My friends are living out Pride and Prejudice

Except with an Indian twist, that is.

The unattached ones find their love lives open to public scrutiny. Family, friends, etc are all invested in finding a match (a thought at which intensely private me recoils in revulsion). None are set for arranged marriages, as such, but finding a partner is definitely a collective rather than an individual effort. It’s not quite carriages and balls and waiting for the gentlemen to call by in the afternoon, but more speakerphone calls while family members listen with bated breath.

I find the matchmaking process endlessly fascinating. Parents talking up their children to other parents. Blatantly pushing the kids together and hoping they hit it off. The subtle (and not-so-subtle) allusions on the part of grandparents and elder relatives.

And most of all, the compressed timeline. We’re still so young, but marriage is serious business. And when it comes to nuptials, time is short. We’re looking at a year – maybe – from meeting to marriage. That means where you or I might give things a try and see if they work out with someone, for my friends that means doing some serious forecasting and projecting, deciding straight off the bat based on the scant information hand whether potential hurdles are surmountable, or whether they mean that prospect is not worth pursuing. Risk is scorned, as it can be when you have the luxury of choice before emotions enter the equation.

I listen to the lively conversations, and participate as best as I can. But I simply can’t fathom their reality. I’ve been with T… seven years? I still feel barely ready to tie the knot. (And yes, I can hear you already. What if we’d met at the age we are now? Maybe things would be different. And maybe you’re right, but I am almost positive a year would still be far too short. I’m indecisive; a second-guesser; a slow mover and heel-dragger.)

4 thoughts on “My friends are living out Pride and Prejudice

  • Reply plantingourpennies November 13, 2012 at 02:21

    At my last job, one of my coworkers had gone through the modern version of the traditional Indian arranged marriage and it was so interesting. His family basically picked out his wife from online listings, the families got together and got to know each other in India (while he was in the US and she was in Europe), and then they had 2 chaperoned dates before flying back to India to be wed. And yet, they seemed like a perfect match! They trusted their families to know what was important to them, and their families came through. Very foreign to how we do things in the US, but very interesting.

  • Reply Budget & the Beach November 13, 2012 at 13:39

    Oh wow I can’t imagine that! Of course maybe if that happened I’d be married now. lol! sigh…

  • Reply theoutliermodel November 17, 2012 at 03:50

    Crazy! I’ve been with CF as long as you’ve been with T, and we feel the same way. I couldn’t imagine meeting and marrying someone in less than a year!

  • Reply Catching up and Cookery Sunday: Quinoa Spinach Pie | A Gai Shan Life November 19, 2012 at 05:26

    […] is watching her Indian friends live life under a marriageability microscope. My parents didn’t force the matchmaking issue but they definitely asked me to “play […]

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