Caution: There is no concept of moving in together or dating in a typical Indian household. All these things are done in secret. Live-in relationships and Dating is a taboo in India. However this is not absolute and there are in fact many exceptions coming up in form of liberal families in big cities.
So it all started with a simple statement “Mom Daddy I like a guy. We have been friends for past six years and would finally like to tie the knot.” There was a moment of shock followed by an agonizingly long silence where I waited for them to give me some kind of reaction. Contrary to many western cultures, finding a life partner on your own is still considered quite gutsy in India and is even frowned upon by many.
Hopefully my parents have evolved a tiny bit where they aren’t against it per se but at the same time quite cautious as well. My mother had met the guy quite a few times in the past six years and had immediately taken a liking to him therefore she was delighted by the news. Daddy however was an entirely different story.
I was interrogated for weeks before he agreed to go along with my choice and he is still in his quintessential father-of-the-bride mode! Some basic and few other amusing questions from hundreds that were asked included:
Q. How will you adjust in a different caste and their culture?
A. I know the guy and I have seen his family’s ways. I am pretty sure I can handle.
Q. But they are from a different state!?
A. I don’t have to marry the state daddy. And besides they have been living in Delhi far too long and their lifestyle is purely metropolitan.
Q. What does the boy do?
A. He is a database trainer and has a successful YouTube channel. He is big on social media.
Q. What Social Media? How Can You Earn A Living From It? Isn’t Facebook for making friends and sharing pictures & YouTube for watching free videos?
A. Yeah it used to be – a gazillion years ago…..
And then it took me another three months to just explain the workings of social media and its importance in digital age in order to convince my dad that the guy can earn a living!
Actually, the fact of the matter is that dad is still in the denial mode where he believes that me and my sister will never have another man in our lives, get married and settle down away from him. In a typical comedy movie style, my father is a bit jealous that he will not be the sole man-of-the-house and there is someone else with whom he will have to share my attention.
It’s comically adorable but has also created a certain level of discomfort. However he is gradually coming to terms with this new scenario and I am sure he will be more welcoming once acclimatized.
One good thing is that he is not opposed to the idea of me marrying someone out of our caste chosen by myself. Frankly, this is an amazing start to a love marriage in India because other alternatives include forced arranged marriage or honor killing!!!
Here’s hoping that my family will also accept my guy and respect my life choices…
You can also read about my Roka Ceremony in the post – My big fat Indian wedding – The Roka Ceremony