Sunday, August 7, 2011

Matrimon(e)y Shopping...

Just the other night I was in the midst of my ‘happy hour’ of the day. Diving into my dinner plate while surfacing in between to check the ‘Newshour’ on ‘Times Now’. And so, it wouldn’t be wrong to say that I felt immensely disturbed as I heard the sound of my phone ringing. Irritated, I fumbled with the phone and pressed the green key.

“Hullo ?!?”

“Hi. What’s up ?” It was my rather eccentric friend on the other end.

“Ohh. How are you ?”

“Fine. You say.”

“Fine too. What’s news ?”

“No news. Just called.”

My sense suddenly shifted gears and went on to the sixth. This guy wouldn’t ever call at such an hour to ‘just call’.

“OK. Come on. Out with it !!!” I exclaimed.


“Who ? How ?? When ??? Don’t tell me you are getting married !”


So it had finally happened. The most awaited wicket had finally fell. With almost all my other batch mates having bitten the dust, we all were keenly waiting for this piece of news. Betting each other if this was really possible in this very world. This weird fellow, taking the path to matrimony was one of the most laughed about imaginations amongst our batch. And now it was going to be true.

“You see…” he began. “It was rather a lucky thing. Though I didn’t want a doctor girl, and she’s a Pathologist, but it’s fine since she’s not a clinician. And secondly, she’s from my own city. And most importantly, her dad is a Pediatrician and her mom is a Gynaecologist. So I have all the main departments in my upcoming hospital taken care of !”

And then he grinned. Though I didn’t see him grin, I knew him well enough to know that he was grinning right then. As if I could hear him grinning.

“I’ve also found a girl for you.” He continued.

“Ok. Keep her safe. I’ll collect her when I come there next time.” I replied.

“No. Seriously. What type of a girl do you want ? A medico ? Or a non-medico ??” He was persistent.

“Neither a medico, nor a non-medico !!!” I was beginning to lose it by this time.

“Ohhh. So you’d want an engineer… ?” It suddenly seemed to beam to him. And that was when I burst out laughing. And I was soon into fits of laughter as he further tried to describe how a non-medico was the term used for a housewife and things to that effect.

Putting that incident aside, I really wonder how we, in India, literally shop for a spouse. I mean, just talk to any budding groom or his family. They are absolutely clear about what they are looking for in a bride. Apart from the age old caste/fair/tall/English-speaking/etc. people are not only concerned about the girl being working or not but also very specific about the job she does. Some prefer a girl with a job while others opt for a homely housewife. They look for all the required specifications to be met just as they would buy a consumer product.

In other words, a working girl would mean an extra source of income into the household. It is even better if her job is complementary to that of her husband’s. So that they can easily setup a combined establishment.

On the other hand, a homely housewife would be expected to take care of the home and kids. And actually, without even being paid for it. The guy doesn’t really need a soul mate. He simply needs a working hand at home without any additional cost.

In fact, I have been witness to a case where the match couldn’t work out because the groom’s family had a problem with the prospective bride’s work hours. She was supposed to be at work during hours when they needed her to be at home.

In my own field of doctors (including many of my batch mates) I’ve seen a surgeon wanting a gynaec. wife. A pathologist wanting a pathologist. And so on. And some of my friends have tried to reason with me by telling me that one has to be practical. So one needs to know what’s best for oneself.

So, just as one has all the specifications for a much needed product in mind, before he goes out to shop for it, similarly it’s the case with arranged marriages in India. People have a clear list of requirements at hand before they go out to shop for a bride or a groom. In fact, marriage is just another necessity to fulfill life’s requirements as one spends his or her life. And such people usually follow the principle of ‘love what you get rather than get what you love’.

How can someone marry just to fulfill some needs in life which are invariably related to money ? And thus chooses a life partner who’d be a help in the fulfillment of those monetary gains ?? It boggles my mind !

So, it’s no wonder when some of my aunts, who are distant relatives of some of my other aunts, are busy spreading the word around to look out for ‘doctor brides’ for me.

If only they all knew… I HATE SHOPPING !!!


(Image courtesy : Google Images)


  1. Haha, best was "“Ok. Keep her safe. I’ll collect her when I come there next time.” I replied."

  2. A working wife is the need of the times in we live...the times of hire and fire...

    But a wife who loves rather than who works makes more sense anyday.All the best!

  3. good one shobit.. Loved it... :D

    Before falling in love with my senior in college (who is my husband now) I knew that if I do not find anyone for myself, my parents will get me married soon... So according to my mindset, I had some demands..

    He should know to laugh if I crack a joke. I mean wholeheartedly.
    He should have a good sense of humour. That will show that he is intelligent.
    He should be an engineer ( cz I am one and if he is also one then he will understand my lifestyle and field and might help me get a job with his contacts)
    He should let me work... :P

    I din search for such guys in college... Coincidentally he also had all these qualities...

    When u know ur parents are going to force u and when u also feel lonely and want a partner, u put forward such priorities.. I know all see only the work and money-related stuffs but you can also see the person's character na.. Depending on your own priorities.. Arranged marriage is always an embarrassing concept.. It is the duty of the guy and the gal to cooperate and speak wholeheartedly and decide for themselves..

  4. Rashmi :

    :P Hehe. You know, I actually said that to him. As if it was some gift for me that he had found. :D

  5. Alka Gurha :

    Exacty. People nowadays are looking for a 'working' wife because that's the need. In fact, a 'working' wife is a means of fulfilling the financial needs of the family.

    I don't have any issues with a wife being a 'working' one. The only thing that irks me is how people want a 'working' girl as wife.

    The bottom line is, people want a wife... not a soul mate. And they marry because of their needs. Not because of love. :-)

  6. Preethika Shenoy Padiyar :


    You know what... At the end of my post, I had wanted to ask the readers about a girl's perspective about groom hunting. But I forgot to add it there.

    And you gave such a lovely description of what goes on in a girl's mind along with the reasons for it too. :-)

    And speaking of character, well, I'll have to write a complete post on that too.

  7. If u wanna know about a gal's problem in indian weddings, watch this movie Toh baat Pakki... :) u'll know...

  8. Whether it's arranged or love marriage, people have certain requirements or as I put it, expectations from their better half :) You may not exactly put it into words, but you will have some expectations yourself. You will realize that once you start the bride hunt.. Even girls have such expectations, so I dont think it is bad to be clear about what kind of person you want to spend your life with :)
    And in arranged marriage, you cannot look for good nature etc easily, because you hardly get time to know each other. So qualifications, looks are the things people go for..

  9. Preethika Shenoy Padiyar :


    Appears to be a Hindi movie... is it ? I don't watch any new Hindi movies. I guess I just don't have the aptitude for that. :P

    But will surely have a look if I come across it. :-)

  10. Avada Kedavra :

    Yes. I wanted to convey exactly that. People want to search because they have some needs to fulfill. Either monetary or otherwise.

    But I didn't mean about expectations. That's a bit different. One can expect good nature from one's spouse. But how can one expect a particular profession in a spouse ?

    I guess love doesn't see anything else. It's impossible not to fall in love with a person just because he or she is not from a particular profession. But people tend to overlook that and still go for their requirements which shows their search for a spouse is just to fulfill their life needs.

    That's why I would never opt to 'bride hunt'. I don't want to search for someone just because I have to. And therefore, I don't have any 'requirements'. I'd let it stike me without any warning. :P :-)

  11. Humorous truth I would say.. :) I am not sure if marriage was always been a necessity. But I am sure, people do have lot of expectations from their ideal match. To some extent it makes sense to compare it with retail market as you mentioned :P .. But ideally, I think it also makes sense to have certain expectations. After all, every single person may not have love marriages, but there are cases where people are happily married though it was arranged.

    So, what I am trying to say is - it is always good to know what you want from the partner you are looking for (but it has to be reasonable & practical). No matter if it is love/arranged - if both of them have similar mentalities & expectations then why not? But then, there will be differences in opinions. You see, nobody is perfect. So it would require some sort of compromises. (which is fine unless it affects your values)... And it is very important to clear out these things before coming to any conclusions. As it will be one of the biggest decisions of life. And I think, if these things are not discussed, even a love marriage wouldn't last too long...

  12. Sunil Padiyar :

    You mentioned a few things here that I skipped in my post above.

    "After all, every single person may not have love marriages, but there are cases where people are happily married though it was arranged." - In fact, I've seen so many couples from arranged marriages who look completely happy. Maybe, it's because both of them managed to find the exact requirements in each other.

    And I'm not saying it's wrong to make any compromises. But maybe people don't want to make any compromises that's why they search for the exact requirements.

    My point of view is that when it's love, then any differences get sorted out without much fuss. (Well, that's what I believe. :D) Two people in love wouldn't (rather, shouldn't) sit and discuss their professional aspects before getting married. They should marry anyways... shouldn't they ?

    As far as me, I don't have any requirements. Yes, expectations are there of the other person being nice as a human being. But that would automatically be one of the reasons I would get into love anyways. :-) Just that I don't think of any requirements, because for me, I don't want a wife. If there would be someone so special, then I would marry her. :-)

    But then again, I'm not called crazy for no reason... :D

    Thanks for reading and the nice reply. You both are a wonderful blogging couple. :-)

  13. @ Shobit:

    Thanks re... :)

    About the expectations, you are wrong.. Even in love marriages you will have expectations.. Like in my case, I was in love (I am still) but I was not sure if I should accept his proposal or not.. Cz I wanted to work and have my space.. Have my own decisions and I did not want to be forced into anything.. I was not sure if I will get that.. so we spoke and sorted out the matter and he also agreed that he will let me be, which is why I accepted his proposal... The 'main uske saath ek saadi me bhi guzaara kar loongi' type fundas are only in movies where everything goes perfect.. Perfect example is in the movie Zindgi na milegi dobara ka Abhay and Kalki..

  14. The simple fact about life is that people change every 6 months.. Some things about them will be constant but many things will change.. It is difficult to know how a person can change when a big change happens in their life like commitment or wedding..

  15. So well put :)

    We do shop for brides/grooms, don't we...
    Made me think..

  16. Preethika Shenoy Padiyar :


    I know I may be wrong as per everyone's practical views. But it's not because I'm in some fantasy world like they show in Hindi movies.

    I mean to say, if there is someone so special, then anything else wont matter. Be it religious beliefs, caste rituals or professional preferences, it just wouldn't matter. The person would be the most important to me than anything else.

    When I say I don't have any expectations, I meant I don't have any pre-requisites for a probable spouse so that I can find one. I don't want to search just because everyone is supposed to marry.

    Yes, there are always expectations from the special person in one's life. But that would be the very reasons for me to fall in love in the first place. So obviously, any other thing doesn't and wouldn't matter.

    Though, these are my personal views. As I said above, I'm not called crazy for no reason. :D

    And I dont watch many Hindi movies. Specially not any new ones. :D

  17. Priyanka :

    :D Yes we usually do.

    Welcome to my blog. :-)

  18. Hi Shobhit,
    Feeling really good to hear all dis from a guy especially :)
    And i hav experienced dis People actually have created a wishlist and dat includes everything :(
    They don't want a wife dey r actually looking for a juggler who can do multiple tasks simultaneously :)
    And i feel very few guys like shopping ;)

  19. Hello Shobhit,
    Dis is AWESOME :)
    I feel people r not looking 4 a life partner anymore though dey say so but they r actually looking 4 jugglers :)
    And i believe very few guys like shopping ;)

    1. Gitanjali :

      Thanks for liking the post. :-)

      Yes, people are actually out shopping for a bride instead of finding a life partner. And I can very well understand what you must be going through. But, just enjoy the funny part of it all. :D

  20. Hey. I am so glad you asked me to go through this post. I couldn't agree more to whatever you penned down. People definitely have a particular set of 'requirements' before posting up their profile on or!And the sites too help them publish their requirements with the column of REQUIREMENT in bold letters!
    Sometimes I just don't understand the concept. Why can't you like a girl/guy for who they are and not for what they do! I wonder...

    1. Writing Bee :

      Thank you for reading and liking this post. :-)

      And yes, my thoughts about this are simple. If there's someone I want to spend my life with, I'll marry her. But I'll not marry someone just because that would fulfill the needs in my life, monetary or otherwise, just for the sake of marrying. :-)

      But I guess people think practically and their priorities are different (money). :-)



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