Monday, January 28, 2008

My cents about marriage

I am lucky enough to be born to parents who have groomed me to be self-sufficient by providing me good education. However, there are times when I do feel that being a girl is a burden because of some situations I put them through.


Being single has its repercussions. I have nosy ‘well-wishers’ who wonder aloud as to why I am not yet married. Considering that I am still quite some years away from the dead-end figure of thirty, I wonder why this has become a hotly-discussed topic. To make matters worse, there have been allusions about the existence of (one or more) boyfriend(s) as well! Geez…..! The depth to which nosy-parkers can sink to!


I happened to be at home when my Mom was in the process of calling up a prospective groom. The call was received by the guy’s Mother. After dispensing with the required preliminaries, my Mom was at the receiving end of a barrage of questions which included the likes of “Is your daughter fair?” to which my Mom (smartly) replied that every child looks the best to its parents. This was followed by an enquiry if I had a H1 visa. I was wondering what does H1 visa have to do with marriage when she answered that her son apparently prefers a girl who is eligible to work ‘as soon as possible’ abroad! Hah ! It is not just ladies who are choosy these days!


I am at a juncture of life where I am quite sure about my priorities and my aspirations. I may not be drop-dead beautiful. Or even remotely cute (a key aspect of finding a good husband even if you do not have brains :)...) ! But hey, I am smart, frank and quite likable (a revelation to me indeed :-)......). I am bereft of pretence. I am a voracious reader. I maintain a blog. I have a yen for photography, music and colours. I have good dressing sense. I do not have to apologize for knowing better English than your average Joe. Or for being interested in photography. Or for being able to handle a DSLR better than most ladies. Or, in short, for knowing my mind. And this , I gather, is enough to set the warning bells (of insecurity) clanging among the males? Baah !


I still remember that one of the most back-handed comments I had received regarding my photos was that since it has been captured using an expensive camera it is bound to come out good! How chauvinistic! Is that supposed to put me ‘in place’? For crying aloud, that 'expensive' camera cost me nearly five months' salary, something which I scrimped, scrounged and saved to buy!


I have taken all the major decisions in my life so far. And I have learnt to be responsible for them. There have been some which I have not taken because it is not dependent on me alone. There have been times I do feel the lack of a guide….. or a father-figure. There have been indeterminate delays in taking major decisions because I would have needed time for a research. But hey, I have made mistakes and learnt from them. I am lucky enough to have good friends. However, if there’s one thing that I have learnt the hard way, it is to not be submissive! And unfortunately, that’s exactly the aspect which is perceived as a threat by men (and their Moms).


Phew ! Getting married is no easy job ..........and I am finding it the hard way :-| ! Let me appease myself at least in this way......

fun quiz for myspace profile and blog

:-D :-D !!

Addendums:

1. When I was young (as if I am old now!), I used to think of marriage as something particular to the individuals involved. However, as I see my parents go through the motion of searching for a suitable groom, I am forced to backtrack into thinking that marriage is not just between two individuals but
between two disparate families as well. Without mutual respect between the families involved, I am pretty sure that
the couple in question would not have a hunky-dory life to lead, unless the spouse is taken into account as an individual.....and this is an art perfected by the minority of mature people.

2. Any relationship would involve compromise, as I was discussing with a friend from Delhi. So does marriage. What differs is the level of compromise, and whether some can actually be termed as 'compromise'. As I was discussing with her, what's wrong in flagging off this relationship as friends and gradually progressing to higher levels of relationship? Am I being very naive in presuming thus (after all, a compromise is a compromise, with or without friendship) ?

35 comments:

RK said...

Err....no comments on the topic...
but can't let go a chance away to point this...heee...dont mind..i actually have high regards for your language :)

>.I do not have to apologize for knowing better English then your average Joe.

'than'...not 'then'...

Chitra said...

-/RK
He he...thanks for pointing out my fallacy in the English language :D!

GuNs said...

It kind of pisses me off what these matrimonial proposals look like these days. Guys want girls who can work better (i.e. earn a lot) than they can look after a family and women want men who can buy them cars and maintain a high-society lifestyle more than they can offer love, stability and support.

It is indeed pathetic. Marriage proposals look more and more like business proposals these days.

With the insane amount of money spent on marriages, I suppose we are going all wrong with our tradition here. People take loans, sell houses etc. to get this kind of money just so they can have a showy wedding etc.

Curiosity killed the cat but it leads me to ask you whether you would have any difference your first impression about two guys who've sent in their photos with their marriage proposals and one of them is remarkably better looking than the other.

-PeAcE
--WiTh
---GuNs

Vijay said...

Hi Pal,

This is My first comment on your blog, but a silent reviewer past 6-7 months. Thought of sharing a fwd mail which i got through my friends hope helps you.

FINDING AND KEEPING A LIFE PARTNER - By Dov Heller

Golden rules for finding your life partner by Dov Heller.

When it comes to making the decision about choosing a life partner, no one wants to make a mistake.

Yet, with a divorce rate of close to 50%, it appears that many are making serious mistakes in their approach to finding Mr../Miss. Right! If you ask most couples who are engaged why they ' re getting married, they ' ll say: "We' re in love"; I believe this is the ..1 mistake people make when they date.


Choosing a life partner should never be based on love.

Though this may sound "not politically correct", there ' s a profound truth here.

Love is not the basis for getting married. Rather, love is the result of a good marriage.

When the other ingredients are right, then the love will come. Let me say it again: "You can ' t build a lifetime relationship on love alone"; You need a lot more!!!

Here are five questions you must ask yourself if you're serious about finding and keeping a life partner.

QUESTION ..1: Do we share a common life purpose?

Why is this so important? Let me put it this way: If you're married for 20 or 30 years, that' s a long time to live with someone. What do you plan to do with each other all that time? Travel, eat and jog together? You need to share something deeper
and more meaningful. You need a common life purpose.

Two things can happen in a marriage:

(1) You can grow together, or

(2)you can grow apart.

50% of the people out there are growing apart. To make a marriage work, you need to know what you want out of life!

Bottom line; marry someone who wants the same thing.


QUESTION ..2: Do I feel safe expressing my feelings and thoughts with this person?

This question goes to the core of the quality of your relationship. Feeling safe means you can communicate openly with this person. The basis of having good communication is trust - i.e. trust that I won ' t get "punished";
or hurt for expressing my honest thoughts and feelings. A colleague of mine defines an abusive person as someone
with whom you feel afraid to express your thoughts and feelings. Be honest with yourself on this one. Make sure
you feel emotionally safe with the person you plan to marry.


QUESTION ..3: Is he/she a mensch?

A mensch is someone who is a refined and sensitive person. How can you test? Here are some suggestions.
Do they work on personal growth on a regular basis? Are they serious about improving themselves?

A teacher of mine defines a good person as "someone who is always striving to be good and do the right ";.
So ask about your significant other: What do they do with their time? Is this person materialistic?

Usually a materialistic person is not someone whose top priority is character refinement.

There are essentially two types of people in the world:

(1) People who are dedicated to personal growth and

(2) people who are dedicated to seeking comfort.

Someone whose goal in life is to be comfortable will put personal comfort ahead of doing the right thing.

You need to know that before walking down the aisle.


QUESTION ..4: How does he/she treat other people?

The one most important thing that makes any relationship work is the ability to give. By giving,
we mean the ability to give another person pleasure.

Ask: Is this someone who enjoys giving pleasure to others or are they wrapped up in themselves and self- absorbed?

To measure this, think about the following: How do they treat people whom they do not have to be nice to, such as waiters, bus boys, taxi drivers, etc.. How do they treat their parents and siblings? Do they have
gratitude and appreciation? If they don ' t have gratitude for the people who have given them everything; can you do nearly as much for them? You can be sure that someone, who treats others poorly, will eventually
treat you poorly as well.


QUESTION ..5: Is there anything I ' m hoping to change about this person after we ' re married?

Too many people make the mistake of marrying someone with the intention of trying to "improve"; them after they ' re married. As a colleague of mine puts it: "You can probably expect someone to change after marriage for the worse" If you cannot fully accept this person the way they are now, then you are not ready to marry them.

In conclusion, dating doesn ' t have to be difficult and treacherous. The key is to try leading a little more with
your head and less with your heart. It pays to be as objective as possible when you are dating; to be sure to
ask questions that will help you get to the key issues. Falling in love is a great feeling, but when you wake up
with a ring on your finger, you don ' t want to find yourself trouble because you didn ' t do your homework.

Another perspective... There are some people in your life that need to be loved from a distance.. It ' s amazing
what you can accomplish when you let go of or at least minimize your time with draining, negative, incompatible,
not-going anywhere relationships. Observe the relationships around you.

Pay attention...Which ones lift and which ones lean? Which ones encourage and which ones discourage?
Which ones are on a path of growth uphill and which ones are going downhill? When you leave certain people
do you feel better or feel worse? Which ones always have drama or don ' t really understand, know, or
appreciate you?

The more you seek quality, respect, growth, peace of mind, love and truth around you...the easier it will become
for you to decide who gets to sit in the front row and who should be moved to the balcony of your life.


à An African proverb states, "Before you get married, keep both eyes open, and after you marry, close one eye";
Before you get involved and make a commitment to someone, don ' t let lust, desperation, immaturity, ignorance, pressure
from others or a low self-esteem make you blind to warning signs. Keep your eyes open, and don ' t fool yourself that you
can change someone or that what you see as faults aren ' t really that important.

à Do you bring out the best in each other?

à Do you compliment and compromise with each other, or do you compete, compare and control?

à What do you bring to the relationship?

à Do you bring past relationships, past hurt, past mistrust, past pain?

You can ' t take someone to the altar to alter them . You can ' t make someone love you or make someone stay.

If you develop self-esteem, spiritual discernment, and "a life"; you won ' t find yourself making someone else responsible
for your happiness or responsible for your pain. Seeking status, sex, and security are the wrong reasons to be in a relationship.

WHAT KEEPS A RELATIONSHIP STRONG IS:

1. TRUST

2. COMMUNICATION

3. INTIMACY

4. A SENSE OF HUMOR

5. SHARING TASKS

6. SOME GETAWAY TIME WITHOUT BUSINESS OR CHILDREN

7. DAILY EXCHANGES (meal, shared activity, hug, call, touch, notes, etc.)

8. SHARING COMMON GOALS AND INTERESTS

9. GIVING EACH OTHER SPACE TO GROW WITHOUT FEELING INSECURE

10. GIVING EACH OTHER A SENSE OF BELONGING AND ASSURANCES OF COMMITMENT

If these qualities are missing, the relationship will erode as resentment withdrawal, abuse, neglect, and dishonesty;
and pain will replace.



Always remember

" Before you get married, keep both eyes open,
and after you marry, close one eye "

Chitra said...

-/GAR
It is a matter of 'his' requirements vs 'her' requirements! Sigh! And regarding the guys, I would take a decision only after talking to them for sure!

-/Vijay
Thanks for the forward, Vijay! And do keep visiting :-)!

I strongly feel about the threshold of acceptance. Are we so into ourselves, so choosy and so sure of ourselves that we refuse to make some concession towards others?If one can be so 'adamant' before marriage, would he/she be a good partner in the next 30-50 years of marriage?

Anu said...

aha! the perils of searching for the right one! here we go again..same boat story..:(

Anu said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

I am a silent reader of your blog and I have never commented on any posts earlier.

Some how, I felt like posting comment on this.

All the best and I am sure you would get someone really good.

~

Yesh said...

This is my first comment on your blog though have been a regular visitor here. You have aptly put across the matrimonial scenario's seen in our society nowadays. But you know what i am on the other side of your story, i am an guy and i certainly think that i have all the ingredients required but at the end of the day there is someone out there from the gal's side who puts up some UNKNOWN negative aspect as a groom heheheheheh :). Anyway all the best Saggi and yeah Saggi's are bound to get the best things in life.

Chitra said...

-/Anu
Et tu Anutus? :-)I guess this is the story of any present-day, confident working lady.

-/Anon
Hey...thanks! On a funny note, I wish that there was some kind of telepathic process by which we can know what's in the other person's mind before we can get to make a complete fool of ourselves!

-/Yesh
Tee hee....! It is akin to an appraisal :-)! Your negatives get highlighted and blown out of proportion while the positives are undermined :-|.

angada said...

"threshold of acceptance"
Good one indeed!

Vijay said...

I do agree with you, practically you can't be so choosy, but then some points are worth it; thats what i meant.

An Anonymous said:

You know what I did before I married? Anything I wanted to.

My best wishes are always there :-)

Hey Chi !! let me know the model of your new DSLR !! me too a photographic freak

Chitra said...

-/Angada
Tee hee thanku thanku :-)! I know I am supposed to be pretty serious about it all. But I do not believe in getting worked up over something which is not really in my hands :-)!

-/Vijay
Those some points again are dependent upon the personality of the individuals! Anyways, please do not take offence to any of my remarks :-)!

My DSLR is Canon 30D. Had the 18-55 kit lens along with it :-)

DesiInDC said...

It is very apt to say 'Marriages are made in heaven.' in regards to our society and the way we approach it. Whether it is 'love' or 'arranged' marriage, there is only so much anybody can find out about the other person before marriage. Only way for any marriage to succeed is to able to practice 'give and take' by both individuals. Otherwise, any relationship is destined to be doomed.

And 'than' vs. 'then', I have seen many many Americans make the same mistake. :-)

DesiInDC said...

And good luck with your search. I am pretty sure you will find the right guy. :-)

Endevourme said...

yes, expensive camera doesnt mean good pics, i have seen junk pics taken with hifi dslrs :D
&... &... we shudnt mind ppl with tiny brains da, there is nothing wrong with them, its just that their brains are small...what can they do?
@DesiInDC
/-I am pretty sure you will find the right guy. :-)
..mmm..shudnt we prefer past tense here?

Chitra said...

-/DI (JK?)
Perfect !! Aptly worded! Couldn't have expressed it much better! And thank you so much for the wishes! I need them all :-) ! It is not much about finding the perfect guy than going through the (dour) process :-|! Besides there's no such thing as a 'perfect person' alvaa?

Ah well...I knew it was 'than' and not 'then'. Did not proof-read it though :P :D!

-/Endevourme
Tee hee....thanks for the support :-)! And what exactly are you hinting at, eh?? Out with it..... !

DesiInDC said...

@Chitra

Yes, there are no 'Perfect person's, but there are 'perfect person's for a companion. Someone who matches with your wavelength and with your ideas, who shares common interests with you, etc. Hope I made my point clear. :-)

@Endevourme
If that had to past tense, what are we worried about? :-)

Endevourme said...

c,
"Sigh... why do I have to explain everything myself?"
remember...?remember...?who says that? :D
d,
thats a really amusing word 'worried' hehe thanks d :D
but...but...who is 'worried' here?
chitra are you 'worried'?

Chitra said...

-/DI(JK)
Yup yup! You already did! Couldn't resist pulling your leg (as usual)!

-/Endevourme
Geeeeeeeeeezzzzzzz! Wait till I catch hold of you and spank the daylights out of you! On a serious note, I am worried not for myself, but for my parents. They sure don't deserve such treatment :-|!

Vijay said...

Ab Ab ba Canon 30D !! amazing one :-) I have just stepped into this world of photography, recently shifted from Sony to Canon SX100. Hey would like to share few pics & need some comments if you are free.

Anonymous said...

Chitra,

Leave about telepathy but these prospective grooms, they give some hints of what they are, and we need to get those hints and judge them.

As you mentioned in your post,that guy wanted a H1 Visa so that the girl can start working as soon as she gets there...

what exactly he wants in life. Does money come first in his list or what? Seems like no matter what, he wants his wife to be working.

Agreed that you are career oriented, but you donot require anyone who says you SHOULD be working as soon as possible.
This is what I felt.

~~

Chitra said...

-/Vijay
Tee heee (read as crowing :D)! Commenting? I am still learning da :-)! If you are keen on learning the nuances, just drop me a mail. I can send you the links of certain forums where you receive constructive feedback.

-/Anon
Agree with you on that point! Hint-processing guidance needed :-)!

AMARJEET KAUR said...

Ye post mere expert comments ke bina adhoora hai:
Doll - arranged marriage is like satta. Take me for instance - I chose my husband because I found his mother very 'sweet' although he was the average Joe, as you put it.
Turns out that the sweet mother was a bitter pill and the average Joe stood by me in some really trying times & is my best pal now.
So, the distilled gyaan is that after looks have faded & intellectual battles fought & bruises healed, are you prepared to stand by the chap & say 'go do what you want - I'm with you' and he is prepared to do the same for you.
When you are a couple, you go thru shit - children, their illnesses, financial crises, career issues, old age & what not.

Chitra said...

-/Amar
Yeah...! Politics has new meaning here :-|!

adisakke said...

this is one grt blog very frank and open ,love to read more from u mam...respect u a lot......nad with just one paragraf u hav influenced me
tht i readily bookmarked ur blog so tht i can read d updates ASAP..
u hav pointed out the reality tht encircles a normal womens life..
now its nt just d bride the groom demands...much more...it sucks really.

Chitra said...

-/Adi
Thanks! Glad that you like my blog. As to changing trends in marriage, I guess this is called 'revolution' :-)!

Bala said...

heh heh...
I suppose everybody has this rant..

Nice to see a fellow sagittarian.. Nice thing that was.. I'll have to steal it away to use it at an opportune moment..

While the prospective groom's mom was asking questions, you should've said that you would only marry someone with a 30D or upwards :P

~Bala

Chitra said...

-/Bala
Aaaah yes! How nice of you to remind me :P :D!

Vinu said...

I have been a silent visitor of your blogs for some time.

"For crying aloud, that 'expensive' camera cost me nearly five months' salary, something which I scrimped, scrounged and saved to buy!" ...

Which camera are you talking about...or do you think that would give me an indication to what your salary is :-D ... Just kidding..

Keep writing...waiting for your next blog now...bloggers like you are inspiring me to write too..

Chitra said...

-/Vinu
Hey Vinu...welcome to my space :-)! I purchased a Canon 30D, a DSLR, and associated lenses which came up to around 2.5K US dollars.

And thanks so much for that wonderful compliment. Somehow, I have never considered myself that 'uplifting' to be an inspiration to others :-)!

Keep visiting.... !

Male Virgin said...

Hey Chitra...I will marry ya anythime...Keep me in mind as an "Original" or "Backup"....Your Choice....

http://www.orkut.com/Profile.aspx?uid=6071102658056776459

Chitra said...

-/MV
Er........!

Male Virgin said...

Well, I could not understand what you meant by your coment "Er....", so being the dumb guy, I did a google search on "Er....", and it came up as the ER TV series.

Looks like we all end up there one day anyways, whether we marry or not......

Chitra said...

-/MV
Oh well ! That's funny :-)!