Sex and the city: Am worried about coping with arranged marriage, especially on intimacy front

I was in a relation with a guy who wanted to marry me. But my parents were not ready for it. Now I am getting married to a guy my parents have chosen for me. Even though I know my parents want the best for me and have chosen a good guy, I am worried about how I will cope in an arranged marriage, especially on the intimacy front. I don’t feel any passion and we are quite formal with each other so far. I am being told by my family that I feel differently with time. Maybe they are right maybe they are not. Maybe I’m comparing what I felt with my ex. My fiancé is a nice guy but I am very apprehensive. Please advise.

Marriage. Now that’s a big one. You are already aware of that. However, do you still harbour feelings for your ex-boyfriend? This answer may help you better understand the emotional state you are in. Are you ready to move on with another man or do you still think about your time with your ex-boyfriend? Your comfort levels with your fiancé could certainly alter (for better or for worse) once you will get to know each other a little better. This would require both of you to invest the time and the intent with exploring the possibility of togetherness through marriage by spending a fair amount of time ‘being together’ and ‘sharing thoughts and ideas’ with each other during this essential courtship phase.

Your parents may truly want what’s the best for you but you need to remember that you owe yourself a responsibility first. What is this responsibility? The responsibility to live in way that you are okay and happy with. Happiness is a result of our own innate psychological settlement with the goals and indices that we have set for our lives. Recurring stress will visit you from time to time but the happiness you settle with will tide you through those rough patches. Your happiness is your responsibility! Happiness can never be outsourced.

If you want something for yourself, it is your responsibility to negotiate hard and passionately for it rather than succumb to the pressures exerted by the powers that be. Society rewards children for ‘sticking to mandates’, ‘fitting in’ and being compliant’ but as adults – rewards are linked with monetary and power based up-gradations. As people, the only way to stay relevant is to evolve in a timely manner. Our decision making abilities must evolve as we age because if we get accustomed to letting other capable or even caring people – make significant decisions for us – we are likely to spend a great deal of time doubting your own competence at ‘calling the shots’. A person’s decision making abilities affect how easily they get swayed in this world.

You will often be in positions where you’ll have to make the tough call between being ‘effective’ and being ‘nice’ since you may not be able to be both. Sometimes ‘tough love’ or ‘hard calls’ must be made a part of business, social and family life. This is why it is important to make a decision for whom you want to spend the rest of your life with autonomously. Your parents can continue to be a reference point and the respect and love you have for them remains unchanged. However, if this is your life you are going to live, it’s got to be on the mutual terms that are decided by you and the man you wish to spend your life with.

People frequently trudge down the path of ‘what ifs’ that lead them from one speculation to the next. This can get stressful. Comparing him with your ex is the natural thing to do although it may seem a tad unfair to him based on how he reads into it – if you actually someday choose to articulate these private thoughts that compare him with the others. Your fiancée is his own person and it would only be fair for you to judge and interact with him based on your unique insights based on how well you get to know him.

Passion builds over time and it is but natural for you’ll to be formal with each other at the start of the relationship. Remember that all great friendships begin with formal ritual based pleasantries so that the interaction doesn’t get awkward for any of the people involved.

Any do-overs to this relationship once it’s matured will be at the risk of disappointing the family so you need to act with clarity. If you need to clear your mind before you take a big step like marriage in your personal life, I would strongly recommend you to pay a visit to a pre-marriage or relationship counsellor so that you are absolutely certain about what is motivating your behaviour and what the sustainable and honest way forward is for you – given all these thoughts that you are currently having. It’s alright to be uncertain and worried but you are going to have to come clean with your family if you feel like despite attempts made by you, you’re just not ‘feeling it’ and that a marriage should never be based on such a primal compromise and lie – where you don’t feel any love for the man you’re about the marry.