Arranging Marriages – Part 28 (aka, The Whole Family is Involved)

Posted on: May 15, 2013

The other day, one of my Bhabhis (Bhabhi = wife of older brother or older male cousin) called me. She started off with: “So…. how are you?” and then very quickly swooped over to: “I heard of a boy in Atlanta. Are you dating anyone??”

As I told her, if I was dating anyone seriously, I would tell the whole family. Every day. Like, I’d find a way to bring it up in random conversation: “You had eggplant for dinner? Awesome. Did you know MY BOYFRIEND wears a purple shirt sometimes?”

Sadly, no – that’s not happening. In any case, she tells me that she met a friend who also has a cousin who lives here in Atlanta, and that her friend was looking for an ‘eligible girl’  for her male cousin, who is my age.  I said, sure, send me his info and let’s see what happens.

My Bhabhi gets the boy’s biodata and pictures and emails it over to me.

Yeah…………. I know the guy. We used to run in similar circles and hung out every once in a while. I actually thought he’d moved away, but I guess not.  Apparently, the push for looking for a girl for him is that his younger sister is getting married this summer so his family is looking for someone to make it a double wedding. HAHAHAHA.  Basically, the same shit my dad tried to pull last year with my younger brother’s wedding.

I called my Bhabhi back and let her know that I’m not interested now, and I wasn’t interested before – I explained that we know each other and if were ever going to have dated, we already would have.

She’s silent for a bit, and goes,

“I guess it’s different for me – I learned to love your cousin AFTER I got married. So I guess I don’t understand why it can’t be the same for you.”

And to be fair – she said this with no judgement. She and I, though both Indian females, grew up massively differently.

And that’s because she had an arranged marriage – my cousin went to India for about 3 weeks, met a few girls, chose one, she also liked him enough to say yes to the ‘proposal’ and that was 15 years ago. And they are happily married with teenage twins – and it totally did work for them, as well as for ALL my other cousins who got married the same way.

I don’t understand how she said yes to marrying my cousin after just meeting him a couple of times (and knowing she’d have to leave her family behind in India and move to the States), and she doesn’t understand how I can’t have found someone by my age. Both are fair questions.

And briefly, I wondered if it would work for me? I mean, let’s face it, what I’m trying isn’t working…maybe just throwing myself into something with the knowledge that there was no other choice but to make it work wouldn’t be a bad thing???  Maybe it would work? Maybe I could find that good Indian girl deep down inside me who was built to just say ‘yes’ to someone who’s good on paper….

… But I can’t. Let’s face it – that is not me. At all. As I told Bhabhi, if it didn’t work out, “We’d just be room-mates.”

So, the best part of this story is that when my Bhabhi sent me the email, her phone autocorrected the subject.

It should have read: “Biodata of Jay.”  Instead it read, “Bidet of Jay.”






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