Photo courtesy “Cosmopolitan” Magazine.
Are you tired of Tinder? Maxed out on Match? Has the search for Mr. Right, turned wrong?
Maybe it’s time to take a new look at an old-fashioned solution — the arranged marriage.
I follow a number of Instagram accounts on dating. They have names like datingmrwrong, datingafter50, datingafter40, datingappgargbage,dating_nightmares.
Some of them post funny dating observations, like: “Sorry we haven’t spoken in a while — I’ve not been drunk.” “We broke up for religious reasons. He thought he was God. I didn’t.” Or “My prince isn’t coming on a white horse. He’s riding a turtle and obviously lost.”
And some publish head-snapping profiles men have posted on dating sites. They range on the mild side from men claiming to be 40 who mysteriously post selfies of 60-year-olds, all the way to bathroom shots of half-naked men with pot bellies, tattoos and gold chains. Then there’re the married men who seek specific sexual favors they’re not getting at home.
Yuck, yuckier and yuckiest.
I think it’s time to stop the madness and get some outside help. Either enlist your parents to arrange a match: or, if you’re a little older, perhaps your children can perform the honors.
So, how would it work? If your family members do not have a suitable candidate in their social circle, they place ads extolling your virtues where like-minded families might see them. They then review applications, select prospects that match their own socio-economic backgrounds and set up meetings where both families are present. I imagine, you can have private conversations with the applicant, but there’s no dating, no courting, no sex.
This is the way they do it in India, Pakistan, Japan, China and Israel, where arranged marriages are still fairly common.
While the families do the recruiting and vetting, the designated players still have veto rights.
What makes the arranged marriage different over the typical Western approach is the emphasis on compatibility and commitment rather than romantic idealism and sex appeal. And guess what? It works.
While the overall divorce rate for first-time marriages in this country is 55 percent, the global divorce rate for arranged marriages is only 6 percent. (That’s according to a 2012 study by the research institute Statistic Brain.)
Experts offer a variety of reasons why arranged marriages work, but they pretty much boil down to this: without the stress of cultural differences or family disapproval, the couple has a better chance at building a stable environment for themselves and their children. If love, as we know it, isn’t there at the beginning, it develops over time.
And let us not forget the advantage over dating. No more married men pretending to be single or single men committed to staying that way. No swiping, ghosting, bread crumbing, catfishing or benching. No more soul-crushing hours waiting for your phone to ring or ping. And no more drowning your sorrows with old pals like Ben & Jerry or Jose Cuervo.
Sounds pretty good, doesn’t it? You’re welcome. Comment here.