South Asian Youth in Marriage Crisis

Crisis. That is the first word which comes to mind when assessing the state of marriage amongst the South Asian youth in America. One could write a sociological paper analyzing how Indian and Pakistani parents are simply out of touch with their American-born kids. Being of South Asian descent myself and exposed to the drama of getting hitched, I felt it prudent to write a fictional letter based upon the experiences I have encountered for all those out there who have no voice or say in their future.

Dear Mom and Dad:

There comes a point in everybody’s life when one must become forthright and honest. My time has arrived and you must hear the truth for better or worse. For the past five years, you have showcased me like a piece of meat to your family, friends, and strangers in the hopes that I will get married. You have exaggerated my credentials and forced me to compose a resume outlining my life history like I was applying for a job at Goldman Sachs. Unfortunately, I’ve had no luck. Maybe this is god’s plan. Maybe this is my destiny; not marry within the community. I have repeatedly said that I don’t have much in common with the less-than attractive people you introduce to as they tend to be fresh-off-the-boat. Do you listen? No! How can I marry someone who is interested in watching Bollywood films and listening to desi music 24/7 while i go out to work?

Both of you need a reality check. You claim you are Americans with the U.S. flag placed proudly on the forefront of our well-manicured lawn. But behind close doors, you openly criticize and look down on their cultural norms. Um, we live in the United States. This is the west where guys and girls openly date. Maybe if you’d allow me to do the same in college, I wouldn’t be this old [32] and unmarried. You may have changed your physical location when coming to this country, but your mentalities have not evolved. This will explain why I have had to lead a double life.

I have been dating an African-American for the past three years. Even though I tell you I am going to my friend’s house for the weekend, I’m really seeing my partner. Our outings are diverse and adventurous. At dinner, we settle for a decent meal that is accompanied by lots of good wine. Yep. I’m on a one-way ticket to hell. While you’re busy watching Mr. Shah Rukh Khan, my partner and I settle for a nice Sunday drama on PBS. Hey, what you don’t know can’t hurt you! And touching upon that theme, remember when you asked me to drop of that delicious biryani you made for Mrs. Khan? She and her husband went out-of-town for the weekend and left their daughter home all alone? Ring a bell? Well, sweet little Deena was having a partay filled with all sorts of shenanigans. Oh, I didn’t get involved. Amidst the blaring music, I simply placed the dish on the kitchen island while Deena was dancing and taking vodka shots with the jocks from her high school football team. Did she see me? No! She was drunk and too busy flinging her bra in the air shouting “HECK YEA, F*CK YEA.” I’ve always known she was a double-faced slut who had her parents wrapped around her little finger. But I’m not like that.

As a dutiful child, I have respected most of your wishes and gone along with your unreasonable demands. Fortunately, that will no longer continue. I will get married at some point but not to a person of desi descent. I’m taking control of my destiny and will do everything in my power to ensure my say is final. For now, I’m interested in me, myself and I [furthering my education and getting a better job]. You see, I have the courage and the conviction to be the first of many to say LEAVE ME THE HELL ALONE.

P.S. When my kids reach puberty, I will talk to them about sex. Get over it!

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