I Started Living With My Lover When I Was 18 And This Is What It Taught Me About Marriage

Anonymous Anonymous in Let's Face It on 18 May, 2017

We have often heard "jo bhi karna hai, shaadi se pehle karlo". This forces us to strongly believe there's probably no life after marriage, no fun maybe, no hanging out, or maybe compromising with ambitions, losing our individuality or living up to the whims and fantasies of the person we marry. In short, hell.

But then there's another lot of people who say "abhi nahi, sab shaadi ke baad karna". This again forces us (especially a girl) to believe maybe she will find her Prince Charming with whom she could live a fairy tale, all fun, all the comfort, perhaps be on top of the world.

These contradictory statements provoked the barely 18 year old curious soul in me. I decided to unravel the mystery and stayed with the guy I loved. Then they said two people staying together is not marriage.
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I said, will registering make it so? Then they said yes, but not actually, because the family integration was missing (though we knew about every member of each other's family and maintained necessary communication). So staying with my guy by making it legal was not enough, and society looked down upon such relationships.

Well, to be honest, I was extremely content with my decision. We shared our own roles and responsibilities and supported each other in achieving our dreams. We had endless stories and laughter to share. We cared more than ordinary roommates would in unfavorable situations. We tried our best to give each other enough space to breathe. We struggled to excel in our chosen professions just like this chosen relationship.

We were so deeply inclined in developing ourselves that we hardly had any interest in being dishonest or disloyal.

We were glad we had each other to share our day, our problems and this is how we chose to spend the rest of our lives. But deep down in our hearts, we knew this was not acceptable and so we kept it as a secret from our families and relatives. We knew they would be hurt but we were not ready to follow their meaning of marriage.

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We were not ready to compromise. So we started playing hide and seek because our decision would not be validated. Nor could we come to terms with our parents' views.

This decision of mine proved to be very fruitful because I was walking with the right guy, deeply in love and developing and learning for 15 long years. 

I have seen huge budget lavish marriages collapse where thousands of people were showered with blessings. I have seen people surrender to requisites of their in-laws, put an end to their dreams to prove to be a good wife, men imposing on their women customs that suffocate her, where raising voice follows with abuse or divorce (isliye log kehte the "jo bhi karna hai....").

But I have also seen ruthlessly demanding wives, men working hard to fulfill her wishes, women misusing rights.

I strongly believe these misconceptions about marriage exist because we try to make it a bigger deal than it actually is. We are so bothered about integrating that we start forgetting our individuality, or compromise with it to the extent to become what the society desires us to become, and not what we dreamed for ourselves.

On the path of following one's dreams, love acts to be latent reserve of strength (because this love is not an arrangement, this love is a choice that you believe will be a facilitator, not a regulator), and meeting one's destiny makes life worthy.