Hamilton, Madison, and Jay

This blog is devoted to a variety of topics including politics, current events, legal issues, and we even take the time to have some occasional fun. After all, blogging is about having a little fun, right?

Location: Mesa, Arizona, United States

Who are we? We're a married couple who has a passion for politics and current events. That's what this site is about. If you read us, you know what we stand for.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Arranged Marriages A New Trend?

I spotted this story from FOX News at the top of the Hot Air page. Curious, I zipped on over to find this story regarding the resurgence of the arranged marriage:

The best way to find your partner for life could very well be the oldest: the arranged marriage, according to one trend expert.

“Today is the era of the arranged couple who fall into love around the birth of the first child," said Marian Salzman, co-author of "Next Now: Trends for the Future."

"It sounds traditional, but in some ways so much of the future is back to the past, turbo-charged,” she said.

Arranged marriages have been part of many cultures for thousands of years, primarily born out of the desire and/or need for a financial, political or property-based partnership. As America expanded multi-culturally, this custom filtered through as certain ethnic groups sought to preserve cultural and class traditions.

But, contrary to the "old" arranged marriage, in which children are forbidden from choosing their own partners, the modern arranged marriage is not about being forced into federation. It’s about relying on the matchmaking mastery of Mom and Dad.

“This is about picking a marriage partner — not about falling into bed for a world-class romance," said Salzman, whose trend forecasts are based on pattern recognition and what stylemakers are talking about.

“There is a newfound interest in letting someone else solve the love dilemma,” she explained. “We’re on option overload, and we’re maxed out in terms of time, and we’d all love a partner. So it makes sense to enlist those who know us best to forge a proper and satisfying match.”

I should let readers know, before I go any further, that I spoke to Thomas about this piece. The reason? We did not exactly have today's "A-typical" courtship and marriage. The "courting period," as he called it was short prior to him popping the question. Our marriage was not welcomed by either side of the family, at first, then only grudging acceptance was given. Does that make this marriage doomed? Hardly. While his parents died before we were married, mine are still around. My mother has warmed up to him, and my father is, well, the same.

Arranged marriages, to me, sound seriously outdated. This was something done a long time ago to forge alliances between nations and people; to enhance the financial union between two families; it was even done by some as almost rudimentary eugenics (producing the next generation of smart or attractive people). None of these worked out very well. Inevitably, wars and disunion would occur. Mom and dad helped choose then, and this new trend would have them choosing now.

I do not think this "new trend" is really necessary. We live in a world today where it is a 24/7, go, go, go all the time. Thomas often says that the general populace of the world seems to have the attention span of a nanosecond; we never take time to stop and breathe. Marriage is a very big step in the lives of two individuals. They cease being two, and become one -- united until death and forsaking all others. Marriage is about love, not convenience, and it should not be treated like it used to be. Most arranged marriages did not work out too well, with one spouse being miserable because they were forced to marry someone they did not love.

We are traditionalists. We believe that the day people get married it should be one of the happiest days of their lives. And while the father is still typically asked for his blessing, it should not be the role of parents to locate a suitable spouse. It should be up to the couple as to whether or not they wed. Some may find this approach an interesting one to try, I see only those who truly love one another capable of making it succeed.

There are not hard and fast rules for marriage. It takes time to develop the feelings that couples nurture before taking the big step. For us, that time was short. I knew I loved him, and he knew he loved me. After the proposal, we learned more about each other before finally setting the date. It is not that we did not want to go through with it, but given how much we knew about each other in the beginning, it seemed only fitting to continue to grow with one another. By the time the day came around, we completely knew as much about each other as we possibly could. Since then, we have learned a lot of new things about ourselves. A few of our friends are stymied at how we conduct our marriage. To us, it is an equal partnership with both sides willing to compromise. After all, marriage is give and take. In my humble opinion, arranged marriages seem to give the air that the give and take is already enumerated somewhere, and the choices are not there for the couple.

I think we will stick to doing things the old-fashioned way. They have worked for thousands of years, and will continue to do so.



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