The arranged marriage game is not palatable to many young people. Understandably perhaps. But then the alternative, which is the Dating Game, brings with it, its own share of woes. Rejection, lies, deceit, deception; for many, these are the experiences that the dating world earns them – rather than soliciting the ‘one’.
What am I getting at? And how then, if the two primary sources of finding one’s life partner have their inherent flaws does one ‘settle’ down? Many of my students’ parents might be unhappy to read this – but I’m going to say, Live In! A Live In relationship, in my own experience, is arguably the ONLY true measure or testing ground for compatibility. NO two people are alike. Not even two people in LOVE! It is difficult for humans to co-habit. So what a live in situation does is, it breaks down all the WALLS and FACADE that tends to exist in an ‘arranged’ situation, or in a ‘dating’ situation; both of which have the people involved at their best behavior, constantly. While in a Live In relationship, which of course you only get into in the first place if you feel ‘seriously’ enough about your relationship; the mask comes off. You are who you are – tantrums, eccentricities, idiosyncrasies, madness, demons – all included.
This then, turns into the ultimate litmus test for not only two peoples’ love for one another, but perhaps more importantly, of simpatico.
Anuja and I lived together for a good 3 years before we decided to get married. And I think it has held us in good stead, that there were few shocks or surprises post-wedding (at least vis-a-vis one another). And that is important. Because finally, life throws you enough and more curve balls, and the last thing you want to have to contend with in those situations, is marital problems additionally.
I think for parents as well, as long as they have a realistic understanding and insight into their children, and feel they are mature and responsible, they should be open to the idea of a young couple living together before they take the proverbial ‘plunge’. Else, it could just as easily become a plunge into eternal darkness!