One has to understand sub-continental culture regarding marriage in order to understand this particular crisis. Marriages are classified into two groups: 'settled' marriage and 'affair' marriage. In a 'settled' marriage, the groom's family chooses the bride, and if bride's family accepts the groom, the two families get together and fix the marriage. The bride and the groom may or may not meet each other before the marriage. In an 'affair' marriage, two persons fall in love and get married, with or without the permission of their families. This is considered a social crime, and the newlyweds are forced to leave their families.
After I came back from the US, I met my sweetheart who was attending medical school. We courted each other for years, and when she graduated we figured it was time to marry. I asked my family to select the woman of my choice so as to marry the woman I love without upsetting social norms. When my mother proposed my fiancee's family, her mother wanted to see me personally. I assumed she would consider me a suitable candidate for her daughter's husband since I come from a good family and since I am qualified to maintain a family. However, rather than looking for qualities in me that might make her daughter happy, she demanded that I posses an MBA degree before I marry her daughter. Apparently, all of her relatives' and friends' daughters got married to either MBAs or Ph.D.'s.
I was dumbfounded. I would have gladly given the moon to her daughter, but I was not about to earn an MBA to satisfy this woman's irrational craving. How would an MBA help me to become a better husband? Even though I intended to pursue an MBA anyway, I could not agree to her demand. I told her that I would never earn an MBA. As a result, I couldn't marry the woman of my dreams.
I stayed true to my personal values, and it cost me the woman I love.
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