but thing are pretty different if u look from basic.

"""""23 is no age for a man to get married. He has to build a career, become stable, self-sufficient, self-dependent and mature and capable enough to handle responsibilities, and that’s not until he is 27"""""

This is just because no girl want to have a husband with no money no job or a settled career. Tell me a simple why every modern girl wana ideal husband (Good salary, good job sensitive, caring bla bla bla).

So things are not same as it looks....i am not against girls i respect girls very much and very agreed with your post but every coin have two face...think deeply why things rae like that as u mentioned in ur post, look in to the indian civil history, go for surveys may be it will help you to clear your view......

Thanks and very sorry , if i wight somthing offensive.


Anonymous said...

What i fell is,,,

In todays world women are independant n thus are not as adjustin n accomodatin resultin in so many divorces. In such scenario if da couple are aware der marriage is acc their wishes, they will try harder to sustain it as opposed to arranged marriages.

Honestly I feel its way easier n less complicated to go fr arranged marriage. But if a person does fall in love, its criminal to all parties to ignore their heart n go fr parents wishes.

So try to nt fall in love n make parents happy. If your unfortunate to love, please hav da backbone to stand by it b4 n after marriage.

Anonymous said...


CRD said...

Nice post.

Well my family has a history of inter-caste and inter-religious marriages...and i thought my parents would accept the same in my case

Imagine my horror when my parents told me strictly that they wanted a Catholic girl from Mangalore only :P

Anyway, I'm now gettin married to a catholic girl (not coz they forced me...its more coz i never found a gal :P) . Its an arranged in we were set up by our parents...but we had a long courtship..and i guess we can call it a love marriage now :d


Find details to a blogging contest on my bloglink. Do visit. Here's inviting your readers as well.

xyzandme said...

“Girls with Boyfriends are spoilt and wasted"

Not completely wrong.

But one shouldnt be biased towards the girls.Include guys in the equation.

The number of boyfriends/girlfriends he/she have had. That number is proportional to three things:
1. He/She is easy.
2. He/She is desperate.
3. He/She is unstable.

Esha - People for the Blind said...

xyzandme: Are you for real??? I mean.. easy. desperate and unstable? Because they had multiple relationships? WOW!!!

On another note. Tanvi, LOVED ur post.. so true! And after centuries, it continues to be true.. thats the tragedy.

xyzandme said...

Be specific, coz multiple can mean 2, but it may also mean 100.

I am for real and reality is what I am talking about.

A girl or a guy who have had 2-3 relationships is definitely 'better' than one who have had twenty in the same time span.

Tanvi said...

Anonymous, those were some significant views...

Sure, a man has to build a career and his lady would want him to do that....but then the girl should be allowed to 'wait' till both of them are ready to get married. Right?

"its way easier n less complicated to go fr arranged marriage"....not sure about this....getting to know, love and live with a 'stranger' you have been married to doesn't seem any less complicated.

"if a person does fall in love, its criminal to all parties to ignore their heart n go fr parents wishes"...true.

"try to nt fall in love n make parents happy"...why should parents have problems with their son or daughter falling in love? It is a beautiful feeling. They should be happy for him/her!

Love is one of the most significant feelings in this World...One who has loved, has experienced bliss...Someone would be 'unfortunate' to leave this World without having felt it!

Thanks for the views and food for thought....and do not regret anything.

Take care!

Tanvi said...

CRD, you have a sweet little story complications :)
Good Luck...

I am sorry I read the comment so late...I hope the competition is still alive....quickly hopping on to the link to see :D

Tanvi said...


The number of boyfriends/girlfriends he/she has had is actually proportional to the number of times he/she has tried to find his/her true love

Thanks for visiting and expressing your views

Tanvi said...

Esha, I'm glad you liked the post....and your words completely match my thoughts...tragedy, indeed...

[I am curious about your profile name...are you associated with an NGO for the blind or something?]

xyzandme said...

That is actually very well put.

But you missed out an important term of what I said in my second comment.
"Time span"

If two people fall in love, you confess those feelings to each other, and after a while you break off and express those feelings to someone else and so on.
The amount of time spent in between these two relationships is important.
Don't you think so? It determines how truly one wants to find the true love and stay on with it.

Tanvi said...

thnx xyzandme for the appreciation as well as the clarification....
I don't completely disagree with you on the 'time span' factor....but I won't judge anybody on these factors alone till I actually know what's going on inside his/her mind...Right? There are all kinds of situations and complications in this World that we cannot even think of.

xyzandme said...

But wouldn't someones actions and behavior reflect that what is going in their mind?

Tanvi said...

It's not a thumb rule though....

xyzandme said...

Explain. If you don't mind to.

Tanvi said...

dear xyzandme, ofcourse, I don't mind explaining that....

I meant to say that sometimes, actions and behavior don't seem to match the intentions....and intentions matter the most.

The farthest of people see actions....
The closest of them understand intentions...

Don't you think?

xyzandme said...

Yes, I completely agree with you missy.
It all comes down to the intentions. But how does one perceive them? If a person kills another person, there are multiple probabilities of why he did that. Is he a
cold blooded killer or a professional hitman etc. Behind every death sentence given by the jury, if you remove the motive, they all become killers.

But given that, would "finding love" be the only reason for a girl to get into multiple relationships over a short time span?
I wanna know your view on how would you define an intentions of a girl if not by her actions and words..

Tanvi said...

Honestly, I feel I wouldn't know the real intentions even if I were her mother! God knows best...

What we see as a murder might as well be an impulsive action in self defence...but if the jury can't make that out, it is not their fault....because we are humans, and we have limitations...

but since, we have not been handed over with a responsibility to judge people, I would rather be as non-judgemental as possible....
In fact,I admit, I find it hard to judge people even if I am required to. I sometimes wish I could get into the head of people to find out how they actually feel about what they are doing!