"Is it"

“Donot talk to strangers, our parents always taught us. And one day they want us to spend our life with a stranger. What irony”

So you’re son is an IAS, you should easily get 5 crores as dowry. So your daughter has completed her graduation, I think it’s high time you start looking for a groom ; What’s your budget like how much money are you going to spend. Just about 1 crore or so, it would take away all my savings until now. Then you could get an engineer or a doctor or even a CA but depends if the guys like your girl.

That’s Arranged marriages in North India for you (maybe the rest of India too) and it’s the most important discussion that goes around when elderly people sit together. It’s as if they are discussing selling and buying the property or shares of a company. A guy is measured merely on the scale of qualification and his parents status quotient and then his selling price is decided by the so-called-society. On the other hand, a girl is merely a toy whose qualifications are generally kept aside or is a basic requirement and she can buy a groom on the basis of the amount of money her parents agree to spend. Like a bookie puts price bets , like a company announces share prices and like they make business deals. Some weddings are fixed for a bigger business. Some for a powerful son-in-law. And some just because the family has to wad off their girl. Sad but true.

It’s just the society that matters, it’s just the people that matter, it’s just the show-off that matters for MOST of the people. Since the guy and the girl won’t get to meet much, before the marriage is fixed, it’s generally the external appearance, family, the status quotient and the money that matters. If a girl loves travelling and the guy is completely opposite, it dosen’t matter. If there is nothing common between both of them, it still dosen’t matter. What matters is the girl’s family is gifting their to-be son-in-law a Mercedes S Class. What matters is that they would be gifting designer wear to the whole family, our status quotient amongst our family would rise further. That’s how shallow the minds of Indian parents have become. And I am not saying this for everyone, but still a majority of them think so. If not on this shallow, at least a part of it does prevail.

How parents/other people justify is that they just want happiness of their kids. But how can they know the compatibility between the girl and the guy in a couple of meetings. How can they just send off their girl to a stranger’s house. Some people also justify that they have time between the engagement and the final wedding to know each other. How many of the parents would call off the wedding if their girl tells them she dosen’t like the guy since he is not someone she would be happy with. The sole reason for disapproval would be what will the damn society say. And this damned society would simply pinpoint at a girl having supreme attitude because why should a girl decide what kind of guy would suit her. Let the money and family decide that.

I know we can’t hold anyone responsible for anything, it’s just the society and it’s norms that have made everyone such. Where no matter how much they say guys and girls are equal, the reality is still harsh for a girl. They still have no say or very little say in deciding things, they still have to be at their best always just because her parents think what will the society say. I won’t say all families think just about money, a lot of them just want a beautiful partner for their kid. Though even with it, money will still be involved; if not directly, somewhat indirectly. More problems are always faced by a girl’s family, they have to put in their blood and soul into the wedding so that their girl is not abused in her new family. Why can’t the society treat them as equals, Why does it always have to be a girl? I guess it’ll take another 20 years for us to get an answer.

Honestly, there is no end to this discussion and no affirmative result. Like they say, it all depends on destiny. Sometimes a couple after an arranged marriage is also the happiest and the most compatible one. At other times, even a couple after Love marriage gets divorced. I can just hope for a time when getting the HIV test done or taking a compatibility test at the marriage councellor’s office would have a bigger say in marriages rather than “just” the money.

Would love to read all your thoughts on this topic especially the married people. Thanks for reading.