This is a debate that can go on forever depending on the people involved and their thoughts and views about marriage.
When I got married 22 years ago it was an arranged marriage as my parents wanted me to marry some Goan boy who belonged to the same caste that we did. Well, Ezy (my husband) proposed to me, so it was an arranged union but partly love marriage too, at least on his side.
I had two paternal Uncles who were Priests and my father did not want them to say that we had not done the right thing. He always told us from when we were young that he would have to answer for the wrong that we did and so we siblings were even frightened to talk to the opposite sex as we were worried that Dad would take it wrongly. Three of us married the partners chosen by our parents while one brother married a girl of his choice but luckily she belonged to the same community so Dad had no problem with that.
Arranged marriages are good for two people who are willing to make the marriage work even though they may not know each other very well before marriage.
Ezy and I had a lot of problems at the beginning adjusting to lot of things and all the interference from people from both the families. But we decided that we wanted our marriage to work and we sorted our problems and are still together. We have arguments now and then and Magali is the referee many a times.
Many a times I have seen arranged marriages break up because of the meddling by family members and also because the couple do not really bother to try to make a go of the marriage. When there are children involved it is difficult for them to see the parents separating and they are mentally scarred.
In my opinion I would say that even if a couple gets into an arranged marriage they should be given enough of time to go on dates and get to know each other before the D-Day. I got engaged to Ezy in June 1989 and though we went out sometimes we both were shy to ask each other questions and so there were a lot of questions left unanswered. He joined a ship soon after and there were a few letters exchanged and a few calls between us. He came home end December 1989 and we got married on 20th January 1990.
We joined a ship together in May 1990 and sailed for 13 months where we got to know each other and had time to ourselves when he was not working.The other Officers used to tease us that Ezy was spending all his time in the Cabin and not coming to the Smoke Room to watch movies or play carrom or Table Tennis.
So ending the arranged marriage debate I would say that Life is Good when you Make it Good. Marriage is between two individuals who should work together to make it a success.
In the present times I think that the children should be given a chance to find their own partner and hence Ezy and I have told Magali that she will have to find her own partner and we will not be forcing our choice on her.
The couple should always be ready to make adjustments and nor bicker about small things. There should be no name calling and no physical violence at any time during the relationship. Both the partners should make an attempt to keep each other happy by doing small things that the partner would love.
In the end I would like to say that Arranged or Love Marriage it is the Couple who have to live through it and do it with LOVE.
May God Bless all the couples with Love, Joy and Lots of Happy Years Together.