Love Marriage in Nepal
Love Marriage in Nepal: – Marriage in Nepal is a very complicated matter. Unlike in the western country where two people fall in love and decide to marry in order to together do not quite apply in the general case of Nepal. It is not an individual decision. Instead, it is a social decision. Families and societies get together to decide upon a marriage.
There is an elaborate kind of meetings and arrangements that occur before deciding upon a marriage. First is when the groom’s family finds out about the girl and her family who have been proposed for the marriage. The family first has to decide whether the girl is suitable and the family is also respectable. If the family is positive, then only the boy or the to-be groom is allowed to see the girl. The girl and boy cannot, however, meet each other privately.
Both the families come together and this is when the girl and the boy see each other and upon some public exchange of talks, they have to decide whether they want to get married to that particular person or not. Arranged marriages of this kind are the most popular and the most sought-after type of marriages in Nepal. In all of the arrangements that take place, love between the girl and the boy is not even an issue to be discussed. The focus is on whether the two would be the right match not if they would fall in love. Love is supposed to happen by chance in the later parts of their life after marriage.
This is the acceptable form of marriage among the upper and middle-class people in Nepal. Even until today, the marriage where the boy and girl fall in love and decide to marry is very rare and is not given that much of respect as arranged marriage. Love marriages are still a taboo. Of course, at this day and age when after a legal age, individuals are allowed to marry whoever they want to marry, the family and the society does not recognize love marriages.
Love marriages, as rare as they may be, do not end up very well too. Because once a girl and a boy decide to marry across cultures and religion, the family and society show zero tolerance. They do not cooperate and we often hear of cases where family pressurizes the boy and the girl to break the relation off. Or, they are asked to leave the family. In many cases, the couples decide to leave all their belongings and stay away from the family. They are treated as an outcast by the family and the society. They are not allowed to participate in social functions and celebrations or are just straightaway disowned by the concerned families.
So, love marriages in Nepal is still a concept that is looked with contempt. Everyone in their family would have had a few cases where love affairs have been disregarded by the family and because of that, they had to marry someone else for the happiness of the family and the society. In such cases, the people are supposed to just forget their love and their want in order to please the family and the society.
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So, as it is, the society in Nepal is one that is very suppressed in its own love and happiness. Such repressed society is not a very healthy environment to be in. So, it is the time that love marriages are given due regards. It should be recognized as the right of adult individuals to choose their own life partners the way they want to.
Reasons why love marriages are not the norm in Nepal
Even to this day and age, love marriages are not the acceptable norm in Nepal. Even though few people have now started accepting love marriages, it is still supposed to be something that is done against the interest of the family and the community.
It is made to look like an offense against the will of the family. Few educated people and people from the city areas have started to accept these kinds of marriages. But, even then it is regarded as something not desirable in the orthodox social circle. Given below are few of the reasons why love marriages are not the norm in the traditionally oriented Nepali mindset.
Love marriage is not the Tradition
Traditionally, Nepali marriages happen when families get together and arrange the whole thing between two matching couples. Individual preference is never even thought of as an issue that should be taken into consideration. And when generations after generations this thing has been going on, it becomes a norm and a tradition. Our parents and grandparents were raised in that kind of environment.
So, obviously, they would also expect our generation to comply with the same rules as far as possible. The way they understand, arranged marriage is the best option there is for anyone who wants to marry. So, they do not recognize love marriage as a possibility with a good outcome. That is why, out of tradition too, arranged marriages are preferred to love marriages in general.
Society reserves the right to match couples
To marry the children is the duty of the parents. That is how the society has made every rule. As a result, the responsibility of finding the right match and to marry their son or daughter becomes something that is of utmost importance. For the marriage of their sons and daughters, the society starts looking for a perfect match from their very young age itself. And when it is the society and family which is looking for the partner, of course, they would not be worried about love, they would only be worried about matching.
They would consider things like salary, job, good house, looks and everything else that ensures a comfortable lifestyle. Love is not even a thing that they would consider while matching a marriage. That is why, in the society like this, love marriages are not the norm and arranged marriage is much more prevalent than any other.
Many pre-requisites need to be matched before marriage
There are many limitations in the society when it comes to marriage. Things like class, caste, religion, birth charts and everything need to be very closely matched before marriage between any two individuals. Inter-caste or inter-religion marriage or any relation where the two parties are different from each other is not allowed. In fact, the society would not accept inter caste or inter-religion marriage at all.
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Apart from that, even the birth charts between these two people are compared for compatibility test. If the chart shows any kind of astrological defects that marriage should not happen, the marriage is halted then and there. There is no marriage when the priests decide that astrologically, the given two individuals are not a good match with each other. In such conditions, love marriage would not be possible in a society like what we have here.
The Rising Popularity of Love Marriages in Nepal
With the turn of the century, instances of love marriage have also started to be heard time and again in Nepal. Nepali society is getting more educated and has started respecting individuals happiness rather than worrying about the society and traditions. People have understood the fact that unwanted traditions need to be rooted out and traditions that go well with the society and make individuals happy should be followed.
That is the reason love marriages have been on the rise in today’s society and culture. Youngsters these days reserve the right to choose and marry their preference rather than going for the one society and family approves for. Given below are few of the reasons why love marriages are on the rise in the society of today:
As people are getting more educated, they have realized the fact that before belonging to any caste, creed, or status, humans are humans. And humans do fall in love. When it comes to love, all these things like caste, creed, status and family circumstances do not matter. It is the decision of the individual regarding who he or she wants to spend their lives with. It is not the decision of the family or the society.
Family and society can only be the support system when it comes to marriages but cannot be the ones to decide who to fall in love with or who to spend their lives with. Education has become a reason why this kind of awareness has come to the people in Nepal. Because of education, they have realized that people should not bother about other’s personal life and should respect every individual despite their religious, social or economic standing.