This Valentine’s Day, some 10,000 young boys and girls will take an oath not to marry without parental consent. An article published in Times Now says that youngsters in Surat will be taking an oath on February 14 to get married only to the people chosen for them by their parents. Not only that, they will also pledge to put an end to their romantic relationship with a person who does not get approval from their parents. The man behind this entire initiative, a therapist by profession, said that the purpose is to promote the importance of parent’s guidance among youngsters. No parents in the world posses as much confidence in their own matchmaking capabilities as Indian parents do. Knowing how they obsess over love life of their kids, most parents will not only applaud this initiative but use it as an example.
- Some 10,000 youngsters from Surat will be taking a pledge this Valentines Day, to only marry with their parents’ consent.
- Why is it so difficult for Indian wards to let their children marry as per their wishes?
- Why do they have this compulsion to have a say in who they choose to marry?
- For them, marriage is more a matter of social standing, than what their kids want.
No parents in the world posses as much confidence in their own match-making capabilities as Indian parents do.
Why is it so difficult for Indian wards to let their children marry as per their wishes? Why do they have this compulsion to have a say in who they choose to marry? Indian kids still do not have full freedom to choose their life partners and that is sad because it reflects how for Indian parents, the happiness of their children isn’t a priority at all.
For them, marriage is more a matter of social standing, than what their kids want. The choice of a life partner, thus shouldn’t be made on frivolous parameters like love. They are confident of making a better judgement for their children on the basis of religion, caste, economic standing, birth charts and whatever else may catch their fancy. The logic here is that children often make foolish alliance out of sentiments. As a result, they end up in disastrous marriages which bring an ill name to the parents and even the neighbours. However, these are all excuses underneath which lies the urge to control every aspect of your child’s life.
Parent’s want to have a say in the marriages of their children because they see them solely as their progenies, who owe them their existence. Hence it is they who must have the right to decide who will be the right match for them.
It reflects on how parents and our patriarchal society treat a bad marriage. If the marriage was an alliance approved by them, it is fate. If it was one forced on them by their stubborn kids, it is their mistake. It reflects on how they see children as obedient when they marry where they are directed to and heartless, disobedient and thankless, when they dare to choose a partner for themselves. Little do Indian parents know that such controlling nature costs them a fulfilling relationship with their kids. It not only breaks their children’s heart, but it also fills them with resentment against their own parents.
Falling in love is a natural and spontaneous act, which cannot be moderated. And as far as marriages go, love is possibly the best reason to take the plunge. Marital alliances formed out of any other reason may be functional and long-lasting, because there is barely a way out, but they may not be happy ones. So it is time for Indian parents to learn to trust their children with matters as crucial as marriage. We also need to stop glamorising devotion to parents and then use it to blackmail children into unwanted marriages. Emotionally blackmailing children into subservience is a violation of their agency. Children are in no debt to spend their entire lives with a person you like, just because you gave them birth.
Picture Credit: indiiatcnews.com
Yamini Pustake Bhalerao is a writer with the SheThePeople team, in the Opinions section. The views expressed are the author’s own.