“He wants divorce. She wants to know what wrong she did to be treated this way, why he chose her, but repents his decision immediately after marriage.”

Sharing an email.

What do you think should she do? Also, why do you think did this man get married to her?

Should she have, even the right to deny him a ‘no fault divorce’? If yes why? If not why not?

My friend and I went to the same college. She truly is an amazing person. Studious, friendly, polite, empathetic, cheerful, and loved by everyone, even at other majors. Back then she always had dreams about the kind of husband that she will have. Someone who would love her, and appreciate her for who she is. She has been talkative person. Very. I’ve spent hours then, listening to these, but none of that has come true now, which bothers me a lot.

Right after her post-grad, she worked at a well-known multi-national, and was a much respected employee and colleague. Three years into this, her parents thought it was time for her to get married. She was ready for an arranged marriage.
In a few months she called to say that they’ve chosen a guy, whose family is from the same town, and that he works in the US. The families met over dinner during an evening, and my friend and the guy were given time to speak to each other. The guy was happy with her, and same with her. They married in 2012. She left for US and initially she was getting accustomed to her new surroundings and her new life, but sounded happy indeed. But within months she started saying that he was so aloof, that they had problems having a conversation. She used to start something, and he would either nod, or would just answer in a single word. When she sat close to him, or tried to touch him, he would tell her explicitly that he didn’t like being touched.. He always said he needed time. Every effort she put in to understand him was futile, as either he said he is just not comfortable with her, or about how badly dressed she is, how ugly she is, or how bad her English grammar is (none of this is actually true).
They came here twice to have all this sorted out with elders. Both times he told her father that he will change things around, and would try to be happy with her once they go back. But he wouldn’t even try.
Once in between these visits, her MIL visited them, and when she left after a month, he became even more stubborn and started asking for a mutual divorce. Her family suspected he might either have an affair, or that he might be impotent. My friend undoubtedly says that the first is not true, as he never goes out at odd hours, talks, or texts often, or anything that could be signs. He proved the latter wrong by having a test done to prove himself. They were both asked to visit a psychiatrist at their town, where after 4 sittings, the doctor lady said she cannot force him into this, and he was extremely adamant, and never wanting to try. After this, he clearly told my friend that he would never change his decision, and that its only for convincing her, that he visited the psychiatrist.
He has provided for her well. Takes her out, buys her essentials. His Indian friends and acquaintances all like her much, and always invite her to eat out or to movies. They’ve even advised him to change, and pointed out that she is a good human being, and that he must be lucky.
All the while, my friend has tried, tried, and tried to make the marriage work. Been patient like no women in that situation can be. Now she has become extremely depressed, self-doubting, and thinks she has a bleak future. She wants answers to so many questions from him before she can think of obliging him. She wants to know what wrong she did to be treated this way, why he chose her, but repents his decision immediately after marriage, what remedy he has towards her 1.5 wasted years, of her young, precious life.
Her parents (her dad is assistant commissioner of police of a city) have always been supportive and patient and are only waiting for her to say that she is tired of waiting. She is afraid to come out of this unproductive marriage fearing of community, and her divorcee status. her parents want him to go through hell for how easily he treated (or handled) their daughter like an object. They are guilty, though they definitely did not force her to choose him. A single ‘no’, or ‘I don’t want to’, on his part would have saved her from this hell-hole.
Her well-wisher that I am, I want her to ditch this undeserving guy, and to be her usual self again, and find someone who is absolutely worth her. Enough is enough-of sleepless nights, and teary days. Kindly let me know what you, and others think, as i have come to trust your blog so much.
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90 thoughts on ““He wants divorce. She wants to know what wrong she did to be treated this way, why he chose her, but repents his decision immediately after marriage.”

  1. I am no expert but I suspect he may be gay.
    He didn’t have the courage to come out of the closet for obvious reasons.
    Indian society does not treat gays fairly.
    Neither did he have the good sense to remain unmarried.
    Let this lady set a time limit, say 6 months or a year to check if there is some other problem and see if it can be sorted out.
    After this time limit, let her agree to a divorce and salvage the rest of her life at least.
    Regards
    GV

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    • I agree with you. The recent Supreme Court ruling did nothing to favor gay folks and it is even better reason that they’ll pretend to be heterosexual for the sake of society. It is clear that she’s really trying to get intimate but absolutely no reaction from him clearly means that he is just not attracted to her. A very valid reason to let go of a marriage, IMO.

      I wonder if he is being pressured by his family to keep up this “happily married” charade. If he is as unhappy as the LW says, he has even better incentive to leave. I have a homosexual friend who gets an immense amount of pressure to give up his “perversion” and marry a girl for the sake of his parents. Fortunately, he has not given in and has made it very clear to his parents that he will never ruin the life of a girl by marrying someone he has no connection to. Damn society!

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      • And you know what your friend did to “deserve this”? Despite being an educated, professionally accomplished lady, she agreed to give everything up to marry a guy she met over dinner. She started off on the weaker leg.

        I am in no way justifying her husband’s behavior. Such stories just disappoint me because women give up their everything to move to a foreign country with a relative stranger and have nothing to fall back on if things go sour. She has parental support, but we’ve seen time and again that not all women enjoy that kind of a support system. I say, she thank her stars for a supportive family, get the hell out of the US and resume her career in India.

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        • If she is in the US, demand the guy pay for her to get a masters degree in US and she will agree to the divorce. He has already “ruined” her life in eyes of the Indian society’s hypocritical standards, might as well milk that ******* for all he is worth. That’s what I would do if I was in her place, try to do whatever possible to build a strong future for myself and a good education goes a very long way.

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        • I shall never understand why people think it’s great to decide marriage over dinner. It only leads to misery and sadness for everyone. How can you know if you can spend an entire lifetime with a person over DINNER? How does one decide? See how he eats? Do you make the decision by what he orders? How he slurps his soup? WTF!

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        • @krith
          I too wondered at the part where LW says the families met over dinner and the marriage took place because the guy and the girl liked each other,got married, and she flew to the U.S.How come the woman did not insist on meeting the guy alone ?
          But then, after reading the entire letter about the guy’s behaviour,I dont think any number of meeting and discussions, before marriage, would have made any difference.

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        • @AnnonDiva: Are you serious?! If she were interested in a Master’s degree she should have started working towards it already (perhaps she is.) But using it to blackmail him is just really bad form. I hope you were trolling.

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        • @SM
          No I am not a troll, I love this blog on discussion from an Indian perspective. As for “bad form” and blackmail, we are way past that. If any guy played with my life and treated me like shit in somthing as serious as marriage vows, I would damn well make sure to take him to cleaners with zero regret,.
          Getting a masters was just an example of something I would do if I didn’t have it already. Investing in my own education is totally worth it and have no shame in making the guy pay for it because he didn’t have the balls to say no to the marriage. I won’t have such a guy’s goodwill or future finances as my priority, instead I would put MY well being and security above all else. If that makes me a bad non-ethical Indian girl, I don’t care, a debt free US degree is worth more to me.

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        • @AnnonDiva–I disagree. She has no legal right to force him to pay for her Masters degree. When one agrees to an ‘arranged’ marriage with a stranger, there are certain risks one takes. It’s all a part of the fine print of getting married to a stranger. I doubt a US court would agree to such an arrangement, especially considering they’ve gone to therapy and the therapist has clearly stated that the situation is irresconsilabale.

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        • @Anondiva,

          He is not playing with her life. There hasn’t been any abuse, merely a show of disinterest. That is a risk you take when you marry someone over dinner. You must do what you will according to your ethics or lack thereof, but it would be partly your fault to marry a chap you don’t know at all. And moreover, we only have half the story. Who knows what has happened with the guy? Of course, that should not be the LWs concern, but we as impartial observers, should not jump on the guy and say he needs to pay.

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        • @AnnonDiva :

          We can either try to be vengeful and “milk” the situation or move away from this with our head held high saying you have found your independence.Maybe there is justification on his part that he did not know his issues before the wedding.Blackmail is not an end or solution to things.It just makes us fall in front of our own eyes.Honestly,it is not worth it.She may struggle for a bit but that is what sees us through at the end of it all and makes us a better person.It is unfortunate that this happened.I totally sympathize with her.We can’t try to reason everything out.When we are too close to the puzzle it never makes sense.Just zooming out and looking at the larger picture someday(and of course hoping that there is a better larger picture someday) is all that is important.All the girl needs at this point is positive encouragement and hope and not bad thoughts. Relationships go wrong all the time.There is no explanation for these things.We just have to hope that every mistake we make takes us one step closer to the right person.You can never jump to the end.The journey is the best part.That’s what teaches us patience.I’m sure she’ll find love and companionship someday.I really wish she does.

          I just want to tell her to stay strong and wade through this tide.Remember always “This too will pass” . Nothing is permanent.Reach deep,muster up all the strength and take this in your stride.You want to study further?Do it on your own terms. You will then discover independence and you’ll be more proud of yourself than you can imagine.Find new friends.Check things off your bucket list.Laugh.Laugh a lot.Drown all your issues by telling yourself “It’s all uphill from here”.

          Like I said we never get served not more than we can deal with.If you feel that way then just turn it into a chance to make you a stronger person.That’s it.Life is really that simple. For everyone.

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        • I think such suggestions and mindset come from people because people in India are not taught to let go of a dead relationship gracefully. I’m not saying they do it all the time elsewhere, but there is often a point when people realise the relationship is over, and one has to move on. This point NEVER comes to some of us, and parents and family thirsting for revenge and discussing at length on how to save a relationship just never lets you get closure. It’s really not all that important to save a relationship.

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      • Bang on! That’s exactly what I thought too. He’s gay; doesn’t know how to admit to it. Even if he is not, no point in sticking around with someone who doesn’t want to be with you. If he’s asked for a divorce, then there’s really no going back is there? The chap just wants out. Your friend needs to realize that you can’t fix relationships if the other person is not interested in mending; importantly, she can’t keep thinking about it as a problem that stems from her. The whole tag of “divorcee”; if it’s something you allow to dominate your identity, it will. Accept it as a legal end to a relationship and move on.

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        • @anonDiva: WHY the hell is it always a guys mistake if he doesn’t say NO….it’s not the gal too who got into it …. Cudnt she ask/test his commitment towards marriage….

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    • I’ll be honest with you–I somehow don’t suspect that he is gay. Well, maybe he is, maybe he isn’t. Whatever his issues are, he’s not taking care of them in a very healthy, constructive manner. He’s probably been taught his entire life to internalize everything and never confront it, whatever “it” may be. What people don’t realize is that aside from this refusal to evaluate one’s soul being incredibly self-destructive, it also does a lot of harm to the people who come close to you. Case in point, the LW’s friend.

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    • That’s no justification for how he has treated her.

      I know somebody who was sexually abused as a child and only came to consciously accept his homosexuality once he hit his thirties.

      Yet throughout it all, he thankfully resisted pressure to get married and ruin an unsuspecting girl’s life.

      Gay men always have a choice. What some gay men don’t have is integrity and ethics

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  2. As tough as it is for your friend to hear now, you and everyone else need to keep telling her that it doesn’t matter. Right now, she is waiting to get answers from a man who has no respect for any kind of explanations. What went on in his head, whether it was a love gone wrong, impotency, he just didn’t like her whatever it is, she needs to know IT IS NOT HER FAULT. Also she can’t control his reaction, so the best for her is to stop expecting those answers and just get out of this. Often when we are abused or our trust is broken, we decide we want to move on, but stay stuck thinking how could he/she do this and that they would apologise or change if only something made them realise it. What your friend needs to realise is that this won’t happen when she is so invested in it. For all you know the answers may never come. She has already spent 1.5 years on this, she shouldn’t spend anymore waiting for this answer. Whatever his reasons, they don’t matter, what matters now is what your friend wants to do for her future. Tell her, this decision is about her, not about what his reasons are or about determining if he is a good guy or bad. This is just about her choosing what’s better for her.

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    • It is completely HER and only HER fault if she agrees to get united with a total stranger over a dinner. Period.

      In fact as mentioned, NO BODY was forcing her to do this.

      Well, She can’t take his pie and eat it too.

      She is well educated and sensible ( at least otherwise). Where does all this sense goes when wedding comes in picture?

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    • This is a very wise reply. I was in a situation very similar to the LW’s friend’s.

      It’s not easy to accept that you may never get the answers you were looking for. I regret the loss of three precious years of my life in a marriage similar to the LW’s friend’s.

      I regret spending so much time consumed by rage at the injustice of it all. I really, really wish men like the LW’s friend’s husband spared a thought for the many lives they harm when they behave so selfishly.

      I know this girl will spend many nights wondering if there’s something horribly wrong with her. I really wish men in our society were raised to understand what marriage truly entails.

      My only request to all the young girls reading this is: PLEASE trust your instinct. Do not marry a man if you sense anything “off” about him.

      All the troubled, agonised nights wondering what you did wrong; all the subtle ostracisation society heaps on you … its really not worth it.

      Believe that you deserve to be with someone who values you. That’s the only way you will avoid a situation that the LW’s friend and I found ourselves in.

      Women lose precious years of their lives because some irresponsible man decides to treat relationships flippantly.

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      • I completely agree with you. But do you think either this man or the woman know what marriage entails? Deciding on a lifetime of partnership over a dinner brings it’s own risks with it. Period.

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  3. Hi…This one is just 99% my story. I spent 6 months with a person in same situation. It was hell hell and just hell for me. My ex husband was just the same. Finally, when i came out of his house, i consulted a psychiatrist in my city as i was depressed and has lost my job due to recession. I was in a very bad situation when i decided to come out of this. But the psychiatrist did a wonderful job for me. I had come out of that house as i would have lost my mind and would have been running like mad on streets even if i have spent a single day more there. But i was also not sure of divorcing him as i had social fears and financially i needed a job. This psychiatrist made me realize that “MY LIFE WILL BE THIS WAY IF I CONTINUE TO LIVE IN THAT Relationship AS THE CHANCES OF HIM CHANGING IS VERY VERY SLIM TO NILL”. The psychiatrist also said that it is a personality disorder where the person cannot have very close relationship in immediate first circle. In my case, my husband would get irritated if i questioned him. He would not like my presence around him. His relationship with his parents was not really healthy. He also would be aloof. But he could perform at work and had few friends who could support his ego. 6 months of my married life were spent wondering what could have been wrong with him as no logic would answer any of my questions. Ultimately, my search stopped with the explanations given by the psychiatrist. Her description abut his attributes and behavior even without seeing him was pin to pin true. I went to the extent of asking her would he be alright if he has a kid or would the kid also be at risk to ensure my decision (i was totally insecure in this relationship and we had never even touched each other). She said, this person cannot be comfortable in first circle of relationships. They will just drift apart and get irritated when questioned. That was the moment I decided that i need to come of this and i had not second doubt about my decision. I was sure that i would not be happy in that sort of unwanted relationship.

    I had to face questions and insecurities after coming out but it was easier than staying in that hell. Now please ask your friend to please have a check with psychiatrist (Not counselor or psychologist). My gut feeling says that this guy is not a gay, has other affair or impotent. His mental circuit is just this way and unfortunately the other one has to suffer as these people cannot open their dumb mouths before getting married.

    I have tears in my eyes when i read this above story because i know your friend will not get her answers from him.

    Regards,

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    • Shilpa, Hats off, girl. You did the right thing for yourself and for the children you did not conceive in that marriage. I am happy you find a supportive mental health professional who helped you leave the joke that your brief marriage was. I sincerely hope you have started leading a full life again. I am sure that with your wisdom you have a great life ahead of you. All the very best.

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    • Shilpa,

      You stated that your gut feeling is this guy is not gay, or impotent or has another affair.
      The post clearly discounts an affair or impotence but has not mentioned anything about his possibly being gay.

      Quote:
      Her family suspected he might either have an affair, or that he might be impotent. My friend undoubtedly says that the first is not true, as he never goes out at odd hours, talks, or texts often, or anything that could be signs. He proved the latter wrong by having a test done to prove himself.
      Unquote.

      I somehow suspect he is gay, Of course I am no psychiatrist and so can’t tell for sure. But the signs are ominous and point towards it.
      If this can be ruled out, may be a psychiatrist can help. If not, the quicker the separation, the better for both.

      Regards
      GV

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    • hi shilpa
      i am so sorry about your marriage….
      i am making a documentary on indian marriages and some stuff like this..
      i dont want to hurt you again….just want to know about your views and experiences…
      if interested reply me….this is lil effort from my side ,if i could help women like you in anyway..

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  4. This marriage for all intents and purposes is already over… no point in dragging out the misery.
    One and a half is a long time, and the displayed effort would have shown some effect .. if there ever was going to be any.
    Yes , in India , there is social discrimination against divorcee’s in india .. but i somehow doubt that anything is worth being in this sort of a marriage.

    And as for the gay thing.. it’s a possibility, and yes he might have had a marriage of convenience for himself,
    On the other hand I don’t think a man should be called gay simply cause he is not attracted to a particular woman ( No offence to the author of the email.. but her view of the wife could be clouded by friendship)

    And as for the part about the guy saying NO beforehand… arranged marriage’s rarely involve knowing the other person too well… and in a way that is occasionally true even for love marriage’s I guess ( since we try to put our best feet forward )
    So unless the guy had pre-planned malicious intent, I think such blaming should be avoided ( Again , I feel this letter is biased , since it’s written by the wife’s friend )

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    • I would also dearly love to hear the guy’s side of the story before judging.
      But then, no amount of judging is going to change the past.As you say, this marriage is over and WHY is of least consequence now.Only thing for the LW’s friend do now is to get out of the marriage and rebuild life.
      I think the questions she has, for which she wants answers from him are just to gain closure.

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  5. Same thing has happened to my mom’s second cousin. The girl moved to USA after she had an arranged marriage. After a year when she visited home, her sisters found her turned into an empty shell. After much prodding she revealed that her husband paid no attention to her emotionally or physically. They had never been intimate. The family got them divorced soon enough. After a little while, the girl got remarried to a good guy and is happy finally. My parents strongly suspect he is not into women. The x-husband apparently was very pained and guilty during the divorce process. It sucks being on either side. But it will be okay. Hope is what keeps us alive.

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  6. Somehow, I don’t feel sorry for your friend but more for her husband. It seems to me that he has been forced into this marriage by threats and emotional blackmail. Your friend, on the other hand, has chosen to get married to a stranger over a cup of coffee!! No wonder it has not worked out!

    One reason could be that he is gay and has been forced into marriage and is now reproaching himself. Another reason could be that he had a girlfriend whom he was made to ditch in order to marry your friend, and he hasn’t got over her. A third reason and the most likely to me is that he simply does not like your friend. A marriage is more than just something to be decided over a cup of coffee. He may be finding that they are not compatible and he cannot feel love for her. That is perfectly normal and his feelings must be considered. You can’t force people to love you, and you can’t force people to be married.

    As to what your friend should do – negotiate a settlement for her wasted time and move on with her life.

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    • @fem
      I read the post twice.Both times, I had this nagging question in my mind “How the hell did she decide to marry a complete stranger?’.
      One answer that came to me was – Well, she saw it happen many times while growing up.Arranged marriage =Boy and Girl meet with families,wedding date fixed,tie the knot.All is hunky dory.
      Infact, we still see media endorsing such things.Remember the ad that says ‘when is your Platinum Day of Love’?
      So can’t completely blame the girl either.
      As for feeling sorry for the guy, we haven’t heard his version at all, so guessing or analysing his character,personality,etc seems totally futile.

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      • Exactly. Many commenters sound as if the girl did something unheard of in our culture and is therefore solely responsible for her lack of judgement.

        Chanced are that everybody she knows had an arranged marriage and a happily ever after. This may include her parents and siblings.

        Arranged marriages do carry the risk of things going horribly wrong; but the vast majority turn out just fine.

        Failed marriages have always been a part of Indian culture; the only difference is that they are now legally validated by a divorce decree.

        A generation ago, such a woman would have gritted her teeth and stayed put in a bad, loveless, unjust union.

        Let’s be honest and assign blame where it’s due. The man is as much at fault as the woman herself. Let’s not make martyr out of him while vilifying the woman.

        As a fierce opponent of arranged marriage, I nevertheless realise that our imaginations are shaped by the social and cultural landscape that we inhabit.

        How could the woman foretell failure if it was something she was never given knowledge of?

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        • Just because something is prevalent, doesn’t mean that it is right. Similarly, just because something appears good, it isn’t necessarily good. Indian marriages can appear to be stable and good, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that they are. Do you think the LW’s parents are going to complain to her? If everything appears good on the surface, it is just an indication that one or both of the partners has decided to slog it out. One needs to use their own brains in such matters.

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    • Please Fem, he said yes after meeting her for a meal as well, so why are you placing the blame of this hasty decision on her? Besides, as the one with issues, it was his responsibility to speak out. Even if it meant telling his parents that he found her looks, style and grammar offensiveness. Instead he chose to belittle and emotionally abuse her. Yes, she was stupid. But he was cruel.

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      • I am not placing the entire blame on the woman, but as I don’t have any information on why the guy, I am assuming the most common factor in most Indian marriages – force by blackmail, in which case, I feel pity for him. If he too has done something clueless like decide on a marriage over dinner without force, then he would be to blame too, but there is no information about that. I commented on the woman because her information is very clear.

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    • I absolutely agree with this. I feel like the LW has gone overboard in describing what a wonderful and well liked person her friend is. In reality, that has nothing to do with anything. The man is not attracted to her and has made it clear (for reasons only known to him) that he will never be attracted to her. It’s time for her to move on.

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    • “has chosen to get married to a stranger over a cup of coffee!! No wonder it has not worked out!”

      Well, let’s be honest, there have been some (once in a blue moon) instances where this has worked out. But to build a life long relationship? What are they going by? Whether the person drinks latte or espresso (admittedly, this can be a make or break thing, but still)?

      Some things don’t work out. Period. Even in marriages where the people have been together for a decade beforehand don’t always work out. They just don’t. That’s humanity. That’s how it works. Half of us will always be sure and confident and have luck on our sides to make it work the first time. The other half will stumble. This has been the case in practically every decision that anyone ever makes, ever. Why is marriage suddenly so different?

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    • I don’t feel too sorry for him. There’s no evidence that he was forced into this marriage, so he bears as much responsibility for its failure as his wife does. It’s not his fault that he’s not attracted to his wife for whatever reason, but instead of being mature about it, he’s decided to verbally and emotionally abuse her. An Indian woman who isn’t attracted to her husband wouldn’t have leeway to do that, she would be expected to suck it up and bear it. The arranged marriage market is unfair to men too, but in general, men have greater latitude to say no, and divorce doesn’t carry as much stigma for them, so I’m not inclined to be that lenient towards men who allow marriages that they don’t want to go ahead.

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  7. The story sounds so similar that its like listening to myself Except for the fact I was still based in India. But I kept my parents in dark about what’s happening in a hope that one day it will get better and involving my parents might only make it worse. The man I was married to had a very close relation with his Mom and sister (separated from her husband). The number of phone calls they had was unbelievable.

    I was there for 12 months.. depressed to boot with no support (coz he thought I was too social and I thought maybe that was making him uncomfortable).. but then the email clearly describes the experience.

    There are no answers at least not at this point… But trust me you will find the answer eventually.. As for why you deserve it… No you don’t deserve it and more importantly he does not deserve you.

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  8. Wow, how heartbreaking. I firmly believe in making things work, but you can’t force someone else to care. He is careless towards her emotions, and if that continues, abuse or total neglect may follow. They should spend some time apart, first, to see if either one of them gets the answers they need. When the time is up, a decision must be made.
    How shameful that he didn’t even try to make it work. Or maybe in his mind, he did try. (I guess you never really know.)
    One of my good friends and his wife (both are like parents to me) had an arranged marriage. They met once, and agreed to marry each other. I’m not personally familiar with arranged marriages, but I imagine they require a great deal of mutual sacrifice.
    Best of luck to your friend.
    May both of you be well.

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  9. Oh I don’t know.
    My 1st marriage was after a 1 year engagement.
    Everything was wonderful UNTIL we got married.
    Then everything was wrong with me (according to my new husband).
    He refused to sleep in the same bed with me, told me I was crazy, I was too fat (I was slimmer than when we 1st met), told me he hated my mom & my friends & forbade me to see them, went to a marriage counsellor & he just sat there & wouldn’t talk, he refused to help with anything around the house, he sat all day peering into his computer & chain smoking …….yadda yadda yadda.
    But he didn’t want a divorce.
    So after 6 months of that BS I kicked him out & filed for divorce.
    He remarried within 8 months to a woman the met online who was into cross dressing.
    I was so embarrassed & humiliated by the divorce I just gave up on ever marrying again.
    I still have never figured what the hell all his problems are & were – but I do know they were HIS problems not mine.
    So yes, stuff like this does happen, no matter how well you think you know the person before hand.
    I am now happily married to a man I went on 1 dinner date with & spoke to for 4 hours before he proposed – that was 14 yrs ago.
    You just never know!

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    • Samsara, in the Indian context, people are often not allowed to actually be together even if they are engaged for a year or more. There is often no sharing and being completely intimate with your partner. I am not saying that was your case, but if it was, it explains the sudden about turn. My friend had a love marriage after knowing the guy for 6 months, but frankly, she didn’t really know him. She never visited his house, never saw how he lived, what he ate, whether he burped or farted, never got to know his ideas. This is just as bad as deciding over dinner. I think you took a risk but if you’re happy, good for you.

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  10. Is this even up for debate? Is there any benefit to remaining married? Be glad that only 1.5 years have passed. It’s a short time in the larger scheme of things. Get a peaceful mutually consented divorce with no hard feelings and move on. After all, many love affairs last less than 1.5 years! Forget society. Its opinion is worth less than toilet paper.

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  11. I feel sorry for the husband here. If he has made it clear that he is not interested, then your friend should move on. Why marriage didn’t work, as fem suggested, reasons can be galore. It can be as simple as that he does not like your friend. Your friend’s father thinking of making the boy’s life hell is another crap. Marriage is just a gamble in the end. Things might not work between two individual. No body can be sure. So it is unfortunate that it didn’t work. Your friend is heart broken. But it is high time she does not waste any more of her time and just move on.. As for answers, well may be your friend’s husband might take time to finally explain. But as for your friend, that he is not interested any more is enough of an explanation to divorce and move on. And all that crap of being a divorcee and society should be washed of her head immediately.

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  12. i have LOTS of questions here, but no doubt abt the solution – she should leave. its not her responsibility to figure out what happened to him. Marriage means both need to work. one cannot work for both. no matter what his reasons, she needs to find her own sanity and leave.

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  13. I have an aunt who was in a similar kind of marriage. My ex-uncle was smitten by my aunt’s profile on paper. After marriage though he started finding one fault after the other. They even had a baby within the first year of marriage, but this man refused to get intimate with her after. He used to be ashamed of her height, her features, her English, her background (none of which were wrong) he would never appreciate anything in her. It affected my aunt a lot, she lost confidence in herself, and it took her years to get out as there was no support from her family. He was not gay, never had any affair, did not even marry with parental force…he was just a man with a deep superiority (inferior in reality) and needed a perfect wife that he could brag about and show off as a doll in society. Knowing him today I know he would never have been satisfied with any lady out there, some people are just not fit for marriage…he was one such.

    I will tell your friend to get out as soon as possible, and not a waste her life with this man she will never have a happy future with. He just doesnt think she is good enough for him, it is his problem not hers. Just 2yrs of her life she will be fine in the long run, let her not look back at all, divorce is not something to be horrified about anymore.

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  14. Tell her that it doesn’t matter why he doesn’t want to be with her; what matters is that he doesn’t want to be with her. Also that while she may not know whether things would work out if they tried, probably the guy has already tried. When someone says they’ll never change their decision, it is truly over.

    Also help her find support. It is not that she’s tied to this relationship for its lovely qualities; she’s just scared of getting out of marriage and facing the reality of her failed relationship. That’s natural. it’s traumatic for anybody. So more than what she ought to do (which is obvious), the question is, what support can you give and where else can she get it from? that’s the key.

    Also, there is a lot of hatred in the comments about the guy – why didn’t he tell her before marriage he has a personality disorder, he doesn’t deserve you etc. (really? do people know, before being in that intimate situation, of such disorders?)

    Let’s keep in mind we do not know his side of the story at all. And not just in this situation, but in all of life, when are people so rational that they know how they’ll feel before the act of doing something as new as marriage for the first time? Life sucks when things like this happen, and you gotta feel for the girl, but everybody’s time is wasted, including the guy’s. Probably he wanted to love her too, and live happily with her. Just because she’s kind and loving doesn’t make him a villain; it only means her story is tragic. These are things you can tell her when she feels so bitter that she ruins her own life with anger / hatred. But not now!

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    • “Also, what wrong she did to be treated this way”. *If only* life worked like that, treating us with exactly what we feel we deserve.

      Whenever I’ve gone through something hard, I’ve never felt I deserved it. But I have always learned something from it. Your friend has learned not to jump into relationships and not to trust that arrangements approved by society for thousands of years always work out in these times. And to let go of a relationship when it’s dead. All of these are terrible, harsh lessons, but invaluable for the rest of her life.

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    • Hi Reinter,
      Agreed that he may not know about HIS exact problems, before he got married. But what about the expectations he is expected to fulfill in a marital bonding. He must be aware of the confusion the wife is undergoing, and does not he have the onus of clarifying his unusual and curt behaviour to her. It is not 1 or 2 weeks…one and a half years. Do you mean to say that he is oblivious of the fact that he has hurt another human being, both in words (about her touch and being judgmental about her language skills) and deeds (by keeping mum, not interacting, not acknowledging her affection,etc).
      If he feels that she is not the right person, then better convey that rather than allow the other person to lead an enigmatic life. And regarding the wife, it is high time that she tries to solve some other puzzle, rather than get stuck with this conundrum. May be, before this she, as a last resort, can try discussing with a mental health professional. But I tell you, if it is a personality problem, then the personality is already set and only psychotherapy may help, but the person’s core traits are very difficult to change.

      To all the readers,
      My only question, whenever I read such problems is that….is that men are not taught what they are expected to do in a marriage apart from – not ditching his parents, sisters, brothers, his career and friends….if he is not equally responsible for taking the emotional responsibility too, then why wreck another woman’s life? I am not asking this because of cynicism, but because not many take the marital vow with as much commitment as women are expected to do….when a woman gets married she is rewarded socially for forgetting her parents, siblings, friends and career. But when a man gets married, he is expected to only PROVIDE her…..if it is life long partnership, then sharing of feelings, communication and emotional bonding form the base…which seem to sadly missing in many marriages. The number of children are taken as the proof for a successful marriage even now..which is very sad.
      A recent article in a magazine said the counsellors are suggesting couples to wait for their problems to settle and then go for a kid, as the children born out of unhappy marriages, may suffer later.

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      • Hi Lee,

        I agree with you and understand your point about expectations. Her expectations have obviously been shattered.

        He is obviously not behaving as a good husband should. The only thing I am trying to say is that this needn’t be because he is some kind of evil person; it could just be that it’s not clicking for him. Some people are wired to keep going out of a sense of obligation, but obviously this guy is not one of them.

        As for him telling her that she is not the right person, I think that’s what the request for mutual divorce is, right? I agree that he ought to be a better communicator and take her through this better, but this is always easier said outside than it is done when one is in that situation. Also, when you do an arranged marriage, it is usually frowned upon to say much about love being absent, because then relatives will descend on you and ask why the hell you agreed to marry a stranger if you’re fussy.

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      • In this case I do not think it is about gender roles or expectations. Its simply a case of a hurried marriage between strangers gone wrong. He might have issues but even if we reverse roles both should have the option of a divorce. What would you say if a woman agreed to an arranged marriage and then discovered she is not into him while he keeps pestering her for attention. She wants to end the marriage but he feels cheated and his parents want to make her life hell. They too keep pestering her to sort out her issues and make efforts to love and accept him else they will teach her a lesson. But the woman just cannot force herself to fall in love with their wonderful son.

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  15. People have this weird fixation about ‘closure’. Closure is something that you find within yourself, it hardly depends on the other person. If that guy didn’t consider her valuable enough to offer a decent explanation, why should she continue to grovel for answers. He chose to be selfish, uncaring and (almost) irrational. (I understand that he probably has issues of his own which are leading him to behave the way he is, but still, for an outsider that is how it seems) What will your friend choose? To be further devalued by seeking explanations/reasons from that guy putting her life on hold? Or just cut her losses and move on?

    Honestly though, what sort of explanation could satisfy your friend? If he tells her that it’s not her fault that he just can’t like her — will it make things better? Why does validation from that matter so much?

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  16. Sorry what exactly is unclear here? The marriage is not working. End it.

    As for making the guy go through hell etc, I think tough as it may sound, its best to let go and carry on. I say it as a person who has had two very close people go through similar situations. Both times, the parents involved simply let go because holding on to it is very very hard on yourself.

    Yes this should not have happened. It changes things for an innocent young person, perhaps irreversibly. But best to salvage it as soon as possible and move on. her whole life is ahead of her.

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    • I agree, you never know if the guy was aware of such personality disorders. People in our society are totally unaware of sexuality or such issues at all. I know a guy in my college who appeared ‘unusual’ at the time, and I was one of the few who didn’t judge him for that. He was a unwilling to be touched by girls, and most people attributed it to him being educated in a boy’s school. Eventually, when he turned 22, he discovered he is gay.

      Best to let go cleanly and resume her life.

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  17. Tough as it’ll be to do, I think your friend must just cut her losses and move on. Her husband is not into her for some reason and it is pointless to spend any more time trying to figure out why. Of course she must be feeling rejected and humiliated (though it is totally not her fault ) but 1.5 years is a really short amount of time when you look at the big picture. Ask her to reach a settlement with her husband and get a divorce. The faster she does this, the sooner she can begin living the rest of her life. She will also need counselling to overcome this blow to her self-esteem. As for “what will other people think”, I can guarantee that none of these “other people” will ever be able to make up for her lost life if she continues to stay on in this loveless marriage.

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  18. Dear LW–this is going to sound very harsh, but I believe letters like yours are part of the problem.

    What did your friend do wrong? She agreed to marry a stranger and gave up her entire life to move to a country she’s never lived in before (I’m assume as a dependent). She gave up her independence over a dinner meeting in spite of the fact that she was working at a ‘multi-national’ and doing well for herself. Those are the risks you take when getting an arranged marriage.

    What he did wrong? He agreed to marry a stranger thinking that it’ll all work out. Maybe he’s gay, maybe he’s just not attracted to your friend, maybe he’s repulsed by her and he’s only realized it after living with her closely. Who knows? The fact that his friends like her and she’s a nice person has nothing to do with the fact that he’s simply not attracted to her. Sure, he should have figured this out before they got married, but that’s what you risk when you get married over a dinner meeting. The fact that he calls her ugly/stupid/etc shows that he’s not exactly a nice person either so I’d urge your friend to cut her losses and move on.

    What his parents did wrong? They probably forced and pressured him to get married. If they know he’s gay and they forced him regardless, they’re horrible people.

    What her parents did wrong? They decided to jump on the opportunity of arranging their daughter’s marriage with a man in the US. The fact that they want to make this guy’s life a ‘living hell’ as you’ve stated, makes me think they’re pretty horrible people themselves. Clearly the man has problems and deserves sympathy–this isn’t the time to seek revenge.

    “Should she have, even the right to deny him a ‘no fault divorce’? If yes why? If not why not?”

    No. She signed up for an arranged marriage with a stranger–she took certain risks. This being one of them. She cannot deny him a divorce because he isn’t attracted to her. If she wanted a man who loved her and appreciated her for who she is, then she should have bloody well taken responsibility for herself and gotten married to someone of her own choosing. And if her parents wanted her husband to be someone who loved her and appreciated her, they should have encouraged the same.

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    • **Adding

      “A single ‘no’, or ‘I don’t want to’, on his part would have saved her from this hell-hole”

      A single no or I don’t want to from her own end would have saved her too as well, correct? If we’re going to give her the benefit of the doubt and say she was raised to want an arranged marriage and didn’t know any better, then we can afford to give him the same consideration, no?

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  19. Sometimes it is better to give up on certain things. Having tried every thing to make it work, it is time to let go. The questions would no doubt continue to haunt – why he behaved like that? what was wrong with me? etc etc.. But remember – you tried your best. You gave your best. If the other person is not willing to take even a single step forward then it is simply not worth it. It is good that there is no child in the picture here. That would have made things even more complicated for the LW.

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  20. I think that your friend could really use the services of a good therapist and a good lawyer. Her marriage is beyond saving at this point, so she needs to focus on fixing her own emotional and financial/legal house so that she will be ready to move on in the future.

    Your friend seems hung up on understanding why her marriage fell apart, and her obsession with this issue is leaving her stuck in a marriage that has become miserable for both partners. What she has yet to realize is that no answer that he can give her is going to make her feel any better about the situation. None of the answers (ex: an affair, husband is gay or asexual, he’s just not attracted to her, etc.) are going to make her feel any better about the situation. He can’t give her a good answer, because there is no good or right answer in this situation. Is this unfair to her? Of course it is, but I assume that your friend is an adult who understands that the world is unfair and we all have to deal with the obstacles that come our was however we can. Instead of talking to the husband or going to counseling with the husband, she should find a good therapist for herself. A good therapist can help her talk through and sort out all these issues and as a mental health professional can help her figure out how to sort out her emotions (anger, frustration, sadness, etc.) so that she can make a clean break and move forward.

    Next, your friend needs to contact a lawyer so that she protects herself legally and financially in getting out of this marriage. She seems not to be able to think or act clearly, considering her emotional attachment to the marriage. She needs an objective third party to ensure that she is making the right legal and financial decisions.

    Remind your friend that that the best thing she can do right now is to be selfish. The marriage is dead, but she is a lucky woman with the potential for a long and happy life ahead. She has supportive friends and family, no children from the marriage to worry about, a good education and plenty of resources . She has so much potential…but right now she needs to take care of herself so that she can move forward and reach that potential instead of wallowing in the lost cause that is her marriage. Hopefully, she’s learned some good lessons and will really get to know the person the next time she enters into a longterm relationship.

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  21. Relationships can’t work if one person is simply unwilling to put in the effort. He is clearly unhappy in the marriage, for whatever reason. I suspect he himself is well aware of the fact that he’s gotten very lucky in life. But what can a person do? You can’t force attraction, you can’t force chemistry. You can’t force love. Yes, relationships need to be worked on, but there should also be something that exists there to build upon, right? If that simply doesn’t exist, your friend is just trying to build castles in the air and wondering why they don’t stay up.

    The one thing that annoys me is that he is deflecting his own issues on her and is refusing to be confrontational about them. He needs to look at himself in the mirror, and confront his own issues before placing the blame on other people. It’s typical Indian posturing, to be quite honest. We’re a culture that is somewhat stilted in discussing feelings on a day to day basis with other people, let alone with ourselves. He needs to understand for himself where his shortcomings are, because blaming his wife is useless.

    You friend also needs to learn when to let go. She has tried hard enough. She deserves someone who wants to work on a relationship as much as she does. THAT is the place where she needs to be throwing in her weight and effort. On a relationship that the other person wants just as badly. Otherwise, it’s a waste of time. Tell her that it’s not her fault in the slightest. Sometimes, life simply doesn’t work out. People love to point at the divorce rate and scream about a decline in morality, when it’s simply humanity being as indecisive, unsure, and unsteady in our decisions as always.

    On a side note, this is why things like “dating” and “getting to know a person” should stop being foreign, abominable concepts in India. You can’t get to know another human being solely over Skype after 3 months and decide to spend the rest of your life with them. You can’t meet for one dinner and decide that either. People need to be given room and leeway to take their time with these things. It’s another human being, for crying out loud, not a university course that you only have four months to complete.

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  22. On second reading, I find that whole potency test unbelievable. Who ordered he take it and who forced it on him? In a bid to try and understand and ‘fix’ the situation, I think both his parents, her parents and she are making this into a situation of who is the right one here. Sure, he could’ve have been forced into the marriage, but that just makes him garden variety coward and not evil. What is disturbing though, is, as someone already mentioned, trying to deflect whatever reasons he has for not being invested into the marriage into about her English grammar and vice versa. I agree, your friend might be a genuinely good person and that is why everyone including his parents want it to work but all this pressure is not going to make him want to be with your friend in a loving manner. It seems from his response after going to the psychiatrist that he is just keeping it up because he also doesnt want to appear wrong or doesn’t want to deal with not feeling it for your friend, another garden variety cowardice to be honest. (That said, we all have situations when we have been cowards, so not judging him.)

    Your friend and her parents need to be told that it doesn’t matter why he did what he did. The time now is to look to the future. What is the idea, to continue trying to fix a hopeless situation, or to come out of it stronger, with a chance of possibly meeting someone better suited some time in the future?

    As much as it is out of their own frustration of not being to help her, her parents’ talk of retribution is of no help to her. They should rather be talking of how they plan to help her build her future (and telling her they’ll find another guy for her at the earliest may not be of help right now). If your friend is still afraid of the society, it means that somewhere deep down she knows that her parents aren’t totally accepting and she doesn’t want to be a burden. What you, her parents and all her well wishers should try to do is remind her that she is an independent woman, who once held a prominent job and that she can take care of herself again on her own, with or without a man. What she needs right now is to not feel so unloved and alone and to help her with that, all of you need to show her that you accept her despite this failed relationship.

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  23. Do you want the solution or sympathy? Its all black and white for you, isn’t it? That your lovely friend was lured into marriage by this monster of a husband who shattered her dreams of an arranged prince who would sweep her off her feet in the first meeting and love her for the rest of her life to make ‘her’ happy. Its time parents stop feeding this trash to their daughters.

    //Back then she always had dreams about the kind of husband that she will have. Someone who would love her, and appreciate her for who she is. She has been talkative person. Very. I’ve spent hours then, listening to these//
    You want to know what is her fault? That she wants ‘him’ to appreciate her but she herself doesn’t appreciate herself. You can only control your own reactions, you can’t control others actions and base your happiness on it. If she appreciated herself her image about herself would not be influenced by her marital status or societal approval. If she loved herself she would have removed herself from the situation where she is not loved and appreciated.

    Its time we stop viewing future spouses as some knight in shining armor who will shower us with happiness. Most people are not even matured enough to be married. Get married when ‘you’ feel you are complete, confident of yourself, emotionally strong and financially independent. Marriage is for sharing, loving and caring each other. It is part of life not life.

    I wish parents would stop raising girls as if they are some delicate flower who must be loved, cared at all cost by her husband…else they will ‘teach him a lesson’ and ‘make his life hell’. Please raise you children to become a complete well rounded human being who has interests and hobbies to make him/her happy and does not rely on spouse and society. Teach your kids to find their own happiness and go for it at all cost.

    It is only in times of crises we are shown the mirror. Its all very well to put the blame on the husband and son in law. What about your own role? You need to brutally honest here. Aren’t parents at a fault for making their daughter into a woman who values society over herself?putting her happiness in the hands of someone who she met once. So who should make their life hell?

    It is not wrong to expect a loving spouse? But what has she done to get one? Met a guy over dinner? I know marriage can go wrong even if you have known someone for long. But in case she didn’t even try.

    Now she and the parents have to be brutally honest with themselves. Put the fault where it belongs. He is not refusing her a divorce. Onus is on her to claim her life. Sorry the person cannot be a bad person for wanting a divorce but a person withholding it for the sake of society is.

    The man is wrong for calling her names and the woman is wrong for not valuing herself and allows him to do so by being in his company when she has the option of a divorce.

    What use is marriage if there is no love and respect. Get out of it. What are u scared off? That divorcee tag would reduce your value in arranged marriage market? Don’t tell me you are in love with ur husband. So what is stopping you from a divorce.

    If you love yourself you would also forgive the guy for whatever his faults may seem like. Try to be in his shoes. Getting married and realizing you made a mistake and feel nothing for your husband.

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    • Also I would like to add that marriage is a concept we humans have created. Like everything created by us it is not perfect. Not everybody has to get married and not all marriages are meant forever. If we agree with the above we will not give marriage more importance than our self worth and happiness. However marriages does teach us a lot of lessons even when it doesn’t work. So we must learn and move on to happier space.

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    • Great thoughts Purple sheep. I think the movies and society is yet to come out of its trance of the French chivalry and the ‘damsel-in-distress,knight-at-arms’ attitude. It is high time, women start looking into themselves then look outside for approbation.
      Even in movies, when the heroine is being helped by the hero (she can actually start strategizing her own escape route, rather than waiting for the hero’s arrival), the heroine does not even move her finger either to help herself or dare to beat the villain’s men with whatever comes in handy. She maneuvers her vocal chord in all directions and brings out the best pitch to shout ‘Ramesh, Rahul, Sunil, Tom,Dick,Harry…whatever the hero’s name’. Such scenes have been subtly reinforcing the idea into women, since her childhood, that she cannot save herself, and only another man can do it. The gender which perpetrates is also the saviour..he is the be all and end all.So much for the physical prowess, 10 packs and matrix revolution movies. Who talks about presence of mind here?! Dare speak about it….in fact our great leaders fought the Britishers with physical prowess by wrestling with them when canons were targeted at their chest.
      The movies and serials typically show a ‘good house-wife’ as one who twirls her saree end in concerned anxiety when the husband is coming home late and serves him ladles of hot food….well to love another person is good. But to base one’s self-esteem and life’s aim on another’s approval day in and day out, is irking. Women, please wake up and have some self-worth to deem yourself fit and happy to live in this world, despite ur marital status and husband’s approbation. No husband yearns for a wife’s love and approbation the same way and base their sense of self-worth on it.

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  24. I did think about whether the guy is gay as well. But the point of the matter is, no matter what his problem is, he DOES indeed have a problem.
    I think she’s done enough to fix the issues they have, but he is simply not willing to do so.
    If she is hell-bent on finding out WHAT the problem is, she could persist, get another therapist or whatever else she can do. But what after? What if she discovers that he is in fact gay. Or that he is in love with someone else? The main point is… he does not want to be married to her!

    It was wrong of the guy to marry her when he didn’t want to and making life so difficult for her and so many other people (as well as himself). He’s an idiot, for sure.

    LEAVE this sham of a marriage.
    And take more time before you decide to commit the next time.

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  25. As to the first question, she should accept that there is nothing left in this marriage and move on quickly. It doesn’t make sense to waste precious years of her life over this good-for-nothing cause. The sooner she accepts this and decides to leave him and move on, the better it will be for her in the long-run. She can take therapeutic help to get over the trauma which has been caused by this failed marriage. She should understand that it’s NOT her fault – she made a judgement error which we all make in life – and shouldn’t be harsh upon her for this. It’s better for her to create some self-centered goals now and divert herself through other self-development activities. Pursuing higher studies or working in a full-time job can bring a huge change on this front.

    As to the second question, I think she shouldn’t be allowed the right to deny him a ‘no-fault’ divorce. I don’t think anyone should ever be denied the right to walk out of an unhappy relationship. I don’t think keeping a marriage in-tact forcefully (through legal or other means) against wishes of one of the married would ever lead to any good outcome (for either of the couple) in the long-run. However, by all means, I think she should have every right to sue the guy for the emotional and mental abuse (constantly offending her by telling her that she is ugly etc.) and what appears to be planned deception (he never intended to fulfill marital obligations right from the start) that she suffered because of him, if she chooses to do so.

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    • I’m pretty sure that any court in the US will not label name calling (such as ugly, stupid etc) as emotional abuse. Especially considering that the LW’s friend and her husband have sought professional therapy and the therapist has also indicated that the man should not be forced to be in this relationship. He wants her out of the house–she’s the one who isn’t leaving.

      In fact, I think he has more grounds for suing her than the other way around. They’ve gone to therapy–the therapist has pretty much sided with him. He wants a divorce which she is reluctant to give. As for the test to prove he’s not impotent–if he was pressured into it, then he has even more grounds for suing her.

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  26. A lot of arranged marriages work a lot don’t, yes it’s the luck of the draw but so is falling in love. No, I’m not supporting one type over the other , Its what works for an individual. that’s not really the point. There are plenty of cases where the couple knows each other , have been together for yrs and yet the relationship falls apart. plenty of aranged marriage failures too.
    I dont blame her over agreeing to marry him over cup of coffee, or him. people change their thoughts change and if one is simply not interested then they should let go and move on.

    if the husband doesn’t feel he can live with her, whats the point in being stubborn. split and move on.
    As for revenge , for what? it’s not like he put a gun to her head and forced her to marry, she married in good faith so did he, if something changed later it did, we’re not robots we are humans we change.

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  27. I am an Angelo American and I have to say, Mr.vishvanaathjee would be mostly probably get the correct answer! Also, as a wife of an Indian and who has travelled there often, homosexuality is NOT welcomed! It’s a huge debate in the USA but since you all live in a “group” oriented society, the pressure to marry to “save face” with others is a mountain to climb! I feel sorry for both because neither are living authentic lives! Honesty sets you free!

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    • My main point is: No one should be denied the right to legally separate from an unhappy marriage – irrespective of how the other partner feels – if one partner strongly believes that he/she wants to walk out for the best, if should be enough. I also think there should be a legal provision for people to ask for compensation for any emotional/physical/mental abuse they believe they’ve suffered. It is up to the court to decide whether the allegations are valid or not. I’m not commenting on who harassed whom in this case – it’s just that if one person feels that he/she has been harassed, they can seek justice legally. That’s all

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  28. Things are not very easy to say based on what is being said. Most importantly we totally don’t know his side of the story. It is just said, she tried to understand him. Even though, she could be smart and capable in many areas, one can’t say she did her best to understand him. When you want to understand a person, it is possible only for persons who don’t judge him. Definitely she needs help because she is too young and she is pressured in the problem. If they want to know what is his point of view of the whole situation, it could be possible only by a person who could unconditionally accept that he has his own good reasons and he has his own pains . When he finds safe to talk freely to such a person, he will tell his total truths. If someone criticizes him with terms like gay, impotent etc., if those terms are not true of him, he will only shutdown and be in shell. Even a question of what is his opinion of how a nice wife has to be, can tell some clues about why he is pained. Has any understanding person whose gentleness and tenderness to move him, talked to him?

    The hard part of our society is many males have already resigned into believing what they say are never going to be heard. A society telling ‘males don’t cry’ never wants to understand the emotions and the pains of a male. He could even say he wants divorce because he has accepted no one is going to hear his point of view and so he likes to have freedom. Perhaps he is afflicted by trauma in childhood which could be healed only when someone has unconditional love to him for a few months. And once he knows he is loved, he could freely extend his love also to his wife as he knows there is love and the marriage could work. This has to be a possibility because there is no abuse here but only some lack of understanding. Just writing of a man without understanding him, doesn’t help. Unfortunately 80% of psychiatrists are not competent enough in helping a couple who are finding difficulty in marriage.. .

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  29. “A single ‘no’, or ‘I don’t want to’, on his part would have saved her from this hell-hole.”

    **Would have**. But it didn’t happen that way. Now it is up to her to make her decision and move on from that person who has no interest in her. She may have lost one and a half years of her life, but how about making an effort to make the rest of her life better by leaving this one behind?
    Sometimes relationships don’t work out. Every marriage is a risk and every arranged marriage is even more so, a goddamn game of chance. Cut your losses and move on, make a better life would be my suggestion.
    I agree with what Bhagwad says.

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  30. I thought some comments were pretty harsh on either the woman (LW’s friend) or her husband. Of course, they’re both adults and can act more responsibly, take charge of their own lives. But many people in India have been conditioned so much by parents that they remain children well into their 30s and 40s. I think both are victims of the ‘arranged marriage bliss’ concept that is sold to us by elders. “Marriage is the ultimate joy, marriage will fix all your problems, marriage is love forever, 2 strangers will magically fall in love”, etc. – we are brainwashed with these concepts and our movies have reinforced these ideas.

    Looks like the LW’s friend walked into the marriage with these unrealistic dreams in her eyes. Looks like the guy was told all his ‘problems’ (emotional, orientation, etc.) will ‘go away’ once he gets married. And looks like they both believed these lies or were convinced at some level,

    The only logical course is to break up. Why would she not grant him a divorce if he’s seeking one? What’s the point of forcing someone to stay in a relationship? The divorce should be conducted as amicably as possible. Neither husband nor wife here is a villain although both have made mistakes. He needs to sort out his emotional problems. She needs to start looking ahead and getting her life back.

    I wish our parents were a bit enlightened and would have a serious talk with their kids, find out what’s going on, listen to their thoughts, rather than be obsessed with approval from neighbors and relatives.

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  31. Pingback: “My relation with my ex was dead because he was never available for me in person or over phone… The feel is being repeated.” | The Life and Times of an Indian Homemaker

  32. Pingback: “I am saddened to read that many people here think that a second divorce is the end of the world.” | The Life and Times of an Indian Homemaker

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