Soniah Kamal

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'Islam is not Pakistan's religion; Marriage is'

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Arranged Marriages, Decisions, and Holly Goddard Jones

It's no secret that Holly Goddard Jones is one of my favorite writers and that I fell hard for her amazing short story collection 'Girl Trouble'. Holly got married at nineteen. In America this was unique, unique enough for her to be asked 'Were you pregnant?' and 'Your parents must have been pissed?' In Pakistan when a nineteen year old girl gets married she's asked 'When are you going to get pregnant?' and 'Your parents must be pleased.' Ahh- the dichotomy of cultures East and West. And yet contrary to my friend Kipling's sad assertion, the twain do meet.
Can I consider Holly's marriage an arranged marriage? Yes I can. Holly was dating her husband but she married him because her father didn't want her living in 'sin.'

What inspired the above? Holly's lovely blog post on her early marriage and how things can and do work out. We know because in our part of the world arranged marriages can and do work out every single day.

"Thirteen years (and a handful of months) ago, I sat down with my father at the kitchen table of my childhood home in Kentucky, and I asked him: “Would it make things better if Brandon and I got married? Would that make you happy?” read rest here


Anjali said...

An illuminating piece by Goddard Jones. I've been told many times that my own relationship (which started at 19) would not last because we were too young. There are many benefits to young unions. Goddard Jones is spot on.

Drunk on Ink said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Drunk on Ink said...

Anjali, what are the benefits? As Holly enumerates in her piece she was missing out on many of her 'age expected' activities.