Marrying for money… #ThrowbackThursday

Did you know the streets of the UK are paved with gold?

Everyone in Canada has a HUGE house?

In the USA, they all have at least 3 cars per household?

In Australia, you can live the life of Riley?

Did you know that? Did you?  You didn’t? Well, that’s because it’s not exactly all true, but in the eyes of some people, these are statements set in concrete. Those people that want to get out of their own countries and live in these wonderful places!

I can’t speak for other countries and cultures, but I can reflect on what I know about some people and their thoughts in my own culture.

In India, where life in the villages is not as fast, and modern as the cities, parents dream of getting their children married into a well-settled family, where their child will have support and live well. Don’t we all?

Marrying your daughter to a person who was settled abroad was always a favourable thing, as even though you were sending your child far away, they would live a better life than what they had back home. And for those settled in other countries, having a wife from back home, meant you had the comfort of ‘home’, while settled in this paradise.

As children were born overseas, it was not only the sons who needed wives, but the daughters born abroad also needed spouses. Communities got bigger in other countries and marriages happened between those immigrant families, and everyone was getting along just fine. You still got the odd marriage happening back home, and a daughter or son-in-law, fresh from the homeland arrived, visa stamped, and ready to start a new life.

I don’t know when this happened but it became a HUGE money making racket.  It was never something I knew much about as my family weren’t in India, but after I got married, I heard much more about it, with my own In-laws close family still in India. Now if you have a child in the UK, Canada, US or Australia, or numerous other countries, and they were of marriageable age, you could stand to make a packet!

Fly back home, put an ad in the local papers that you have a son/daughter with a foreign passport, ready to marry, and a queue would form outside your house door within hours.  And not only would you have lots of candidates, but you would have lots of people willing to pay sizeable amounts to get your child married to theirs.  See people almost offering a dowry for their sons, as well as daughters! Not only would their child get the same foreign passport, but after a certain time passes, they can then start calling over the rest of the family to live with them!

And when they got there, they would get all this stuff! A house, money, a car, material possessions that they could only dream of back home!

But no, get there, and realise you have to WORK! Get a job, yes!  Then you might get that car, house, money you wanted!

You see, this is the problem with many folks back home. They have this ideal stuck in their heads, that everyone living abroad is rich, wealthy beyond comparison.  And compared to them, I guess we are.

It’s our faults really. We go back home to visit family, with our fancy phones, cameras, clothes, and money to go shopping, and out and about all the time.  But, what they don’t see is when we are back home, how hard most of us work, to save up to get these things, and how long we might save to go back home and be able to do this shopping etc.

They don’t see the cost of living here, compared to theirs. Yes, it’s cheap as chips for us, to go out for the evening there, to shop for amazing clothes, to hire a car and be driven everywhere, for the duration of our stay, but to do the same on a daily basis, back in reality, we would all need to be millionaires! We can afford to fund a two-week trip and pretend to be more well off than in reality, but even we couldn’t continue that lifestyle there for much longer!

I have seen so many people, men and women, who have fallen into the trap, their families have spent loads of money, got them married off to someone, sent them abroad with all these expectations, and they get there, and realise that

a) they have to get a job, to contribute to the family’s income, and then possibly afford some of the luxuries they had been dreaming about

or

b) they are nothing more than a glorified servant in their new marital home

or

c) the worst one, they were a cash cow.

Meaning this whole marriage was a means to make money for the family who had come from abroad, knowing the value of their own child. In fact many times you would find that this same boy or girl was already in a relationship back at their home, and the whole marrying in India, to give someone a visa, was a great way to make money! As soon as the stamp is on that newbie’s passport, hello divorce papers, bye bye India spouse, and time to settle down with their actual partner of choice!

Or, especially in the case of many girls brought to these countries, deal with the fact that your ‘husband’ isn’t actually interested in you, just your trimmings, so to say, and cope with the reality that he will be out, with other women, you are just the wife back home. Keeping the house clean, the food cooked and his bed warm.

I know there are some genuinely happy marriages that have been conducted along the way, not for money or visas, but there are just so many that give the whole sanctity of marriage a bad name.

If I’m truthful with you, and this is something I say to our younger family members back home, they are actually better off where they are. Most of the children in our families are from relatively well-off families. There, in India, they don’t have to work, they get everything they need, if they do work, it is a choice they have made. They probably have a maid or someone coming in to cook and /or clean. Luxuries we don’t see any of here. Ideal jobs don’t just land on our doorsteps, we have to study hard, and apply for job after job until we find something. There if you know the right person, you’ll get a job no problem! No qualification necessary, and if you need a qualification, just pay the right person for it!

Instead, we still see families ploughing their savings into the marriage of a child, so they get that magic visa…

Please, think twice before doing it, your child might actually be happier where they are…the grass isn’t always greener you know…

65 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. pamelalf
    Jun 28, 2018 @ 17:16:21

    Very enlightening post, much of the examples you described I can relate from my country. I find those who are wealthy back home much better off then moving to a first world country. There money goes further, most people can afford to hire help for children and the home and life moves a slower pace, which can be nice sometimes as many people in North America suffer from anxiety, stress and depression derived from their workplace.

    The trade off however (in my opinion) is at least in Canada, affordable and top quality health care, education, social services and a legal system that allows for enforcement of laws and reprimands illegal or unjust behavior. I am not saying there are no crooked citizens or politicians in North America, but rather. the system is such that the collective voice wins over bribes and nepotism, for the most part. This is what makes living in first world countries appealing and why I think people continue to pay high taxes, work in stressful environments in order to enjoy these freedoms.

    Having a perspective from both, I can see the appeal on both sides. However, if you are disadvantaged, do not come from a wealthy family or a family with power and name recognition, or living on or below the poverty line, it is much better to live in a first world country as your standard of living will be elevated.

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  2. britonabudget
    Jun 22, 2018 @ 08:58:30

    Great post, programmes like 90 Day Fiance show that the grass isn’t always greener!

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  3. Jaya Siva Murty
    Jun 15, 2018 @ 04:33:46

    Well written and so true. We always tend to think that the grass is greener on the other side.

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  4. simplywendi
    Jun 01, 2018 @ 02:04:22

    Thank you for this super informative post………I had no idea.

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  5. chrissy
    May 30, 2018 @ 12:59:34

    Interesting post.

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  6. Eliza
    May 14, 2018 @ 16:24:00

    This made me sad. I still believe in the world where everyone is good, truthful and kind.

    Liked by 3 people

    Reply

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  8. Jennie
    May 11, 2018 @ 21:20:33

    Excellent post, Ritu!

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  9. whatlikenext
    May 11, 2018 @ 11:27:28

    … It’s a reality check for people, well written 😃

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  10. Book Club Mom
    May 11, 2018 @ 01:05:01

    Wow – this is very interesting – it definitely opens your eyes.

    Liked by 3 people

    Reply

  11. Claire Saul (PainPalsBlog)
    May 10, 2018 @ 17:19:27

    it is that belief in media stereotypes that is so strong isn’t it?! My best friend from school married her Malaysian boyfriend (prob because his passport was taken after a trip home 20 odd years ago!) and then for her first couple of years as a junior solicitor found herself supporting the whole of his family back in K-L…because he couldn’t get a job. So she was paying rent, bills, both their student loans, and for his parents, twin brother & fiance and grandmother…..on one occasion I was taken net curtain shopping and then we had to pack it up and airmail out there. It cost hundreds!! It must have been a huge shock when his parents, who had a maid and gardner, came to stay in their tiny 2 up 2 down in Whitstable!! Maybe she should have asked for money to marry him all those years ago!

    Liked by 3 people

    Reply

  12. Karyn
    May 10, 2018 @ 15:02:51

    good post

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  13. Jennifer
    May 10, 2018 @ 13:38:53

    I can understand why people think that these countries are rich, it is the Hollywood hype. But so sad to think that in this day and age people are still selling their children for a better lot in life. And where there is money to be made, there will always be scammers.

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  14. OIKOS™-Redaktion
    May 10, 2018 @ 11:37:12

    Wonderful written Ritu! The media not always tell the whole story, neither the own citizens, nor the people would come to Europe. ;-( Michael

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  15. OIKOS™-Redaktion
    May 10, 2018 @ 11:30:33

    Reply

  16. hotmessmemoir
    May 10, 2018 @ 11:14:18

    Wow Ritu! I’ve heard of this briefly but this really is the truth of all of it. I can’t imagine the depression some people feel once they get to the UK, US, etc. and realize we have to work long hours and sometimes utilities are shut off b/c the bill wasn’t paid in time. P.S. And we do have 3 cars but the 3rd is a non-working, piece of $*** and I would give up my first born for my husband to sell it!

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  17. thebigmoneysaver
    May 10, 2018 @ 10:54:14

    This is very sad to read. I’m in the States and you’re right; it may look like ‘luxury’ over here, but there’s so much more to it than that.

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  18. thatblogwherecheriemovestogermany
    May 10, 2018 @ 08:24:29

    Super interesting. Everyone here in Germany was so surprised when Dirk and I moved here. They thought we would be so rich living in America. (we did fine in America, but worked very very hard for everything and we were NOT rich). Germans think Americans are rich, but do not realize it is often a culture of debt, credit card debt is huge in the States. Very little debt in Germany.

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  19. Debbie Harris
    May 10, 2018 @ 07:24:40

    I found this to be very interesting Ritu, thanks for telling it like it is!

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  20. Midlife Smarts
    May 10, 2018 @ 07:20:27

    Really interesting read. When I was growing up I thought everyone in Canada, USA and Australia had swimming pools. Hopefully, your message will get through and help some folk.

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  21. pensitivity101
    May 10, 2018 @ 07:14:42

    The dollar signs rang up big time when we said we lived in Poole. Everyone thought Millionaire Row in Sandbanks!

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  22. Shailaja V
    May 10, 2018 @ 07:03:15

    Well said.Hopefully things have changed and for the better now but you never know how many people still harbour these mindsets.

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  23. foodzesty
    May 10, 2018 @ 06:47:02

    Well said Ritu!!

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  24. NJ
    May 10, 2018 @ 05:27:50

    It happened alot during 1990’s and early 2000 specially in Punjab. I remember reading all those stories in newspaper. There is book called Provoked on same context and it was made into major English movie starring Aishwaraya Rai. I think you are right its important to look into details before plunging into such a decision and grass is always greener on other side.

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  25. edwinasepisodes
    Mar 08, 2015 @ 11:35:41

    I have seen this happen myself first hand. My ex-husband was Kurdish and came from a very poor village. It was imperative for him to do well and bring all of his family over here. So much pressure on him sending money home.

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

    • Ritu
      Mar 08, 2015 @ 11:50:09

      It happens in so many places…. But you’re right its a huge pressure… One of our family members is now in Canada with her hubby and their struggles to settle there, alongside fund their family back home.. So tough…

      Like

      Reply

  26. lbeth1950
    Mar 08, 2015 @ 01:44:36

    Interesting situation

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  27. relationspdbeverly
    Mar 08, 2015 @ 00:58:00

    Kind of sad, if you ask me.

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

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