Category Archives: Marriage

Before Marriage Till Marriage!

indian marriage

By Malathy Madathilezham

Man is a social being. This is something, which we have all studied at some point of time. Thus one of the most cruel and effective forms of punishment/ torture meted out to criminals, terrorists, etc. is solitary confinement. The need to communicate and interact is something of the utmost importance to human beings in order to retain their human nature. Self-expression, exchange of ideas and organization are something’s, which we are experts at utilizing for our benefits. Thus we have groups beginning from the family to nations. We have created complex social structures, which compete and cooperate with each other. On the basis of social interactions among human beings spread over time and continents, we have established a wide variety values, norms and rituals that are the foundations of the human society.

The society keeps changing, earlier this change was at a much slower pace. Something’s, which were unacceptable, unpardonable and frowned upon, are now part and parcel of our society and nobody gives a second thought to him or her. Similarly, some accepted aspects of society are now considered a blight on society. Thus change is also an important aspect of human civilization.

This change has also affected the dynamics of men and women. May be some people have enjoyed or suffered these changes more than the other! There are of course extreme situations of women still living in the same age old conditions and bound in tradition or poverty, but in this particular discussion I would not elaborate on that. Feminism, Liberalism, Capitalism and many other ‘isms’ have contributed in parts to this change. So a woman doesn’t look at a good marriage/alliance or domestic life as the only criterion, which makes her life a success. It is definitely still one of the most important things to majority of women but education, career, self dependence, financial independence, an interesting social life are also being counted somewhere on the list.

A fairly well educated woman in her twenties wants almost everything from a good job, a handsome and loving husband, friends, a fun social life, decent salary etc. etc. She doesn’t want to have the life of her mother; she wants it to be better and bigger! Any mention that her gender makes her vulnerable is almost blasphemous. Her semi-liberalism and semi-feminism along with her ego would be a force to reckon with. She is assertive, confident and has her own opinion on everything ranging from fashion to politics. At work she may be ruthless. Efficient, competitive and aggressive she want that corner office to be hers. She looks for true love and romance but at the same time is practical when it comes to decision making…She is becoming more and more demanding it seems… ah and confused too. What is the most important? What is the priority?

Until few years ago, the man was the sole breadwinner of the family. He took on the burden of providing a good life and a better future for his children, at least in financial aspect. A well settled (government) job, a ‘good’ wife along with a sizable dowry would probably make him seem more successful back then. Now look at a twenty or thirty something man, he is equally confused. The father was feared and revered. His appreciation and love, one could only see the glimpses of. He sees his mother, always loving, most probably a housewife. She was the stable rock of his family when his father was busy working or on tours. She is the quintessence of womanhood and selflessness for him. The women his age confuse him. They are his classmates, friends, and colleagues/superiors. Equally aggressive and competitive as men, and given undue advantage at times due to they’re gender. And yet they crib about inequality! Life is becoming tough for him. A simple joke and they get offended!

He is in a reasonably good job and enjoys the weekend parties and stuff. Parents want him to marry, but is he ready for marriage? And demands from the parents of the prospective brides are also high. In addition, the question of whether or not to accept dowry. His ex gf thought he was an MCP with double standards. Yes, it is imperative for him to earn more than his wife, what will his friends and family say otherwise! He wants a workingwoman, but not a career woman. He wants to definitely have a better life than his father, who he thinks had it all easy. The option of changing jobs is open, but with the recession and all, the growth in salary is not worth it. At the same time staying in a company for more than three years may mean stagnation. May be he should go for further studies? Or is it better to get married and ‘settled’ now?

And it is in between all this confusion that suddenly a their families find a good match in each other’s families, backgrounds, etc. Its in a daze that meet each other, ask each other some questions, forgetting the important ones, which  they always wanted to.

‘Do you like her/him?’

‘Yeah she/he is okay. I would like to spend more time though.’

‘Oh sure! You will have all the time after the engagement. We need to fix a date for that though.’

After that its’ a whirlwind… Time passes so quickly .. then engagement, the thousands of calls and SMS’s, each of them trying to impress the other, share as much as possible about themselves, the apprehensions and doubts,etc etc. Then the wedding shopping, planning…

And Voila! The D-day is here. The usual confusion and mayhem prevails during the wedding also… and soon its all over or should I say its all beginning of everything!

Let me not say more now… Just

Wishing them a happy and blissful married life!

🙂

The Great Indian (Before) Marriage Tamasha – Part 4

By  Shwetha Kalyanasundaram

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The last blog post (in this series) ended with the following question “So what happens if the horoscope matches?!?” Read on…

If the horoscopes match at both ends, one moves onto a phase where you try to get to know each other!! This is done to see if they are compatible with each other. Well, in most cases, the two people involved are always going to be at their best behaviour, giving stereotypical answers, in an attempt to impress the other person.

Questions are asked on a variety of topics and hypothetical situations are drawn and one is gauged on the answers given and the level of compatibility is measured based on these answers!! Practically speaking, people tend to behave in a completely different manner, when faced with the actual situation. And one’s thought process is going to change as you mature and one is going to act according to the situation at that point of time. Given this, how will you know you are choosing the right person as your life partner?!?

Pondering over this question, I finally drew my own conclusion and here it is: (mind you, the next few portions can be serious!)

There’s always the pending fear and anxiety of things going wrong. The person you are trying to match needn’t necessarily portray their true nature. The whole act might be pre-mediated in an effort to create impression. Even assuming that the true nature is always portrayed, human character is still amenable to change with growing years.
It’s hard to judge a person based on a finite set of questions however hypothetical it may be.

I would like to draw a similarity with that of a job interview. If 3 people were being interviewed for one position and all of them seemed technically strong with good credentials, then it’s a tough call right? In that situation I would go for the one with that extra zeal, motivation and rapport. (Psst…Behavioural reasoning would help me weed through this.)

You make a choice based on your essential needs and requirements which absolutely cannot be compromised – your core values. How do you gauge that this person isn’t pretending to possess those? You observe how they behave in their surroundings and with their surroundings. You follow their journey to the current destination which should usually serve as a predictor to where things will proceed. But remember that there will always be forces beyond your control that can cause disruptions and distress.

That would explain why horoscopes are so heavily relied on. By placing your faith and fate on an astrologer you are essentially alleviating the anxiety levels and creating self-assurance on a secure future. Hell, I have seen things go wrong even with horoscope match.  Remember, humans are innately good. It’s how each person reacts to different circumstances that define their character.

Hence proof that I m a thorough Human Resources professional! *chuckle*

After years of the groom hunt, I finally found my man. And yes, I did have my share of “flashing bulbs” and “ringing bells” moments that I believe are supposed to happen when you come across your soul mate. And a definite proof that it takes just over two and half minutes to decide your soul mate!! (A recent research quotes this!)

I now truly believe in destiny!

And as every fairy tale ends, we live happily ever after!!!

The Great Indian (Before) Marriage Tamasha – Part 3

By Shwetha Kalyanasundaram

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Not to forget that this blog is attributed to the tamashaa that ensues in every house (almost every house), there are quite a few funny snippets that must be highlighted in the process.

In a lot of profiles that I have scanned, in the “about me” section, there would be details of the parents, brothers, sisters and the whole gamut of people in the family; but no information about the guy whatsoever. Poor guys! In some profiles, even their pet makes their presence felt but not the guy in question!! Heck, why is there a separate space for family details then?!?

Nearly 40% of the profiles that are available on these matrimonial sites have very funny descriptions – descriptions that use only adjectives (and I mean only adjectives) to describe how “good” the guy is. The most common adjectives that one would find are “nice, loving, caring, jovial…” and the likes. I thought all of us fit into those adjectives!! It’s so obvious that I don’t understand the reason why it is being stated! Ooh, the best part is their expectation for a “homely” girl. Here’s the dictionary meaning of the highlighted word:

HOME.LY / ˈhōmlē/

Adjective

(of a person) Unattractive in appearance

Synonyms – plain/simple/unsightly

Now we know what every guy wants!!! Bu ha ha ha *evil*

Most of the guys, on their profiles state that they don’t smoke or drink. But when you do start talking to them, they accept that they are social drinkers/smokers. Why hide it?!? Accept the facts as they are – it’s after all one’s personal choice and in today’s world, its acceptable and most of the girls don’t mind it at all. As the Tamil proverb goes “aayiram poi solli oru kalyaanam pannalaam” (read: One can say a 1000 lies to get married), I guess this just adds onto their bag of lies!! I appreciate guys who are really honest when it comes to this.

Can you believe it if I say that being the only child to my parents had become a disadvantage for me in the marriage market??!! We have received calls from parents who didn’t want to go ahead with the proposal just because I’m the only child.

And one parent even had the audacity to ask my mother if anything could be done…what does she expect?!? Does she expect my parents to adopt one or go through the entire process of delivering a child again?!? Oh boy, didn’t I enjoy the dressing down that the lady got from my mom for being so downright stupid!!

So what happens if the horoscope matches?!? Watch this space for more!

The Great Indian (Before) Marriage Tamasha – Part 1

By Shwetha Kalyanasundaram

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As customary it is in India, for girls to get married as soon as you enter the 20’s, I was no exception. A few days after I turned 21, my parents sat me down for an “adult ” talk. (The last time that happened was before I entered my engineering college where I got a discourse on the do’s and don’ts at college). My parents bogged me down with questions pertaining to my social life, more directed towards my “preferences” to the opposite sex. When my parents were convinced that I wasn’t seeing anybody, out popped their question – “Are you ready to get married?”

Boy that did set me to think. I set my grey cells in action and tried to introspect if I indeed was ready for marriage. After days of pondering, I decided that the answer was a “yes”!! When I told my pals’ bout my decision, I received a variety of emotions – some rolled their eyes, some laughed it off, some cried (honestly!!) but most of them were shocked. My girl pals bombarded me with a lot of (silly) questions like:

What happens to your career?

Why do you want to settle down so early on in your life?

What happens to your identity?

and many more!! Does this drive me to another state of confusion?!? No!! I was sure that my decision was spot on. Here’s why.

I’m blessed to have wonderful parents, who belong to a small group of people who have evolved with the times and they have always been very liberal with me. They have been very supportive in whatever I have done till date and have always ensured that I carve a niche for myself in whatever I do. Till date, I have been able to do just that and I know for a fact that people recognise me for who I am and what I stand for. They have made sure that my head is held high all the time and that has indeed made me a better person. And I am sure that my partner would respect my ideals and give me the same encouragement that my parents have showered and I am absolutely sure that he would support me in my every step towards success. So, getting married is definitely not going to stop me from achieving my goals.

The entire concept of an arranged marriage, these days can be compared to an online dating process with parental control! My parents, who are very liberal, did give me an option of finding my partner while I pursued my masters, within their reasonable expectations and by far, the only expectation they set forth was that the guy had to be a Tam – Brahm!! But with my studies occupying most of the time, I just found it to be a humungous task and removed it off my list of things – to – do.

I find the whole concept of arranged marriage very appealing. I like the fact that there is commitment before there is love – there is a strange allure to that. In arranged marriages, two people make a commitment to each other and then embark upon the voyage of really getting to know each other – trust before anything else. This is what drove me to ask my parents to hunt down a groom for me.

That’s when the whole fun started! Stay tuned for the fun ride J

Marriage Bond

By Monika Sharma

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With lots of dreams and hopes in my mind,

This bond of marriage I decided to sign.

A commitment for my entire life,

To be proud to be called as your wife.

A bond of love, trust and gratitude,

We will continue crossing all the latitudes.

two_wedding_ringsWith life’s experience and ups and downs,

This bond of marriage makes us strong.

An intact connection of a friend and a mate,

This package of all relationships is great.

A few adjustments and a heart of love,

Can also forbid a number of brawls.

A bond so pure and intimate,

Marriage is where two souls meet.

Chronicles Of A Mom – To – Be!! Woo Ho!! Part – 2

pregnancy

OF SICKNESS AND FIRST LOVE

By Shwetha Kalyanasundaram

April 2nd 2013 will be the day my husband and I will never forget, the day the big P-moment was announced to us! First a sense of incredulity followed by a wave of joy and now an imminent feeling of fright and anxiety.

First thought after all the celebrations – to add this moment as a life event on Facebook (We love updating our timelines!). But we chose to keep mum for a while, at least till the end of the first trimester (We didn’t want to jinx the whole baby thing; rather the elders in our families didn’t want us to!).

Well, pregnancy does have its share of wonderful moments that are precious but there is also a cartload of less than fabulous symptoms!

The first and foremost is the “morning sickness”, which certainly doesn’t live up to its name! I definitely spent most of my mornings (afternoons and nights included) hugging the toilet!

Secondly, the “heightened power of smell”! Do I blame the hormones that magnify every smell that comes my way for this??? The foods that I used to go gaga have me gagging at the very sight of them now.

Phew, “exhaustion” features onto the list as well. Guess building a baby inside you is a far more tiring than working out in the gym (lol! Bet my husband’s reading this…my only chance to brag; ha ha ha!).

And not to forget “lost sleep”! Insomnia has struck me while my husband snores away to glory (Duh)!

And last but not the least, “mood swings”! As much as my body is working hard to nurture the tiny bundle of joy inside, the pregnancy hormones are definitely working overtime to take control of my body? No rather control of my mind! One minute I’m happy, the next minute, weepy; one moment deliriously happy, the next moment disproportionately pissed! I’m definitely riding an emotional roller coaster!

All the grumbles roll away the moment you see the tiny peanut growing inside you for the first time in your ultrasound!

I fell head over heels in love with the baby nut! The most intimate moment and the first of many! The first picture of our baby will definitely occupy the center space in our baby book!

So what happens next? My second ultrasound called the Nuchal Translucency (NT) scans. I can’t tell you how excited we are to see how our little peanut has grown and transformed.  And as I enter the second trimester which seems like the next big milestone, the worry that everything is good – seeing that our baby is doing alright as I enter the next phase of pregnancy has definitely set in! Nevertheless, am looking forward to all that comes with it.

 Will keep you all posted! Adios till then!

For the first part look here

He Got The Girl And I Ended With Monetary Wounds

baraat

By Anshuman Sharvesh

Occasion, lavishness and orchestra were all there. Gorgeous ladies and some well-groomed men were also in attendance. Mouth-watering food accompanied profligate beverages. In such a moment, If someone seizes your attention with his uninteresting face, you can guess he must have paid the bill and has to be the bride’s father.

This fairy-tale is of my best friend’s wedding and the only two people who were feeling miserable there were I and my friend’s father-in-law. It’s no rocket science to figure out the reason for his feelings. I would have felt the same had I needed to put so much money on a marriage. The heart would sink seeing so much money melt away. There was another minor reason, my friend taking away his daughter. You though must be wondering why was I feeling miserable but believe me, I, had every reason to be.

Everything started with a phone call,”#*^beep beep, it’s my marriage on 20th and you need to be there”. I said yes with all energy, which fizzled the moment I kept the phone down. The date of the marriage was just 15-days away. I checked IRCTC but it disappointed me again for the billionth time. I first cursed the population and then called a broker who I knew would suck up my savings but get me a ticket using all corrupt methods he could. The monies he asked were enough to depress but I realized that would not help, as I had to shop for a marriage. Let me tell you the fact that I hate savings as well for the simple reason that it makes me feel how well I could have utilized the same money I would pump into buying some new clothes. I still managed to buy something that made me look better than how I actually felt inside.

The day arrived and I was all decked up having painted the fairness creams they boast of making you fair in minutes. As customary nowadays, people called me for dance. I realized how no one actually cared of what I was wearing making me feel ashamed of so much money spent to no avail. The result of all that dance was that I arrived at the marriage hall sweating, hair haywire, wet shirt and the groom who had spent all this time in the air conditioned car was like he has just landed from the salon. Not a single girl looked at me and I was actually seeing the money burning in front of my eyes. I sat around the corner and watched the entire ceremony without a single nap. I saw my friend getting garlanded by all jewels especially the two expensive rings, one watch and one gold chain.

In the morning we left with the bride, everyone was tired and exhausted excluding the one with the beautiful bride and expensive gifts. All exhausted I too left for my home and slept till evening as I had a train to catch at night. Leaving home is always a problem but after bidding goodbye as I was leaving for the station the only wish up my sleeve was to see my name in the confirmed list of passengers. It was WL 2 when I had booked it and unless someone is terribly unlucky this converts.

I though was having a pissful time and the final status turned out to be WL 1. In dire straights I booked a flight to return as the deadlines in office had to be met. As I landed in Delhi, these were the exact lines that I spoke “He got the girl, the watches and expensive rings and I lost my money…#beep not even a single person praised my suit…#beep not a single girl looked at me and here I am at IGI airport again bargaining with the autowala”, but between all this someone inside said and I quote again “DUDE AT LEAST YOU R STILL SINGLE…ENJOY BEING ALIVE”.