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what is a decent way to handle this?


LAYAAN
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quick facts - arranged marriage situation, this man emailed me (his 1st email to me), I replied to his email honestly and to the best of my ability, without showing my anger and frustration about the questions that he and his dad asked about me. Right from the 1st email his focus has been on whether I'll get a PhD for sure? When is the exact date my PhD will "finish"? and most important area of his focus is "Will you get a job in my area?" "What are the job opportunities for you in this geographical location?" After my reply to his 1st email, (in which I did address the question about "job") I didn't even think that the guy will email me back but to my surprise he did and he has asked the same Q, about job (thats still his Q#1) and a whole list of other questions (what do I like to do on weekends, etc.)

 

I have no energy to go through this again. The guy is in NY. I'm not done with my PhD yet. Within next 6-8 months, I don't think I'll have enough time to go to NY to visit him. Also, he has been very upfront about his emphasis on my finding a job in his area. Why bother? I told my mom that I don't want to reply. My mom got mad at me. So, looks like I've to scribble something. Since he took 5 days to send me a reply, I'm going to take equal or more time (Won't be nice anymore to any Indian man. Especially when they treat you like this.)

 

What would be a decent way for me to tell him that because of my hectic schedule and the distance and his emphasis on "job" (that means money), I don't think its appropriate to go ahead with this proposal now.

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"It doesn't sound like we're a good match." or "I think I have found someone who is a better fit for the position." This whole arranged marriage thing sounds more like a marriage of convenience/business transaction to me, so turn him down like you would a potential candidate you had interviewed for a job.

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Tinu, as others have said, just tell him that you are not interested.

 

Apart from that, as we have discussed before, I think you are approaching this whole thing a bit with unrealistic expectations.

 

People usually resort to arranged marriage sites with a very clear idea of what they want in a relationship and in what time frame. And the nature of the process necessarily makes it sound much more like a business deal than an approach with the emphasize on the romantic side of things.

 

Thus I do not think that questions in regards to profession, location, time frames etc are uncalled for under the given circumstances.

 

Arranged marriage sites are not the place to go normally, when you want to meet someone, take your time to get to know them, not having any defined expectations of what should transpire when and to work out later if your life style, professional choices may match or not.

 

I'd say in a conventional (western civilization I guess) way relationships work is that you fall in love with a person and in case you do decide that you want to be together you try to find a way to work out details pertaining to job, location, times frames etc.

 

However people who sign up on an arranged marriage website, want to get married - and fast and are usually less concerned about finding a soulmate, but are rather looking for someone who is compatible to a very predefined list of prerequisites. Thus from their point of view, it doesn't make sense not to find out at the very beginning if you fit their profile.

 

What is causing you so much trouble at the moment is, that you are not really at a point in your life where you know exactly how much more time your PhD will take and what you want to do next in regards to your profession - that's the exact opposite of what those guys want to hear.

 

I understand that you want to be in a relationship and that you do not want to take the risk of investing anything into someone without knowing if his intention is marriage.

 

I believe you have 3 fundamental choices:

- you decide that the arranged marriage approach is what you want. that means you have to improve your 'market value': an obvious thing would be to focus on your studies now and start signing up after you will be able to provide the answer to those questions that annoy you so much now

- you actually prefer meeting a guy, taking time to get to know him in all aspects, focus on the romance - then you have to face it and just risk the conventional approach to dating, without having an apriori guarantee that there will be a marriage one day

- you are dead sure that only the combination will work for you: you want to have the security from an arranged marriage, yet you want to take all the time that you might need to do whatever you have not even decided you want to do with your life - in this case, you just have to start growing a much thicker skin and realize that it will be very hard and will take a lot of trials and errors before you find that particular person

 

 

I venture to guess that you are annoyed about those questions (and in consequence about that person), because it hits a sore spot: your PhD and everything related to it really stresses you out a lot, you yourself are unhappy about not knowing how/ when you'll finish. It's a legitimate thing to worry about it, but you can't really let this interfere with your other big goal in life: to get married.

 

As I understand you are a scientist. As such you have learned skills to identify/ formulate a problem clearly and you have learned how to define the individual steps necessary to answer/disprove your hypothesis. You will also know that there is a certain logic in things and that there is a certain order in which subquestions have to be answered before you will be able to obtain your final result. You also know that you have to take experimental results and conditions as they are and that you can't change the nature of some of those.

 

Thus, as an exercise I suggest you treat your life's goals in a similar fashion. Forget for a second that this is about a hearts affair. Just write down what you want to accomplish and then be very honest what are the requirements of getting that (there are always requirements, if we want to admit it or not). Then try to work out which of the requirements you are already meeting and which are the ones you still have to work on and what you can do to accomplish that.

 

All I am trying to suggest is for you to realize exactly what you want and how realistic it is. IF you want something that is rare - absolutely nothing wrong with that, you just have to be willing to be patient enough.

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I'm going to visit a life coach tomorrow. Its a strain on my pocket, but I've to do it. I hope that his visits bring helpful insight and clarification.

Penelope13, I appreciate your taking time out to reply to my post. I agree, but I currently am in a confused state, where even if I had a job at this moment and I was done with my education then suddenly my market value in the arranged marriage market shoots up. Okay, so I get married on the guy's timeframe and because he is running out of time I've to have a kid. Whose life am I living? Where am I in this as a person? Where are my personal desires and goals? Is there a room for those in marriage? Getting married pronto and having a kid yesterday was never my dream. It still is not. I'm looking for a man I can come home to, a relationship where there is friendship, love, caring, sharing, trust. Too much to ask for... I thought of killing myself several times. I don't fit into Indian culture. The only reason I didn't kill myself is because my mother is alive and I don't want to be responsible for her death. In the US, I'm not an American. In India, I'm no longer an Indian. Who am I? There is no place where I feel that I belong here.

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Tinu, I think it's a great idea that you'll see a life coach, since you clearly need some help at the moment.

 

AS said, I can relate to the identification crisis. Living between 2 very different cultures can be so stressful.

 

I hope this life coach can help you to understand what are truly your personal goals versus the ones you think you should fulfill either due to expectations from your family, or the people who live around you.

 

Patience with yourself and for the process is a really good starting point. You do not need to figure out/ find your life partner today.

 

Let me know if there is anything I can do to help

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allie... thats not true. I'm going to work, but it turns me off when they start talking about job even before we have met. or you are telling me to write no kids, no work so he runs away ASAP.

 

Yeah, I meant you should say that to scare him off. It was supposed to be a joke, you know... a stay-at-home mom who doesn't want to have kids!! That way you could tell your mom that he ruined it (by changing his mind), not you. But yeah, it was kind of a joke. Probably a better idea to be honest and let him know you are put-off by his extreme inquisitions into your financial/job situation when you don't even know him.

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It seems to me a lot of your stresses come from trying too hard to fit the puzzle pieces. Sometimes you just have to make your own niche and I think that's going to be your way to finding a sense of happiness.

 

So you don't fit in in America or India. Who cares? The key to living a strong life is using your gifts and passions to help others. So figure out what those things are and what you can do with them. When you start working in that direction, your passions will naturally attract the right crowd to you... including a future husband.

 

I believe one of the biggest mistakes people make is focusing their efforts on circumstance rather than on using their gifts. You can't create a crowd of friends or find a future spouse by making those things you goals... instead you have to have a direction for your life that is continuous and dynamic and then let those people come to you. People are attracted to passion. When you find something to be passionate about, people will naturally be drawn in.

 

If you're a science nerd, you might know the direction of a magnetic field is orthogonal to the force it generates (Lorentz Force Law). This is a good analogy for life... a person chugs along in the x-axis heading toward a positive destination and as a result, people are pushed in on the y-axis. But if you aim directly toward the people, you lose all your force of attraction.

 

You've got to do what makes you happy. You can't mold your life in hopes that it fits a mold someone else will be attracted to. If you love school, stay and finish for you... and don't give it up for anyone. If you hate it, leave... go do something else and don't stay there because you think it'll make you more attractive. It won't. Passion makes people attractive... passion is the key to happiness. You've got to find yours and go after it 100%.

 

You don't sound like a candidate for arranged marriages IMHO. I have nothing against the concept, but I don't think it's for you from reading what you've said. I'd recommend scrapping the dating scene for right now and just putting all your energy into finding exactly what direction you want for your life. Once you find this, everything else will come together.

 

Best wishes.

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Sorry Tinu, but I no longer believe that the problem is with the guys. To be honest the problem is with YOU.

 

It is the same story again and again and again. You know it too. You meet a man through the arranged marriage system. Since it is an arranged marriage thing there is no dating, get to know the person stuff.. and certainly no romance. The guy asks questions about your education and job prospects (just like how the girl would want to know about the guy's education and his job). You get pissed off and you come here and write about it.

 

If you keep doing the same things you will get the same results. That is common sense.

 

 

 

Very good ](*,)

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Okay, so I get married on the guy's timeframe and because he is running out of time I've to have a kid. Whose life am I living? Where am I in this as a person? Where are my personal desires and goals?

 

I very well remember from your posts that if you were dating a guy you would not have sex with him for quite some time. The guy needs to wait for a certain period of time before he can get any. And to be honest I doubt if you will have sex before marriage. So basically you are subjecting the guy to your timeframe of when you will allow certain things to happen. But you do not extend the same courtesy to the guy. You can have your rules and timeframe, but the guy is not supposed to? Things do not work that way Tinu.

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