An email: ‘He made it clear to them he will not marry me without their support. He will not leave them behind… ever.’

What kind of life and future can a woman expect with a man who has made it clear to his parents that he would not marry her without their approval?

How does the email writer benefit from being married ‘into this family’? (because she would not be marrying the man alone)

Sharing an email.

I am an American white girl with a Punjabi Sikh boyfriend. He told his parents about me from the very beginning. They were open to the idea and agreed for us to spend time together to see if we wanted to get married. We wanted to marry. They refused. I was confused. It was too late. We were already in love!

For months, he called them and tried to convince them to approve our marriage. They cried, they yelled, they threatened to disown him. They told him to never come back to India. He was the reason for their new sicknesses. He was the reason they were now bedridden. “What would society think? She won’t be able to cook Punjabi food. She will take you away from us.” They repeated all of this on a daily basis. Somehow, some way, he got them to agree to meet me. We were so elated. We flew to India bearing smiles and gifts. I adorned my best salwar kameez. I was polite and demure. I looked through all their first daughter’s wedding photographs. I did everything any other Punjabi girl would have done in my situation. Then a neighbor came over and gave his two cents on our possible marriage. He was very opinionated and very negative about me. His mother began crying and refused to speak to me. My boyfriend cried. And then it was all over. We changed our flights and flew home early from India…defeated. Why would the words of one person be enough to change everything?

This was almost one year ago. Since then, my boyfriend has cried and begged. He’s pleaded his case to them to PLEASE agree to our marriage. He made it clear to them he will not marry me without their support. He will not leave them behind…ever. They refuse even to this day. They continue the emotional blackmail on a daily basis. They have X, Y, and Z health problems now, where as before he met me they were in perfect health. They’re bed ridden. They’re dying…..because of HIM. They continue to send him profiles of other “suitable girls”, even though he protests. He says fine, then I will never marry ANYONE if you don’t let me marry her. They said fine, don’t. It appears they called his bluff too.

At this point my boyfriend wants to give up. He’s completely brainwashed by them. He believes their health problems are his fault. He believes their unhappiness and my unhappiness is his fault and his fault alone. He thinks he’s a loser. He can’t go on seeing his parents “suffer” like this anymore. I asked him who is going to be there for them when they die? He says he knows no one will. That he will die alone.

Why is he so blind to the clear manipulation and control of his parents? Why is he not able to see through it? Why is he not able to stand up against them? I know he desperately loves me, but he’s willing to lose me for them. I just don’t understand it. Now he is willing to make everyone miserable for the sake of his parents when if he married me we could at least try to be happy and hope they will come around. I can’t imagine that they would disown him forever. They have no one else. Their elder married daughter no longer speaks to them already. My boyfriend claims this is why he cannot abandon them- because she did. He feels completely responsible for them in every way. He tells me he has tried every thing he can to convince them to allow us to marry and there’s nothing left in him. He said if I think if anything then I should go and do it. I can’t think of anything I can do to change their minds!! I just wish I could show him the light of love. 😦 Help!!

IHM: If there was no emotional investment, would the situation appear different to the email writer?  

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Please watch Queen, what kind of future was Rani being offered? 

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American Woman’s response to comments on her email.

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101 thoughts on “An email: ‘He made it clear to them he will not marry me without their support. He will not leave them behind… ever.’

    • Maybe not the right place to post this article, emailing the blog owner would have been more appropriate.

      Its inspiring to read the articulate and well thought out views of the writer. I love how the write presents a detailed argument against the teaching and its consequences.


  1. I think you should just let the guy go and move on. He is wrong for you at so many levels!

    1. If a grown man has to ask his parents for permission to marry, which is obviously not their decision to make, and can’t stand up for you now, he probably never will.

    2. Even if his parents agree some day (and I’m not saying they will), all their future troubles and illnesses will be your fault, and not their son’s – because “women like you trap good Indian boys who are so blinded by love they can’t see clearly”.

    3. If you’re married to him, you’re practically married to his entire clan. You can never eat/drink/dress/watch what you, as an individual, want to. Everything you do will need to be signed off as ‘appropriate’ for them.

    4. His parents are so impressionable! All it takes for them to change their stand is a random neighbor disagreeing. Really? Can they not think for themselves?

    Now think about these things and then make your decision. Can you honestly say that you want a life like this?

    I’d say move on from this relationship. You deserve better.

    Liked by 6 people

    • I disagree… While most of the points you are saying are right, i dont agree with the first point. Him asking his parents is not out of line.. Because he has a different value system than yours doesnt mean he is wrong

      People have different priorities.the way they work and act is different… The guy has tried and is still trying. What is he supposed to say he should go ahead and get married even if it means breaking off relationship with parents. But why? he can also break up with her and findsome else. Its not like there is only one person for you in the entire world, and if you loose her, its over.

      And please dont make this is a gender issue. if you look around you will find so many girls who will give up even more easily than this guy


        • We don’t think likes and desires (and choices and decisions stemming out of them) are worth pursuing… because happiness from such things is a zero sum game. There is a higher purpose to our existence than pursuing our desires.. You may get it, but you need to be open


        • Meaning other people’s desires are not worth pursing?

          And some people have the right to pursue their desires by controlling who other adults marry?

          The desire for an obedient male child who brings dowry and an obedient, self sacrificing daughter in law is worthwhile, but wanting to marry someone we like is a ‘zero sum game’?

          Liked by 3 people

        • I am sorry but u have ready decided that he is not going to standup for her after marriage..

          The fact is he is trying to convince his parents..the reason being he considers them an important partof life. And he wants them to acccept his choice and be happy.

          But he is not wiling to go ahead without their choice. That doesnt means he will not stand up for her after marriage.

          And one more question.though not directly relevant.. What is the need for marriage here…why not break one more social convention and stay together without marriage


      • It becomes a gender issue only because of one reason. If, by some stroke of luck (I am not saying good or bad), the guy’s parents do agree, they would never let the guy forget that they have “given up” their wishes / “sacrificed” their place in the society for HIS happiness and hence, now, his wife needs to follow their whims and fancies to repay their sacrifices.

        I agree, the basic question here is irrespective of gender because both buys and girls give up on someone they love because of parental pressures.

        I think it is pointless to keep on stretching things beyond a certain limit. Its been a year. They are not relenting. The guy doesn’t want to lose either his parents or his girlfriend and is at loggerheads. It would only be wise for both of them to move on, let time do its healing and then look for a person who would be compatible with their life and priorities.

        If the guy’s priority is clear from the beginning: his parents, it doesn’t make much sense marrying someone whose thinking completely revolves around “what will my parents think” or “will my parents approve of this”. One, it is very degrading to the wife to know that she never was or never shall be his priority and two, such people cannot think for themselves. They always look at the world through the eyes of their parents. Not a sign of being an adult.

        Liked by 2 people

      • Multi billion dollar question is that why many girls give up even more easily.

        Answer: Gender roles to which guys and girls have to conform. Girls give up more easily because they bring shame. Guys don’t give up because no shame is attached and at the end he will bring a DIL on whom still they can show their whims and fancies.

        Many other factors are there but in my point of view its the major one.

        Liked by 1 person

      • The value system you’re talking about is the same as mine – parents have a say in their children’s life decisions. I get that. But when parents manipulate their children to the extent of stunting their emotional growth, it bothers me. As a child this guy may not have had much control over his life, but now he’s an adult.

        Think about it. He’s asking for permission, not discussing his life choices with his parents. A year after he started trying to convince his parents he is, well, still trying – and I don’t know whether he realizes that there is one other person (who, btw, owes nothing to his parents) hanging in the balance.

        And I’m not saying he should go marry her – but he needs to come to a conclusion. How long do you think it is appropriate for him to wait before he decides?

        Of course there are girls who will give up more easily – women are taught not to “want” anyway. If a woman were to be dating a man for a year without being married to him, in a different country, she would be labeled a whore, and her parents would disown her. So much for this not being a gender issue!

        Liked by 1 person

        • No he realizes there is a other person whose life hangs in balance… But that other person can also make the decision for both of them… She doesnt need to wait for him. She needs to come to conclusion not him.

          So if a girl is slandered we blame the society, but if guy is stuck because of same societal and parental manipulations etc we blame him now?


        • Anon,
          I agree with your general surmise ,..its just love ! There is no need to somersault ,juggle,struggle so much for a love relationship ,..whether its men or women doesn’t matter !
          My personal opinion is :One can live without love but not without respect and kindness,consideration !
          Its OK to be parent oriented ….respect for parents wishes and mulling over their advice when it comes to your spouse /bf is important !
          But at no point one should shift the responsibility of one’s decisions and actions on parents or any one for that matter ! That has to be shouldered by the individual !

          Liked by 1 person

        • @Anonymous,

          You asked:
          So if a girl is slandered we blame the society, but if guy is stuck because of same societal and parental manipulations etc we blame him now?

          This is the magic of this oppressive codependent society, it wants men to be decision makers and be in control all the time and show no weaknesses or human failing, yet at the same time it wants the women to be naive, gullible and dependent on men for all decisions. It is sad you and majority have not yet figured it out.

          For every woman who is tired of acting weak when she knows she is strong, there is a man who is tired of appearing strong when he feels vulnerable.

          For every woman who is tired of acting dumb, there is a man who is burdened with the constant expectation of “knowing everything.”

          For every woman who is tired of being called “an emotional female,” there is a man who is denied the right to weep and to be gentle.

          For every woman who is called unfeminine when she competes, there is a man for whom competition is the only way to prove his masculinity.

          For every woman who is tired of being a sex object, there is a man who must worry about his potency.

          For every woman who feels “tied down” by her children, there is a man who is denied the full pleasures of shared parenthood.

          For every woman who is denied meaningful employment or equal pay, there is a man who must bear full financial responsibility for another human being.

          For every woman who was not taught the intricacies of an automobile, there is a man who was not taught the satisfactions of cooking.

          For every woman who takes a step toward her own liberation, there is a man who finds the way to freedom has been made a little easier.

          Nancy R. Smith, copyright 1973

          Desi Girl

          Liked by 3 people

        • Haven’t you heard the recitation everywhere on TV,films,family,neighbourhood tha “Bache chahe kitne h bade kyun na ho jae, maa baap k nazar mai bache rahte hai”. This sermon has not let adult Indian grow up, making decision and taking up responsibility.

          This sermon is filled in our parents head also. Even if they want up to give the control ,all society member will jump over them “Apne aisa kaise kar die, bade modern ho gae hai.”



          //But that other person can also make the decision for both of them… She doesnt need to wait for him. She needs to come to conclusion not him.//

          It doesn’t really matter who ends the relationship – it’s what makes them end it that is disturbing.

          If I knew my parents to be overbearing, I’d evaluate the situation before getting into an emotional and/or physical relationship. What would my action plan be if they were to not approve? Would I have the courage to say no to my parents and do what I want? Or would pursue the cause for a few years but then cower and give in? I’d get into a relationship only if I knew could do justice to it. But if a relationship had a 50% chance of survival, I wouldn’t get into it. I don’t subscribe to the “samay aane par dekha jayega” thought process because there is another person involved who will go through the same trauma for no fault of their own if it doesn’t work out.

          //So if a girl is slandered we blame the society, but if guy is stuck because of same societal and parental manipulations etc we blame him now?//

          Don’t get me wrong, I blame the person being bullied as much as the bully. I think women should learn to stand up for what they want and believe in. So should men. Society is, and will be, cruel for a long time.
          But as things stand, men already have the power to break away from traditional mores. If they’re not using it, it makes people like me mad. Most women would kill for that sort of freedom, you know!

          Liked by 1 person

      • I concede the point that it is upto him to decide how much of a say he would his parents to have in his life. Having said that, the next question is, did he really think his conservative, society-pleasing parents would be willing for him to consider a non Punjabi woman, leave alone a non-Indian one? If he was so intent on doing things to keep them happy, why did he get involved with one in the first place and cause her so much of heartache? Where was his concern for his parents when he was philandering around?


        • I met this Punjabi guy, we had known each other for half a year and he said he never thought of taking into consideration marrying a non-punjabi girl or even marrying at all. He fell in love with me first but he was pushing and pulling because he doesn’t know if it would be good for both of us. He has a lot of responsibilities as the man in his family and he told his mother about me very early. At first, the mother did not say anything about it and said if we would be together I need to work hard. After a while, during some pushing and pulling from him, after many months – his mother told him they can never accept a non-punjabi girl because it would be hard for everyone. Learning about their culture, I came to understand that. He told me immediately and I got angry at first then talked to him after I cooled down. He said that he never thought he would love me, but to do the right thing – he doesn’t have the right to marry me or even touch me. So he said, it’s my choice to stay with him. He was firm of not getting married to any one because he would focus on his career than family from the start. I was willing to make sacrifices, but I think this way is the best thing as I don’t see myself having a family too. I am still young. Both of us can’t really commit because we don’t want to, but the support we give to each other helps us with our careers. I chose to stay with him as his significant other/ lover/ companion because of the values and qualities he relay on me and I trust him to look after me until I meet a guy I can spend the rest of my life with – or maybe a successful career. Even I don’t know what I want actually. All I know is that he respects me enough to lay out realities between us and he would never give false dreams. The partnership/ companionship in our level is fine with me.


      • I dont agree with you. A person’s marriage os nobody else’s business. But i would still say it’s ok to ask for your family and friends opinion because that tells you a lot about your decision. But if your friends/family are basing their opinion on unchangeable things like nationality, caste, religion or looks ratjer than behaviour they are not mature enough to be consulted.

        Also you can’t change other people’s opinions. To me the fact that he thinks its possible or even right to try to change someone’s opinion whether right or wrong for so long shows that he will follow into his parents foot steps of emotional blackmail or manipulation at some point.

        People need to have the courage to take responsibility of their decisions and not always wait for approval. You have no idea what this attitude can lead to. I see what it does to you. All manipulative people start out as “victims” who have “no other option”.


        • REALLY strange timing to have you reply to my letter almost one year later. The exact day we broke up AGAIN.

          I completely agree with you 100% btw.

          A long story short, his parents came around, we were planning to get married (silly me), and at the last minute before final plans were set his parents started acting up again. We planned to marry this December, but his parents said we cannot marry in our birth month (both of us have Dec. bday) nor in even years (2016) So that means NOVEMBER or else! This all being told to me after I secured a date in December to please them. NO mention of this “belief” prior. This all being told to me now, when it is almost October. Weddings where I live cannot come from thin air. People plan them way in advance to secure the best locations, coordinators, florists, photographers, etc.
          He agreed with them. Wedding in November or else. He didn’t regard any of the hard work I’ve put in to planning this wedding, the availability of my family and friends, or the fact that a wedding cannot be put together on a person’s whim with such short notice. Nope. November OR ELSE. He said I was disrespectful by not accepting their beliefs. I said if he had let me know with enough notice I would have been happy to accommodate that belief, even being against my own. It didn’t matter. I MUST accommodate them now OR ELSE NO MARRIAGE. It doesn’t matter they didn’t tell me sooner- I should respect that. It doesn’t matter I’ve dreamt of a wedding my entire life and cannot have one if we change the date- I should respect that. Where is my respect? It doesn’t matter it’s clearly against the religion he and his parents claim to be from…it’s a “family belief”. If it was so important, why wasn’t it told to me LONG AGO?

          It’s all just a bunch of @%#$ to be honest. I can’t believe I believed things could work out between us. I can’t believe for a minute I thought he would be step away from under their thumb and become an actual adult.

          I should have listened to you all a year ago.


  2. What about you LW ?Can you manage to break off with him without emotional fallout ?
    If yes ,do it !
    Most of interreligious marriages are landmines in India !Even if you live in America ,in your case drama will either continue or it will be silence zero communication !
    Your bf is emotional parent oriented guy ,he’ll end up resenting you one day !
    Secondly ,from your letter its clear that your bf has has done enough pleading,understand ing,make his parents understand ! You know there is a limit to pleading,…. one cannot continue to plead ,oblige for the rest of one’s life !
    His parents are unaccommodating,……they will not change !
    Thirdly, are you ready for All the compromises that you will have to do more than a Punjabi girl ??
    Think carefully ,…..
    As an American do you have enough knowledge about Indians ,their way of thinking to crack their code of manipulation, family hypocrisy etc etc ?


  3. Hi LW,

    I will suggest you to ask your BF about what’s his Plan B in this situation. Its life and we should have multiple plans so that we can deal with situation. I know many parents who never agrees to Love Marriage how much you plead,cry,blackmail they will never agree.

    I will share my roommates story. It may give you some idea. She and her BF belonged to different castes. Her BF formally went to his father for asking about marriage. They politely disagreed saying no and started searching guys for her. She did all pleading,crying, black mailing. Guy also did the same at his home but they clearly maintained respect of each other at their home. Nobody can blame my friend at his guys home even before their marriage. They have clearly stated that they are future spouse and they should be respected. One day my friends parents finalised her marriage and said that they will take her to boys home for meeting. On that my friend decided enough is enough she had a Plan B. They had a court marriage in Magistrate Court , informed parents that they are married. Now what’s their plan????

    Now her parents agreed to her religious marriage and she went back to her home. Her mother said that because of your action we have agreed to this marriage and you brought shame to us. And her reply was super for which I admire her.

    1st: I am not ashamed that I married my BF. I didn’t cheated anybody told truth to you and his family and I can tell it to society . We are ready to give party to friends and family and declare that we are married.
    2nd: This marriage drama is for you and your society not for me or my husband. so dont show that you have done sacrifice and favour to us.You care for your society and dont want to say in society that you daughter married on her own.
    3rd : on Bidaai, her mother said dont quarrel at sasural listen whatever they save, dont defame us. Her blunt reply I can not tolerate wrongdoings whomsoever does it. If they do they will pay.

    Why I wrote this that pleading,begging,crying is okay. Its part of relation of indian parents and childrens. But you have to show them that you are strong ,clear headed person and you are capable of making your own decision. This pleading,crying is a phase and you are more than that.

    From your letter what I have perceived is that your BF is not more that a person who can only cry,plead etc. He has not taken stand for blames which is put on him. So in case if you marry he will expect you to take all blames which will get you into very inhuman situations. As per his mindset you will have to become perfect DIL with no desire and full of sacrifice. If you fail then he will also blame you that his parents were right you are not good and decision of marriage was wrong. I can explain his parents mentality. They thought that let our son enjoy company of the women for few years (thats why didnt objected) and in end our son will marry our choice. A win win situation. Thats why most of the Indian parents don’t object if there son is dating even after informing them.

    Do a lot of thinking…………

    Liked by 3 people

    • I forgot to mention that I too love a guy who belongs to a different caste and my parents are not agreeing. So I have my Plan B in place.

      Think for your Plan B as a couple and for yourself.

      Liked by 2 people

    • “They thought that let our son enjoy company of the women for few years (thats why didn’t objected) and in end our son will marry our choice. ”
      Yeah, I’m taking this into consideration. For now, I’ll stand my ground and be on my own. I love him but I love me more.


  4. 1. Stop trying to analyse why your bf cannot see how his parents really are etc. Sometimes, people we love behave in the way we do not want them to and our over analyzing does not make someone change. This is like breaking heads over why that cute guy I went on a date with did not call me back, why they never spoke to me, why does he not give up smoking etc. We do not have control over other people’s actions. This is like asking why some women date abusive women or controlling men.

    2. You cannot force your bf to choose you over his family. Even if he did without his own will, he will be resentful towards you. Why do you want a man who does not choose you?

    3. If his family agrees, they will use this for the rest of his life to make him do what they want. Not a nice situation.

    4. I know there is a lot of emotional investment and sunk costs but you have to cut your losses. Else, your high sunk costs becomes even more.

    5. It is sad. It is heart breaking. But if your bf chose his family over you, you have to move on. You cannot force anyone to love you or choose you. He made a choice not to stand up or maybe he is not emotionally strong enough to fight. Either way, he made his decision. You have to accept it.

    6. Love him, bless him and release him with love. Stop holding on to him to prove a point and show him your love and why it is better than his parents.

    Liked by 4 people

  5. I am probably not the best person to give you advice in this as I have zero patience for unnecessary family drama of this sort. I would not take this crap from my family, from my boyfriend’s family or anyone else. But still, here are a few things you ought to consider.

    1. It is fine to want parental approval for your decisions. They are, after all, the people closest to you. But as an adult, sons and daughters must learn to deal with parents’ disapproval and parents must learn to deal with their grown-up children’s varying choices. It does not seem to be happening here and either your boyfriend or his parents have the emotional maturity of a five year old. Do you really want to go there?

    2. Imagine that these parents give their approval and you get married. Just understand that the interference will not stop there or be restricted to major things. You will be scrutinised and criticised from what colour clothes you wear to the amount of salt in your daal (and if you don’t cook the daal in the first place, then there will be hell to pay!). These things can be overcome if your guy stands with you, but he will not, will he?

    3. Please develop some self-respect. Don’t roll over and try to please the parents by wearing salwar kameez or whatever. You don’t have anything to prove to them. Just be yourself and if they don’t like it, they can lump it. Exchange of culture and ideas can only take place when it is open from both sides, otherwise it is just imposition. And while we are at it, don’t cook aloo gobhi either, trying to please them. Realise that you DON’T have to please them. Please don’t do it.

    4. It’s been one year. Time to give an ultimatum to your boyfriend. Fix a time limit for him to make a final decision. His parents should not be able to put your life on hold.

    5. Take your boyfriend for therapy. He sounds like he really needs it. Indian parents can really weigh you down with the drama and suck your spirit and life blood, leaving you a mere shell of your former self. He needs professional help if this has been continuously going on for more than a year now. Give the entire thing a rest for a while until he gets some help. This is really your best bet. Your man needs to start thinking like an adult. He is useless otherwise, love or no love.

    6. Consider that if the daughter too does not speak to them, then there is something really wrong with the parents, even by Indian standards. Think about it.

    Liked by 6 people

    • “Imagine that these parents give their approval and you get married. Just understand that the interference will not stop there or be restricted to major things. You will be scrutinized and criticized for what color clothes you wear to the amount of salt in your daal (and if you don’t cook the daal in the first place, then there will be hell to pay!). These things can be overcome if your guy stands with you, but he will not, will he?”

      THIS.. I have a few friends who married their boyfriends and are facing this, It is downright horrible. And guys go on to say “My parents sacrificed their wishes for us and said yes to marry, I cannot go against them every time, so now you have to adjust to all their demands”..

      Before deciding to convince highly orthodox parents, one needs to be 100% sure that the guy sees the marriage as something he wants, or something he is ‘sacrificing his parents’ happiness for you, so now it’s your turn”

      All other points are spot on..

      Liked by 2 people

      • “Before deciding to convince highly orthodox parents, one needs to be 100% sure that the guy sees the marriage as something he wants, or something he is ‘sacrificing his parents’ happiness for you, so now it’s your turn””

        This a thousand times!
        These relunctantly-agreed-to ‘love’ marriages can be more oppressive for a woman sometimes, because the BF-turned-husband now feels a need to show extra ‘gratitude’ to his parents! It’s not worth persuading ultra-orthodox parents if you plan on also trying to appease them later. Better to either break up or get married on the understanding that the parents will not be granted veto rights over the couples’ life choices.

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Oh lovely another parents know best story . I comment on these because it galls me that int his day and age these things still happen. Not that I’m surprised. The same old useless drama has been continuing for years and years.
    My advise to those boys an dgirls who cannot stand up to their parents is ; DONT FALL IN LOVE’ ‘ dont choose your spouse’ ‘ Always ask mummy and daddy ‘. simple. your life , your parents life and the future spouse life will be happy ( at least outwardly)

    to the LW i’ll say leave this , go your way, try to forget , do other things and get on with your life. Life is quite simple really, minus all this drama and angst. You and he are not ont he same page.Either be brave and get married and then tell his parents which in your case i dont see happening or break it off and spare everyone the angst.

    I might sound rude but such is life. some parents are unreasonable. some are wise, some apply their life lessons and experience and grow up, some dont. they are humans too. giving birth to someone , raising them and growing old never gave anyone wisdom. there are smart parents, stupid parents, idiots, well wishers, sacrificing parents and all kinds in between. you have no control over which one you or your friend lands.

    My parents gave me an ultimatum too, forget him or leave. i sat down and assessed the status, he was a nice guy, in love , no red flags , no killer habits , so ergo no confusion. walk out . It is the best thing i have done in my life. and consiously tried to learn and apply it to the way i raise my boys.

    If he’s not ready to make them happy it means he doesnt mind making you happy , sure he’s not jumpping with joy at the thought of hurting you, but you rate no.2 . you rate him No.1 .. hence not an even even match. move on.


    • I don’t agree that the problem can be avoided by not falling in love. For one thing, you really can’t plan that. The most unlikely people have fallen in love. Taking it to the next level is a different thing. Secondly, people generally assume that parents desire their well-being and happiness and even if they disagree, they would eventually come around. No matter how many horror stories you hear, you think it will never happen to you. So people end up in a relationship and then realise that their parents are no different from thousands of other emotionally abusive Indian parents.

      Otherwise, I agree with everything you say. Especially this: “you rate no.2 . you rate him No.1 .. hence not an even even match.” Just the plain, simple truth.


      • thanks . yes you are right you cant help fall in love, but if you even suspect that your parents show signs of control issues. and you will know somewhere deep down. try your best to NOT fall in love.
        what else can you do, why go thru the whole song nad dance and then breakup. Better still as you are fallin gin love nd feel this coul dbe the one, talk to your parents, tell them this is happening and if they blow up, you know 🙂


        • It takes two to get married 🙂 She is not the only one getting married the guy has already stated his stand “will not marry without parental support.” 🙂

          He has to make the decision she has already made it regarding marriage about relationship not yet.


  7. I’m assuming you both live in America…the solution to me is simple. Just get married in America or India or wherever. You don’t have to “elope”-inform everyone that you are getting married, tell his parents, if they want to come they’ll come, and you have a respectable normal wedding. They may come around after you get married but tbh your husband sounds a bit spineless.


    • It takes two to get married 🙂 She is not the only one getting married the guy has already stated his stand “will not marry without parental support.” 🙂

      He has to make the decision she has already made it regarding marriage about relationship not yet.

      Liked by 1 person

      • @desigirl well hopefully she can convince him
        @VS I said that even if his parents don’t come they can still have a normal respectable wedding, check my comment. And i think elopement is unnecessary when it’s two mature adults-why the need to hide? They’re presumably not in danger.


  8. Did not have to read the entire post, but I did.
    The title of the post says it all.He will NOT marry LW without his parents support.He made it CLEAR.
    Now, that gives a huge advantage to the parents, doesnt it? The parents are saying to themselves ‘Oh, everything is alright, he will not (dare to) marry her’.
    So, his parents will NEVER agree, because they do not want her as their DIL.
    He will NEVER marry her, because the parents did not approve.
    End of case.Simple.
    Why cant the LW see this?

    To answer the first two questions in this post IHM,
    1.LW can expect to have a miserable life after marriage to this sort of guy.
    2.No benefit at all.She will spend each day filled with regret.


  9. I am well aware of all these. it’s like a dilemma where you have to die anyways. but still i would say if he really loves you he must marry you and fulfill his duty as a child also whether they want or not.


  10. Dear LW

    Eve if you marry him now, you will repent all your life ….his family will blame you for everything that will go bad….In America you can tell your parents in law to mind their business and do not poke in your privacy…but that wont happen here….parents in law think they have all the rights on their son’s marital life and will not stop poking. It wont be easy fo you to handle them. And god forbid what if they move in with you in America? you wont be able to stop them…..will you be able to deal with thier presence throughout your life? I am not trying to scare you but this is 90 probablity. Even if they had accepted you, would you be able to live with them all your life in one house? Think about it ! Its Indian families you are dealing with after all !

    If he fights the world to marry you, then he is good ! But if he cannot convince even, let alone the world ! Please move on or try to move on ! I am sure there is no dearth of good men to marry you.
    Blessings !


    • FS,
      Parents do have rights over sons and even daughters ! Its only because daughters are married off and culturally sent away to husband’s house that hold over daughters is limited !
      In Asia, there is additional burden of dowry associated with daughters,perceived weakness of women !
      I don’t understand how why the son should leave his parents for wife the same way wife should not have to dump her own parents after marriage !


      • Then how come they will make a family, be part of marriage or live in or partnership what ever u call it. Thats the point we don’t understand that as a community. Making your own decision does not mean you are leaving behind the people (relatives,parents and society) behind you. You have made a decision . They may like it or not but there is no reason that for making decision you will punish your child by breaking relation with them.

        Why to punish people for making decision of their life.

        Liked by 1 person

        • “Making your own decision does not mean you are leaving behind the people (relatives,parents and society) behind you. “.
          Exactly! Choosing your life partner does NOT mean leaving your parents behind. That perception only arises only when parents feel they MUST approve their adult child’s life partner. It’s NICE when we like who our children marry, but it’s not NECESSARY. What’s MORE important than our APPROVAL is our children’s HAPPINESS.


      • Cosettz,

        Thats the point I am makinh which you failed to understand. If guy has already said that he will not marry without his parents support and isnt willing to go against his parents wishing, then she is just wasting time and emotions in that.

        Parents have all the rights on their kids but putting sons and daughters through enormous stress and imposing their wishes on who to marry, is not exercising of ‘right’. Guy is an adult….he can sense good and bad….his parents are wrong here. Period. They need to understand and if they dont, LW should move on considering guy is not ready to go against his parents


  11. Dear LW,

    You are trying to understand a very convoluted set of expectations from parents and children. Logic is not always….um….understood or accepted. 🙂

    There are a few questions/comments that you may want to consider in this relationship (please note, this is coming from someone who has, and to a certain extent is still, in the same boat as your bf):
    (1) What is your future plan as a couple? Say his parents do agree to the marriage, and for first couple of months everything is blissful, but then with his parents in India, and his feeling like he is their only old age support, is he willing to move back to India? Are you wiling to move to India, if required? Are his parents willing to move to US? When and if his parents move to US, will they live with you? You may want to discuss this with your bf.
    (2) If his parents never agree, how long are you willing to wait?
    (3) If his parents agree, what are going to be your boundaries with his parents? What are going to be your bf’s boundaries with his parents? This will be very important especially with point (1) that I made.
    (4) Are you willing to deal with blame? Trust me when I tell you, his parents will blame you for “taking their son away”. This may induce guilt within you, and perhaps even your bf.
    (5) If he is having difficulty deciding, sometimes distance helps. As I said, I have been in a similar situation where my parents refused me marrying my bf even though they liked him (family issues). Emotional blackmail, pressure to marry the person they found who would be “perfect” for me all began after 2 months of them saying no (mind you we were almost engaged). In the moment, the decision I made was to break up. In the end, I realized that no one was benefiting. My depression surfaced, and everyone talked to me like I was being unreasonable. The time that I was broken up with my boyfriend, I really was able to clear my mind as to what I want…not what my parents want, not what my boyfriend wants, and definitely not what anyone around me wanted. When I made the decision to be with my boyfriend again, it was my decision only. I know how difficult it is going to be to convince my parents (and yes, I understand why your bf wants or feels like he needs their approval), and this is something that I am still working on. BUT my point here is that distance may help your relationship. In my case, the distance helped me be closer and have a more mature, committed relationship with my bf. It hurt while we were apart, but it helped. In your case, it could go either way. You could end up knowing you want him, and he may realize that he wants you but not at the cost of his parents. In that case, it will always be you or them. Your call. OR he may realize that regardless of what his parents say, you are who he wants to raise his future children with. He needs the space and time to decide for himself with no pressure from anyone around him, you or his parents. The distance for a while may be very very helpful for both of you.
    (6) Your bf is going to need therapy to help deal with guilt. The emotional blackmail from parents takes a HUGE toll on your own mental health. Guilt of making your own decisions about your life that are not the decisions your parents can (or want) to support you with. Talk to him and ask him to see someone. Someone completely unbiased and out of the situation to hear your concerns and give you perspective can help a lot.

    Please note, even if you are willing to give it all in this relationship, he has to give it all too. This is a partnership that you want to start, not something that is to please everyone else around. At the end of the day, the two of you will live it day in and day out.

    I hope something in my reply is helpful to you and your relationship.

    Good luck!

    Liked by 3 people

  12. LW, leave him. It is going to be hard because you are emotionally entangled. But leaving him is the healthy way. You deserve better. You deserve an adult who loves you. You deserve to enter marriage with love and happiness, not fear and blackmail. He is being emotionally abused by his parents. This is often passed off as “culture and tradition”. It’s not. There are sensible Indian parents who value their children’s happiness, and clearly this family does not belong in the sensible category. Don’t take on their drama. It will be hard, but the wise thing to do would be to break off. Much later, you will be really glad you did.

    Liked by 2 people

  13. Dear LW, Now that the people here have given you some valuable advice on what you can do, I’ll tell you what will most probably happen if, against all odds or with his parents’ approval, he marries you.
    I had an inter-cultural marriage. Both Hindus but different states. I speak his language but he doesnt know mine. I was b&b in his state, so know his culture a little. When we were friends he came out to be very sweet and sensible. Pretty forward minded and a very nice cook. All in all, he was overall the ideal boyfriend. We fell in love and told our parents. My family agreed, with slight pressure, but his family had some issues. He always told me that his mom was very liberal thinking and always knew what was best for everyone (should have been a red flag for me). His mom did agree, but apparently he had to convince her a lot (which he didnt tell me assuming that I’d be worried). His father doesnt really have a say, the reason of which needs another post. We followed all of their traditions during the wedding, which was partly my wish because our weddings are usually boring. In short, everything happened with his family’s approval and according to their traditions.
    Cut to now, we have a 1 yr old kid and his parents often stay with us, since we dont want to leave her with the maid alone. His mom, who is otherwise very sweet, believes in all superstitions. I’m not supposed to cut my nails on tuesdays, wash my hair on thursdays, pluck tulsi (holy basil) leaves after dark, wear new clothes during certain months, teach my kid certain things etc etc etc. Everytime my kid falls sick it’s somehow my fault. I don’t know anything. I am not at all superstitious. But her argument is that after a girl’s marriage she should adopt everything her sasural-wale (husband’s family) do. She should forget her family’s traditions. Since I am from a different culture it applies more to me. She has many more such rules which I am supposed to follow. I hate all this but don’t talk back to her. I usually tell my hubby later and ask him to handle it.
    But he doesn’t. He never does. He feels, but never dares to say, that they agreed to the wedding and we should be grateful to them. That his mom is right, though I am not wrong. His argument is ‘What’s the harm?’. There are many more such things, like fasting for hubby’s long life. I am not against people doing it but just because I am a girl, I am not lesser than my husband. I believe in live and let live. But somehow my hubby never supports me. I love his parents but can’t stand his spineless attitude.
    Sorry for the long post but I hope you can see what you are going to end up in. Being an Indian I am used to at least some traditions. You are going to drown in them 😦

    Liked by 1 person

    • “Being an Indian I am used to at least some traditions. You are going to drown in them :(”

      Oh yes, no cutting hair or nails on Tuesdays or Fridays, no taking the trash out after dark, wash hair ONLY on Fridays.No meat on Saturdays, no taking hubby’s name, only address him as Aap,do Puja daily but not during your period.
      Even if the child has a fever/cold/cough, if its a festival, wash its hair; even if the child’s hair is stinking dirty, dont wash its hair on a Tuesday.
      Do not touch(buy/cook/eat) meat on an eclipse.
      You work? Fine, first wake at the crack of dawn, cook for everyone, serve them, then leave for work.Come back, clean up the kitchen, do laundry, cook for everyone, serve them.Sleep late and wake up early.Dont complain.EVER.
      Dont forget to handover your entire salary to in-laws on Payday.
      Do not travel on a Friday(working on a Saturday? Convince your White boss that women are Godesses of Wealth and if they pack their bags and leave home on a Friday, there will be loss of all their material wealth).
      When visiting certain relatives, dress up in yards and yards of cloth, dont trip, wear your entire Jewellery collection, sometimes 12 bangles on right hand and 11 on left.
      When elderly guests are visiting, dare not eat in front of them, dare not lift your gaze, just keep head covered at all times, look down at the floor and do not speak.
      Go to temples regularly, pray for well being of entire household you have married into.
      What? Your Mom/Dad is sick? You want to go visit? No way! We are your Mom-Dad now.They are strangers to you, except on festivals when they have to send huge baskets of sweets for the entire colony.
      Wake up at break of dawn, every Fiday, light a diya for the Gas Stove.
      On certain ocassions, light a diya and worship your Vehicles, Stove, Fridge, Mixer-grinder, Oven, Washing Machine, Geyser ( !!! ), wear bangles even if they scratch you.
      Rub Turmeric paste all over your face on a Friday, even if you have to go to work.
      Give a grandchild within x no.of uears after marriage, preferably a grandSON.You have trouble concieving? Visit XYZ temple or some Baba, tie a thread on a tree, feed a cow, visit a lady who concieved 10 times,look up at the night sky and wish upon a particular constellation, read some holy text for the next 7 days.
      The list is endless, LW.

      Liked by 2 people

  14. LWs,please give intermittent replies to the posts written painstakingly here by all commentators !
    We need to know your feedback !
    Up till now only one LW has engaged actively with us as we have been with them !Rest all of them disappear ,…we don’t even know if LW is listening to our thoughts !


    • Yes, that would be nice … if the LW responded. But I think when we reply to LWs here and discuss things, we are also trying to understand the people in our lives and our own relationships. Every discussion, I learn something new – about who I need to be, how I need to draw the line, what I need to prioritize, how I can help someone in my own family see things more clearly, etc. So I don’t mind spending time responding …. it sort of helps me learn and sort out things in my own life. It also reminds me there’s a whole community of people who think along the same lines and share similar values (it is hard to remember this when I look at my relatives:)

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Hey guys, I am the LW and am sorry for not replying back yet! It was tough processing all of the advice you all gave. I am truly grateful for everyone’s input.

    anawnimiss- He made it clear in Indian culture ALL of his friends had to either be arranged or ask/fight for permission. One of his friends has been fighting for seven YEARS! Like that was normal in India! I honestly never heard of any Indian child telling his parents who he’s marrying. It sure seems like everyone I’ve met felt immense pressure and fear.

    All the parents future troubles being my fault according to his parents is something I’ve thought of and am nervous for. He’s told me once we were married I would then be number one, but I really don’t trust that to be true given our history.

    I thought the same thing you said about his parents not thinking for themselves. I couldn’t believe it when they did a complete 180 from allowing me into their home and then crying and refusing our marriage in one day. No matter what my bf tried to explain and rebuff that man’s opinion they refused to hear it. I think it was embarrassing enough.

    I really do believe they have stunted his emotional growth by deciding everything for him his entire life. This is the first time he’s tried to ask for something he desired and they rejected him angrily. He fully realizes he has me hanging in the balance and it crushes him. Ever since the drama with his parents began he has been extremely depressed. He has now decided he should not wait any longer and keep me around. We have actually been broken up for months now. I recently saw him after many months apart and he confessed even though we were broken up he has been trying to convince his parents on a daily basis. He didn’t want me to be a part of the suffering anymore, so he broke up with me, but hoped to change their mind and come back to me with good news. He knew there was a chance I could have moved on, but he was willing to take that chance for my sake. Unfortunately they haven’t changed their minds to this day, but he says he’s still in love with me. I know he loves me with all of his heart, but he loves them more.

    anonymous 1-

    He IS supposed to go ahead and marry me in my opinion. Why? Because that’s what he committed to do. He told me he wanted to marry me and would never leave me. It shouldn’t mean only if my mommy approves. It should mean no matter WHAT. And Indians look at us Westerners with a side eye thinking we will leave them when we’re bored?!? I was committed to marry him no matter what. Now who’s committed? What about what I gave up? What about my family?

    You make it seem like there’s thousands of people out there who are easily found and are a perfect match for someone. Finding someone you truly connect with is rare indeed.

    Indian Homemaker-

    He really should attempt to understand why his parents don’t value his happiness and respect his choice. I know he’s very angry at them, but yet he chose to side with them anyway. I don’t understand that thinking at all. It would crush me to know my parents value what their society thinks over my own happiness.

    Anonymous- The need for marriage is on the part of my boyfriend. I have suggested we continue together while he tries to change their mind, but he refuses. Either we get married with their approval or not. The main reason is that they have spied on us in the past. I don’t know how, but they knew where and when we have been together even though they do not live in the country. So if we were to live together they would certainly find out and it would total ruin our chances if there ever was any.

    A regular Indian girl- I couldn’t agree more with what you said about how degrading it is to know his parents are his only priority. He himself isn’t even his priority or he would have married me long ago.

    cosettez- I cannot break it off without emotional fall out. We already have had so much pain. We have tried letting go a few times, but somehow someone always calls the other. This really is true love. Not puppy love. Not lust.

    girlsguidetosurvival- thanks for sending all of those links. I will send them to him when I get the courage to. He hasn’t been open to my suggestion to google our issue and read about other’s experiences. He says because he has a sister who left the family that none of the stories online can be listened to because they were all from normal homes who have other children in the picture. I fully agree he’s completely blackmailed by his parents!!! I’ve told him that thousands of times, but that gets met with extreme defensiveness. He believes his parents are ill because of him. They tell him it’s his fault and he believes it. Anything I say to suggest otherwise is immediately not heard. He thinks I do not understand.

    I don’t know why I am not strong enough to do what you suggest. I just see how great we are together and the huge mistake he’s making. If I were a friend on the outside looking in on this relationship I would give him the same advice I give him now. I would tell him they are blackmailing him and that he needs to stand up for himself or he will never be happy.

    in Love- his plan b is to leave me and never get married and live a miserable existence taking care of his parents as a dutiful son.

    boiling- you bring a good point. It hurt my self esteem a lot that he chose his manipulative family over me. I showed him love and I got tossed aside. I don’t know what I can do to make myself accept that anyone could do such a thing. I sacrificed so much to be with him. I sacrificed things he doesn’t even know about for the sake of us. And to be promised everything and thrown out because of bigotry… just kills me inside. My trust for men is completely shattered.

    fem- I wish my boyfriend had your mindset. I’ve taken my boyfriend to therapy twice after some arguing. I told him he really should do it on a regular basis, but it’s expensive and he isn’t willing to pay for it. I wish he would. I also think that the fact his sister does not speak to them is a HUGE red flag.

    Desi Daaru- thanks for the advice. If by some miracle they approve of our marriage I would have to insist that they are not granted veto rights over our choices. That sounds like a miserable life those women lead. 😦

    radha- I agree. He never should have dated me if he needed absolute approval from them. It makes me so angry when I even think about it. I would never have touched him with a ten foot pole had I known he had parents like this!

    b- I would love to get married in America and then tell them about it afterward. Or tell them about the upcoming marriage and invite them. He just absolutely WILL NOT do this plan. This is the ONLY plan I see ever working though. He wants them to stand by his side at the wedding. Period.

    aarti- you’re right. I believe he ruined all hope of our marriage when he told them he wouldn’t marry me without their permission. He handed them the one bit of ammunition he had!

    whitedaisy- We had discussed all of those issues in the past about our plans. Your reply was really helpful. Thank you for sharing. I hope my bf has the same strength you do.

    divya- thanks for sharing your experience. I feel very sorry for what you go through. ;(


    Liked by 1 person

  16. Hello fellow American lady,

    I wish I had seen this note the day it was posted. But I have a feeling you are still tuning in.

    So, I wrote in a few years ago with a similar problem. My Indian boyfriend was never brave enough to tell his parents about me (our relationship was off and on for nearly three years), so I’ll applaud your BF on that. His parents know you exist. However, it seems that since then they have basically been determined to make your lives a living hell. And I guess from their point of view, you are making their lives a living hell because no matter what stunts they try to pull, you just won’t go away.

    This line in your email ” Why is he so blind to the clear manipulation and control of his parents? Why is he not able to see through it? Why is he not able to stand up against them? I know he desperately loves me, but he’s willing to lose me for them. I just don’t understand it. ” sounds like exact words that could have (and probably did) tumble forth from my mouth for years. Heck, if I’m honest, I still think the same way.

    And that’s what it breaks down to. I’m sure your guy is lovely, but fundamentally, he just thinks differently from you. It’s the equivalent of someone challenging most American’s about the concept of “American Exceptionalism” . Every since we were little we were taught that we are special because we’re Americans, and Americans are capable of achieving whatever we want, if only we are willing to work hard for it. It’s an ideal that is woven into the fabric of our beings, just as the need to please his parents has been woven into your boyfriend, and the guilt that has been used to control him has also been ingrained.

    I saw that guilt with my boyfriend. He felt guilty because he could not be the man he knew I needed him to be, he also felt guilty because he knew that his mom and dad would be disappointed in his choice of partner. So, instead he somewhat selfishly tormented himself, and it made me miserable because he could never commit to being 100% in, but I loved him, and I refused to give up. He constantly kept me at arm’s length as a way to try to protect himself, and perhaps in some warped hurtful way, me.

    It did not work out. He would never commit to giving us the space we needed to grow. Something had to give. Instead he gave up. On me, on him, on us.

    It honestly still hurts to this day. There is a part of me that hates him for never being able to see how his actions caused the demise of our relationship. For only being able to feel guilt without seeing any type of logical reasoning. Sadly, the only emotion he has really been taught is guilt.

    I’ve learned that guilt is what drives a lot of people living in the Eastern world. They call it “duty” or “morals” but mostly it’s just a feeling of shame and guilt that was infused at a young age in order to make the person easier to control later in life.

    I wish I had some solid, sound advice about this matter. I know all to well that it is not easy to just “walk away” “move on” or “let time heal wounds” . This is the man you love, and want to spend your life with.

    That said, personally, I think you should break up with him. Don’t allow yourself to be drug along for the horrid ride. You might be doing you both a favor.

    I’ll just say that it’s not up to you to go to India and beg them to like you. If his parents can’t respect you for who you are, just as you are, they are not worth knowing. Why do you have to bend and contort yourself to please them? Why is it that these people get to act as if they and their culture is oh so superior to you? From what we see with our friends on this blog, there is a small section of people who are standing up for themselves, setting out to change the fundamental fabric of India, but change is slow coming, and there is a billion people in the country.

    Your boyfriend has to come to his own conclusion that his parents way of thinking if fundamentally flawed, or you have to accept that this is who he is. And that for him, pleasing them might always trump all…even his love for you.

    I’ll leave you with this quote from one of my friends:

    “You deserve a man who is going to show up for you. One that’s going to proudly declare, “I want you. I want us. Whatever comes our way we’ll get through this, together.” Life is too long (or short depending on perspective) for you to wait on a wish-washy man giving you the bare minimum just so you’ll hold on.”

    I wish you peace.

    Liked by 4 people

  17. Thank you, American Woman, for sharing your story with me. I agree 110% with everything you said. I really do. I wish my boyfriend would not take the same path yours did. Were you able to be friends after that? Have you moved on with someone else? Sorry if that’s too personal…I’m just curious. It pains me to see so many people have gone through this! It’s torture! My boyfriend feels torn between the life he wants to live with me and the guilt he feels for his parents. His dream would have been if they could have accepted me as a daughter and we all are a happy family. It was my dream as well….the difference is I am willing to go on together without them as a “plan b” and hope they change their minds someday. He is not. 😦 This makes me feel (and probably would make anyone feel) like he doesn’t truly love me, but he says he does!

    I want to ask all of you in this community one more question if you’re still reading….

    If my boyfriend were to read this….what advice would you give him aside from walking away?


    • Nothing really ! He is an adult who somehow can’t differentiate the balance between his wants,limits to pleading and begging,sense of duty for his parents and a little of self created confusion !
      Also he is hypocritical,… No qualms having a full sexual relationship with you but suddenly for marriage and parents not agreeing to his wants he has to flounder and froth,be helpless,feel stuck and what not !

      I am sure he always had an inkling of how the marriage struggle would roll out but since his parents gave him permission for affair with you ,…he assumed they will come around eventually !
      Tough luck !


    • At the cost of sounding caustic, I’d ask him to grow a pair. You can’t keep hiding behind your conditioning. At some point you have to grow up and face the facts.

      There are many women out there who, just by virtue of being women, have little control over what happens to them. They are taught to see themselves as second-class citizens; as pretty-much-domestic-helps whose only job is to care for and please others – parents, parents-in-law, husband, extended family, society, etc.
      This is how I lived for 29 years. Then I took a stand and a divorce, and took back the reigns.

      It took a long time to finally get back on my feet and get my relationship with my parents back in some kind of order, but I am no longer blind to other people’s faults or my own. I can’t be bullied anymore.

      He needs to do the same – he needs to see his parents for the manipulative and controlling bullies that they are. He needs to understand that his life is his own, let go of the guilt, and start making his own decisions.

      If it means he needs to go through therapy, he should do it. Not for the sake of your relationship with him, but purely for his own good.


  18. Sorry, LW, for not responding earlier. Here’s a point-wise response to what you said.

    //He made it clear in Indian culture ALL of his friends had to either be arranged or ask/fight for permission. One of his friends has been fighting for seven YEARS! Like that was normal in India! //
    Though Indian parents can be very controlling, not all children need to fight to make their life decisions. There are a lot of parents who grew up, if you know what I mean. Also, these decisions are far easier for men than for women.

    // He’s told me once we were married I would then be number one, but I really don’t trust that to be true given our history.//
    You know that’s not going to happen, right? You will always be that girl who trapped their innocent child. Anyone who tells you otherwise is lying.

    // I couldn’t believe it when they did a complete 180 from allowing me into their home and then crying and refusing our marriage in one day.//
    Do you see yourself putting up with this drama on a daily basis?

    //He didn’t want me to be a part of the suffering anymore, so he broke up with me, but hoped to change their mind and come back to me with good news. He knew there was a chance I could have moved on, but he was willing to take that chance for my sake.//
    From what I understand, the guy has made his decision. Now all you need to do is decide whether you’re willing to wait, how long you’re willing to wait, and whether the life that awaits you (if and when you do marry him) is worth waiting for.

    //I know he loves me with all of his heart, but he loves them more.//
    Need I say more?


  19. No, those questions aren’t too personal. They are very good questions.

    I find it very difficult being his friend, because I still have deep feelings for him. Both love and hate. I hate that he pushed me away, I hate that he wouldn’t commit to giving us the space to grow, I hate that I spent so much time trying to assess his feelings because he could never really be clear on what they were. These things have more to do with his personality than being Indian, I suspect.

    Fundamentally, we grew up completely different than they did. America is billed as the “land of the free” we have been taught to stand up for, fight for, and value our freedom. It’s our THING. In India, the party line is that sacrifice of your own personal happiness is what makes you a good person. It’s their THING.

    I hate to make it us vs. them, but that is the way your boyfriend’s parents think. They aren’t changing. In order for your relationship to work, your boyfriend will have to see them for the emotionally manipulative people that they are. He will have to come to the conclusion that they are wrong. It doesn’t seem as if he is willing to do that. Maybe he will see it that way, but you will be long gone.

    No one person is worth the degradation of yourself. You can’t change who you are, where you grew up, or your race. And if they and he can’t accept that, and respect you for all that you bring to the table, you have to let it go.

    That said, I am still working on letting it go. We are taught to “never give up” to “not back down from a fight” “to buckle down harder” “to persevere when times get tough”. To walk away from him will be one of the hardest things you will ever have to do. You have to go against the grain of your thinking and give up on him. It is painful, and I wish I could say something to prepare you for it, but there is nothing.

    Being in a relationship with someone who isn’t allowed to love you just for the very basis of you being who you are, sucks, It is sad. Frankly it racist, and xenophobic. You will continue to wish that you could come up with magical words that make him see things from your point of view, you will continue to wish that love will prevail, and sadly, (I say this from experience), you will come up short every.single.time.

    It cannot be a battle of love, because he loves you, and he loves his parents too. The problem is that there should be BE NO BATTLE. He should not be in a position where he feels he has to chose between you and them. There should be no such a thing. There should be one team, you all should life him up because you love him, but that is not the way most Indian parents operate. We’ve been taught not to care what other people think of us, they have been taught to basically judge their worth and validate their experiences based on it.

    Like someone said above, unless he is willing to step out from behind his conditioning, and see it for what it is, and start questioning these practices, he is a lost cause.


    • I’ve wanted to tell him everything I’ve read here from you all, but whenever I start and mention his parents manipulating him he instantly says you can’t listen to what you read on “google” (meaning you all or any time I read stories like ours). HIS parents are DIFFERENT. How can I comment on that at all? 😦


      • I’m just keep it real with you. You’ll have to find the strength to move on with your life without him. There is nothing you can say that will make him come around to your way of thinking. He has to discover these things for himself.


        • You have summed up our (and in this case I mean me and the LW’s bf) upbringing so well!!!! This is a very insightful and clear response. Thank you American Woman!

          LW, as much as you would like to talk to him about it, and show him that he is being manipulated, you can’t. Not until he WANTS to hear it. The best thing right now is to go cold turkey. He needs to miss you, and he needs to evaluate the situation for himself. You telling him, and trying to talk to him that other people are going through similar situations is not going to help him. Everyone thinks their parents are different, and their situations are different. You truly are not doing yourself (or him) any good by holding on. Let him go, and see if he comes back. Work on yourself rather than try to work on him. You are hurt, and right now the only person best for you is you. Take care of yourself first (but not with the hope of him coming back), and learn to love yourself again. There is no shortcoming in you. He, in a way, made a decision for both of you when he decided that his parents have to agree. He can put his foot down and say that this is the way it is, and realize the emotional blackmail; or he could wait for the “yes”. Either way, the ball is in his court, and you’ve done all that you could. Rest is upto him. You do you…and be the best you even without him (and this is by far not going to be easy).

          Stay strong! Good luck!

          Liked by 1 person

        • Thank you whitedaisy for sharing your thoughts! I completely agree with you. In fact, one of the things I regret is not letting my guy go to give him the opportunity to sort out life for himself. You do take the risk of him never coming back, but if he plans on not sticking around, time apart won’t change that anyway.

          LW, take head to what was said here. You have to be willing to walk away, which is pretty much the deal when getting involved with any person who has this type of deep, cultural conditioning. There are no magic words, no magic advice. He won’t see the manipulation until he is ready to, and you have to accept two things: that by the time he sees it, you might be long gone, and that he might never see it.

          Walk away. Pray, if you are into that. Turn it over to the universe, and trust that what will happen is what is meant to be.

          Peace to all.


        • Thank you all for your honesty. You’re right. SoOOOOOOOooooOoOOO right. We had a chat the other day and I saw clearly everything you all have said to me. He is not ready to see his parents for who they are. I’ve become the “enemy” of sorts. I can see the resentment of me in his eyes. He’s broken, they’re broken, and he’s done fighting. He said he feels numb of all feelings, hope for anything good, and he can’t go on making his parents ill and unhappy anymore. He lost his feeling of commitment towards me. He’s depressed and hopeless. So we are finished. I sadly am letting him go and find his way. I was committed for life, but if he is not anymore, then I can’t be. I will go on with my life, but do hope he comes back to me before it’s too late. Deep down I don’t think he will.

          They “won”. :(((


        • There is never any “winning” in this situation. The only thing you can do is take charge of your life, and not live as a victim. It will be hard. These situations aren’t your normal, average, every day breakup. It is a rejection of the cruelest kind. You will hurt for sometime, but eventually you will be able to see he is not the man for you, if you allow yourself to see the situation clearly. His parents are manipulative, but at the end of the day, he had a choice to make about how he wants to live his life.

          Do not sit around wallowing, and hoping he will come back. It is the worst torture. Live your life.


        • I’d have to agree with American Woman. Do not spend your life waiting for him to turn around and come back to you. Even if he does, I’d say stay away from the man who is too afraid to choose his happiness over his parents. He will suck you into his nightmarish life, and you deserve so much better.


  20. “It is a rejection of the cruelest kind.” – I was taken by these words. So true.

    In this so called happy-go lucky arranged marriage “N” number of times women and men are rejected that too on basis of money,looks,manners etc all non important thing. But still we feel proud in having arranged marraige.

    Biggest Hypocrisy is that when people say that they will not marry anybody else other than their gf/bf and will wait for parents to come around but sooner/later start feeling loss of commitment towards their gf/bf.

    LW please move on , your guy has already moved on. In few months , he will again start cycle of rejection this time with other girls found by his parents. Will get married to one and will again reject her every day in name of adjustment.


    • You’re right. Our last conversation he told me his parents were pressuring him to look at the profiles they’ve selected and hurry up and get married. I’m sure this marriage season he will be married…:( I’m moving on.


  21. It is a sad situation. After all of these years, I just realized today that my ex treated me like a stray puppy he found on the side of the road. He loved me, but didn’t know if his parents would allow him to keep me, so he kept his distance in an effort not to become too close, so he wouldn’t get hurt. But he caused more damage.

    LW, I know it will be hard to take us seriously here. I heard the same things years ago. That I should leave, let go, move on. I did not. I tried my best, but in the end, nothing was ever enough.

    It won’t be easy. But you have to let him go.


    • Thanks, American Woman. I do take all the advice her seriously. I wish he did. I wanted so much to forward him this page and other pages on this lovely blog. I hoped to wake him up! But I didn’t because I know nothing I have/could ever say will change his mind.

      So…we did end things almost three weeks ago now. It’s very difficult. I want to call him or text him every single day, but I don’t allow myself to. I NEED to prepare myself for him possibly getting married sometime very soon. If I keep talking to him I will be more devastated than if I let myself forget him. He definitely treated me the same way your bf did towards the end. In the beginning my bf had a lot of hope his parents would change their minds so we were very close!! Once the incident in India happened he started to slowly push me away. I feel numb/in shock at this point. I really thought they would come around. 😦


    • Hi, the reason I followed this old post now is that the same thing happened to me exactly. Your replies to LW here struck me a lot… the mixed feelings I am having in my heart…… love, hatred, struggle, wanting to fight, to confront, to give up… it’s all tangled in me and is consuming me. The funny thing is that he offered that I can continue with him but I need to be fully aware that there’s a limit in the relationship and he would stop seeing me once he starts a serious relationship with some yet-unknown same-caste indian girl and once that time comes I cannot cry in front of him as if i didn’t know this in advance. This is exactly the ‘stray dog’ scenario. He hurt his ex in exactly the same situation and he hurt me again… and AGAIN when he came back to us after a 3-month break-up. I guess that’s the price I’ve got to pay for loving him and holding on to sth. I should have broken off from long long time ago. I wish my message would not bring up the saddening memories in you…. If it does, I am sorry for it…..


  22. As some one who has broadly been in a similar situation, I can say that you are lucky to not get married to this guy. Your life could get much more complicated and stressed. Relationships end all the time and people move on. It hurts immensely but people move on eventually.


  23. Pingback: Simple methods, recommended to anybody else, coping with any other kind of abuse, are forbidden to Indian daughters in law. Forbidden by whom? | The Life and Times of an Indian Homemaker

  24. Pingback: “My suspicions were correct. He contacted me yesterday and asked me to get back together!” | The Life and Times of an Indian Homemaker

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  26. my situation also …Luckily the relationship got cut short only 5 months after it began…but it still hurts so much.
    I also felt the “lost puppy thing”, he kept me at arm’s lenght at the end and broke thing off saying his parents will soon begin to send him profiles and chat to the girls, so it would not be fair to me to stay together… Then i though : “How dare he think i would have stayed anyway??? In what world would I have stand that??? “….As if he made me a favor by breaking up.
    Thinking about it i feel resentment that he pursued the relaionship in the first place ( whereas i needed some convincing because i was not attracted at first) knowing that he will want his parents approval for a “serious relationship..leading to marriage”. And what is a serious relaionship, pray tell? I used to be very picky and i don’t commit easily so when I made the choice to date him, it didn’t enter my mind that we were only “dating”. And it is not even a matter of sex as we never had and he never pressured me.
    Anyway now I feel like crawling in my bed and never get up…the worst and cruelest kind of rejection indeed!
    But I know that, reading about the experience of everyone here, that I should get up and live for ME everyday, one step at a time and stop waiting for him to have a revelation.


  27. Pingback: An email from the Accused Guy: ‘I would request all to respond once again after reading the other side of it.’ | The Life and Times of an Indian Homemaker

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