I meet them ever so often these days - Smart,qualified, witty, employed young women, extrovert, party animals - in short "eligible" in every sense but unmarried.Reason: they haven't come across the "right" man yet.Are their expectations very high? Do they want the looks of a Brad Pitt and the qualities of a Darcy and the wealth of Bill Gates preferably with the voice of Amitabh Bachchcan and the poetry of Neruda? Not really. They just want a man who shares their interests and respects their independence and is fun to be with.Or so they claim!
So I asked one of them if they mean to say that they haven't found any like that among all the men they meeet. She said that she hasn't actually had the opportunity to find out because none of the meetings has proceeded beyond meeting at parties and she doesn't want to make the first move and sound desperate unless she is sure that the other person has some interest in her! And I have a suspicion that the men are not making the first move precisely for the same reason. so you meet them everywhere - young, smart, qualified......eligible in every sense but unmarried!

So when I got the occasion to talk to a couple of young men, "eligible" and unattached, I asked him what the problem was, in order to get a male perspective.They said that the girls these days are great as friends but not so great as wives - they wanted everything and were not ready to make any compromises.

Probing further, this is what I understood.I dont mean to sound like one of those agency surveys which draw conclusions on sociological trends after interviewing 100 people, but I wondered if the root of the problem lay in the fact that in the past 50 years women have outgrown their traditional roles while men are still not ready to contribute as much to the domestic responsibilities. Is it to do with the mindset that acquiring the skills required around keeping house and managing children is a bit of a feminisation of the male which is considered a backward step for them while a woman moving into traditional male bastions is considered as a step forward for them? Even though the division of responsibilities between men and women started out without any value implications, the "women's territories" have acquired an implied inferiority over the years probably because they don't have the potential to bring any money to the family revenues. And so men do not see any value addition in acquiring these skills.Where possible they try to avoid it by outsourcing the service - cooking for example but there are certain responsibilities that one or the other spouse has to take on personally and it is still the woman who does it in the majority of the cases. And when some women rebel against this and question why it cant be the man who makes the career sacrifices for the sake of keeping the family together, men complain that these women want "everything" and don't give up anything!
But isn't it precisely what men have been doing all these years?

I do believe that definitions of marriage and family are up for major changes in the course of this century. The above issues are already a source of unhappy marriages and even divorces in some cases. And a lot of young people are nervous about making a the commitment to a married relationship - some say they are not marrying in order to avoid a divorce! Everyone wants more from relationships and are not willing to be restrained by societal norms in case they dont get what they want.

Good or bad, this is the reality. And like all generations, this generation will come up with its own solutions for these issues.And in the mean time,you meet them ever so often these days - Smart,qualified, witty, employed young women, extrovert, party animals - in short eligible in every sense but unmarried!
Labels: , | edit post
36 Responses
  1. Shiv Says:

    Yo!! Uma...U hit the nail!! Me was thinking for the past few days on these lines!! Dunno..actually am kinda not ready to take in the risk of choosing a person rightaway!! but all the traditional things of looking out for alliances and all..I just hate that...and as u said..If we really find a person who attracts u in all kinds..then u tend to stop back and think..y the first move by me!!..Woh!! It is a bit too complex yaar...Very much!!

  2. ~*sim*~ Says:

    it being wedding season in bombay, i've been thinking about some of these same questions since all and sundry seem to want to know why i'm almost 24 and not yet married (or even attached).

    i agree that i may sound like i want everything (and hey, who wouldn't take that pitt-bachchan-neruda-gates-darcy combination?) but i am also one of those rare girls that's not afraid to make the first move, reputation be damned (because that's what it's all about, right? "he might think i'm desperate..." "people will talk...").

    that said, here are some of the other reasons i haven't "settled" yet:

    0) it's hard to even meet people at parties. my social circle is pretty women-centric, and tight-knit, in the sense that there are hardly any new additions. yes, i need to expand, but for now, there is a problem even at the "meeting people at parties" stage.
    1) i've been in 2 serious relationships in the last couple of years, and i'm not currently ready to move into another, especially one that would involve another level of commitment (and i mean commitment in the sense that there are rings and future in-laws involved.)
    2) i still feel like i have some oats to sow (not just in the metaphorical sense in which it's used for men, ie other relationships, but oats nonetheless). i want to go to graduate school. i want to be able to lead life according to my own means, rules and demands. i want to travel. a lot of that changes once you're in a committed relationship (see above for definition of commitment.)
    3) a lot of the men i meet/am attracted to/who are attracted to me are just not the marrying kind. they're not done sowing *their* oats yet. they don't want to be monogamous yet. these guys can sometimes even make good friends, (to think about what the guys you met said about girls making good friends but not good wives) but i don't even know if i could condone being friends with a casanova who "played" women on a regular basis. in my case, i thought i had found my ideal pitt-et.-al. combination but then he decided he wanted to see other people. and yes, i will even admit to staying single out of a slight fear of ending up shunted at the altar or soon after, like a couple of women (and let's be fair, men, too) i've heard about in the last few months.
    4) parents at this point are very very picky. no muslims, no blacks, no whites, no yellows, only nice boy from good family in same community. it narrows the eligibility pool. what if i were to meet a nice marwari boy? no go. well, then, they might as well look for me! and i'm not ready for readymade rishtas yet, because it involves too much family and associated awkwardness (if you don't like the boy, then his grandmother's sister who is your grandmother's best friend feels bad, etc etc.)

    so, i'll stay single for now, thank you very much. as you can see, in my case, it's not even about the post-marriage gender roles that have changed -- it starts much earlier in the process.

  3. Anonymous Says:

    I am not to old to comment on this..... but I still have my views here.

    I have seen (from my cousins and friends who are my age) that once a girl gets into her career and starts earning money... her expectations of a suitable guy changes. The list of it should be like this and he should have this and be like this, becomes longer and longer.

    I got married at the age of 23, when I had barely stepped into my career. My expectations were not much then. But I see a lot more list of things when my cousins (All my age) have to choose an eligible guy because they are all independant and earning well by now. (This I am talking 3 years after my marriage)

    Though I am from todays generation and only 28 yrs old. I believe that girls should get married by 23-24. They have lesser expectations then and can gel with the other person well. :)

    Just my 2 cents. :)

  4. Anonymous Says:

    My 1.5 cents.. :)

    I do feel men always find it hard to make compromises. They prefer to consider themselves the "man of the house" and their women-folk to manage the household... even today, there are many cases where men expect women to be under their shadow... there are many "elgible" men who want their wife not to work.. times are changing, but it has a long way to go still...

  5. Artnavy Says:

    very thought provoking and on my mind after reading the God mother

    A friend of mine is just as you describe a globe trotting arrived in life girl pushing 30 and no man in tow- i think they find her intimidating??

    i got married really early at 22 - found my man and felt no need to wait- i guess not everyone is in such a rush...

  6. Altoid Says:

    Hey Usha

    Thought-provoking indeed. Another related post and one of my favorite bookmarks :

    Like you said, one can only hope there is light at the end of the tunnel for these wonderful girls.

  7. Hip Grandma Says:

    ALL ARRANGEMNTS WORK ONLY WHEN ONE IS WILLING TO ADAPT.Nature has seen to it that even unicellular organism survive only when they co-exist.Dominance results in the survival of one species at the cost of another.Evolutionary history indicates that the mightiest of living organisms have perished after having dominated the planet for a considerable period of time.Social norms of the present times indicate that men and women need to co exist not only as life partners but also as colleagues and neighbors.The sooner this is realized the better for society.or else the society may show a retrogression which may not be condusive for its growth.

  8. I think I have seen both sides of the table on this one. I was a serious career oriented professional till I turned 27, resisted all attempts at marriage - and then when I folded into marriage - i went the whole hog - left my home, my country, my job - everything and became a Stay at Home Mom.
    And you're right - our expectations of ourselves and of our partners have changed so much, but men somehow are still stuck in a time-warp where they want 'a girl like my mom'. or they want a professional girl who also takes care of the home. And there is so much to loose - if you get stuck in a bad relationship.
    A friend of mine - pushing 30 - found a man she liked - went ahead and asked him out - and what happened - he just backed off - obviously not ok with such a forward girl.
    You know to me - girls of today are like Draupadi - she asks for 5 qualities for her husband and she has to marry 5 men to get them - no single man can have all of them.
    Sad State this..... things havent changed even today :(

  9. I enjoyed reading the main post and the 8 mini posts (comments) :)
    I wonder if somewhere these is being made an issue unnecessarily. I feel in this day and age, you can have it all career, great family life/social life, kids etc...ofcourse it's going to be hardwork on both genders. I think somewhere these girls lack the inertia to be propelled out of their comfort zone.

  10. A.R.Malik Says:

    Pardon my ignorance, but why is marriage even an issue? Remember that Groucho Marx comment about it being a good institution, provided 1 wanted to stay in an institution... I'm 32 and feel no pressing urge to get married. I do realize that the social pressures are more intense for women, esp Indian women, but hey, let's think out of the box here for a second. As far as I'm concerned, marriage comes second only to organized religion as a source of unnecessary misery for a whole lot of people. Girls don't wanna marry? More power to them. And Sim, re sowing yr own wild oats...good for ya!

  11. passerby55 Says:

    Good post, Usha

    I have come across such who are eligible.

    I hear them say many a thots about marriage It indeed is a big step for them.

    they see/hear some bad marriages and have all such fears, thinking they too may have to face the same. Are the raising amount of divorces the reason for them to think so? or is it they are selfish with their share of demands.I wonder.

  12. passerby55 Says:
    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  13. Visithra Says:

    Something to Say : lol i couldnt stop myself from agreeing with you on the draupadi point ;)

    everyones point is quite near to the truth

    the other prob is most men feel threatened by the new age women - that they will have to give up a lot and that she will be a constant challenge for them or even surpass them - that's why you see them being friends with such women and marriying someone whose pretty docile ;)
    i totally agree on the conclusion u came too - most men just arent ready to accept the changes ;)

  14. Anonymous Says:

    its pathetically one-sided thought!!!
    I would personally want my wife to be more involved than me in bringing up my children, simply becoz of some extra powers that she has by virtue of being a feminine....
    i have personally never agreed that men can substitute women on certain issues, like maintaining house integrity, raising children,
    I know one thing for sure, if i were to raise my children alone without a hand in my wife being a major children will just be violent, anti-social creatures... I wonder you know what it means when they say "woman forms the backbone of social structure"....have u ever wondered if the spiritual status and value cult that India proposes for itself has any relationship with this special role that women play in the social structure....
    I am simply saying that this equal stakes theory in a family is good in theory but trust me...u know how the current generation is suffering from lack of values, social responsibilities etc etc...
    Its probably becoz people have bought this equal status theory,
    Its rather unfortunate that u even can come up with an idea that womens social role is a backward step!! If u just think a bit, u will know that men shy away from it more becoz they just dont think they are capable of it...
    I guess this male/female chaunism arises mainly due to the way men have projected themselves.
    From age old men have projected that these social roles are lower and that they are destined for more "revenue generation" roles. This projection is a subtle way of telling woman folk "I am not capable of handling the roles u hold in this society" .Its just that he is too egoistic to accept it. Predominantly, human creation is such that men are blessed with certain strengths and so are woman". Try asking your husband to bargain with a vegetable vendor, try asking him to manage a monthly ration, try asking him to find out what your childrens inherent strengths are(that u can understand without speaking a word out). Maybe ur husband will, but i am sure 95% of them are pretty bad at it.
    I agree that woman have done especially in todays context to take care of both...
    But I also know of woman who dont complain a bit about donning this dual role... its only a few noise makers like you who are heard again and again.
    I agree with what those guys told you to a large extent.I know exactly what they mean.
    When he meant "compromises", what he exactly meant was this social role that women are trying to run away from. Trust me, i am more than ready to share a large amount of workload, but is it essentially a good thing to do?? does it have a positive effect on your children?? I would be very curious to find out what your children are upto??
    The problem i feel is, the current generation of woman are simply not able to handle the freedom that they are enjoying, that no generation enjoyed (atleast in a 1000 years). And men are clueless as to how to handle this new age woman,[ becoz they have only seen the way the older generation woman were handled...i mean..u cant use the same tricks right??]
    All these are laws of nature, and like u said the solution arises as profoundly as the problem is!!

  15. Mahadevan Says:

    A very interesting article indeed and it needs a studied response and not merely an off the cuff comment.

    Marriage implies relationship of two people, two families and what more, even two social groups. In the earlier generation, the families and the social groups were asserting themselves, often subjugating the interest of the married partners. Today, thanks to better education, women's emancipation (atleast in the urban centres), financial independence and the needs of vocation, individuals have started asserting themselves. They realise that they can build up their own relations. As an employee's performance is tested before regularising his services, the relationships too are tested before they are regularised through marriage. Before regularising the relationship, as is the vogue today, they even do a little bit of 'due diligence '. I feel, relationships can survive cultural differences, but incompatability of value systems, would shatter them.

  16. Thenraj Says:

    You are right, the preference of the people changes as they move ahead in life.

    And more ever the current generation of people mostly live for the present and dont even bother about the future like the female in ur post. Some may disagree with me..for me we have to live for the present without affecting the future. We have to secure our future so that we can enjoy the present and when the future becomes present its enjoyable.

    As i am a male i am seeing lots of females everyday and lots of them are attractive and good in position. I can choose any one in that crowd. But according to me female who i am seeing day to day life are like fire flies, they are enjoyable for certain amount of time, but for the life time companion one should be responsible, and at the same time fun loving. Lets have enjoy the together with the safe future..

    Females in ur post just thinking Life is for fun, and that will get bored when they grows older, let life has everything fun, pain and every possible thing then only it will be meaningful..

  17. Anonymous Says:

    The article is slightly one-sided, but prob. is true. But it is not easy for me to see your POV, since I am not in the same position.

    Anyway, one of the aspects that no one talks about out of respect or due to the political correctness that Mathajis and Pithajis are the recepients of, in our culture is very simply this - A lot parents these days are not really concerned about their children getting married. In some cases they couldn't care less and make some appropriate noises so that people don't accuse them of neglecting their duties. What could be the reason ? Kids these days are a good source of income, esp. the ones in IT, software etc - many parents are enjoying standards of living that they could only have dreamt about. Prob. explains the high percentage of singles in these sectors. This applies to parents of both boys and girls. So when people ask me why I am not married at 30 plus or why inspite of being the only son I am not married I just shrug it off. 'But they won't let go - they ask me Your mother must be pestering you every day, since you are the only son ?"; How do I explain to these people that my mother has never asked me once or talked to me about my marriage. I am not cynical, this is most definitely not the reason all the time - this is something that hurts deeply that people either deny it, brush it away , or just call you crazy. Well, I can hear you asking, 'Why are so insistent on the traditional form of marraige ?'. My response is , if you parents are so modern and like to imagine yourself to be (say) parents in US, why don't you live off your own resources. And if you are so traditional, Isn't it time for VanaVas ?


  18. Usha Says:

    Shiv: Ultimately it is your life and you should decide what you want and not be pressured by others. I understand the state you are in.

    Sim:I enjoyed this comment a lot and thanks for sharing your take on the issue. I see the other issues involved now.

    Coffee: I disagree. In fact if they marry early without exactly knowing what they want and after marriage if they realsie that they havent got what they want it ccan be worse. There is no ideal age for marriage, in my opinion, it depends on when you find the right partner.

    Kishore: That is alarming.

    Art:I have also wondered if men are intimidated by very accomplished women. At the expense of sounding like an ad, I wonder if it takes a complete man to feel comfortable around a superwoman!

    Altoid: Thanks for the link. I enjoyed reading the post and agree with her views too.

    Hipgrandmom: Totally agree.

    STS:Draupadi syndrome huh? then they are in for the fate of draupadi - 5 husbands to please and serve yet none to be there when she needed help. It was finally her friend Krishna who saves her honour!
    I guess that should teach us all to know that there is no single person with everything and it is for us to decide on what is non-negotiable and what is not so important and make the appropriate choice.

    Orchid: Things have changed a lot in the past 50 years. Girls have the freedom to choose their partners, to know them before marriage and men are a lot more sensitive and accomodating too. But I guess this very freedom has widened the choices and made things more complicated.

    Abhilash:Lol @ Groucho Marx quote. There is then your category of people who look upon marriage as avoidable, but I am talking of those who would eventually like to marry and yet are in this kind of situation.
    Spoken like a responsible adult, encouraging a 24 year old to sow wild oats!!!( Sim , you seem like a nice girl, don't listen to him!)

    Passerby: I am more worried about those who are not scared of divorce but speak of it as a normal thing if things don't work out!

    Visithra:I heard about this from some girls too and I thought they were exaggerating!Perhaps that again proves art's point about feeling intimidated around very confident girls.

    Prashanth: I am sorry you understood my post as being my take on the issue. I was only throwing the issue open for discussion which I am happy to see it has generated - so many points of view!
    I see where you are coming from but I do not believe that children are a woman's responsibility and they can do a better job etc. She could do with a lot of help from the man which men have conveniently shirked in the years past. It is not rocket science. It is something you learn on the job.
    Second you dont need to "handle" the woman, just accept her as she is and let her be. She can "handle" her well enough without your "telling" her how she should be.
    yes, I am a noisemaker - why else would I blog?

    Mahadevan:Very well put.Yes I see it the same way too.

    Thenraj:That is a very superficial assessment. Girls who party and are extroverted are not fireflies. They are young and independent and single and they have healthy fun and socialising. They are responsible at work and once they have family responsibilities they will handle it well too. Times have changed. dont judge them using traditional norms. I have a great deal of respect for the young women and men I referred to in my post.

    K.a.R: I am sorry to hear that angle but I believe that there may be some misunderstanding here. Parents may be financially or emotionally dependent on their children but that doesnt mean they do not want them to marry. And I am sure software salaries are high enough for a person to maintain both parents and his own family.
    It could be that they do not want to interfere and want the son to make his own choice.
    Why do you think that a girl of your choice will not be happy to have your parents under the same roof?

  19. Alapana Says:

    "Try asking your husband to bargain with a vegetable vendor",
    After 8 months of my wedding my husband does it better than me,ofcourse i taught him and the good point is he is willing to learn.

    "try asking him to manage a monthly ration",
    He today makes a grocery list on first sunday of every month while i am busy,Again he never knew the diff between masoor daal or urad daal before,He is ready to learn and he shows off proudly when he succeeds what he tries
    now he tries cooking and he dosnt do it out of equality factor but because i want him to be independent and cook when he is hungry and alone.
    "try asking him to find out what your childrens inherent strengths are"
    Situation still not faced;p but sure will try to ask him this question when i have kids.

    He teaches me driving,makes me learn to stay alone or travel alone and leaves me to handle the finances and takes my help with his career decisions and helps me when i need the same.

    Now do i term this all as Equality theory which only this generation women created? No,this is natural if both women and men want to co exist in harmony and be happy in their respective roles which they make themselves,let not the socity decide on them.
    I got married when i turned 27,i dint want to marry before and i was not ready to get it into any relationship where traditional roles will play a major part.I wont preach that women should get married at an early stage to avoid too many choices and too much of independence as i heard from a lot of people before,Who are you to decide how much of what should be given to a women?
    let her decide on that and when she fails then it would be learning curve for her,let her learn through her experiences, be it with men or driving,(Not much diff acc to me,both need lot of practice;p}

    Todays generation lacks values? responsibilities? Not at all,maybe their perspective towards the value system changed which is good, anything which doesnt undergo change is not worth and becomes rotten. they are better equipped with choices and reasonable enough to make their own decisions,i am a teacher myself and seen men and women with lot of confidence for their age,they have an opinion abt everything,but the good part is they are ready to hear others views and change themselves.
    Women have different choices today,to marry or not to is up to them,and nothing wrong waiting till 30 or 35 for either of them, ultimately it should be a relationship which works out fine for both of them.
    Recently a got a mail from a blogger and he emphasized on a line "Trust me,men are changing,they are ready to take more responsibilities which traditionally were seen as a part of women's life,trust me,they are changing" and yes,i trust that,maybe slowly,but both men and women are changing and both are ready to accept that fact:)

    God knows what all i typed,i hope i make sense,if i dont then Ushaji,plz ignore the comment and think it all was a part of a Homealone lady with nothing much to do for today;p "

  20. Usha Says:

    Aalapana:Makes a lot of sense. In fact you pretty much echo my thoughts on the situation. I think youth today are very intelligent and sensitive and hence they dont want to jump into anything without careful analysis. if things go wrong, they are not willing to suffer it as fate but are quite capable of optin out and rebuild again.

  21. Thenraj Says:

    -/ USHA,

    May be the people whom i am meeting are like that..i think so..anyway i agreed to ur point..

  22. ~*sim*~ Says:

    alapana: that's awesome to hear from someone who is actually in the trenches. please don't feel like you were just randomly typing -- it made a lot of sense to me when i read it. and this cynical girl [cynical but NOT a firefly or a player or superficial or irresponsible, thank you very much] is also glad to hear there's hope out there for her ;) ;)

    and usha: don't worry, i'll be careful about what kinds of oats i sow. after all, i am a marriageable 24-year-old! :P

  23. Bijesh Says:

    Interesting post!!

    Yes, I totally agree that we - men - are still learning the ropes in this new generation of thoughts, social roles and a million other things. It won't happen overnight. It will take time.
    But not all of us are willing to learn or change, that's the sad reality.

    I don't know a woman's POV but I would think that the modern woman is also learning and getting-used to her freedom and such other.

  24. Thank you, thank you, Usha!!! It is so close to my experience (the male-female responsibility divide part, not that I'm eligible and unmarried).

    There're also some young men in my family and my husband's - not going to name them and embarrass, but the commitment-phobia, the not-to-appear-desperate-so-I-wont-approach epidemic is rife.

  25. Artnavy Says:

    Not connected- linked you on my current post

  26. Alapana Says:

    Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay,Ushaji,Atlast i can see your blog design as it is,Thank god,i dont know why i was unalbe to view it before but anything loaded from Blogger is not seen on my system or laptop also.But suddenly it started working and i can see the lovely blue here:)

  27. Anonymous Says:

    So many people have said so many things here - I wonder if I could add anymore.

    I believe, many of the problems stems,not in equality, but in the definition of equality we all individually have. My idea of equality, although quite appealing to hear, never have gained much acclaim from the opposite sex or elders.

    I believe that men and women are equal - total equals, regardless of age, creed, or religion - save in the only, but truly beautiful, factor that women have to ability to grow a new life within them. I've revered, adored, and loved them more for this singular factor, than many of their other traits.

    But when it comes to matters of the kitchen, or anything that is regarded 'feminine', I've never really minded partaking in them - because, in fact, what's there to mind? it's just another chore. Does it matter who does it? (but I realize quite well, that many men shirk when it comes to this)

    Yet in the same light, I expect, my partner to partake in the so called 'masculine', or, things-easier-for-men-to-do, matters (and by this, I don't mean heavy lifting). But the most prominent reaction I get, especially from Indian women, and even from some of the most strong ones I know is, 'I'm a woman, it's not easy for me to do that. You won't understand'.

    It is then, that I am irked beyond compare. Equality doesn't come from how people treat you - people, in a given circumstance, will seldom fail to treat you wrongly, unjustly, discriminatingly, and differently - equality comes from our minds. If we think we are equal to another - we WILL be equals to the other.

    This, I believe, many women, and men, fail to comprehend, and hence, all the problems

  28. Usha Says:

    Thenraj: I see what you mean.


    Biju: Sooner or later people will change or be left behind!

    Priya:I see similar things in my family too - sometimes when a man shares all the housework he is criticised too by....women of the family!!!

    Art: Thank you.

    Aalapana: Divs mentioned he could nt see the photos with IE. When i use IE I see the sealife pictures but not the photo the banner! I am too technically illiterate to know what the problem is!!
    But good you can see it now!

    abench: ya, and then there are some like this too! I have seen them too, in fact lots of them.

  29. Vinay Says:

    Hi Usha,
    I just came across your blogspot while browsing through the net. The recent post is quiet interesting and well written. Pre marriage syndrome is growing in India both within males and females. Your right character ethic such as integrity, humanity, courage, simplicity, justice and modesty are given a backseat when compared to the personality ethic such as public image, attitude, skills and techniques.

    As you have rightfully pointed out that the answers to these questions will be found as it has always been in the past.

    If you have read the book “7 habits of Highly Effective people” by Franklin Covey he states in one of the pages that “search your heart with all diligence for out of it flow the issues of life”. I has been delightful reading the post …:)

  30. Deeps Says:

    I am sorry to be commenting so late, but well after seeing some of the comments, wanted to.

    I was the kind that had crushes/infatuations during college, but never fell seriously in love. I had some fixed ideas about career and marriage, thinking 2 years of career and then go for marriage. But society has different ideas and parents do bend accordingly.

    After about 1 year of work, my parents were into the search already. And yes as somebody said, independent women do have certain ideas. I for one wanted a guy who earned more than me (to avoid ego hassles), who had studied more than me (again ego), who would be willing to treat me as an equal (let me study/work/do wahtever I wanted after marriage) and basically a friend. Does it seem like too much to ask? I thought not.

    But a couple of guys I met proved otherwise. I remember the first guy I ever "saw", was surprised by the mere fact that I knew a lot about F1 racing (!!). I was stunned. What did he expect me to be? Just one illiterate cow? I was determined not to wear a saree for any of this "seeing". Later found out that they would have preferred me to wear a saree and not work! While another guy got abusive in just the chat session we had before meeting (we never met, because of this factor), yet another guy admitted openly to drinking and smoking (said he did it for friends!! Can you believe that!).

    One guy spoke too much about philospohies and was earning less than me. I refused him as I really thought guys cannot handle the "woman earning more" factor. I may have been selfish, but I'd rather earn less than screw up my married life by earning more!

    I again told myself that I wasn't expecting too much, but was disappointed again and again. Then I met my husband. He fit everything I had asked for. But to be very honest, I didn't know whether to believe him or not! I mean how do you trust any word a stranger says? This might have been my insecurity, but I worried a lot for a couple of weeks about it until I decided to take a risk and take the plunge. The gamble, fortunately worked for me :). But I can't say it for everyone.

    I have seen 2 women (neighbours and friends) being promised a lot before marriage, then being treated miserably. One was a guy from US who married, said he'd get his wife later and left. Never got back to take her! Another was nice before marriage, after marriage starved his wife, beat her, did not let her work and what not! Thankfully she's out of the marriage now!

    These instances make it risky. A single person has to think 1000s of times before taking the plunge. Its not only women. For men, the woman coming in has to adjust to him, to his parents. Though there are a lot more nuclear families now, this is still a factor. The expectations are more. And not everyone meets the expectations and when you find one who does, he or she might be lying.

    Its become a difficult choice, so I guess people remain single until something clicks. But it again doesn't mean that if someone meets your expectations, everything will be hunky and dory. There will still be misunderstandings, still be problems, the couple have to face it together and be there for each other. A happy marriage takes work and better believe it!

  31. Usha Says:

    Vinay: Thanks for dropping by and sharing your views.

    Deeps: Interesting expectations and issues. As for working on the marriage, it is an everyday thing. Start from scratch each day. Believe me, I have done it for close to 28 years!

  32. Anonymous Says:

    here you go! my long overdue post on the subject :)

  33. AT Says:
    This comment has been removed by the author.

  34. Anonymous Says:

    I see that somebody here was praising about his husband willing to learn cooking, bargaining with veg vendor, ration....why on earth he is doing that...u r trying to make a female of him... gosh so what does a 'man' mean anymore, just another female...i am not sure this is what the females want from men!

  35. SuPra Says:

    all this is intellectual vanity or brain-shit.Sense of happiness n fulfillment from life is what matters ultimately.All these babblings n noises display ignorance.Relationships r not dresses r articles that r tested in trial room r in ur flirting territories(read as offices)n then selected.Wisdom in the place of intelligence;character,love,commitments,values are necessary than cold illogical logical comparisons r trials r testings r mesurings r flirtings.Whether u achieved millions,sexed n tried 1000 partners,worked 4 25 companies doesnot really matter when measured in terms of LIFE.Every human on this planet needs certainity,order,peace and stronger n deeper love n commitment,owning somthing(not material)to appease her ego.Marriage is evolutionary figment that meets this.Change is constant n necessary but it should be positive change that brings harmony in ones relationship,marriage,family or in LIFE.Alll those women musings are really yuckkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk!cmmon empowerment doesnt mean to discard values,mock relationships r to bitch around.

  36. SuPra Says:

    focus on equity than equality n wisdom than intelligence.