Arranged marriage better than dating
My parents, in a very earnest bid to secure my eternal happiness, have been trying to marry me off to, well, just about anyone lately.
In my childhood home near Sacramento, my father is up at night on arranged-marriage Websites.
But I did take heart in the fact that it was addressed only to me.
I’ve been fielding such messages—or, rather, my father has—more and more these days, having crossed the unmarriageable threshold for an Indian woman, 30, two years ago.
And the result—strange e-mails from boys’ fathers and stranger dates with those boys themselves—has become so much a part of my dating life that I’ve lost sight of how bizarre it once seemed.
Many women, Indian or not, whose parents have had a long, healthy marriage hope we will, too, while fearing that perhaps we’ve made everything irreparably worse by expecting too much.
Ramesh Gupta, “the boy’s father.” That wasn’t as bad as the time I logged on to my computer at home in Fort Greene and got a message that asked, forgoing any preamble, what the date, time, and location of my birth were.
Still, for years, I didn’t want to get married the way my brother did.Depending on whether my father was in a magnanimous mood, he would add “caste no bar,” which meant suitors didn’t have to belong to Jainism, an offshoot of Hinduism with the world’s most severe dietary restrictions. Still rather prejudiced against meat-eaters, my father immediately discards responses from those with a “non-veg” diet.There is, however, a special loophole for meat-eaters who earn more than 0,000.My father saw my mother once before they got married.He loves to shock Americans by recounting how he lost sight of her at a bazaar the day after their wedding and lamented to himself that he would never find her again, as he’d forgotten what she looked like.
(A middle-class family can easily spend $100,000 these days on a dowry in India.) Much savvier in the ways of his new country, my father laughed it off. ” Fulfilling his parental duty, my father placed matrimonial ads for me every couple of years during my twenties in such immigrant newspapers as India Abroad.