Marriage, in India, is a tradition that has survived through the centuries and generation. Unlike Western culture where people have free choices, in India marriage is still a family matter. Love Marriage exists in the urban society but Arranged Marriage is still the appreciated option. And if you are the parent of a girl, marriage becomes one of your biggest responsibilities. Once your little girl reaches a certain age, hunting for a good boy becomes your foremost action. Some go the traditional way…put up advertisements in newspaper, some randomly spread the word around the town, many call their family priest to seek advice, and almost every parent visit the temple to secretly whisper in God’s ears.
In the marriage market, NRI category is the most lucrative. Many parents have, often times, secretly wished for an NRI groom and envied those who managed to get hold of one. But are you actually willing to give your daughter’s hands to somebody from an altogether different world? Or, is an NRI tag reason enough to pack your girl off?
Being an NRI bride isn’t easy. With marriage, she alienates herself from her family and friends, and then she is thrown into an environment of new faces, new language, new food, new ways of life, and with an expectation that ‘she will adjust’. Adjustment is a gradual process; it’s like wearing another skin so being completely comfortable takes time and those with uptight upbringing may find Western values intimidating! Life can be frustrating at times for the career oriented women especially who have had a thriving career back in India because once you are here without a work permit or a Green Card, you never know when you are getting back to work!
But life, as we know is a delicious concoction of the good and bad. Marrying an NRI takes you to bigger, better, brighter shores. You start living in luxurious apartments and drive fancy cars. Breathe fresh air and drink clean water. You get tremendous opportunities and appreciation of what you do. You start earning in Dollars and Euros, and fulfil your travel dreams. And the most important acquisition is Freedom. You have the liberty to do What You Want To without having to think what the society will think.
Marrying an NRI and living abroad can be fun if you embrace Western culture while you retain your core values. It can be exciting if you are flexible and not adamant about ‘I am an Indian’ and therefore ‘I will just stick to everything Indian.’ Be open to experiments – try the world famous Mc Donald burger, treat yourself to English movies once in a while, celebrate Christmas with your neighbor, keep aside your salwar kurta for a day and try on that trendy skirt, and most important – don’t hesitate to mingle around. The path is simple; you just have to be willing to make few corrections and amendments here and there.
So while you prepare to embark on a journey towards marital bliss, your new country awaits you, the new NRI bride!
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