A marriage is termed ‘arrange’ when it is proposed by people other than those getting married, and this has been an integral part of Indian society. When their parents, their social groups, trusted close friends, or matrimonial sites bring two people together, their lives are compared on a lot of aspects such as their religion, caste, culture, education, financial positions, physical attractiveness, and beliefs. The next step is to calculate their compatibility or ‘Kundli Milana’. This is usually done through a priest. Then their families and the people who are to be married meet up, and if everything goes well, they get married.
On the contrary, marriage is termed ‘love marriage’ when it is proposed solely by the couple. They are not necessarily from the same religion or caste and their family background might differ. They have different cultures and beliefs but they tend to show emotions of love, care, and intimacy towards each other. They are familiar with each other. Arrange marriages lack this. The couple proposes the marriage, their parents meet up, and if they agree, they get married.
From the above descriptions, it is natural to think that love marriage will last longer, but usually, the opposite happens. Many sociologists have claimed it happens because of their different backgrounds and high expectations from one another but the main reason behind this is lack of effort and gradually diminishing ‘spark’.
Imagine yourself coming across someone and getting attracted to him or her instantly, the first thing that comes to your mind is to get to know him or her. You start a conversation and you talk about the most random things in the world. Gradually, you move past that stage, you talk about you and them, you talk about your favorite color and your worst fear, and you start to open up to them. You put in efforts, take them on romantic dates, surprise them with the most basic things, make them experience things they never had, and slowly try to be a part of it. There is always this mischief and shyness in you around them, you try to be the best version of yourself, and suddenly, you forget how to ‘act’ and start being yourself instead. This is how you fall for them and crave their company simply because they bring out the best in you. You try to make them happy and make sure you are the reason behind it. You start to prioritize them over yourself. They start mattering to you more than you do to yourself. You crave permanent commitment and security because you are scared to lose them. This constitutes the first stage of a romantic relationship. It ends with a marriage. The next stage comprises of external factors such as taking up responsibilities and ‘future’. This is the stage where it all comes crashing down and you fail. You stop putting in efforts because you think you know them completely. You spend all your time at work because you think its okay not to give them time anymore. They will not leave, but they do. You stop remembering birth dates or anniversaries because “if they can’t, why should I?”. This is where ego and attitude come in and love slowly vanishes. Moreover, before you realize, misunderstandings turn into intense arguments and you cannot even stand each other anymore. You expect efforts from them but you are not doing the same. You found a right mate but you stopped being one. They stop making you happy and you slowly start searching for it somewhere else, it may be another person, or your work or anything. This is how a happy marriage fails.
Now imagine your parents finding your partner, they show you their picture and basic details but it is not enough. You are excited and you will go through their social media accounts and know more about it. The first time you meet, you will be shy around them. You will try to be on your best behavior because you have to impress them too. You spend time together and go back home. You think about all the happy moments and cannot stop smiling at yourself like crazy. Then you start texting and just when you start talking to each other and getting one another is a view about the world, it is time to get married. You are yet to pass the first stage but you are married, so you do everything such as going to movies, or on romantic dates, or talking under the moon, or strolling around the park holding hands, or fall in love after you get married. You get to know them after you are married and therefore, you are still keeping that ‘spark’ alive. You start thinking about the future but you still make sure you give enough time to them. You do not have high expectations because that part was clear before the wedding. You knew what they want from you and what you want from them. You know enough not to let your efforts go in vain. This is how an arrange marriage turn into a long-lasting one.
Love is an important part of every relationship. It does not matter if you fall in love before your marriage or after, what matters is if you are putting in efforts to keep that spark alive. People tend to spend their whole life in an empty marriage where everything revolves around your work, your financial strength, your social groups, your kids, and your reputation. You become so engrossed in satisfying your social needs, you forget at some point, someone was waiting for you at home when you got back home late and slept without sparing them a glance but now, they sleep. Love, honesty, trust, sexual faithfulness is indeed an important component, but they are not enough. Time and communication are equally necessary, no matter if you are 30 or 80. Go on dates, surprise them with their favorite chocolates, act like foolish teenagers, make them happy, cook them dinner when they get back home late, be upfront when they upset you and appreciate when they make you happy, and most importantly, give them time and talk to them about everything you like and dislike about them. There is always more to know, more to learn, and more to love. Do not let it go just because. Find the right partner, but do not forget to be the right partner.