1. I blame thee!
This was THE very first question my could-have-been father-in-law asked me when I went to (what seemed more like an interview with him) meet his daughter to discuss a possible matrimonial alliance.
I know they say it’s not easy being an Indian girl who’s turning 30 and still lives with her parents.
But believe you me, it’s equally tough for a boy to be the same age and not have his wedding plan chalked out.
“Even Vineet is getting married now! And he was the most averse to the thought of getting married. If he can, why can’t you?”
If only I could tell my mother that Vineet slept with enough girls to know what he didn’t want from a woman and was finally settling with one who seemed to be unlike any of his previous “companions”.
I’m Abhay Mathur and this is my story - the story of getting cornered by my parents and societal norms to get married.
Oh, so they want you to marry someone who you can have sex with for the rest of your life and you don’t want that. What is wrong with you?
Well, it’s not that I didn’t want to get married or enjoy the “benefits” that come with it. I just didn’t know how to decide who to settle down with.
At the very outset, let me start by listing down everything and everyone I’d like to blame:
1. 90’s Bollywood movies:
Inspired by quintessential Bollywood cinema, I grew up believing in soulmates and in finding my perfect partner.
Worse still, in seeing signs when they’d come into my life, and the song and dance that follows.
But let me break that myth for you, it ain’t true!
None of it is.
2. The Indian society:
The surroundings most of us have grown up in make marriages sound like it’s the most important decision of your life, and should you mess it up, there’s no going back.
Of course, you can choose to part ways, but as modern as our society and families claim to have gotten, you’d still be perceived as an outcast who decided to break the holy bond.
3. The parents:
As is the case with most Indian kids, a lot of unnecessary pressure stems from parents’ urge to see their child “happily settled” as soon as they finally (after 15 long years of studying and toiling to get the best grades and jobs) start living life on their terms.
I’m sure any Indian male in the same situation as me would relate to this.
So in the midst of not finding my Heer (so what if I wasn’t anything like Ranjha) and being surrounded by younger cousins and least-likely-to-get-married friends, I decided to check out what the phenomenon of “arranged marriage” was all about.