Tuesday, November 8, 2011

What makes a marriage work??

Loads of my older cousins got married in the last five odd years, and every time a wedding would happen for all the obvious reasons, the topic would turn to the ones who are next in line. 
Of course I was teased, and there was leg pulling all the time, but every one knew that I still have time, considering the fact that I was still in college.
Now, amongst all the cousins, there are a set of cousins who we meet ONLY at weddings. And that is one reason why we are not close to them. Be assured, though we have heard enough stories about them. Because these two distant cousin sisters are very bright and intelligent young ladies.. you know the always on the the top sorts!
The older of these two is getting married too, next year. *I hope that it does not clash with the n number of other weddings that we have!!* And, her parents had been looking for a match for her for almost 3 years now!! And I remember when her parents started looking out for a match for her, a shout out was given to all the relatives including us, lest we have some one in mind for their highly qualified daughter.
And one of the first questions that my mum asked at that time was 'What is the kind of family that they are looking for??'
And that became a debate, because my cousin bua who had touched the topic here, told my mom that they are looking for a family of their own status.. and my mother retorted mind you stating that they should get her married off in a family richer than what her parents are... 

Now, I know that love does not feed hungry mouths, but, what exactly is the definition of financial security that the parents of a girl expect?? If the boy has a job and gets home a salary at the end of each month.. then isn't that enough?
Again, enough has loads of definitions.
I also understand that the parents want only the best for their children.. but the parents in case of the arranged marriage trust their choice and in case of a love marriage trust the choice of their children. The world has changed, and so have the needs. We do not live in times where lives were simpler.. as a matter of fact, we are living in a time, where petrol is costlier than beer, and inflation is at all time high.. but can having all the money in the world fill the void of being lonely.. or will a marriage work solely because there is financial security??

Tell me, my lovely readers.. if you were to marry your daughter.. what is it that you will look for in the groom that you would choose for her.. and in case the groom is of her own choice.. what are tick offs?? 

My grand father had devised an A to F formula.. which is one way of looking at things...it goes something like this.. *Modifying it a little bit, coz his original was only for the selection of a girl.. I am gonna try and fit both the genders!!*

A- Age
B- Beauty/ Brains
C- Character
D- Dowry 
E- Education
F- Family

PS: The next installment of the Goa Post is coming soon :) 



Suruchi said...

the elders would be elders-there's a reason why the generation gap theory makes sense-they always think they are right we always want to prove they are not!

money is not all that important where love of a lifetime is concerned but then it is also not a secondary issue-you need to weigh out all of it!

but at the end of the day-love conquers all:-)

Jack said...


Very thought provoking post. When our daughter was to be married, I was looking for compatibility factor in every respect between the two. That includes everything from age, physical appearance, education, vocation, status and nature. We let them meet without being looked over the shoulder to take their decision.

Take care

Wicked Witch of the West said...

Now that I am a parent, and also divorce, I think that arranged marriages are an awesome idea. For my girls I would look for:
- similar educational and economic background of family (some people claim this is snobbish but it really does make a difference in speech, habits etc)
- intelligent
- career (high earning not being important, this is more to do with showing responsibility)
- good breeding material (I want cute grandchildren)
- similar values in matters such as how to spend time, money etc
- kind nature, similar interests, not controlling, conversational spark etc

Having a lot of money is not important. Someone can have a lot but spend it on drugs, clothes, new cars every year and so still provide an unstable stressful lifestyle. And with the right company, a bigger house etc is not so important.

Practicalities defintely do count, unfortunately love doesn't conquer all, and practicalities can defeat over time.

Bikram said...

oh yes .. dont remind me of that Each time i ring home and talk to parents or grand parents I got to listen to the same things each time :)

no matter what anyone says , money is veyr important YES i beleive in that because I have seen all this love - care and looking out for each other , the promises made to each other Go out of the window when a couple have to struggle and make ends meet ...

So money is important and I do feel that both working is a good idea , it gives both some independance to do something they want to ..

Rest i think comes with time, when two meet newly you have to learn a lot about each other and its not the same what was before marriage ...

so treating each other with respect and as we would ourself like ot be treated is also a key ..


Rohit Dassani said...

Ofcourse financial security is a major issue in Indian wedding... but its not even close to Love! Its hard to make people understand.... so its always a good idea to just listen to them!! :)

RiĆ  said...

I think parents are justified mostly...coz they think of the practical aspects that make a marriage work apart from love and understanding which we may deem as more important.

Rachit said...

can relate to every bit of it... marriages are the best place to get others in line married... and sadly its not the love that counts...

sulagna said...

heyii sakshi coming over from surichi's blog and loved the writing..simple and thought provoking..i am into an arranged marriage myself and by gods grace its been magical..i guess all my parenst looked into was the boys education,his job, his family and of course character.

baaki sab toh line mein aa hi jaeyga :)

Sakshi said...


I agree with you, that money should not be the primary consideration. But somehow, that becomes the primary consideration.
It is weird how the world revolves not around the people but around their money.

Sakshi said...

@Uncle J
My further question to you is, how does a third person (even if they are the parents.. pl don't take any offence) define the compatibility between the two people who shall be involved in a relationship of a life time.
Was the compatibility as per your requirements or as per your daughters??

Chandni (Chanz) said...

Well if I were on the lookout for a guy for myself, I would rate "confidence" as the most important factor. In the recent past, I have met a few guys who are well educated, have sharp brains, look good and have a lot of money to spare, but they lack the confidence. Really, I have been quite surprised when I came across such guys and realised that I totally totally despise them.. I think, the guy (or anybody else, for that matter) must have some level of confidence in themselves. If they do not trust themselves and their ways then I am sorry to say that they may not be the happy ones.

Please don't mistake this confidence factor with extrovert nature - the two are totally different. Confidence is something that an individual "must" have.

Probably this is the first thing that I would look for in a guy.

And if I were to rate your list, then it would probably look something like this:

Character - I wouldnt want a guy who has a bad reputation
Brains + Education - should be smart, confident and knowledgable
Age (there should be a difference of more than 4 years)

And like Cathy said, "good breeeding material". Obviously I do not want my kids to be ugly..

Sakshi said...

Well, atleast this post got you to comment something!! :P
Here is what I have to say to your bullet points.. in bullets only!! :P

- Similar Education background.. meaning being as highly educated as your daughter or the same profession?? I feel that if the partner is also educated then the decision making as a family becomes easier. Now, economic background.. well if a person is educated and well educated but his parents are not economically that well off, for whatever reason.. will you not consider that person for your daughter at all??
-Intelligent and sensible- Agreed!
- Agreed
- Ahem.. looks, well, beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder..
-Kind nature, good humoured.. sensitive.. all of em are factors which are must, but how much..well, I again ask you.. shall be defined by your standards or your daughters standards!!??

Practicalities are the major factor that define what we dream and what really happens in our lives..it is important to be practical.. but then love is love!! Right?

Sakshi said...

Well, now that you are of the right age, they will trouble you!!

Yes, I know and I agree that love doesn't feed hungry mouths. But we are not talking about being filthy rich here. We are talking about a normal middle class family and people.
How much money is enough- is the key question I guess.

Sakshi said...

And not pay a heed to them.. great idea :)

Sakshi said...

Parents are always justified. But my question is the parameters that they consider are compared against what- the societal norms or what the children want??

Sakshi said...

Hi there :) Welcome to the Blog and congrats on your lil S.
I know a lot of people who are really happy with what their parents choose for them.. and I also know of so many who end up being in failed marriages because of the choices that they make.
In the end it is about how you make it work with your partner.

And again I iterate that, how do the parents define the parameters and how and against what do they measure the same against??

Wicked Witch of the West said...

Lol yes I am a rare, rare commenter now. For some reason while I used to keep a blog, now I feel paranoid even to comment.

The background would not be an absolute factor, as there are some who are totally different to parents - but, I have found that with those of different backgrounds (say, where no one else has even finished high school) there are a lot of differences that are grating in manner of speech and living. Oddly enough, I find a much smaller cultural divide with an Indian of similar educational/economic background to an Australian from a different background.

The subjective factors of kindness etc are unfortunately often not something younger women look for, at least here. Most want a 'bad boy'. The best judge would of course be you, since you have shown such impeccable judgement yourself in choosing Shayon :)

Yes, love is love (and of course I am not one to be dissuaded by practicalities...)- the practical factors do have a huge impact on happiness, but of course once there is love the pain of separation from the other is more than practical benefits can make up.

Seeee, two comments now :D I am sooo proud :D

Jack said...


It is for the two to find compatibility. In our case we gave general guidelines like age gap should not be too wide, education or status or income or job be comparable but it was upto her to take decision. As far as behaviour is concerned she had to judge for herself.

Take care

Sakshi said...

loL, thanks for the two comments, though they still don't make up for the lack of your participation on my blog!! :P

Sakshi said...

@Uncle J
Thanks :)