An email: If you can’t change something and you can’t change attitudes, what can you do?

What would you suggest A (or anybody facing such or any other kind of prejudice) does?


Dear IHM,

I am a twenty six year old woman. For the past two years,my parents have been on the lookout for a suitable guy for me.I am well educated and from a financially sound family but dark complexioned. For this very reason I was rejected many times by the potential groom’s party and they always hinted at the reason of me being dark before calling it off. Each rejection chipped off some part of my self esteem even though I silently anticipated it after the meeting.

I am also wary of the fact that my parents have to marry me lavishly with a suitable dowry in order to keep the future in-laws happy. Earlier my parents were sympathetic and pitied me, but now, after two years of numerous meetings with different parties, their attitude is that of sarcasm and mockery, despite them knowing that it’s not my fault at all. My cousins who were fair and goodlooking found their own companions, were courted and proposed to before it culminating into marriage.
Is there anything I can do?

A

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126 thoughts on “An email: If you can’t change something and you can’t change attitudes, what can you do?

  1. Get financially free, move out of home (if not already out) and take a stance. Clearly communicate to parents that she can take care of herself, meet people and decide to get married (or not or live together) IF she meets a right person.

    Can’t change society, DON’T have to deal with parental sarcasm, esp. when it will take just one poke to burst that balloon – complexion comes from the genes for most part. Can only change one’s own reactions, strengthen core. The best revenge (if one swings to that line of thinking) is a life lived wonderfully.

    Waiting for others to change (out of one’s control) instead of personal growth is a sign that I am not willing to do what it takes too.

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    • She could also look at dating dark skinned guys. That may help too. Not saying that that’s how it should be, but she’d have a higher chance of hitting it off with someone that has a similar Indian-skin-color tone as she does.

      A friend did this years ago. She had an arranged marriage but since she was dark skinned she insisted that her groom must be darker skinned that she was. I thought she was just being stubborn then (I was younger and naïve) but I reckon in most Indian cities, that is a good approach to take.

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      • Ok, a couple of folks have given me the thumbs down without any explanation, so I assume they mistook my post to mean that dark skinned people should only date each other. That is certainly not what I meant.

        In India, with the popular obsession with skin color, darker skinned folks will usually find a higher success rate if they date other similarly dark skinned folks. That’s just a factual statement there.

        There will be exceptions to that, and that’s a good thing. But the OP has clearly had a very bad success rate with guys rejecting her since she’s dark skinned, and if she really wants to pursue a relationship, then it is practical to look at options that have a better chance to work out.

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    • “The best revenge (if one swings to that line of thinking) is a life lived wonderfully”.
      So very true!! It seriously is not in our capacity to lose peace over trying others (even if others are our parents) to get our point of view. You try for a while, but then there is always so much one can try! I loved everything you have said, sangitha 🙂

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  2. Sangitha ,you are assuming that A doesn’t want to get married. What if getting married is her dream, her only goal in life. TO be loved by a man…. some people do live that way, you knw

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    • A lot of people are looking for love externally…from a man, a husband, or parents or in-laws etc. The better way is to work on loving oneself…nothing quite so attractive as a person who totally approves of himself or herself. I agree with Glacier…a dream of being loved by a man being the only goal in life is asking for trouble.

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    • It’s a characteristic trait of our species that we’re driven to find love – A’s case is hardly unique if she has the same desires. Every person in the world faces such problems.

      The issue is that these problems are made worse for her because of her parents and because of the screwed up way Indian society works. Can’t really do much about other people’s tastes. There are some men like me who really like dark skinned women, but she has to go find them on her own.

      The first step is to get her own life and throw off the yoke of her parents. She still may not find love, but at least it won’t be because someone was holding her back.

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      • Bhagwad, exactly – while logical, the challenge with finding those men also is that she has to look within the parameters of caste, language, sub-caste, horoscope etc – and so she continues looking for the needle in the haystack! One option, as you’ve rightly said, is to get out of the whole ‘parents-find-me-a-guy’ thing. That would still be too radical for most Indian men and woman.
        Another option therefore is to do one’s one looking, but through matrimonial websites, and state your preferences upfront.

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  3. I would suggest A to physically get away from the family as soon as possible because what they are dishing out is emotional abuse and no one deserves that. Also, “A” must understand that marriage is a matter of choice. Just because you are of a certain age doesn’t mean that you should automatically step into the arranged marriage (cattle) market. Don’t do this to yourself, do not let such abuse continue.
    If *you* wish to get married, you need to decide the kind of person you want and work toward it.

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  4. I agree with Sangitha. Reject this misogynistic cycle, strengthen yourself and take pride in yourself. The aim of life is not to get married, it is to live well and be a good person and be happy. So focus on that, and pay no attention to the nonsense around you. It is unqualified nonsense. If you find the arranged marriage circuit demeaning, refuse to be part of it. Tell your parents you have tried their way and it has not proved good for either you or them. That you would now like to do it your way – focusing on the things you can control like being financial independent, doing stuff that makes you happy and if in the process of just living life, you meet someone you think would be a good life partner, you will let them know.

    There are many guys out there who are not obsessed with fair skin, some even attracted to darker skin tones, and those are the ones you want to spend your life with, someone who finds you attractive for who you are, not someone who has to be paid off to take you on. Do not fall into the trap of paying someone to marry you; if people don’t see your worth and feel they have to be bribed to have you in their family, do you really want to be around them for the rest of your life?

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  5. Run! Get out of there before you turn bitter. Get a job and set up things for yourself. The moment you do this, you will realize that life is beautiful enough not to waste chipping off your self esteem. A guy who gets interested in you because of your complexion is not worth it and matrimonials are a completely wrong place to search for the other kind. There, even if the guy is as black as a buffallo, will search for a wheat flour girl.
    Take charge of your life and make your parents understand your point, stearnly if required.

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  6. Move out, forget about your parents, be free, independent and self sufficient. Be someone other than a dishwasher, clothes washer, cook, bathroom cleaner or any other pathetic beings most desis are.

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    • But Glacier, don’t you think self sufficiency includes knowing how to cook your own food, wash your own toilet/clothes/dishes? Infact it empowers you. Many women living ‘self sufficient’ (as described by you) lives before marriage end up in shock or self pity when they have to take up this responsibility after marriage. For the transaction to be smooth, I’d suggest learning as many things as possible before marriage and continue doing the same after marriage to avoid unnecessary stress and ‘I am a maid at home’ feeling.

      Financial independence is one thing but running a home is another. Those who can afford maids can talk of ‘pathetic desis’ but what about those who can’t? Would you still call a man who does the above things pathetic? I’d call him understanding and efficient.

      I think the letter writer has been suffering from low self esteem since a long time. It cannot be just because of the recent rejections. Dear writer, have any incidents happened in the past where you were severely critisied or judged?
      Building self confidence is a trecherous and slow path unless you take matters in your hand and make it easy for you. All your young life, you listen to your parents/want their opinions as they mean the world to you. Only when they start blaming their failures on the child does the confusion arise and it hurts like hell. Also, the power equation here ruins logic. Either the child is filled with guilt or becomes bitter over time.

      Dear Letter Writer, I hope you can take these incidents as an experience and learn to grow a thick hide. Over time, you will be able to laugh at such people and sympathise with your parents. They come from am era where outward appearence was #1 in everbody’s bride hunting list. I’m sure you roll your eyes at the pathetic fair and lovely/ponds ads!

      I think when you show love to yourself, people come to you like moths! Work on self-improvement, the rest will simply follow! 🙂

      P.S- IHM, as a homemaker yourself, could you tell me how you feel when homemakers are so badly stereotyped? Does it anger you? Or are you at a stage in life where you can brush off such comments?
      Do you freelance IHM? Despite being a ‘homemaker’ there are so many ardent readers of your blog and your life. Do you consider blogging your career?

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      • Your reply actually confirms how miserable desi marriages are. Of course self sufficiency includes all the things I mentioned however if your main thing to do on a day to day basis is to work like a housemaid then marriage is pointless. You see unlike most desis I don’t think marriage is all that great as it is made out to be, it is quite a miserable state of existence.

        What do most married people do? Produce more like them selves, cook food, clean, get into lifetime debts, mortgages, stupid vacations two times a year, brag about their 9-5, grow old and live through their children and make them go through the same misery.

        OP would do well to realize that life outside the desi bubble is good, ditch the parents, move on and be free.

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      • Glaacier, your attitude to work in the home and marriage in general is mind-boggling on two levels:
        1. “if your main thing to do on a day to day basis is to work like a housemaid then marriage is pointless.” and “Be someone other than a dishwasher, clothes washer, cook, bathroom cleaner or any other pathetic beings most desis are.” – You seem to have a very negative view of housework. Why is that? Because you personally find it boring so everyone else must too? Most of us married or single have to earn a living, unless by some stroke of good luck we win a lottery or inherit a trust fund, and earning a living often takes up a large chunk of the day. My job involves writing and editing other people’s English. Some people might find this dreadfully boring. My helper’s job involves all the tasks you mention. She happens to be married but a lot of helpers are single. I don’t find anything demeaning about her work. I admire the skill and attention to detail she brings to the job, I could never run the house with the efficiency that she does. I would never condescend about her work either. Some people take pride in this work, and rightly so. It is work like any other. It may, because of the laws of demand and supply, be lowly paid in some countries but that is hardly the point. Or do you disregard it because it is lowly paid?

        2. “What do most married people do? Produce more like them selves, cook food, clean, get into lifetime debts, mortgages, stupid vacations two times a year, brag about their 9-5, grow old and live through their children and make them go through the same misery.” Apart from producing children, what do people who are not married do that is so different from this description, pray tell? Most single people I know – and this includes Chinese people and Westerners – also cook, clean, try to buy a house, go on vacations 9stupid or not) generally a couple of times a year, work 9-5 (whether they brag is debatable), and grow old. They also, both married and single people, have lots of a joy, laughter, hobbies, outings with friends and family, quiet time with themselves…Many people are quite content with this life. Why does it annoy you so much?

        You seem to have a dim view of married life, and that may be coloured by your own experience. I would say it really depends on who you marry and what you two make of the marriage. ‘Who you marry’ because a lot of Indian men grow up believing that their duty ends at going out to work and thereafter they have to be waiting on hand and foot. It might be wise to check with who you marry if they will partner in the housework, if neededI have seen lots of men lose this idea of being waited on once they are married and enjoy being equal partners with their wives. It also depends on whether their wives ever push them in that direction – a lot of Indian women see it as a given that they must scurry around and do everything at home, and frankly, who would turn down being waited on like that. I barely did an inch of work when I was growing up and probably if I had the option of continuing like that I would. But when I got married and moved out, I had to take on a lot of housework myself and I fully expected my husband to pitch in and he did; in fact he does more housework than me. But yeah, someone has to do the work, and not everyone can afford a ‘housemaid’.

        Some of the married people I know lead much more interesting lives than the single people I know. My 40-year-old older sister-in-law (in India) has given up her job and spends her time fulfilling her life’s dreams – she has got a scuba certification and now wants to climb Everest (she has weight issues so it’s a big goal for her). My other sister-in-law took on a very senior Asia-Pacific role when she was pregnant, convinced her company to shift her role to India (although she still travels around the world like crazy), adopted her second child despite great family opposition last year, goes on weekend road trips with both her kids and husband… Both sisters-in-law party quite hard too, though they are five-10 years older than me. My friend here in HK, also desi and married, stopped working, and started painting; she’s now starting a small art business. Is that exciting enough for you? Personally, I don’t see why everyone must conform to some stereotype of ‘exciting’. I am quite happy with my boring job (I actually opted out of an exciting journalist job), coming home and vegging on the couch with my husband, going out very ocassionally (we are both not that into partying now), playing with my kid.

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      • I think you severly underestimate women. Offcourse for being self-reliant, you need to know how to take care of the various household-chores such as cooking, washing clothes and so on.

        But these things are *easy*. If you have to do them manually, they take quite a bit of time, but are still not -difficult-, and if you belong to the part of population that can afford a washing-machine and a dishwasher and such things, then they are even easier, and even quicker.

        I have two daughters and a son and all of them know how to wash clothes. They have a little problem yet folding and sorting the cleaned clothes, but I expect they’ll manage to learn that too soon. They are 4 and 6 years old. An adult human being who has troubles learning how to operate a washing-machine after 5 minutes of instruction, is a moron.

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      • The Bride – Why does it seem I hate housework (or housemaids for that matter)? I am not asking.

        I live alone, do a regular job, run a successful business that I built on my own and I do all the housework (cleaning, cooking, washing etc) but I still don’t think doing the housework is something to be proud about – it’s one of those given things that has to be done, I don’t consider myself unique if I am able to do all the housework on my own.

        I hate marriages partly because of the severe dysfunction I have gone through from my own family but mostly I just not go-with-the crowd type. I believe in finding happiness through my own achievements, not through my children, pleasing parents, fitting stereotypes or trying to be another Mr. Joe on culdesac with a minivan. Nobody ever needs to be ‘exciting’ just be courageous enough to find happiness from within themselves & not from an external source no matter who or what it is. I responded to the post only because the OP’s parents are toxic and if she does not do anything about it she will in all probablity become just like them – the cycle will continue.

        If you don’t like my opinions you are free to ignore them, I have never forced my ideas on anyone. If I come across in this way I do apologize, it’s not intended in that manner.

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      • Glacier, most of us here seem to agree that the OP should not go along with her parents’ plans. I was responding to your comment in response to Mal’s comment. What I am trying to say is:
        1. Not all desi marriages are ‘boring’ or ‘miserable’ nor are they about having children “pleasing parents, fitting stereotypes or trying to be another Mr. Joe on culdesac with a minivan” as you seem to suggest. There are many desi marriages which are stifling, but there are also many desi marriages which are exactly the opposite of that, such marriages are possible, do exist and I don’t see why it should be seen as some kind of out-there possibility. The only options in life are not get married and slave miserably or don’t get married and live a full and free life.
        2. Your attitude to people who do work at home (whether their own homes or other people’s homes) is so condescending. On what basis do you decide a particular job is “something to be proud of”?

        Of course, we are both free to ignore each other’s opinions.

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      • The Bride.

        1) Yup an ideal marriage is possible where you are free to do what you want and still have a good marriage but please this is just idealism. Reality is different and for desis marriage is basically like machines coming off an assembly line, more or less they are the same. Add the constant interference of desi families into everybody’s marriage, parental control, spousal codpendency and all the other magnificent dysfunctional attributes marriage is a no go. People who suffer because of this they should realize there are other options even if they don’t see them (& most people don’t want to).

        2) I have nothing against people doing housework for a living, but getting married and resigning oneself to do this,so much investment into something thats lifelong (or atleast supposed to be), the deal has to be better than that. I don’t think that is hard to understand.

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      • @Glacier: “Reality is different and for desis marriage is basically like machines coming off an assembly line, more or less they are the same.”

        I kinda have a problem with you speaking for all desis. I’m of Nepali origin so I guess I’m technically a ‘desi.’ My fiance’s an Indian [born and raised in India, higher education in Canada] so he’s a desi. We’ve been living together for three years now and area already considered common law in Canada so you could technically say we’re married. We’re definitely not what you’ve just described. My parents were arranged to be married–while they did face some hardship in the first year of their marriage, they did fall in love a year or so later, and they’re happily in love now, some 27 years down the line. My fiance’s parents who are both Indian are now divorced and happily married to different people [also Indian] and they all live in India so they don’t fit into your ‘assembly line desi marriage’ stereotype either.
        Sure there may be lots of ‘desis’ who’ve suffered horrendously through the institution of marriage, and you may have been one of them, but let’s not generalize.

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    • many commentators here focus on career.She’s dark doesn’t mean she has no regular job or hobby besides meeting potential grooms.A clearly mentions she wants to get married and therefore is going through the requisite drill.
      is it just my observation that newspapers always publish the pictures of fair and pretty college going girls and not the dark,obese,nerdy and bespectacled kind that are found aplenty but are never clicked by newspaper photojournalists?

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      • adding to my list,
        how long should A wait to find the right person.should she wait to fall in love?or continue such meetings till a fine man consents to have her as his wife?
        if A had written in her mail that she was 32+ would you still ask her to hang on?

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      • “if A had written in her mail that she was 32+ would you still ask her to hang on?” Yes, I would. And I do tell friends who are 32, 35, even 40 to hang on. There is no point marrying someone who thinks you are unattractive and who has to be paid to marry you.

        She could continue the arranged marriage meetings, hoping that someone fine might turn up. However, the set-up seems to be depressing her and her parents. They also seem to be getting dangerously desperate and ready to compromise on the first person who will have her, even those people who make her feel like crap. Why should she put herself through this?

        She could put the word out among friends and family to introduce her to nice openminded men if they came across a suitable person but making it clear she will not pay anyone to marry her. In the meantime, she could just continue living her life, going out and meeting new people, and yes, many of us do meet someone we’d like to spend our life with just like that. And some people may not meet someone and that is not the end of the world either – I’d rather be alone than married to someone who finds the colour of my skin offensive.

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      • In response to your next question – yes. 32 is not the end of the world, as your question suggests. it’s not about age, it’s about what you want with your life. what do you want us to tell her? pay some loser a fat dowry to overlook her complexion?

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    • I hope you find someone just like you who shares similar opinions about marriage and housework. You will fall headlong in love and get married! 😀

      From your points its obvious you aren’t attracted to opposites.

      Wish you luck! 🙂

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  7. Twenty six is hardly an age, you have a lot of life left! A lots! And you decide this moment to make the most of it by doing the start. First step will be to look for financial freedom. You say you are well educated and so that shouldn’t be a problem. And I agree with most of the comments here, run away from the house if you think it is harming you than doing you good. I know how our social system can easily break a normally functioning human being all the more if she is a girl. Trust me nothing is going to change and its is not easy to change the perspective, so eke your life the way you want.

    And if you are positive and you think positive and if you believe the the universe creates exactly what you deeply think then it won’t be long before you also meet the person who likes you the way you are. It works. Clean up the energy this moment inside you and say- loud. “Your deserve the best” the way you are and it is coming!

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  8. First of all, tell your parents not to worry about your marriage and that you will take care of it yourself. It maybe sometime before you meet your match, but you will.
    I am assuming that you already have a job. If not get one. If yes, change and move out to another city or maybe another country.
    26 is too soon to get married anyways. First live your carefree, independent life girl!

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  9. Yes! There is one thing you MUST do- DON’ LET THIS GET YOU DOWN. Also, go ahead and live a wonderful life on your own terms, follow your heart and instincts, DO NOT bow down to the pressures of getting married somehow….this blog would have given you an idea how disastrous can a typical arranged marriage be…what a catastrophe getting married for wrong reasons is. All this was an order 🙂 now some suggestions-

    Put your education to good use, work hard to get a good job…working and being in a good work environment where you are known, recognized and appreciated for your talents and not by who your father, brother, husband etc. is SO relieving. Don’t rely on your financially strong family, CREATE your own financially strong future. A good career, friend circle, hobbies etc. will work wonders for your confidence and will help you realize there is so much more to YOUR life than getting married by a certain age.

    Parents can be quite toxic…I was disturbed by your description -” Earlier my parents were sympathetic and pitied me”. Pitying the child for being dark (after passing on the genes themselves!) can make one feel SO insecure and unloved (nor not loved unconditionally). It might make sense to be on your own for a while even if you are working in the same city…you can give the various PG options a try. Rest assured, LOG will say things initially but the idea is to not let it bother you!

    All the best!

    From another dark girl 🙂

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  10. There is a whole world out there that thinks dark is beautiful! People who think dark is ugly and only physical good looks are important to make a marriage last are entitled to their opinion, but *you* don’t have to subscribe to it. There is a whole world out there waiting for you to explore. Forget about marriage for a bit and like everyone else has said move out and find your own moorings in life. Whatever needs to happen will happen on its own. Most importantly get back your sense of self worth.. it’s really personality that attracts people. Stop beating yourself up.

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  11. Like everyone said out here, take this as the best time of your life to be totally independent, free and do what you want to do only ! Get a job, work hard, earn and spend it on you and no one else !! True satisfaction arises when you blow up your own money..!! Ofcourse, do some wise savings as well for the rainy day. Look out for some other hidden talents/passion within you be it music/reading/writing/cooking/learning foreign languages etc, which you totally can afford to spend lavish time on now.

    Frankly, I look at the perspective that if things/proposals didn’t work out for you for this one petty reason of complexion, then it might be the best thing which happened. Would you want to be stuck with a guy/family who undermines you just because of your looks? Proves that they do not deserve you and are not worth spending your life with. I am so sure, you will find someone who will love you completely for who you are and not just by how you look.

    Meanwhile, just enjoy these bachelor (/spinster) days and enjoy your life fully now doing what you want to do and love the most !

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  12. I agree with all the commenters. Having any level of emotional, financial or physical dependency leaves you wide open to emotional or other abuse, which is what your parents sarcasm is about. Strengthen yourself.

    Skin colour (or any other physical characteristic) is but superficial, it doesn’t make for a happy successful marriage…even if your fair cousins have ‘landed’ great guys, it’s still quite a job to work on keeping a marriage going…so what if it culminated in marriage…that’s not at all the end goal. Enjoy the journey, not the ‘accomplishments’.

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  13. There’s a difference between wanting to be in a loving relationship, and wanting to “get married.”

    If you want to be part of a loving relationship, go out and meet people. You’ll run into someone who’ll like you for who you are.

    Wanting to “get married” is just conditioning and social pressure. There’s no way someone who’s single would just wake up one day and want to get married (I’ve been there). It makes sense if you’ve been with someone and known them for a while……it’s then that you want to get married TO them. But just wanting to “get married” isn’t something you (could) want. It’s something you’ve been conditioned into thinking you SHOULD want by a certain age. It’s like……..wanting to “get tattooed” or something. You look for the tattoo parlor with the best reputation, the best tattoo artist, the most bang for the buck, hygienic interiors and equipment, and whatever else is the most OPTIMAL fulfillment of your “want.” And a lot of times you don’t go for what your gut likes, but what your friend tells you LOOKS BEST. Whether it’ll look good to others who see it on you is a big factor in your decision.

    People who are looking to “get married” go about it the same way, for the most part. Looking for the most optimal solution that’ll provide the largest amount of satisfaction to the most number of people (mom, dad, aunt, uncle, siblings, neighbors, THEIR relatives). They’re not looking for a relationship, or thinking of the marriage as the most important relationship in their life. They’re thinking of what they want in a BRIDE (not necessarily WIFE).

    I’ve been on the receiving end of such discrimination for some other reasons, in the past. It broke my heart to read the confused husband’s email a few posts ago on this blog. It reminded me of so many guys my parents tried to get me to go out with, who all ended up marrying these traditional-traditional women from their village. (I’m not saying that in a derogatory way at all.)

    It pains me to think that when the bride chapter is over and the wife chapter begins, many of them would – similarly – want to convert their wives into more independent, self-reliant women. On the other hand, the only men someone like me would get in the arranged marriage market would be the ones who’d want to TAME me from day one. I’m not even exaggerating. Every single guy who expressed interest in me through that channel wanted to know over the first conversation what I was willing to give up for him. Job/music lessons/dance lessons/career growth/you name it. Would I relocate to his city? Would I give up my job and agree to move in the future in he got a better offer from a different city? Would I choose to be a SAHM so he could focus on his career? Not that I’m absolutely opposed to any of these things, but to think that I was being measured against all these control variables in order for them to determine whether I was the optimal solution!

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  14. And if you change your perspective, it makes all the difference. It’s not your skin colour that’s the problem here, it’s other people’s prejudice against it and their defining you by just one among a million things about you. Once you get that right, you can hold your head up much higher where it belongs.

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  15. Refuse to meet any prospective groom in the presence of family. Insist that you get to meet him outside of home and spend time with the guy to find out if all he’s looking for is ‘FAIR, BEAUTIFUL’ or if he has some substance at all. In many of these situations, even if the groom doesn’t really mind, his relatives will be busybodies who decide to call it off because you will produce dark babies (yup, this is the real reason people don’t want a dark girl even if she looks spectacular otherwise). You be the one to judge and decide if you are interested in the guy to start with. Never put yourself in these girl-seeing situations where people sit and comment on the bride like she’s a newly purchased cow. You deserve better. And please, be convinced in your own mind that fair skin is not necessary to look beautiful. I know it can be hard to do this when everyone around you is so negative, but till you are convinced of this, people will always have the power to hurt you. Nobody can be happy in a marriage for too long when attraction is based solely on the colour of the other person’s skin, so really, you are not missing out on anything here.

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    • I agree with GB…a huge part of the problem here seems to be your and the other side family. If your parents are apologetic or sarcastic abt your skin colour, that’s bringing you down.

      I’m short, apparently. And this was the ‘reason’ given by many boy’s side families to reject me without even looking at me, or speaking to me. (I also suspect, they used it as a flimsy excuse to reject me for my higher degree and ‘career-mindedness’. Apparently, a short woman does not help a tall guy look good. 🙄 After a while, my dad used reverse psychology and presented my height first, like he was bleddy proud abt it. Funnily enough, my in-laws and husband are a super-tall family!

      The point it, arranged marriages can be handled in a better way like GB has suggested…but if your parents are ashamed of your skin colour, it’s not going to work, and also maybe they’re just looking in the wrong kinds of places….there are LOTs of guys and families who are mature enough to look beyond physical features…why aren’t your parents focused on finding those, rather than looking for someone who will ‘accept’ your skin colour?

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      • I can relate to the writer at some level. I’m brown skinned in a family filled with ” fair” skinned people and I’m always made fun of by my extended family. My mom would jump in to support me etc, but the damage was done. This is from a very young age. By the time, I was 20, I had such low self esteem about my looks. The only good thing that came out of it for me was that I decided that I will succeed in spite of my so called ” flaw”. I grew a thick skin and ignored everybody else’s comments and went about my degree, ended up in the US for higher studies and became financially independent.

        It did take me a while to grow confident again, but this confidence is based on my achievements and not on how I look or how I don’t. Again, meeting my husband in the US without anybody’s interference is the best thing that could have happened to me. He doesn’t care about my skin color, he is maybe one shade ” fairer” than me.

        My advice would be to channel all this negative criticism and comments to fuel your desire to achieve something concrete ( ike a better degree, job, whatever). This will definitely help the self esteem and confidence part. Growing a thick skin will also help.
        GB is right in that try meeting the guy outside of the family and getting to know the person as opposed to the traditional way.

        Like

    • Well said Gounder Brownie. I remember the first family function I attended after I married my ex-husband. I felt exactly like a “newly purchased cow”.

      I was scrutinised from head to toe by members of my husband’s family, while across the room, my MIL and some other elderly women cast evaluating glances at me.

      I can almost imagine the conversation, “Is she a good cook? What does her father do? Oh, it’s a pity she’s not an engineer. Why didn’t you get an engineer bride for your son. Why, he could have had any girl he wanted to!” 🙂

      Like

  16. Dear Girl,

    I wrote a blog post once about how I dealt with my unsporting mother. I can empathize, its a void in your support system. One can get used to it but it never goes away. Move away, live on your own and do not involve your family in your social life. Rebuild life and self esteem. Once you feel better about yourself, you will find a companion – someone who does not care about the color of your skin. It is not a fairy tale – it will happen. But to make it happen you need to first heal your own self esteem which you cant do at present in your parental home.

    Like

  17. I know what she means . I went through this – from my parents ‘hinting’ that I should be more willing to give up things in order to fit a guy’s perception of an ideal wife cos I was dark and not pretty , so was in no way eligible to call the shots . It went from depressing to humiliating while I secretly envied all those who were like she said ‘courted and proposed to ‘ . But then I found a man who calls me pretty every single day , and now I laugh at those ads of fairness creams . A , believe me , one day you would too . And you would wonder why you bothered to torture yourself when you should have been enjoying your life and freedom.

    Like

  18. I cringed at the “but dark” part. The color of your skin is not in any way a measure of your character, nor is it correlated with beauty.

    I agree with the other commenters who recommend rejecting this ritual – it will only make you sad and as you yourself say, threathen to destroy your self-esteem. And there is absolutely no reason to accept that.

    As for marriage, first decide if you *yourself* actually want this. I’m not asking if parents or society expects it or encourages it, I’m asking what *you* want.

    If you find that you do want to marry, the best way of finding a suitable husband is to increase those activities where you interact with men of a suitable age. Since you do not say much about your circumstances, it is hard to be more concrete than this.

    You will find that superficial features count less the better you know a person. Someone who does not know you at all will perhaps think less of you because of your skin-tone, but someone who knows you well will not. Also, I think knowing someone well makes it a lot easier to judge if that person is compatible to you and suitable as a husband.

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  19. All the suggestions are nice and hinting a good future.

    but how to do.. what they have suggested, if you have any problem. Get in touch with me.

    Or else you are confident enough then keep going.

    Keep Smiling.

    Like

  20. Reminds me, only recently I was in Siliguri a informal photo shoot (I’m am an amateur photographer) at a relatives place. My father 60+ took me to the kids to take some pictures.. and there were little girls and boys some 6-7 of them – fair, dark, etc. I took pictures of all of them – the kids all smiling and having fun. Well, I just little taken aback when I was about to shoot a beautiful girl (5 years old) (seriously! – lovely features) who was dark complexioned – my father says- “You also come”.. and he says “Black beauty” laughing profusely. The kids and the girl still smiled too..and the photos was great. But it pinched me somewhere why it was important to even mention about her not-being fair! By the time she actually grows up I’m so sure everyone around her and even innocent comments would have done lot of damage to her self esteem.

    Maybe its like the way my wife is after my grey hairs – and says why don’t I color it- they are few- but I don’t mind the way they are! But she seems to. But again, I know of so many people in Siliguri who even have wigs and who put Mehendi to not show their baldness or grey hairs. The point I’m making here is ultimately its upto you on how you see yourself- once they is taken care- the rest of the world won’t matter!

    Like

      • And there are other old men like me who are glad to have any hair at all.
        Colour is immaterial. It’s a great age when you no longer feel the need to conceal your age. That’s the age when we cast aside hair dyes and feel proud of our silvery strands.

        Regards
        GV

        Like

  21. hi A,

    let these matters don’t bother you much..as many others have said here, get yourself emotionally strong. try to get involved in some activities and friends where you can be empowered inside.

    love yaa

    Like

  22. hi my first reaction…we are living in a stereo type society…your problem is a common problem…lets say even a fair skin women, having pimples will face the same problem u are facing…

    it is very difficult to isolate ourselves from family and society…so my advice to you will be , dont go for arranged marriage unless u have frank discussion with your future partner to understand him….

    to avoid rejection, you can always send your pic first…and put a condition to talk to him over phone to avoid unnecessary complications..

    In my case i took 7yrs to complete CA….i insisted to talk to the partner before seeing…and told her i am CA who took more time to complete and so u shud not put me with a person w ho completed in first attempt…its not inferiorty complex, just to make things clear

    You are in IHM page, definetly u will get the best advise..all the best

    Like

    • While I agree with the rest of your advice, I don’t understand why it is ‘not an inferiority complex’ to not ‘put you’ with a person who cleared in their first attempt. I don’t agree with your entire statement, but I agree with the fact that IHM and her readers do have the best advice.

      Like

  23. 1.Its not like dark complexioned girls don’t get married.

    2.The first hour after rejection (any rejection, and remember everyone faces rejection at some point for some excuse) is tough. Accept you will feel lousy and angry. But don’t give yourself more than a hour to feel it, move , do something you enjoy. Don’t wallow in self pity.

    3.Accept that this might happen. Accepting that doesn’t mean saying its OK, it just prepares you better. Think of it like a helmet while driving a bike. Just because one wears a helmet doesn’t mean its ok to hit.

    4.Realise you want to get married for yourself to share your life with someone. not to prove a point to anyone else. so ask yourself if you want to be married to shallow minded person who judges you by your looks.

    5.your parents are just succumbing to the pressure and stress. you could either argue with them, or just accept that while it would be nice to have supportive parents, they do love you and want the best for you , even if they dont show it in the best way possible.

    6. dont get caught in the I am right trap. Many times the question is do you want to be Right or Happy in a relationship. Even if you know you are right, its tough but just move on without wanting to have the last word. this is for anyone who talks to you about it.

    7. dont go for bleaching or any chemical method to make you fairer. thats a shortcut that doesn’t work.

    8.don’t reject someone just to feel the power of rejection. i know someone, who sailed in the exact boat, and now regrets rejecting for the sake of rejecting.

    9.statistically there are more boys than girls, and 2 years of searching are nothing for many boys. don’t just think of your cousins who got married before you.

    10. you can’t change the world, but you can change yourself and how you can deal with the situation.

    Enjoy life, and this moment, without getting too anxious. Forget what others think of you, and think what you can do to yourself.

    All the best:)

    Like

  24. Errr…and now A you are scaring me..my daughter is Dark with a capital D..does that mean she wont get a husband…hai what do I do? and she is already 3 years which leaves me only with 23 years before I can start saving money for her marriage..good thing you wrote to IHM now and not after 2 years which gives me two years of additional time na..

    are you crazy lady??? your darkness has NOTHING to do with who you marry..and if it has, that person is not worth getting married to…I can understand your parents wanting you to get married…but do ‘you’ want to get married…you are only 26 and honestly there is not real ‘AGE’ when you should get married…get married when ‘you’ want to get married…

    if guys reject you based on your colour, its good, at least you are not getting married to an idiot who will after marriage give you grief!!!

    please dont even consider colour as a criteria for marriage…marriage is a journey not a destination (Starry you are so right) its easy to marry, to maintain the marriage after that is the difficult task, just like its easy to deliver kids but bringing them up is where the toughest task lies…

    Dont even bother about what your parents say…do what you think is right and like the others said, get yourself a job, spend money, enjoy the time to yourself…its never going to come back

    Like

  25. Whatever perception others have of you seems to clearly be affecting your perception of self as well. Which you should not let happen.

    The colour of the skin does not make any difference to your beauty. It’s all in your confidence. FEEL beautiful, FEEL sexy, know you’re worth it. Trust me, if you believe it about yourself, others will too.

    Move out of your parents’ house, live by yourself, find yourself, live a little. Don’t allow yourself to be pressured into getting married to any jackass willing to sell himself for dowry.

    Love yourself (and I don’t mean be cocky about it) but love who you are, and others will too.

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  26. Believe in yourself AND your parents. Confide in them about your problems even if they appear to be sarcastic at certain times..They are just as much run down by constantly trying for a good match but generally parents would always stand by you.

    Forget “looking” for a marriage at the moment – more important is self worth and therefore Develop your personality, look for a stable job or a source of income that would sustain you in relative comfort.

    Marriage is something that will happen in its own time and going by your age, its in your favor, at least the next few years.

    Once you are an accomplished person, you will come across many people who would find you attractive for not just the color of the skin but by the way you hone your inner qualities.

    Dark skin is very attractive too, so stop bothering about it. Those idiots who reject anyone for color of skin are generally also backward by a decade in their way of thinking and are more likely to trouble you throughout your life for something or the other because such people have a set pattern idea about wife (or daughter in law ) and expect them to work like slaves with no individual personality.

    Like

    • “Believe in yourself AND your parents.” Errr….why should she believe in her parents? Why this generalised assumption that “generally parents would always stand by you. “? Plenty of parents don’t stand by their kids, plenty of parents don’t BELIEVE in their grown-up children. This woman has not even started her marriage journey and her parents are actively pulling her down for the pigment in her skin. And I’m not sure abt this, but parents who are planning to give a hefty dowry to keep the in-laws happy….can’t they see it might make their own daughter unhappy?

      What she needs to do is trust herself and listen objectively as to whether her parents are indeed trying to find a ‘good’ MATCH for her….matching what? Skin colour?

      Like

      • @ “generally parents would always stand by you. “? Plenty of parents don’t stand by their kids, plenty of parents don’t BELIEVE in their grown-up children.
        MOST parents do stand by the kids is just what I am saying in different words 🙂 …which means “some” parents don’t…. but in her case they were by her side till constant banging their head against certain prejudiced people of the society have presumably blown a fuse…
        Why turn a daughter against her parents? It is a natural instinct for parents to protect and I am sure they generally do so.
        Focus on the main issue please – she has to develop to be independent and self confident, whether marriage to the right man happens or not.

        Like

      • Truwizard, it looks like this prejudice of society is very much there in her own parents. She needs to stop believing in that aspect of her parents, the belief that her parents have that her colour is inferior, that she is nothing more than a skin colour.

        This is not about turning against parents. It’s about opening one’s eyes and seeing how her own parents are undermining her confidence and happiness (which you say is the main issue and I agree). That doesn’t sound like being on her side, to me. They’re seemingly turning on their daughter with sarcastic remarks and pity about her colour – what’s protective about that?

        If parents can’t stand up for their own daughter, against this so-called societal pressure and prejudice, then it’s a very sorry state of affairs. And this is just about skin colour – a very petty issue – what if it becomes about more than that? If they can’t stand up for their daughter abt the way she looks, then I strongly doubt they can be there for her in any more serious circumstance.

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      • We do not know this girls educational or other qualifications. Nor do we know her other options.

        In such a case is it wise to advice her to move out, assuming that the parents are not good; which I doubt simply because I feel NO mother ( generally ) would not love her daughter for whatever reason.

        May I ask the ladies out here to bear me out? is there anyone who can say that she has her daughters color of the skin against her?

        I think its just that the pressure has got on the parents too in this case, and all she got to do is to tell them to relax and stop looking for a suitable groom, and that she would do it herself. That would be adequate and the parents would either change their attitude or stop looking, giving this lady a chance to discover herself with self respect.

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  27. Sometimes we all need a bit of a spruce-up 🙂 A beautician or fitness expert can guide you.

    In the eyes of the world,Indians are considered par with blacks and Arabs, no matter how earnest the pursuit for fairness here be!

    Like

    • What are you trying to say here? What is wrong with Arabs or Africans? Let me tell you that much of the world has no issues with darker-skinned people. Indians. of course, are different. Your comment makes really no sense to me.

      Like

    • And it is this very thought process that sells fair and lovely creams!! Be happy with the person you are… Dress up, spruce up to make yourself happy and feel good about yourself…not to get a guy to like you.. I mean, seriously…are we not all above skin colors and looks and the lengths of our hair?!

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  28. I have always wondered why Indians have this craze for fairness and also for how long this craze is present in our society. Let me try a theory.
    Color of the skin is determined by the climate and the amount of direct exposure to sun. Thus those living in tropical region has darker skin than those living in temperate region. In tropical countries those who are less exposed to direct sun light has fairer skin. In class/ caste divided society the upper class/caste will have fairer skin as they live a protected life. So the craze for fairer skin is the urge to be of higher class/caste. So it might have started with beginning of Agriculture when class hierarchy began.

    Like

    • Charakan, I think your analysis is correct. It is a class thing, a perception that fair means you have the luxury of not being out there in the sun breaking your back. It is not restricted to Indians. Chinese are obsessed with fairness. They can differentiate between degrees of whiteness, they want to be white like the Japanese (who they idolise). The Chinese word for white is the very similar to the one for money – this ties in nicely to the class/colour idea. Even if you look at European culture, the Victorians were obsessed with remaining fair, the upper class ladies were lily-white.

      Like

    • And AFAIK, this whole fear of going out in the sun and getting dark is resulting in a huge part of the ‘upper-class’ population having a vitamin D deficiency. Not to mention a pitiful number of sportspeople getting anywhere near the top…because of the taboo around tanning.

      Like

      • LOL! Good one, Starry!

        BTW, the above theory of why some people are dark, and some are light-skinned has a scientific basis. People living in temperate and frigid zones of the earth experienced lower intensity of sunlight, AND shorter light time throughout the year, so the melanin in the lower layer of skin decreased, increasing the capacity of the skin to absorb light required to create vit D, so important for survival. Vice-versa for those living in the tropics, who needed to block most of the sun’s rays, as they were in excess of what they needed.

        The interesting thing is that all these people came from a common origin- East Africa- and all these and other characteristic features of each region developed over thousands of years of migration around the world.

        https://genographic.nationalgeographic.com/genographic/lan/en/atlas.html

        Sorry for the unexpected science lesson, but I thought A’s parents’ and others’ obsession with colour of the skin needed to be put in the right perspective. It’s plain silly! So A, believe in yourself, not what others have to say about your skin colour.

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      • Sandhya,
        All this is Science so it is welcome. What I mentioned as a theory for the craze for fairness is Social Science.
        Dark skinned kids born and brought up in temperate climate needs more sunlight than white skinned kids.That is why so many Indian kids in Europe develop Vit D deficiency

        Like

    • Precisely which features are considered to be pretty or beautiful, varies with time and place, but the basic reasons stay the same. Essentially, looking healthy and rich is considered “pretty”.

      So, at a time when poor people worked on the fields in agriculture while the rich was indoors more, being very pale (I’m talking from an European context here) was considered beautiful.

      Then some years later, many poor people worked long hours indoors in factories, while only the rich could afford to go on vacations to places with lots of sun and nice beaches – so the perception changed, and suddenly being tanned was considered beautiful.

      Same with body-shape: at the time in Europe when poor people could not afford sufficient nutritious food, being fat was considered attractive, and being thin was considered ugly. Then industrialisation made poor-quality but high-calorie foods cheap, and many people got still-sitting office-jobs, and suddenly being fat is considered ugly.

      So you’re right. The color of your skin is unrelated to your health, thus the only remaining explanation is that light skin is considered attractive because the rich and socially respected are on the average lighter-skinned than the poor ones at the bottom of society.

      Like

      • Eivind,
        Very true. There is also a ‘survival of the fittest’ factor involved in the fat/lean–ugly/pretty concept.
        In the past people want more body weight because they know from experience that being a little obese [not gross over weight as no one could reach there] has a survival adavantage with infections,which were the main threat for life then. This was the concept of whole of the society during feudalism. Thus having a bigger tummy was not only fashionable but healthy too since life style diseases like Diabetes and Coronary heart Diseases were unheard off.
        In modern era,after the Scientific revolution, as our Physical labour began to decrease and excess food could be produced, people began to get more and more obese. People started noticing that Obesity and sedentary life style is killing many,much more than infections,which was by then fairly well controlled.
        Thus lean people who exercise well became the icon, not only fashionable but healthy.

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    • It could also be a colonial hangover. I know people who are very proud that they have a “gori” i.e Causcasian, daughter-in-law.

      Although they did not actively set out to get a “gori bahu”, now that they have one, they’re happy to use it as a marker of status.

      I also have a cousin who had to break off a serious, committed relationship with her African American boyfriend because her family absolutely refused to accept the relationship.

      Ironically, her older brother married a white American and the family was happy to welcome her into the family.

      Like

      • Eivind, interesting point about attitudes to weight. Never really thought of it that way – though I have read a study on how the poorest in the US are the most obese because they can only afford the most unhealthy food.

        Bad Indian Girl, I think colonial rule only reinforced already existing prejudices. And yeah, Indians are very racist. Ironic, because most of these people would be horrified to discover that outside India we would be considered ‘black’ too.

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      • The bride:

        It’s one of those things that once you are aware of it, you will notice everywhere. That things which are typical of the rich are considered attractive/pretty/beautiful whereas things which are typical of the poor are considered undesirable or ugly.

        I gave 2 examples, skin-color and weight. But there are many many more. For example, at a time when only the upper-class could afford smoking, it was considered “sexy”. But today (atleast in Europe) smoking is mostly something that poor people do, so it is considered unattractive.

        Or speech. Using dialects and manners of speech typical of the rich and powerful, will tend to be considered attractive while talking in the manner of a poor person, will be considered unattractive.

        It’s really quite superficial and stupid.

        I’m actually the other way around. My clothing, my car, my shoes, my haircut and most such things, would lead you to believe I’m fairly poor, while in actual fact me and my wife earn very well (about $250K/year) it can be hilarious to watch how business-persons get all confused about it.

        For example, the last time we bought a new house, the seller was very concerned with how on earth we where going to be able to pay for it. So I said that it’s very inconvenient (and dangerous) to carry such an amount of cash around, and can I simply deposit the money into his account ?

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  29. I am just going to parrot what others have said. If you stay with your parents, please do yourself a favor and move out. Your parents are probably taking out the stress of a zillion relatives and neighbors inquiring “But why is A not married yet” on you – you certainly do not need it!

    Also stop stressing out on “OMG, I am 26, I HAVE to get married.”. You get married because you want to, not because you have reached some arbitrary and artificial age-limit that society has come up with it. Nothing wrong in wanting to get married – but there is something definitely wrong in wanting to get married at any cost. The wedding is only probably a week’s worth of events but a marriage lasts a life time and after all the invitees have declared “A has finally gotten married” and happily gone back home after the wedding feast, it is only you left with your new life. So, choose wisely. I know it is hard with peer-pressure (I should know, I got married after I had crossed the typical Indian-girl age of marriage), but try to keep things in perspective – you can get wedded to just about any one but staying married and happily at that requires that you get married to the right person.

    Anyone who thinks dark skin is a serious character flaw which makes a girl non-wife-material is a moron. In fact, if a groom or his family comes up with this requirement, I think you should reject them first! Facing rejection is very hard but seriously, do you want to get married to someone who would judge someone else’s worth based on the color of their skin? And though it may seem so to you now, though the majority of the men in the arranged marriage market are looking for “fair, slim girls” (irrespective of how fat and dark they themselves might be), there are sensible ones too who realize that what’s inside a book is way more important than what’s on the cover. So, just hang in there. In the mean time, keep your mind open to meeting someone on your own as well. Though it may not seem so, when you meet someone and you click with them, looks will be the last criterion in deciding whether the relationship moves forward or not.

    Good luck. And you are only 26 – have some fun!

    Like

  30. Do you want to get married? If the answer’s no, you should [like many people have advised] move out of your parents house. If you have an education and get paid well, then make use of it. You are in a far more advantageous situation than a woman who doesn’t have a well paying job and is financially reliant on her parents.

    Dark skin = not attractive is only a cultural belief. Truth is, while humans [and other animals] are inclined to seek out ‘beautiful’ mates, beauty has NOTHING to do with skin color. Beauty has more to do with symmetry. And evolution makes animals inclined to seek out symmetrical mates because symmetry = health.

    If you DO want to get married, AND you want to get an arranged marriage, then you should accept the fact that it’s [at least initially] very superficial. My parents were arranged–my dad thought my mom’s family would give him good connections and my mom thought my dad was good looking. Good thing both of them fell in love later on, but those were really dumb reasons to get married. Once you’ve accepted that arranged marriages are based on superficial qualities, you can perhaps work on superficial qualities you CAN control such as weight and wardrobe.

    Furthermore, there are tons of Indian men who don’t buy into the dark skin = unattractive belief.

    Like

  31. Hi

    Have you taken a look at Bipasha Basu – isnt she dark and amazingly beautiful? It doesnot matter whether you are dark or fair. You just need to groom yourself and carry yourself well. All this needs to be done not for netting a prize catch in the marriage market but for your ownself.

    You donot need to be apologetic for your colour or anything else for that matter. Please get rid of all the negative influences around you. IMO, looks are pretty superficial and what you really need to focus on is your developement as a person. Trust you are financially independant.

    All the best

    Roopa

    Like

    • Yes of course, Bips is a great example.
      My younger brother, during the early seventies, was so smitten with Smitha (Smitha Patil. Remember her?). He named his daughter Smita!

      Just in case there is a short girl out there feeling depressed, I was a great fan of Jaya Bahaduri, during the late sixties. I would see her movies again and again. I saw Guddi a dozen times and will see it again whenever one the TV channels screen it. Yes, my wife knows it and tolerates it! Now you know why I am not a fan of Big B!

      Regards
      GV

      Like

  32. Hello A,

    Please do not leave your parents alone and go. I hope u understand that they are part of the same system that you and me are. Their behavioral change is probably because of the pressures of the society. Let your parents know that you have 2 choices one to stay with them and fight second to leave them and go and fight all by yourself. Tell them that you would prefer staying with them and fight with their support, instead of shunning away from them. (the way they are doing with you). Tell them how important they are to you. My guess is they would realise and understand once you start talking to them more openly. And please dont cry when you talk because no relationship or person in this world is worth your tears. After this if they ask you to take the first choice then atleast you know they helped you make your choice. And even in that case do not hold any anger in your heart for them. When you yourself got frustrated in 2 years and are asking for help think about them.
    About your marriage, dont make decision in a haste or frustration, because you might end up with a person you are not going to be happy with. And unfortunately if you end up in a divorce then the stigma is double. Marriage is a very important thing in ones life, but not The only important thing. If by reading everyones messages you get the courage to fly then soar your wings high. Maybe a change of place or going for higher education just to get away from the questioning eyes, and also giving time to yourself to think and be with like minded people and generation would help.

    Like

  33. All that I wanted to say has been said.

    I may be repeating.

    1)You can’t do a thing about your complexion. So quit worrying or feeling bad about it.
    In the “marriage market”, you are no worse off than a young man who is short, or a man who suffers from premature baldness etc etc.
    At least you are not physically handicapped. Look at people who are worse off and console yourself that things could have been worse.

    2)A dark complexion merely means you won’t be in the first list of girls that young men and their parents will shortlist.
    I am not justifying this. Merely accepting it as a sad fact in our society.
    Many Indians are guilty of colour prejudice, however strongly we may deny it.
    But all is not lost merely because of a dark complexion.
    It only means you may need more time to find the right man.
    At 26, you are not at an age when you should panic.

    3)Keep marriage as something you are not ruling out but don’t treat that as a major objective in life.
    That will take the pressure off your mind. As everyone suggests, train yourself, acquire skills, take up a job, work, earn, travel, socialize and live life to the hilt. Marriage will come when it comes. Don’t be so eager to get married, whatever your parents may say. I am shocked to hear that that your parents “pitied” you earlier and are now mocking you and are sarcastic. This doesn’t sound like a typical Indian parent at all. They must be your principal support system and it is they who must feel depressed and guilty if they feel that a dark complexion is a defect. After all they gave you your complexion, you did not choose it.

    4)Don’t depend on the arranged marriage system.
    Start mixing with people, socialize, meet as many people as possible, and look out for your mate and once you find him, simply go ahead whether your parents approve or not.
    They couldn’t find you a proper mate through their system.
    They have no business to stop you from solving your problem your own way.

    5)In the meantime, in case you parallelly try the Indian arranged market system, just as DM in the previous blog declared his physical disability, to prevent disappointment later, do declare that you are dark right at the outset when prospecting for grooms. Your parents may not like this. They may feel that you will be putting off prospective grooms even before they see you. That is better than facing rejection on grounds of complexion after they see you, in spite of you fitting the bill in every other way. You will not be wasting time with people for whom complexion is an issue.

    6)Take heart. There are several men out there who find a dark complexion a terrific turn on.
    Admiittedly they are few but I do know men who are fair who have married dark women.
    Dark men marrying another dark woman is much more common.

    7)Marriage will happen at the right time and while you are waiting for it, stop brooding and instead simply enjoy life.

    Regards and best wishes

    GV

    Like

      • Yes Sangitha, we are still looking.
        He has absolutely no handicaps and still nothing seems to click.
        It’s three years already and he is pretty choosy.
        He met at least three he liked but the girls turned out to be equally choosy and turned him down.
        The search continues. Some of his conditions have now been relaxed.
        The parents have expanded the search to other communities without too much difference in traditions and customs and are now not particular about region and I am hoping he gets fixed up soon.
        They have also agreed to welcome any girl he brings home.
        What more can they do?

        Thanks for your interest.
        Regards
        GV

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  34. Unfortunately such stereotypical thinking is so tightly coupled with our society that it feels like we have developed a new mutation in our genes to store them.

    I understand it is very difficult to go against it specially when ur own family whom you look up for unconditional support , guidance and love suddenly become hostile to your sensibilities. It’s difficult but not impossible dear. Just hang on there and believe in yourself.

    Irrespective of gender,we all want to have that someone spcl we can trust and who can reciprocate back with same respect and love. But life is not a fairy tale. Even when u find that someone , it still needs adjustments from both ends. So don’t rush into any relationship.

    You are only 26 and have a promising life ahead of u. Have confidence and self belief and u can make a beautiful life ahead. Trust me, even guys don’t prefer just fair gals with no self respect Infact they crave for someone who is confident and can be a companion. There is no dearth of Barbie dolls in Toy stores 🙂

    Go ahead, believe in yourself and see how everyone around you will get positively influenced by it. You can do it gal.

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  35. 1. Become financially independent, have a job.
    2. Be confident of who you are as a person, there are people who value that more than your looks
    3. If someone rejects you based on your complexion or anything else on the paper, say good riddance, they were not right to begin with.
    4. Seek out prospective grooms yourself online. Be clear about what you are and what you want. There are many who appreciate honesty, sincerity, a personality more than looks.
    5. Go out socialize, meet people, make friends, marriage is not your goal, living is.
    5. You cannot change parents attitude, let them do their job, you change your attitude and start looking on your own.

    There will many rejections, it will take time….but trust me, there is someone somewhere for everyone, the wait may be long, but when you actually meet the person everything will fall in place.

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  36. Beauty does NOT depend on skin colour. When the hell will we Indians realise that???!!!!!

    I can only say, if possible, move out and go abroad… get a life that is more complete.

    If that is not likely, then atleast start working out, go to the gym, read books, do things that make you feel like a more complete person!!!! Once you find happiness in yourself, you won’t care a damn about trashy people who think fair skin = beauty.

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    • //Beauty does NOT depend on skin colour. When the hell will we Indians realise that???!!!!!//

      It does ,it really does , I don’t understand how it does not

      Beauty depends upon height , upon weight , upon waist, upon eye color , upon hair color /length , upon skin tone ,upon figure . How can it not depend upon all these and skin color

      Like

  37. You’ve been given some very sensible advice here, so let me just tell you two small anecdotes regarding colour, looks and marriage!
    I do remember that an astrologer had told the parents of my very good looking and fair cousin that he would prosper only with a bride who was darker than him. ( I honestly don’t think that this astrology business has anything to do with marital happiness, but that’s how things were when I was a child). They’ve been happily married for decades now, my cousin also did well (he wasn’t particularly brilliant academically or career-wise earlier on).

    Another cousin kept raving to me how beautiful her uncle’s wife was, so I was looking forward to meeting this great beauty. The lady in question was undeniably very fair, but not a great beauty by anything other than the fairness yardstick.

    I just saw Delhi Belly, and found Poorna Jagannathan really gorgeous.

    My dear girl, beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder. Make yourself strong and independent, and stay away from those who put you down.
    I think being being beautiful is more important than looking beautiful.

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    • This is funny stuff! I never understood why a certain friend of mine was considered a beauty in school…turns out she was very fair and I was simply blinded by the light from her white face. 🙂 The white obsession in Asia isn’t a different definition of beauty, it is a literal colonial hangover.

      Like

  38. A must stop giving in to the indignity to being viewed like goods on display and insist on looking on her own for someone to marry. Because if she leaves it to her family, who are sharing in the rejection, she is going to continue hearing this and worse.
    Honestly , A do you want to marry someone who is so shallow that they will like you for your face or dowry or money? What happens after you get married? How do you keep them interested then, or is it ok as long as you are “married”?

    Like

  39. When I was part of this arranged marriage tamasha, my being dark was a problem. My earning more than men who were older was a problem. I rejected every profile that expressed a wish for some particular skin color. If people are so inquisitive about color, they should be marrying Adobe photoshop where they can play with colors all they want, they have no business marrying someone who is as awesome as you or I.

    But I did meet people who were not as obsessed and they were not that hard to come by.. I eventually chucked this whole arranged marriage thing away as it had me worried me on many levels, and married someone I wanted to live with.

    Discrimination from a fair-and-lovely obsessed society is one thing, facing this in your own place is another. Have a conversation with your parents, let them know that you do not appreciate this attitude at all. If it’s not going well, please do yourself a favor by getting a job and living on your own(it’s one of the best things that happened to me)

    if you want a silver lining in this whole color obsession thing, have you observed how hard it is to sort the good ones from the bad ones in an arranged marriage(when there are time constraints)? I’d say this is an easy and fool proof way to rule out superficial people.

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    • “If people are so inquisitive about color, they should be marrying Adobe photoshop where they can play with colors all they want, they have no business marrying someone who is as awesome as you or I.”

      Totally, totally loved this 🙂

      Like

  40. Hi A,
    There is some great advice already in the comments for you to think about and even follow. Building your self-esteem will cure you and your deluded parents. But what I am finding bothersome in the comments is the outright rejection of the idea that looks matter. Truth is looks matter every where. Evolutionary biologists can explain with better examples, but in simple terms physical appearance is how humans have determined if someone is a friend or foe for ages…which is a lot longer than the current system of societal arrangement. But looks have never been the ultimate determinant in a person’s survival or success. And that is the realization a person with low self-esteem needs to drill into his/her head. Beauty may get your foot in the door in many places, but it will not guarantee your success in marriage or life outside marriage.

    Second, your parents are toxic. They would like to see you happily married, but they don’t have the courage to look beyond what they have been taught. So go ahead make your own rules and teach them to treat you with the respect a human being deserves. I loved the movie “My big fat greek wedding” where the girl basically goes out, makes friends, gets a career, a boyfriend and in a way teaches her parents to respect her choices. Watch it, if you haven’t. Your reality is harsher than shown in movies, I know. But seeing how others build up their life from a feeling of being nothing is useful.

    Building self-esteem is a tricky process when it comes to problems with how you look. Even minor positive changes can help in that direction. Self love is so huge and so complicated sometimes that it’s hard to get there if you can’t even take the baby steps. So the baby steps would be, think of ways you are pretty, think of other great qualities about yourself, realize that you can be independent and set your own rules. If you were my girl friend, I would teach you to wear make-up, develop some personal style and ignore parents most of the time. Is there anyone with you who can help you with those first steps? Make-up may seem so useless to many, but I have seen many girls with poor self-esteem shine when they simply spent time pampering themselves. Tiny 15 minutes every morning to realize there is beauty in that face and body, no matter what the family has made you believe so far.

    If moving away from parents’ home is not yet possible, work towards that goal. Don’t engage with parents much. If challenged in your attempts, engage only as much as needed to quiet them. In the world of self-help, the concept of keeping garbage information out of your mind is very popular. And with good reason. So your parent’s hurtful comments, families judgements are all useless information, keep those out as much as possible. If friends are just as critical, ditch them and get new ones. Hope these help. Someday you will know that the good life started at 26 and after a couple brutal rejections. Girl, people are rejected all the time, you are not alone. Find those kindred spirits nearby and do what your parents can’t: find the courage to write your own rules. 🙂 Hugs!

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    • Ria … looks do matter. But what I find attractive may not be what you find attractive, for various reasons. Nature has not left anyone “useless” from the evolutionary point of view. But being fair or dark is no measure of beauty. If it was and being dark means bad-looking, Africans would never have babies and the entire continent would be laid waste soon enough. No one here is saying that attractiveness is not a factor in marriage. But that is not something you can measure from an internet portal. All you can do is say “she is dark” and move on to the next profile. Which is pretty much silly and shallow.

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    • Hi Ria, I just wanted to address one small part of your comment. Nobody is saying looks don’t matter. Looks do matter, although they are just one factor among many. What people are saying is that SKIN COLOUR HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH LOOKS. There are enough ugly fair people and beautiful dark people. As a group, Scandinavians don’t look any better or worse than Spaniards who don’t look any better or worse than Japanese who don’t look any better or worse than Indians who don’t look any better or worse than Arabs who don’t look any better or worse than Ethopians! Sorry for ranting, but this is something that should be so obvious to everybody, and it is frustrating that it isn’t. 😦

      Like

  41. And tell me that the rules of arranged marriage are about “profound” objectives and “thorough” selection process.

    Yeah, right.

    I support the ideas, that she should just get independent and decide about herself. She got enough humiliation for no reason already.

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  42. I am not going to repeat practical advice given by others, but I am going to give you one of my favorite quotes that I use as a reminder when life gets me down.

    “We either make ourselves miserable, or we make ourselves strong. The amount of work is the same.” – Carlos Castenada.

    So you see, it is a choice. Whatever happens around you, you can choose the way you want to feel about it, the way you want to behave around it. Your parents are frustrated, probably feeling guilty too and it shows in their unaware sarcasm. Tell them that you don’t appreciate their sarcasm. As a last resort, let them know that if their unkindness and sarcasm continues, you will leave the house (of course, this is after making sure you can actually do it, otherwise don’t use this threat. If you threaten, then you MUST carry out what you say). Everytime you let the others dictate how you feel, you let go of your own power. Make a choice, ask yourself these questions and see what the answers are. Are you going to let someone else have the right to chip of your confidence? Why does your confidence depend on how the other behaves with you or what the other says about you? Do you have to take what others say about you, personally? Are you happy with who and how you are without others input of who or how you should be? Know yourself, Accept yourself, Walk Tall.

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  43. I am not going to say anything too different . Go out, live your life, have some fun! Take a break from the seeing grooms and the wedding business. Sometimes all need to do it to stop trying and things work out.

    Work on your self esteem again. Some of the prettiest folks I have met and seen are dark skinned , but confident and lovely people. When your personality shines thru and you feel comfortable in your skin , you will see attitudes around you changing and may be meet some one by yourself too 🙂 !

    Like

  44. I guess with this one, I need advice myself. I am reasonably successful, I am decently attractive if not super model types. I have always been a little reticent socially and so didn’t have friends most of my childhood. I was always looking for someone to accept me the way I am. A recurring theme because of this has been that I give way too much to every relationship I have. I find it tough to really connect and yet at times I pour out my heart to just about anyone. My parents are actually a dream for many Indian girls, they are not in a hurry to marry me off. But I had plans to get married a little earlier. In the last couple of years however marriage has become sort of very important to me, even though things I see may not be very encouraging. Somehow I feel that I have everything but I just don’t have anyone to share it with. I have had relationships, but towards the end in every one of them, I have felt that I have given way too much and got relatively less. One particular time I almost lost my self respect because I couldn’t make sense of the abuse and wondered how or why someone would do that to me. Right now I am again at a crossroads, I guess I have made some kind of a decision, but I wonder how to break the pattern. The taking for granted has happened every where, at home, with friends, with relationships. I feel a little unsupported at home because they don’t seem to view my having had relationships favourably. They would have preferred if at the age of 28 I never spoke to any guy, much less hang out with him. It doesn’t help that I have had my own disasters, which further clouds their opinion about me. Even so, in their own way, they stand by me. But somehow I feel lost because this one thing in my life is not sorted. I also don’t know how to keep answering people around me, I guess they see it affects me and go on to press further. Also the times when I have put my foot down, I have received the jolt that I would have been avoiding all the time – rejection. I don’t know how to feel more sure of myself around people in general. Any help?

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    • your folks have been supportive unlike A’s here.
      I assume you are open with them,they’re open minded and you’re open to an arranged marriage.Do you trust your parents enough to choose someone for you? since you mentioned the disasters,it could be that they now trust you a little less with your choice.If you think you’ve had enough heartache,you can ask parents for help.
      be choosy and narrow down your choice to a few select profiles whom you think could really match your expectations.As for rejection,chat over the phone or net before meeting the person.Rejection is tough for men too.That shouldn’t stop you.

      Like

    • Hello Cheesychic
      Parts of your comment resonated with me, so I wanted to reply to you. I think, most Indian women, even those from liberal families, like yours and mine, grow up with a poor and unclear understanding of boundaries.

      Like you, I too feel that I have given more than I have received in relationships.

      Let me share with you, how I have broken this pattern of entering relationships with low expectations and then feeling that I was being taken for granted.

      Perhaps you may find my experiences helpful in resolving your inner conflict.

      First, I have completely rid myself of years of conditioning about how women should be in relationships, how they should behave and what they should expect.

      It’s taken me years to get rid of all this societal conditioning, but it has finally happened.

      Yoga and meditation helped enormously, of course. In fact is been a life-saver. I also began studying Vedanta and its helped me to look beyond the ordinary, everyday dimension of life.

      In my opinion, meditation helps to clear your mind of useless clutter and confusion. You get a clearer understanding of your own nature and what you want to do with your life.

      Before you do anything else, I would suggest that you begin practicing some form of meditation. There are several available, TM. Shambhavi Mahamudra, Sudarshan Kriya. You can pick what works for you.

      Both during my marriage and after my divorce, I went through a period of intense loneliness and alienation.

      I desperately wanted to be with somebody I could share myself with completely and be a part of their life in return.

      Gradually, as the loneliness intensified, my barriers lowered and I found that there is a certain category of people (men and women) that feed off your emotional vulnerability.

      The two short-lived relationships that I had post-divorce taught me a lot. I have learnt to trust my instincts completely.

      Meeting and “dating” men helped me understand exactly what it was that I was looking for in a partner.

      It helped that my parents insisted, quite firmly, that I do my own looking. My disastrous marriage has convinced them that arranged marriage is not for me.

      If I felt disrespected, uneasy or suffocated in a relationship, then, no matter how promising its prospects or how eligible the man, I broke it off.

      I understand that this is a slippery slope. Everybody’s tolerance level for disrespectful and inconsiderate behavior is different,

      I consider verbal abuse to be unacceptable; but I have female relatives who do not mind their husbands yelling at them in public.
      Different strokes for different folks, I guess. 🙂

      I know what my threshold is and I have learnt to trust it.

      Here’s how I see it: I would never be disrespectful, inconsiderate or selfish towards my significant other, so I have every right to expect similar courtesy from him. If communication and talking doesn’t resolve the problem, then it is time to call it quits.

      Oftentimes, we are tempted to ignore little slights and other warning signs. We give in, we tolerate it, we pretend it never happened.

      If I cannot be myself with a man, if I feel obliged to bite my tongue or watch what I say or how I behave or how I dress… if I man cannot accept me and respect me for who I am, then he is not the right man for me.

      I do not mind changing small parts of me, but I refuse to be with someone who expects it or demands it of me.
      At the same time, I do not expect nor demand that the man I am with changes any part of himself just to please me.
      This is my number ONE relationship rule.

      I had a lot of false starts, including a broken marriage. BUT, I have finally met somebody that I feel completely comfortable and in sync with.

      The reason I am sharing this with you is that I sincerely believe that one should never “settle”, I “settled” for something that was not right for me. It doesn’t work, IMO.

      It is better to be single and wait for that special someone, rather than “settle” be stuck in an unsatisfying and unfulfilling relationship.

      Perhaps you have met men who had predatory instincts, which is why you felt abused and disrespected in a few of your relationships. That is why I wanted to share this with you. Hope it helps. 🙂

      Like

      • @ Seema, they understand but just like A’s parents, they do say hurtful things or imply that no one wanted to ever meet my expectations anyway. This was something they did even before I made those ‘mistakes’. Even while in school, this was the way they reacted about my choice of friends. Something was always off for them and they keep telling me I have a weird behaviour, I think too much, worry too much etc etc. Sometimes they say I am just too naive. There is a lot of negativity and a lot of pressure to not fail. Its never said, but I do feel it. Though they have been clear about one thing, atleast my mom has been about not settling.

        @Bad Indian girl thank you for your kind words. I still have a long way to go, one of my relationships was with a guy who had abusive tendencies. But the most recent one was so good that I never for once suspected when it turned into a nightmare. The basic requirement of meeting his folks is something we have had fights about. He says he has told his folks but gets upset when I talk about taking things to a different level. This week was the first time I put my foot down on a matter and I just was rejected outright. I was told not to talk to him that way and I received an angry response and no communication after that. I don’t know what to do, my brain tells me its over because if someone can’t take you going angry once, then they may not be good in the future. But this eerily reminds of my past, how I would be so scared to upset my parents and if they wanted anything I would do it quickly, but I couldnt ask them to do things for me. Its a pattern, I know. I just hope to break it. Sometimes I just want to run away.

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      • Bad Indian Girl, these thoughts are what I’m trying to live by now. Thanks for putting them so precisely. Your nickname captures where some of us women go wrong: In trying to be ‘good’, in line with our conditioning, we get taken for granted and accept fundamental disrespect.

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      • Perhaps that is the reason why things fail for you? Next time, try putting your foot down before you get this involved. And always trust your inner instincts.

        Like

  45. More than 100 comments! That’s a lot of advice for you A! So i have simply decided to tell you my story instead!

    To start with, I am dark skinned! I have never been considered conventionally beautiful. However i have never been bothered by it because i derive my self esteem from other things about myself, like my ability to deal with challenges in life, my achievements in life (academic and non academic), my ability to deal with people and a whole lot of other things that make a better ME!

    As a teenager i had resolved to find someone who would like me more than for my skin colour. N if that hadn’t worked out i would have happily stayed single coz i love myself just the way i am!

    I have always scoffed at people who constantly worry about weight and skin colour and i will continue to do so for the rest of my life! Coz i know that beauty is certainly not skin deep. Thankfully i have been brought up in an environment where i haven been free to choose my concept of “Beauty”, unadulterated by fads and ads! This has helped me find a person who loves me for me and not for the way i look!

    And i really feel sad for those who rely on others’ compliments to make them beautiful. I have always been an strong opponent of those fairness cream advertisements!!!
    If ever given a chance to head the I&B ministry i would simply ban those ads!!

    A please don’t lose heart coz some morons are acting like themselves! There are plenty of them! Stop worrying and start focusing on other great things in your life. Your work, friends, hobbies, shopping,(if you find it a stress buster)! Go have a great time! You’ll find someone wonderful along the way!

    Take care.

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  46. Dear A,
    I have an aunt who is dark, conventionally not Good looking (as many would say) But you know what… she is the smartest, most intelligent, loveliest, enterprising female in our family. She did not have to pay us millions as dowry to be a part of our family. She made my uncle fall in love with her with all her charms, she never tried to put on a charade to impress any of us. She retains her individuality and complements my uncle completely. They have a cute son who’s 2 and both my uncle and aunt are happily married. So what I want to convey is that the world does not come to an end If you are dark in complexion. Yes some fools in my family often pass off snide comments on her, but she refuses to take that crap! Our world is full of bigots, twisted and prejudiced people; but there are many who will love you for what you are! Just Do not think of you being dark as a handicap..You are no less than any body else. Be Confident and stay confident! 🙂

    Like

    • Thank for sharing. This is exactly what is the point. OFten we have bring to the world what we are deep inside. And if that is beautiful, let it shine to the outside. Due to conditioning and choices we lower our vibrations so much that people can’t see that “Real you” and hence the depression. While we cannot exonerate the people around you for making you go through lot of crap, but how to react to a stimulus is your choice. I was always told (coming from a business family) that all this academic excellence etc is waste, you should become a dr or IAS officer. And I would say, I will prove you all wrong. The other way to take the same stimulus is – I’m useless because I can’t be a dr or be what they want me to be.. Today, all the next generation kids in my family- say I want to be what you have become..and their parents are OK with it 🙂

      Like

  47. I feel terribly angry at our societies attitude !! If she is reading this, I want her to know that I am with her, we all are with her. Having said this, while I see living on her own as an option. I also feel that depending on which city she belongs to, she might face hell lot of problems in doing this (even in metros).

    Also, I think the parents here are doing this, without realizing, that this is a serious issue for their daughter now and it is affecting her self esteem (so they are being immaturely insensitive, though they love her). I think before taking such a drastic step in her life, she must talk to both her parents or whoever she is comfortable with, about her feelings on this issue and how it is hurting to her. I think if made to understand well, they will refrain from this behavior. Also, she must find the courage to be independent (if she is not) and then have the freedom to choose a suitable life partner for herself. Breaking the family ties may not be necessary,if she succeeds in doing this.

    Also, Inner beauty is more important than outer one, no matter what impression someone has of her on the first visit, if she is inwardly beautiful, people will always have the sense to appreciate it sooner or later. And even if some people don’t, It is very nice to know within ourselves, that “I are beautiful”. But the meaning if beauty here is not the color of the skin but the beauty if the soul ! All kinds of people can be beautiful only if they have a beautiful soul and man’s focus should ideally be on enhancing this inner beauty with more and more inner progress. 🙂

    Cheers to her ! 🙂

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  48. I am born with a dark complexion,capital D at that. Have been subjected to all types of prejudices since childhood not by my parents but the extended family, at school, while shopping and almost everywhere. I accepted being born with dark skin as a flaw, kept to myself mostly but told myself that the only way to overcome that flaw was through studying good. Always told myself that I would be nothing if I do not study. The success that came built in some confidence. I had to go through the arranged marriage drill. Lot of rejections owing to my skin color. Some wanted dowry because of that. Initially I would feel hurt and angry but would always tell myself that am better off staying single. Parents started to get worried and till that point I never remember an instance when my parents felt sorry for me. Always spoke to parents about how I would be happy staying single rather than get married by buying someone in the market. Its like am paying penalty for being born first as a girl and then a higher penalty coz am dark complexioned. Lived happily, independently and without any qualms about it. Parents saw my happiness and that built confidence in them too. They let me be. I found someone and am going to get married.

    In this whole drill, I learnt how being born with a dark complexion is not a flaw. I scoff at people who would be biased about complexion or anything that one does not have control over. First, realize for yourself that complexion is nothing and don’t let anyone hurt you. People would be able to hurt you only if you let them to. Your confidence in yourself should be such that people do not even notice your complexion, be it fair or dark!!! Always communicate with your parents. Their comments are their way of dealing with their frustration, however unjustified it is. Also, that frustration is at the society and it has nothing to do with you.

    http://quantum-of-truth.blogspot.com/2010/11/gem-at-gems-show.html

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    • Swathi (if this is the same Swathi that I think this is)-
      YOU GO, GIRL! And congratulations on the upcoming wedding 🙂
      -rk

      Like

  49. Dear A,

    We know that in the Indian marriage market, dark complexion for a girl is a big deal. I personally have a friend whose parents gave her away to a man in marriage, whose family took a huge dowry ( as compensation for settling for a dark girl) and mocked her for years before she finally left him.
    In my opinion, its best to choose your own partner, because parents might “compromise” on certain aspects of the family just for the relief that someone said yes….please know that you are beautiful and wonderful and equally deserving of happiness as any person walking this planet. Please be financially secure, and of course everyone wants companionship, do go out in the dating market and explore! There is no need for marriage just for the sake of it, and you clearly don’t want the boy or family to remind you everyday what a favour they are doing you by accepting you. Find someone who can look beyond the colour of your skin and love you for the person you are. I am sure there is someone out there for everyone, so please don’t be in a hurry. You have ample time, life has just begun! Honestly, please find a way to buy more time in general and do your own thing, become your own person. If at home, the discussion of ur marriage happens day and night, try and move away for a while to another city ( if it is possible for you). A friend I knew begged her boss to give her an internal transfer to another city and told her parents it was the boss’s orders so she couldn’t do anything, just to buy more time before settling down.

    All the best! And hey, don’t let this rubbish take a beating on ur self esteem, its just a matter of time… you are the person you are, if you can love yourself this way, the world will, too!

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  50. 1. If Parents are supportive all of these problems would look like nothing. As that doesis not happening take a stand and get employed and live independantly
    2. I think there are men out there for whom being dark or fat is not an issue and sooner or later you will find life.
    3. Chill out relax, live happily and listen to Brahma Kumaris ‘Awakening’ to restore your self esteem on ‘Star Plus’ or download from youtube. Bless you.

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  51. Pingback: “Here’s what I would tell my future/potential daughter, if I ever have one.” | The Life and Times of an Indian Homemaker

  52. Taking a different view here – Many people have mentioned that judging people on their looks is shallow , such people are not worth marrying , they will not make good husbands ..

    I fail to understand why this conclusion and disagree

    Physical attractiveness is a crucial component in marriage / any romantic relationship. If the guy does not find the girl attractive enough , he is right enough in saying so and rejecting the relationship . Whether dark is beautiful or not is different matter altogether. we can debate about it but there is no single correct response . tall people are considered beautiful , bald people are considered ugly .. all these are people view of beauty and there is no right or wrong about it.

    Also note that whatever judgement is happening is from is from “marriage” perspective, not from a character evaluation . Marriage includes beauty and beauty includes skin complexion. Lets not fool ourselves otherwise

    My advise to the writer : Marry a guy who finds you physically attractive, don’t offer extra dowry for compensation for being dark. Also 26 is not old , you have time plenty

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  53. Pingback: Penile whitening cream launched for men | The Life and Times of an Indian Homemaker

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