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Shaaditimers » Member-contribution » Pressurized-marriages-060103
Pressurized marriages are bad and will not work?
A shaaditimer responds

I disagree with the statement. There are some inevitable facts we all hear now-a-days - Arranged marriages are more successful than otherwise, Divorced rate among Indian community including in India and abroad is increasing, Most of the divorced cases are very well educated and emotionally / socially stable people, etc. How can we answer all these questions?

Lets begin with the end, what makes things work in a marriage, being single I don't even qualify to answer this, but I dare say it is the WILLINGNESS to keep working on the relationship on a day-to-day basis for months, years, decades; And "giving-up" NOT an option, work as the fundamental rule. Well, you might disagree with this, but as basic as it sounds, this is what people call commitment (a verb, not a noun), continuous, not one time or few times, something that is exercised forever tirelessly.


Assuming you agree to this, how can we answer the questions raised by the facts of today; why are people divorcing? Is it because they were forced into marriage? Or is it because they married for the wrong reasons? Something like "procreation", "age factor", "societal pressure", "boredom", etc. The point is all these (wrong) reasons existed even in the past, in our parents' generation, their parents', etc; then how did it all work for them and not for us? Well, that brings us to the obvious, people from the past survived because they tolerated suppression and incompatibility from both society and their spouse (mostly female, I agree). So does that mean today's generation should learn to be more tolerant? Our generation rightfully considers progress: to have overcome the suppressions of different forms (political, racial [India is big on this] , gender, etc) as not only victory but as true freedom. Well, so is freedom causing the increase in less tolerant people? Either way, question is how it affects married life.

Divorce is OK, there is always a second chance, you grow up you change and so does your taste in life and you can exercise it, all these are normal today or at least getting there thanks to the true freedom. So you have an option, which could be one of the explanations for the increase in the number of divorces among the elite and the learned crowd. Knowing that the average age for marriage among Indian communities is around 26 for male and 22 / 23 for female, should we expect them to have made the perfect decision about choosing their spouses? Whenever and with whatever restrictions / freedom they had to make that decision under?

That brings us to the questions that I am battling to answer to my parents, what age is right or say wrong (meaning too late)? History has an answer, we don't like that in this day-n-age, rightfully so, it's a different era with a brand new factors and a new equation. So that means we will have to create a new age limit that suits things from this generation? Or are we wasting time reinventing the wheel? Today, even a woman can live unmarried for the rest of her life, something that my dad and mom will never get it. So let's get crazy, is there a need to get married? Or even, why should one get married in the first place? My parents say, we as humans crave companionship, something youth can get very easily, but youth doesn't last, so you lock-in in form of spouse (that's my interpretation), miraculously the depth (if you can measure it) only increases with age, hence the eternal life for people in love.

This is my opinion on answering all these questions: social values have changed so does the basics of survival, work, representation of power, etc. To put it in brief we are witnessing the highest change in pace of life the world has ever seen. This in turn makes us the scape goats, we need to come up with something that will at least last for 40/60 years, so that we don't get too many laughs / ridicules when we are 60-70 years old, for the decisions we have to make today.

Clearly there is NO age limit when you should get married, the game is simple "supply vs. demand", look at the trend (based on the region you live in and other biases) and adapt. Companionship is instinctive, without gender bias or with any time limit, if you can lock in some kind of trustful companionship, it will only grow with time. Marriage is fortunately the social norm for just that; companionship by definition demands something in common, so look for lot of common interests and big one expectation from each other (including the families). Ironically enough, the complementing features of the couple keep them sailing for the long run, look at your parents and uncles / aunts, it amazing how they complement each others "lack of..." So may be that's something to look for too. And last but not least, as a man of science I strongly believe in natural instincts of humans to choose their partners based on their genetic makeup, don't suppress them, they will grow as strong hidden bonds for the choice you make, in the future, making it more tolerable.

How to put all this in practice? Get up and start hunting with that instinct you already have, that already knows what it wants, cut yourself loose from the norms and you will find "the one" who will last forever. Point is there is NO need to reinvent the wheel :)

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