This paper explores advantages and disadvantages of love marriage and arranged marriage. The arguments and counter arguments of each theory are provided by author’s own experience and researches by Baas (2007), Xiaohe (1990), Blood (1967). The views on the matter are subdivided into traditional and modern. This paper displays pros and cons of each theory. It consists of introduction, argumentative part, counter argumentative part, recommendations and conclusions. Each of the part consists of arguments and comments along with observations and reviews.
Are There Any Advantages of Arranged Marriage Over a Love Marriage?
All around the world people find comfort by sharing their life with someone. Sharing your life with someone in other words means marriage. People get married to settle down and begin their life with someone they feel is the right person for them. This essay is going to talk about if there are any advantages of arranged marriage over a love marriage.
The difference between arranged marriages and love marriages lies in the fact that in case of the arranged marriages the family chooses who you marry, and who they think is suitable for you. On the other hand, in love marriages you choose who you want to spend the rest of your life with. People should choose who they want to spend the rest of their lives with, not their families.
The advantages of the arranged marriage are that the family pays for the whole wedding and other necessary costs. Another benefit of the arranged marriage is that the family will get along with the person they chose because it is their choice. Some of the advantages of the love marriage are that the person already knows who he/she is getting married to and why he/she wants to marry this specific person. Also, there will be fidelity between them because they choose each other, and they are in this together.
In spite of this, people should be ready to face some disadvantages of arranged marriage as well as love marriage. The main disadvantage of arranged marriage is that parents and relatives sometimes can make mistakes; they are not always able to do the right choice. Marriage leads people to deal with feelings such as love, passion, tenderness, fidelity; they should be genuine and not to come artificially. Another drawback is that people who are going to marry with their parents’ direction are actually not always ready to marry. So, in the future, they will face with the problems leading to divorces. Some people believe that divorces rate is low in arranged marriages, but presumably the reason is the husband and wife are not willing to be left without their parents’ and relatives’ support as the marriage is arranged by them.
Actually, there are some disadvantages in love marriage. The thing is people who are in love with each other, in most cases, are going to marry spontaneously. In the other words – they take a great risk as they are far from reality because of passionate love. And after the wedding, the couple can think they should have waited. Additionally, if couple’s parents are against the marriage, the wedding day will not be the happiest time for the couple. In some eastern countries, such as India, the love marriage is going to become denying the ancient traditions and culture, in seek of happiness young people are to run into extremes, leaving and not communicating with their families, or breaking their relations. Though this choice is not simple, many people all across the globe choose love. They are eager to love and be loved.
There are two main tendencies to define the way people are to choose their spouse to marry to. The traditionalists believe that there are great advantages of arranged marriage over a love marriage and families should decide all against of couple. When thinking this way, there is no need of feelings expression. Another tendency is treated as modern and it is characterized by idealizing “the love match”.
When speaking about advantages of arranged marriages, it is worth saying that traditionalists’ point of view is simple – as the young couple don’t know each other well and there are no romantic feelings between them during premarital period, so there are more chances to get to know each other better and forge good common bonds, not only between a man and a woman but also between their families. As these bonds appear, the specific forms of mature and stable love will arise between people.
Another advantage is the financial stability of a young couple. Financial problems mostly arise in developing countries so families’ support is especially needed. If the parents and relatives pay the whole wedding costs and other expenses, it is much easier for young couples. It comes out from the dependence on the family in the young age. Most of the arranged marriages in the East are made between young girls from the poor families and rich old men who try to show their success, or sons of wealthy parents. Do people see any advantages in arranged marriages? Perhaps they do, when poor families dream of the financial stability of their daughters.
And it is a stable background of arranged marriages. It is in religion, traditions, and customs. People are eager to defend themselves as much as it possible. Traditions stand over time and live in the minds of the representatives of the whole nation for long. Love breaks the rhythm of time, love is blind, spontaneous, and passionate, and it overcomes the troubles, when they tend to arise. But most of people all over the world fall in love several times in life. How do they know which one is true, real, long lasting, and should lead to marriage? On the other hand, if a couple is religious and gets married in an arranged way, they predictably have much in common – customs, traditions, and interests. Two people are involved in common things; they share success or troubles and they can become close friends. They are of the same way of thinking, manners; they are from the same world. They don’t depend on chemistry that the love is. This is traditionalists’ point of view. Actually, it lives in the centuries as a vital concept, though the world is changing and people of different cultures, political views, and traditions are becoming much closer to each other. Thanks to globalization, the world turns to one big village with different people but common way of thinking. People are able to fall in love even on the Internet, they are placing their profiles on dating websites, meet each other on lines. An acquaintance is easier to provide.
So what about an arranged marriage? Baas (2007) calls it “arranged love”, underlining the attempts of families to organize everything for their children, including their future and feelings. How should love be arranged? This is the main question people who are getting married in different countries are eager to answer.
Love is really curious thing. When two people fall in love with each other, all the advantages of an arranged marriage seem to be gone with the wind. As a fresh feeling tends to be the most colorful, unique and fantastical, like in good old movies when the world belongs to the couple.
Before beginning to describe the advantages of a love marriage, it is worth to distinguish its characteristics: 1) people have a right to choose their life partners; 2) usually, people live together before marriage and it is a chance to get to know each other well; 3) families are not involved in choosing the mate, they have to accept their children’s choice; 4) often a couple has to leave their parents and break the relations with the families, as they are trying to arrange their marriage.
The main advantage of a love marriage is that it goes along with the feelings. As a rule, two people know each other well before getting married. They can live with each other for a couple of years and then decide to build long-lasting and stable relationship. People understand each other, they are close friends already, and additionally, they trust each other. They know each other’s temper, likes and dislikes, so living together is not quite difficult task for them.
Another advantage of a love marriage is a high level of fidelity between two people. Undoubtedly, it is a main characteristic of this kind of marriage. When people are in love with each other, they are ready to express their feelings, talk about everything in the world. Though for many people, it is a complicated thing.
One more benefit of a love marriage as it represents a chance for people to express their independence, their right to choose with whom to spend their life with. This chance is of great actuality nowadays, when human rights tend to overcome the religious traditions, living for centuries. It is not a secret that in many big cities of the world, where previously arranged marriages dominated, nowadays people are of more rights to choose their soul mates to get married with.
So love marriages stand on the main aspects of life – trust, care, fidelity, understanding, readiness to take care of a new family as a significant unit of a modern society.
Nowadays, the aspect of disadvantages of the arranged marriages is disputed by supporters and critics of arranged marriage theory. “Critics of arranged marriages can point to cases that make this seem quite unlikely – of a young and vital woman married off to an old and feeble man, or to a deformed son of a wealthy family, and so forth” (Xiaohe and Whyte, 1990). It comes as a rule in societies with strong traditions and religion, led by stereotypes. Can a thought that people in such marriages are happy represent the truth? Of course, a couple has a right to be happy even in case of arranged marriage. But if they belong to different worlds, if they don’t know each other well (or they get acquainted on the wedding day), there is a weak possibility to be happy.
Another disadvantage is represented by the thought that people who are getting married in an arranged way are not actually ready to get married at all. It is up to their parents to make a choice, so a couple often gets confused about it. Normally, a man and a woman are getting married if they have feelings, if they feel their love is strong to endure all the troubles reality brings to life. And if they doubt, a couple has a chance to wait and prove their feelings, try to live together for a couple of years in order to get to know each other well, and check if they are compatible to each other. It is what people call to pass a test of time. People believe that if their love is strong, it is able to survive in any case.
Mijar (2002) points out that “arranged marriages are not the ideal sort of marriages. Having an arranged marriage does not mean that the married couple remains happily ever after or that there is a harmony in the relationship. Women have been known to stay on in abusive relationships for the sake of family pride, respect in society etc. Even in an arranged marriage, there is a different sort of pressure to be fair-skinned and beautiful”. The author gives an example of India, where “the evil of dowry, caste and community issues and the concept of matching horoscopes, sometimes taken to its extreme levels, have contributed much to the argument against arranged marriages”.
Mijar’s arguments against arranged marriages seem to represent the ideas of “love match” theory supporters. Families of couples are often led by obsolete traditions. Parents are aware much that their choice is right in case if the stars and horoscopes are studied by them. It gives the critics of arranged marriages a great field for discussions.
Arranged marriages are also often criticized for the abuse in the young family. Women are forced to live with a violent man for the sake of children, family pride and the fear. It is not quite normal practice.
Further, let us consider disadvantages of love marriage. Traditionalists criticize it for the “high divorce rates in modern societies, characterized by freedom of mate choice” (Xiaohe, 1990). Critics point out that it is “the evidence of the problems, inherent in love matches” and “that arranged marriages have virtues that are not appreciated by people in Western societies” (Xiaohe, 1990).
The reasons why the divorce rates, concerning arranged marriages, are lower than love marriages (family pride, fear, abuse, less rights) are pointed out above. These problems are of great actuality nowadays, especially in the societies of strong traditions and views, for example, in India and some eastern countries.
Another argument against love marriages is formulated by traditionalists (Renne, 1970; Hicks & Platt, 1970). All their studies are formulated by the phrase, “love matches start out hot and grow cold, while arranged marriages start out cold and grow hot” (Xiaohe, 1990). It means that in the period prior to marriage two people idealize each other as their feelings comes to romantic stage. Then, when married, “reality sets in, and some combination of domestic chores, child care burdens, financial anxieties, and mundane life with a less-than-ideal real life partner leads to a more or less inevitable decline in romantic feelings and satisfaction with the relationship over the years”.
When accepting this point of view, one is to take a risk to run into extremes. Two loving and caring people really take their decision to marry spontaneously, like a love coming suddenly and unexpectedly. But in spite of this, a couple dream about a wedding day (especially women), once they fell in love with each other. Romantic feelings are able to develop in a long-lasting love as people get to know each other better and get married. As a rule, people become close friends first, and then, goes romantic love between them.
But most of the people use to fall in love not once but several times. Moreover, some men and women are proud of it. They say they don’t want stable relationships, leading to marriage. If they don’t want to take obligations, they are really not ready for marriage, either it is love or arranged.
When taking into account all the arguments and counter arguments for arranged marriage, it is worth saying that argues on the matter continue for many centuries. Each theory has its supporters.
Nevertheless, one can prove his theory by examples only. So every researcher has their own point of view on the matter.
To my mind, every human being has a right to choose with whom to spend their life with and whom to marry to. People should make a right choice. And it is possible if relationship between a man and a woman are full of love, care, fidelity, faithfulness. These elements are integral parts of relationship in marriage.
So if people are going to get married, they should take into account all the pros and cons, in order that their marriage can last for years, in order to make their children happy.
After examining additional sources, reading the papers on the matter and taking into account pros and cons of arranged and love marriages, I should draw some conclusions that will help to understand if there are any advantages of arranged marriage over love marriage. So, I have found that:
- Arranged marriage has advantages and disadvantages.
- Love marriage has advantages and disadvantages too.
- There are supporters of the “arranged match” theory among the researchers.
- There are supporters of the “love match” theory among the other researchers.
- People should have a right to choose with whom to spend the rest of their lives with. It is basic human right – with whom to live.
- Love marriage is full of love, care, fidelity, while arranged marriage is full of unknown.
- People are not always ready to get married, even if their marriage is completely arranged by their parents and relatives.
- Arranged marriages are typical for developing countries, where women are not well educated; their families are trying to support them financially, choosing rich husbands.
- Arranged marriages are typical among young people, who really need support of the parents and relatives in choosing their spouses.
- Love marriage is more typical in Western countries, while in the East, people traditionally get married in an arranged way.
- Love marriages are more common in modern world.
So I have found out that love marriages are of more value than arranged marriages, as parents can not know everything about couple’s compatibility.
And though there are arguments and counter arguments for each theory, love marriage appears to be better in modern world. Love marriage helps people to be self-confident and independent.
Love marriage has to deal with human feelings. Where there is love, there is trust and readiness to sacrifice. Many people all around the world are eager to love and be loved. They are trying to find their perfect matches in the street, at the cinema, on Internet. No matter wherever people are, they are always seeking love, when they feel lonely or abandoned.
And when people finally find love, there is no limit for happiness, as they feel joy.
There is a consumption that people love that they are beloved. It seems to be true. As when one expresses their feelings for the other, some chemistry appears to be between them.
Love has no limits, and when humans fall in love they forget about everything, thinking about beloved one. So love marriages must be really happier than arranged ones.