So, you had an arranged marriage???


There is always a bewildered silence when I tell people about how long I knew my husband before I married him.

“21 days???” they squeak, not quite believing their ears.

Of course I could easily say ‘three weeks’ instead. It’s just that ’21 days’ has such a deliciously shocking ring to it 🙂

‘Umm….err…so was it an arranged marriage?’ is almost always the next question I’m asked, in hushed tones, a sense of quiet disbelief still lingering in the air.

‘Yes’ I smile back.

‘Wow!’…The listener leans back and digests this piece of information, not quite sure how to proceed. I sip my coffee/white wine/mocktail (depending on the situation) and wait.

‘So, you did have a choice?’ this is said in a slightly worried, at the same time hopeful voice. ‘I mean, could you have said ‘no’ if you didn’t agree’

I lean forward and decide to let my audience out of its misery. ‘Yes’ I smile. ‘Arranged marriages are an old tradition in India.’

Without fail, what follows is an interesting, thought-provoking, animated conversation about the enigma called arranged marriage. For it is a mystery in the true sense of the word. What makes arranged marriages tick? Do they have a higher chance of survival compared to love-marriages? How does it feel to marry someone who is little more than a stranger? How does love grow? Can you LEARN to love someone?

I have explored all this in my debut novel: ‘Unravelling Anjali: Diary of an Immigrant Bride’ (a fictional account of a young Indian girl who migrates to a foreign country following a traditional arranged marriage). And no! it’s NOT autobiographical. But I’m hoping the story resonates with every girl who has moved to a foreign land following marriage and faced the challenges of settling into a new culture.

If you’ve read the book, I’d love to hear from you about your thoughts on it 🙂

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Nim's Niche
    Apr 13, 2015 @ 19:10:37

    Yes 🙂 Any marriage, arranged or love, needs nurturing and hard work.

    Reply

  2. Komal
    Apr 12, 2015 @ 01:27:28

    Most of my aunt and uncles (and my parents) were arranged. I guess it depends on how you handle the situation. If you have grown up to know that that will be your fate, you chose to accept it and make the most of it.

    I’ve seen both good and bad arranged marriages and can’t say one is better than the other!

    Reply

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