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The first time I met Alex was on my parents’ doorstep, the winter after I graduated from college. 3, or 7, or maybe even 12; by the time my parents met him at the bus station and drove him to our house, I had long lost count.
For more than a year, my extended family had been laboring on my behalf, receiving and rejecting proposals.
Do you hold the idea that there is one person (or just a few), who is uniquely compatible with you?
Do you feel that the right relationship should "just work out", with both of you loving each other easily as you are? In fact, according to a January 2011 Marist poll, 73% of Americans believe that they are destined to find their one, true, soul mate.
Results of his evaluation indicated that: People who believe in romantic destiny (soul mates) primarily look for positive emotional reactions and initial compatibility with a partner.With a commitment to connecting singles everywhere, we bring the world to you.We are committed to helping you find the perfect match no matter where they are.Yes, I know this is hard for most Americans to understand, but it's true. But what can "choice" mean in such restrictive circumstances? Yes, we’ve changed, and yes, we’ve accommodated, but isn’t No, my elders would say emphatically, it is not. He’s a committed provider and a loving father to our two children.During my senior year of college, my parents contacted a network of friends and relatives, and an international community came together to find me a husband. In ways I’m still coming to understand, it's our not-choosing that has reverberated across the years of our marriage, breaking us in ways we can’t mend, and recreating us in others. We have a comfortable life, rooted in tradition, family, and culture.They believe people either "click" and are meant to be, or they don't and should move on.As a result, those beliefs tend drive soul mate searchers to be intensely passionate and satisfied with partners at first, particularly while things are compatible.The percentage is a bit higher for men (74%) than women (71%).The notion is also higher among younger individuals, with 79% of those under 45 believing in soul mates (as opposed to 69% of those over 45). The majority of people hold tight to the idea of romantic destiny.Some love my story because it appears to confirm their belief that America is doing it wrong: "Kids nowadays—having sex in middle school! Child brides and dowry burnings on the one hand, or henna and Bollywood on the other. But by the time I turned 20, I knew my arranged marriage was set in stone. Yes, he and I picked each other out of the proposals our families offered us. When Alex and I got married, all we had was our raw selves. All marriages, arranged or not, eventually hinge on compromise and change. Alex didn’t pursue me; in the economy of the arrangement, he didn’t have to. Since neither of us freely chose, neither of us tasted the deep pleasures of being freely chosen.I grew up in the United States, a product of New England suburbia, evangelical Christianity, Wellesley College, But I always knew my marriage would be arranged. Still, I dated secretly in high school and college, hoping that my parents (conservative, first-generation immigrants from India) would change their minds and terrified at the prospect that they wouldn’t. Saying "no" (though I still longed to) was not an option—the stakes in our honor-and-shame-based family were too high. Based on those 20 minutes in my family room, I decided he was a likeable guy. But accommodating a spouse is an entirely different activity from enjoying her. On the other hand, I’m married to a good man who is my partner and my equal.