In some cultures, an arranged marriage is a long-held belief that is practiced to this day, even when the parties involved have embraced the modern times and the modern way of life. With this type of arrangement, families choose a spouse for a child while they are still young or even before they are born.
Most often, the two people getting married don’t know each other. When the time comes that they marry, they are not given a choice to disagree or change their mind. Such practice is highly traditional in many Asian and Indian cultures, and has been observed for centuries. The debate on arranged marriage is long-standing because of views that greatly depend on culture.
The Pros of Arranged Marriages
1. Better Future
The choice of spouse is often based on how both children will fare in the future. Parents only want what is best for their child, which is why they choose a spouse who can offer prosperity and security. They want them to live a happy and successful married life. Although happiness hinges on love between two people, it is a popular belief that love can be learned, developed and grow stronger when couples are given enough time to bond and understand each other.
2. Financial Security
Arranged marriages are often perceived as marrying for money, because couples are chosen based on a family’s status in the society and financial capacity. It is a family affair where the families involved want to gain as much benefits as possible. Some want to ensure the future of a business, while others want to ensure a legacy they can boast about. It is a practical choice for the parties involved.
3. Strong Foundation of Love
Research showed that romantic love is considered one of the factors of the high divorce rate in the United States. So love that is not founded on romance but are built up together by the two couples will be stronger and will last longer. As time goes by, both people will learn to love each other and create a strong bond based on love, understanding and trust.
The Cons of Arranged Marriages
1. Overly Paternalistic
The practice of arranged marriages are strong in societies where men have more control. Most women who enter in arranged marriage are stripped of their right to defend themselves or leave their husband even if he is abusive. This is why they resort to living a double life that is often unfulfilling.
2. Lacking Standards
There are no present standards, rules or laws on arranged marriages. Although it is not forced on principle, the individuals involved usually have no say in the matter, which makes it forced on certain levels. This is especially true when individual preferences are overlooked for the benefit of the entire family.
3. Psychological Effects
Most people in arranged marriages think that their families would end up choosing someone horrible. This may be true in certain cases because families may focus more security rather than other aspects of a married life. This can have a negative impact on an individual’s psychology, resulting in depression, stress, anxiety and fear. If their prediction proves to be true, being unlucky enough to be paired with an uncaring, cold and abusive spouse, the psychological effect will only increase.
While divorce is available, it is not usually applicable to cultures that practice arranged marriages. So out is not an option.
Crystal Lombardo is a contributing editor for Vision Launch. Crystal is a seasoned writer and researcher with over 10 years of experience. She has been an editor of three popular blogs that each have had over 500,000 monthly readers.