If you can't marry, don't date

If you can't convince your family to allow you a choice for a life partner, do not punish someone else for it.

Nadia Rizwan August 27, 2012
Not all love stories have a happy ending, nor can any of us foresee the fate of our love. Ye, I believe that sometimes the actors of the love story are not entirely committed to the beautiful end at all - they have no desire to get married but are just in the relationship to have a good time.

We often fall in love without thinking much about our differences that may result in a sad ending. To me that is perfectly normal, because no one plans to fall in love and it just happens. While the couple may take all the possible steps to ensure that their differences can be worked out (for example family, social status, religion) it does not always end up in success and, well, that is what life is all about.

So when I see individuals struggling to persuade their loved ones to accept their preferences for a life partner, I feel sympathetic for them.

However, I also come across couples where one of them is in the relationship for “passing the time”, as they call it. Now this attitude is something I take serious offence to.

Some people are raised in families where inter-family marriage is considered more of a mandate than a norm. So when boys and girls are brought up within these families, they have a fair idea that they are going to eventually marry their cousin or a close relative. Most of them also usually don’t have any inclination towards breaking away from this tradition and they respect it.

Having said as much, some of these young boys and girls, frustrated by their forthcoming arranged marriages, tend to use their pre-marriage time to experience falling in love, by orchestrating a “falling in love” episode for themselves. The sad part, however, is that there is always an innocent party that has no idea that they are being used and are destined to be 'dumped' on usually the following pretexts:
Ami nahin maani."

(My mom did not agree).

Meri behan ko talaq ho jayeigi agar mainey khandan mein shadi nahin ki."

(My sister will get divorced if I don't marry in the family.)

Tum humaray zaat ki nahin ho."

(You are not from our cast.)

Now let me tell you that these excuses are often prepared way in advance to be used once the time is right. They are like a packet of instant noodles that will be quickly cooked and served to you just as needed.

Doesn't this complete disregard for the other partner's feelings seem nothing short of cruelty?

I have also come across people who believe that they are doing nothing wrong, because the opposite party knows very well that it is not going to work out, and so they are equally responsible for their fate. Well, I beg to differ here. Nobody wants a bad ending to their love story. Often it is the naive girls who keep on thinking that a miracle will happen if they keep hanging on to their relationship. Miracles might happen if the desire to get married is authentic on both sides, but I guess they don’t realise that the key ingredient - that is the will of the other -is often missing for the miracle to happen.

So here is my request to everyone out there who is in a relationship just 'to pass the time'; please have some mercy on your willing partner. If you do not have the guts to convince your family to allow you a choice for a life partner, do not punish someone else for it. Be honest with your boy/girlfriend and don't assume that they have the same motives as you to be in this sham of a relationship.

Read more by Nadia here.
Nadia Rizwan The author is currently pursuing her PhD in Marketing and is a Lecturer at an Australian University.
The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necassarily reflect the views and policies of the Express Tribune.


Qamar Abbas | 11 years ago | Reply @Sundus: well i am not getting my point conveyed i guess . well if you are proposed by some one but your family must be aware of and with the permission of your family or the guardian you may be allowed to communicate with that person . even in islam there is said that girl should loosen up herself . but this idea of dating i am not getting convinced. i am follwer of islam . i had the knowledge of islam too. as for as u say that i have never spoken to a female or did not seen any one what should i say to this line of urs / hmmmmmm ???
Akhtar | 11 years ago | Reply @hina jamal: Hina...are you following the same principle....living independent and happy too?
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