I have been studying on some facts about marriage to understand what really keeps two people together for decades. Yes! Marriage to me is such a mystery that I have to unravel before I make that big decision. While in my studies, I have gained tremendous knowledge, and today, allow me to pen down, just a few of the lessons learnt so far.
Marriage is a lifelong commitment and you cannot leave it to chance. Hence, choosing a life partner remains one important activity. The relationship between marriage and happiness seems to be a perpetual topic for people, especially for women. They cannot help but ask which process of partner selection will lead to happy lives. There are two main ways through which you can get a life partner; Love marriage and arranged marriage.
The processes of choosing a lifetime partner dramatically differ between Western and Eastern cultures. In Western cultures, mates select one another directly based on interpersonal attraction. Since marriage is not the primary task of starting a relationship, family members are not likely to get involved when a person is starting a relationship. In the Eastern cultures, however, marriage is regarded as the primary pre-requisite for a relationship and it is often arranged by family members. Interesting, right? Let us dig a little deeper on that.
ARRANGED MARRIAGE. Arranged marriage is a type of marital union where the bride and groom are primarily selected by individuals other than the couple themselves, particularly by family members such as the parents. In some cultures, a professional matchmaker may be used to find a spouse for a young person. Arranged marriages have historically been prominent in many cultures. The practice remains common in many regions, notably South Asia, though in many other parts of the world, the practice has declined substantially during the 19th and 20th centuries. Although arranged marriages may seem like a relic of a bygone age, they are still surprisingly popular around the world.
It’s estimated over half of the marriages worldwide are arranged and that over 20 million of those unions exist in the world today, a surprising fact given that we almost never hear about arranged marriages unless we’re discussing their famously low divorce rates. In the U.S., while the divorce rate hovers around 40 or 50 percent, the divorce rate for arranged marriages is 4 percent. In India, where some estimate that 90 percent of marriages are arranged, the divorce rate is only 1 percent.
Advantages of Arranged marriages.
Higher level of experience of parents: Since parents have much more life experience than their kids, they might also be better able to decide which partner might fit for their girl or their boy and which would not. Hence, it could make sense that parents get involved in the decision process regarding potential life partners since they often know their children quite well and often know what’s good for them (or at least they think they do).
Assurance of social status: Arranged marriages often also have the advantage that they can assure a high social status. For instance, in many countries, parents try to find a partner for their son or their daughter which has a high social status so that their children can marry up and have a higher social status themselves, which often also translates into a higher overall quality of life.
Cultural similarities of partners: Another benefit of arranged marriages is that partners often have quite similar backgrounds and cultural values. Most often, parents choose partners for their kids that have similar cultural values so that they will also fit well into the family. Similar values also make it more likely that the marriage works out since there might be fewer conflicts between the partners in the long run.
Avoidance of lovesickness: Another advantage of arranged marriages is that people can also avoid feeling lovesickness. Many people around the world may get quite broken due to a breakup with a partner and may suffer from serious emotional pain. Yet, through arranged marriages, this problem will be gone since there will not be the opportunity to search for a partner and therefore, the possibility for lovesickness is also eliminated.
No stress to find a partner: Finding a suitable partner might also be quite a challenge for many people all over the world. Our expectations are often quite high and we will therefore often experience disappointments during the dating process. In contrast, with an arranged marriage, there is no stress to find and to vet a partner since your parents or other matchmakers will do the job for you.
Disadvantages of arranged marriages.
Love is often not a factor: One downside of arranged marriages is that love will most often be not a factor at all. Maybe partners may get along with each other, however, they will likely never have any kind of feeling for each other. This can be considered as quite sad since many people marry since they have strong feelings for each other and really enjoy their time together and arranged marriages will not account for this important factor at all.
People may be quite unhappy: In general, people who are forced into arranged marriages may be much unhappier compared to people who were able to choose their partner by themselves since they might feel like all the freedom of choice had been taken away from them and they never had any influence on this important life decision.
May promote gender inequality: Women often have much fewer rights compared to men in those arranged marriages and therefore, they might literally get trapped in those arranged pair-bonding situations. This may also lead to a state where women will not be allowed to get any sort of education and their lives may turn out into a mess due to that since they will always be dependent on their husbands, which is never a good idea since it leads to an imbalance of power in a relationship.
Dating period may be missing in a couple’s life: Many of us also really enjoy dating many different people until we find the partner that best fits our preferences. However, it is only possible to decide who fits for us if we get experienced in dating. Hence, if this experience is missing, plenty of fun is taken out of all of it and also, the chances for a misfit will become much higher.
Mental issues: There will also be plenty of mental issues related to arranged marriages. Even though it cannot be measured by studies since many people in forced marriages are simply too afraid to report their mental conditions and their misery to the outside world, it is estimated a high fraction of people in arranged marriages suffer from significant depression and other mental problems since they are often simply not able to deal with the fact that they basically have to waste their life solely to comply with the wishes of their families.
LOVE MARRIAGE: A love marriage is one which is driven solely by the couple, with or without consent of their parents, as opposed to arranged marriage. The importance of love in marriage is nearly endless. After all, marriage is not always an easy arrangement and without love, you would never be able to have the drive, attention, selflessness, and patience it takes to make your relationship a lasting success. Here are some of the advantages and disadvantages of love marriages.
1. Choice to choose
Advantage – Love marriage is not forced upon two individuals. It is their own choice and wish to get married to the specific person. You get the freedom to choose your life partner and you get more independence in this and freedom to live as per your wish.
Disadvantage– There’s a lot of anxiety and stress that people go through when they choose to spend their life with someone of their choice. At times, it takes lot of time to find “The One” compatible to you.
Advantage – Selecting the spouse is taken as a sign of maturity. The ownership of love marriage lies totally with the partners. Since parents are not involved, they prefer not to take the ownership of the success of the marriage.
Disadvantage – Whether this union between partners become successful or not, its ownership lies totally with them. They can’t blame their parents if anything goes wrong. In fact, even if the parents accept this alliance, they still do not get involved in the matters of the couple.
3. Risk factor
Advantage – You have a partner with whom you can do things which interest you both. You can travel, eat out, watch sports together, and explore new places together. They find these things more interesting when they have their love by their side. Even though the chances of break ups and separation are there, the young couple still hope for lifelong togetherness.
Disadvantage – There is a lot of risk of separation in love marriage because usually these marriages are done impulsively and without any deliberation. Over a period of time they realize that there is a huge difference in their goals of life and conflicts start happening. The feeling of love disappears and couples get tired of each other. Eventually resulting in separation.
4. Purpose of marriage
Advantage – For some people, the purpose of establishing a marital relationship with their loved one is hope for forever and ever kind of togetherness. They mutually tie the knot and remain pledged to each other in sickness and health. It takes commitment and devotion to form an everlasting kind of relationship.
Disadvantage – On the other hand, some people take marriage as an opportunity to grow themselves. We have seen many rich girls getting married to poor boys and vice versa. Sometimes, it turns out to be a relationship made out of merely convenience. The Happily-ever-after kind of thinking then becomes a reality check.
I hope this blog has enlightened you to make a more calculated decision on marriage. Do you feel I have left out on some points? Let me know in the comment section. For more inquiries reach me through email@example.com. Follow me on social media here. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube