In most westernized countries, it is easy to find, couples being in a relationship, but they are also restricted from moulding two individual lives in the relationships into one journey. They would rather live together, have babies together, have a lovely house, a family but not get married. Somehow I have missed the important positive side to this aspect. Why not proclaim your love for each other to the world and celebrate it with pomp? Marriage is not only signature of two people on a stamp paper or a business contract. Well it could be considered in many ways, although it is majorly distinctive thanks to the emotional involvement in the previous, which is a big ‘no-no’ in businesses. Business and personal life is preferably not mixed. But this is plainly personal life if you ask me.
Today in a traditional Indian family–although the borders of this peculiarity are slowly diminishing, marriages are still considered as the Spiritual union of two lives, leading to an anticipated great journey towards the future. Most of us, still believe that ‘Marriages are made in heaven’. It is one of the most important occasions in our lives, that matter to the men and the women equally. This is the turning point, milestone, high point, blah blah blah, in our lives. For the ladies, from the legal marriage age to the mid-twenties is the most appropriate time to get married. Oversight of this period may lead to the girl being looked down upon as incompatible for marriage at all. Questions are raised to her competence. For the men, it is rarely the case that they get married before 25 years at all, although not completely impossible. But after crossing the most feared number of 30, a similar although not an exact replica, he follows a similar fate. Again as I said, this is gradually changing. To give you a taste of the change, my Grandmother married at the age of 13, my mother at 19 and me?? Well, I am not gonna divulge the details, but I am way beyond this and still haven’t seem to have ‘settled’ as they may say.
This is when the parents take matters in their own hands and start to fiddle with our love lives. Of course this is all in good faith and for an improved future for their own children. Pictures, bank account details, careers and educational achievements are now discovered. They try to match the astrological scriptures a.k.a. ‘Kundali’, the orbits and the movement of their stars. And after a few things matching and the bride and groom admire the physical appearances, bada-bing, they are betrothed. But this actually gets me thinking…
Should you just give away all your expectations and aspirations and go to the person who looks better than the rest in the pictures that your parent showed to you, and is financially stable. He just likes you and you can stay with him because he is not bad. But you don’t feel the spark when you see him and you don’t hate him but you never felt the love rise within you when he held your hand. Neither did you feel like smoothing his tousled hair in the morning when he wakes up after spending the night next to you. Should you still try to concentrate your love energy towards him because you are scared of ending up alone and didn’t take the risk of waiting or weren’t allowed for ‘Mr. Right’ to come along..? Show the world what a perfect couple you are in spite of the fact that you know deep inside that you would never be able to attain that perfection because it is a compromise that you made… And is it fair on your part for him to never know that you committed your life not on basis of love but on basis of something you are unable to recognise yourself. Isn’t it selfish on our part to never let him know of it? And how correct is to blame him when he finds someone who does reciprocate to his needs?
Is an arranged marriage that bad? It couldn’t be, we have seen our grandparents and parents live through it happily. They learned and understood about their partners, and ended up falling in love with them. They may not have made historic stories but they were definitely happy in their journey called life. Heck, on second thoughts, the historic stories don’t seem like they had a happy ending… but these sure did see one.
I have an example which I think is the simplest way to understand relationships. It can be compared to 2 people going for shopping together and they decide what all they need and want to buy. They return with all the stuff in just one bag. Both of them carry it together on the journey. Each one holds one handle and walks on each side. You have to adjust to each other’s way of walking, speed, strides, etc. It is all about adjustment.
When you go to the same shop to buy but walk out with individual bags, you are in an open relationship, ‘cause you are carrying your own baggage, and own weight and travel at your own stride. When you move to exchanging or carrying each other’s baggage, you are moving one step further and closer to marriage. Well this indicator is not fool proof as you may end up having someone who just isn’t strong enough to carry all by him/herself and so you just help the other out of pity. When you decide to buy stuff for your significant other and mould your needs as per each other, well, honey, you are in love…!!