Arranged marriages have been an integral part of the Indian society. It has been reported that approximately 90% of marriages in India are arranged. A marriage is termed as “arranged” when it is proposed by people other than those getting married. The people responsible for the arrangement of the marriage can be parents, matchmaking agents, matrimonial sites or a trusted third party.
A 2013 IPSOS survey found that 74% of young Indians (18-35 years old) prefer an arranged marriage over a love marriage. According to a Bombay High Court hearing, divorces are higher in love marriages as compared to arranged marriages, in India. It is also a fact that India has a very low divorce rate of only 1.1% when compared to other countries in the world.
Arranged Marriage Vs Love Marriage:
An arranged marriage brings people who have been brought up with a similar belief system come together. This becomes an important aspect in building a base to the relationship. The chances of having cultural differences are less likely, removing one issue which is common in love marriages.
Love marriages need not necessarily happen between people of the same religion, culture, caste etc. This brings together individuals with different beliefs and cultures. They need to put in extra efforts to come to a consensus.
A similar belief system is paramount to a successful relationship. Sure, you do see examples of people with different beliefs making it work, but it’s far easier when you have that building block established in the first place.
In a love marriage, people tend to use pre-screening criteria that emphasize outward appearances (looks, possessions, etc.). These are short-term oriented but may not necessarily contribute to longer-term marital outcomes. Social psychologists have found evidence of “attractiveness matching” in which those dating, give heavy weight to the physical attractiveness of potential partners, and favor those whose attractiveness is comparable to their own.
When a marriage is arranged, there is an equality maintained while we are introduced to individuals for an arranged marriage. Education, finances, and the world views tend to match as families prefer those of equal stature. Therefore, this problem is solved as the prospects come vetted.
Contrary to conventional belief, it is not always advantageous to engage in thorough conscious deliberation before choosing. On the basis of recent insights on the “deliberation-without-attention” hypothesis, simple choices such as between different towels or clothes produce better results after conscious thought. But choices in complex matters such as between different houses or even marriage should be left to unconscious thought.
In an arranged marriage, the expectation level of the partners is comparatively lower than in love marriage. A couple entering an arranged marriage simply don’t know each other that well when compared to those beginning a love marriage.
When there is already a gap in knowledge, the expectations in return will be lesser. In-depth knowledge is crucial to forming accurate expectations, and more knowledge produces higher expectations.
Since there are lower expectations while having an arranged marriage, the chances of being let down are also reduced. As research on satisfaction judgments shows, when expectations are low, they are more likely to be met or exceeded, leaving the newly-wed highly satisfied.
While in India, we may have several heartwarming success stories about love marriages there will be more arranged marriage stories between strangers leading to lasting love. Marriage here is considered to be a lifelong commitment. The partners as well the family have a better understanding and acceptance of their differences. When there are lower expectations and there is a merger of families of equal stature, a strong base can be built. Therefore, in India where culturally arranged marriages are more acceptable than love marriages the chances of them being fruitful is higher. Thus, lesser chance of breaking the marriage.