Friday, July 18, 2008

Marrying an elder women. Does it make sense?

It's been a tradition in india or rather across the globe (as per my observation) that a marriage usually happens between a younger woman and an elder man.
If we take a historic data of 7-8 decades then we would see that the women's age had been too less than her husband's age in olden days (around 15 yrs gap).And slowly with time the age gap starting decreasing and decreasing further . Now the average age gap of marriage would be 3 yrs with the woman still being younger than the man.

But then there are instances where we would also see some love marriages happening where a women is elder than the man (popular case is sachin tendulkar).
But then society doesn't welcome these marriages at all and people look at them as if it's a big sin created, as if it's a very nasty and a shameless act.

I recently came across two such cases in my close vicinity and have also closely observed how bad the near and dear feel about it. They feel as if the couple have commited an unpardonable sin of marrying an elder women.

But then if you really think seriously on this, i did not find anything very wrong in this.
In fact, if we look back to the aryan times (ramayana, mahabharata etc etc), we will find many couples in the mythology where the wifes were elder than the men.
Good example is Sita who is considered elder than Rama, according to one school of thoughts.
Another example is draupadi who should have been elder than atleast some of of her husbands.
Another example is Radha who was elder than Krishna

The people whom we worship or treat as path finders themselves have done this kind of marriage many years back.

If we talk about later years also, i am not sure how many couples really knew their age when they got married.
Even now i find many people in slums or people with very large families not remembering their children's age or date of birth.
Then how can they be so sure than their daughter is marrying an elder man only or son is marrying an younger women only?

When asked some people why they think a women should be younger than man, the first answer that i get is that 'science insists atleast two years gap be between then man and the women'.
Correct. Agreed. But what's missing here is... science only says that their should be age gap, but it never says if women should be younger by two years or a man can also be younger than two years.

Another good and sensible reason i get for this is ---women start looking old soon, as compared to men. So if a man marries an elderly women, then she starts looking much more older after marriage and that might affect their mutual physical interests.
This does make sense .
But then, is this reason of retaining physical interest much more important than the love between both the couples. I think it's not.

Though i do not specifically encourage these kind of marriages as i do not find any special benefits out of them , but i still do not find anything wrong in it as well.
I think they can be treated just as any other marriage.

I don't think there is anything in these kinds of marriages which needs to be treated as a sin or something very strange.

We should not be playing a double game by praying sita, drupadi or radha as an ideal women on one side, and on the other side curse the modern women for a similar act. Same thing holds good for men also.

After all it's we , the socienty, who are the makers of all kinds of rules and we must not accept any rule blindly unless it makes sense, just because some ancestor told it's a sin.