My Indian Boyfriend May Break Up with Me Because of His Family

My Indian Boyfriend May Break Up with Me Because of His FamilyHi Evan,

I’ve searched your blog for the answer to my question but couldn’t find it. I started reading your blog in 2013 and it helped me get rid of an alpha male in my life and encouraged me to try online dating. I met a wonderful man online who is successful in his career, affectionate, generous with his time, etc. He treats me so well and our compatibility is incredible. I have never had a relationship go as smoothly as this. I lost my job last year and with his encouragement and support, I got through a difficult time. A few months after meeting we became exclusive, online profiles deleted, and we’ve met the majority of important people in each other’s lives. I told him I was in love a few months ago, but he admitted he doesn’t feel that yet.

My boyfriend and I are both from the same ethnic background, practice the same religion, but our families come from different regions of the same country. He never mentioned (even though I asked on our 3rd date) that his parents are completely against him marrying an “outsider.”

In the last month his parents have been pressuring him to get an arranged marriage. We got into an argument about this a week ago. He told me he wasn’t 100% sure that he wanted a future with me and needed time to think because he’s been the happiest with me. He knows his parents won’t approve (I sent him your blog answer on that too!) and isn’t sure if he wants to make them unhappy.

This has been the longest week of my life. I have not been contacting him, even though he’s sent a few texts. How long do I give him the space needed? Should I even wait? I was single for years before I met him. I really have been the type of girlfriend I always wanted to be with him. Calm, understanding, and busy with my own life! I work full time (again), have an art career on the side, and constantly going out with my friends. I have been so happy with him and believe he’s worth the wait. But I wonder if he hasn’t made a decision after a week, is silence an answer?

Varsha

Dear Varsha,

I’ve written about this subject many times.

But I guess I’ll take another crack at it, in hopes that newer readers who are too lazy to click on the above links will challenge their beliefs and make healthier relationship choices.

No matter how much your boyfriend loves his family and no matter how much their hearts are in the “right place,” it’s not their life to live.

First: I’m glad you enjoy the blog. I’m glad you got over a jerk. I’m glad you tried online dating. I’m glad you found a wonderful man who has stuck with you through thick and thin. That level of aptitude is something you deserve credit for – and something that will come into play if your current relationship doesn’t work out.

And make no mistake, there is a distinct chance that this one might not work out.

Let me share with you my line of thinking:

1. I am not minimizing or judging the outsized role that family plays when it comes to various ethnic weddings – in this case, an Indian wedding. I have multiple white friends who married into Indian families, and, almost universally, these families made it hell on both the bride and groom – all in the name of cultural purity, tribalism and tradition.

I will say, however, that no matter how much your boyfriend loves his family and no matter how much their hearts are in the “right place,” it’s not their life to live. If he chooses to sacrifice true love – which, as we know, is hard enough to find – just because your families come from separate regions of India, I have no sympathy for him – and nor should you.

2. That may sound like I don’t understand the enormous pressure you feel to please your respective parents. I do. I just don’t care. As I wrote just recently, if my Mom told me that she “forbid” me to marry my Catholic wife or would disown me if I made that choice, SHE would be the one making the choice to ruin our family, NOT me. Thus, there is nothing for you to do here, Varsha. No reason to blame yourself. No reason to figure out how to strategize. This is your boyfriend’s battle – to figure out if he wants to be an independent man capable of making his own decisions or whether he’s going to be a puppet of his extended family and deny himself the joy of marrying someone of his own choosing.

3. I’m not against arranged marriage, per se. Reva Seth wrote an amazing book called “First Comes Marriage” about what Westerners can learn from arranged marriage. I’m only against arranged marriage for people who DON’T WANT ARRANGED MARRIAGE.

As to what you do – silence vs. no silence? – these are all games and you are above playing games.

I’m not against arranged marriage, per se. I’m only against arranged marriage for people who DON’T WANT ARRANGED MARRIAGE.

Be an adult. Pick up the phone. If you agree with me, tell him your spin on what I outlined above. You love him. You want to be with him. And while you’d love to make both of your families happy, this is a defining moment for him as a person. Will he capitulate, and break up with a devoted girlfriend, just to make mommy happy? Or will he stand up and tell his family that he made a decision and he really hopes they can get on board.

If he chooses the latter, I am confident that his family will eventually come around to support him.

If he chooses the former, you have not lost the man you thought you lost, and you should not waste another second of time pining for this guy.

Join our conversation (30 Comments).
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Comments:

  1. 1
    popee

    If you come from that culture, you know unless your husband was 100% behind your marriage, you will face a very difficult life with your in-laws. So unless he is willing to fight his family, it’s not worth it.

    If I were in the OP’s position I would leave immediately and let him know that you are open to seeing him again once he makes a decision (i.e. whether he is willing to marry anyone in the “wrong” chaste). It’s a big deal to upset his family, especially in that culture.

    Staying in this situation is very detrimental, OP.  You’re wasting your time while he is meeting women for a potential future “approved” marriage. If you’re not an idiot, move on.

     

  2. 2
    Michelle

    My Indian boyfriend’s family told him expressly that he and I could only be “good friends.” They had a family motto – BMW – no blacks, whites or Muslims. I only met his parents once in passing and I was never invited to family events or holidays (they lived in a different part of the country). My boyfriend said he loved me on our third date and was very devoted but fortunately I cottoned on that I would never be accepted by his family and I initiated our breakup. He did eventually marry a white woman closer to his age (I was older, and I think his mum went ballistic that I wouldn’t pop out enough babies) his parents must have finally came round.

    Anyway, the take home message is exactly what Evan says. I’m my own person and would never let my family stand in the way of who I choose to be with. If your partner does, then he’s not the right one for you.

     

  3. 3
    Linna

    I’m Chinese and I know all about the struggles a traditional culture may force onto its people, especially when it comes to finding love. OP’s situation has been lived through by so many of my friends, some of which let go of their true love by surrendering to the “impossibility of going against their family and cultural pressures”, while some of which stood up like an adult for their love and ended up with the result that Evan predicted (family of origin eventually came around to support their decision). Either way, in this case, it is HIS decision to make. As much as I love Evan’s advice on what to do to approach the situation (him) now, I can certainly relate to your potential struggles in acting upon it-if you were like me, a woman raised in a traditional culture learning how to find love in a modern culture. It is as if finding love were not challenging enough for us, we somehow have to also learn how to breakthrough our own traditional cultural barriers in the meanwhile. By all means, kudos to OP for being open minded and courageous in her own search for love and my 2 cents: Don’t let your culture or family of origin dictate your love life. Take Evan’s advice, for if your boyfriend steps up, you’ll have a devoted boyfriend who will fight for your love regardless of his circumstances and if he doesn’t, you’d simply get rid of a man whom is not what you think he is.

  4. 4
    J

    I’m more concerned with how wishy washy he seems about the relationship in general. Parents aside, he doesn’t seem to be all in.

  5. 5
    Katt

    I agree with J. You told him you loved him a few months ago and all he said was he isn’t feeling that way yet. Has a heartfelt I love you from him popped out in the last few months? If not, I think the writing is on the wall.

    I worked with a beautiful Indian girl who had a totally handsome Indian boyfriend who adored her. Her parents found out (she was working here in Australia & parents back in India) and she was told to break it off immediately. She did and although we all felt like saying something we couldn’t, this was her culture, her family and her choice. She knew going into this relationship with her boyfriend that it was never going anywhere and that whomever she married it would be arranged by her parents. What to do when you are thousands of miles from home and you meet a gorgeous guy?

    The OP is going through the same dilemma except this is her boyfriend and his parents have chosen another girl they want him to marry. Like the girl I worked with, he doesn’t have both feet in and he doesn’t love you the way you need a man to love you, no conditions and 100% commitment.

    Don’t wait around, as Evan says, you’re the CEO of Varsha Inc. and if he isn’t cutting it … Who wants a man who doesn’t know what he wants.

     

    1. 5.1
      Miranda

      Exactly what stood out for me. That’s a huge wake up call. Saying I love you and getting “not so sure I feel the same way” in return is definitely a sign you need to let go and on top of that, he’s thinking about his family and not making decisions for himself? Wake up, girl. This doesn’t sound that good.

      1. 5.1.1
        josie

        It’s so sad that Varsha is missing the writing on the wall.  He is not into you, girlfriend! The family and cultural pressures are irrelevant here.  There WILL be another man out there for you.

        1. Christine

          That’s what jumped out at me as well–his wishy-washy sentiments in not being sure about a future with her.  Not to mention, his not feeling “in love” after a few months.  I think the family issue is a red herring and the real problem is him not being that into her (or at least, not enough).

          Even if his family gave the stamp of approval, I think this relationship would still be doomed.  A very good friend of mine dated a guy whose family absolutely adored her–but the relationship still ended because her boyfriend just wasn’t feeling it.  His family practically planned the wedding and really thought she was the best thing that could ever happen for him.  Unfortunately, he didn’t share their enthusiasm–never said “I love you”, and was so ambivalent about her.  So my friend made the reasonable decision to break up with him.  Then, his mother and sister made all these phone calls to my friend, crying and begging her to give the relationship another chance (uh, yeah, that was probably as weird as it sounds).  Yes, while outside influences may play a role, they only go so far.

          I say, she should move on already and find the man who is more excited to be with her!

  6. 6
    belle

    My ex boyfriend recently reached out, shockingly, as I have mentioned him.before in comments. He was in an arranged marriage in his 20s, which his parents agreed to a divorce with 6 months as they even did not ultimately like the girl. We parted ways as he was relocated with his company out of state. He has this past year married a woman of his culture (again), following pressure from his family, she is expecting a child already and … once again, he is not happy with this woman either.  I wished him well, asked him to not contact me again, I have moved on and he is married… However, I thought that was interesting.

  7. 7
    judy

    Well just for sheer entertainment value – I met someone Indian who was really a divine guy.  We went out and I asked him what his job was.

    Ahem – RC priest.

    So maybe I didn’t get lucky that time (:o).  (Shucks! Ain’t life a bitch!!).Having said that, he is still the most adorable person ever.

    Replying to the OP, I think the guy is old enough to make his own decisions.  If he had tried that one on me, I think I would have said sweetly “whatever you want, darling” and found someone else.

    Life is too short for puppets.

  8. 8
    Ariana

    I left my Indian fiancé, despite loving him ferociously, a few months before our scheduled wedding, precisely because of the issue with his parents. It felt awful at the time, but I also knew I was making the right decision. I feel so grateful for having had the courage to do so today.

    It wasn’t until we were planning our wedding that their cultural intolerances toward me (the non-indian) really came out of the closet. I won’t get into the details of their behaviour, but in the end he did not stand up for me and believed I was making a big deal out of what he believed could be resolved. I knew it would never be resolved as he was too dependent on his family. I suddenly felt this vivid flash-forward sensation and image of what my life would be like with him if I married him… it was not a life I wanted for myself and I felt unhappy at the mere thought. So I walked away. It was the hardest decision of my life.

    At the end of the day, just like Evan said, this is HIS battle with his parents, not yours. If you really are the one, he should fiercely protect you, and care about your future together, no matter what mommy and daddy say.

    Today, more than four years later, I am happy and feel fulfilled. I discovered and explored many new aspects of myself since then, that I doubt I would have, had I married then. I’m now an avid rock-climber, I’ve slept in snow-caves and ice-climbed, lived in a new country and learnt a new language etc. I dated A LOT and had so much fun getting to know people. I have new friends from all over the world. And last but not least, I found new love and am married to a wonderful man.

    The strength I found is still with me today, and whether or not my marriage is a one that lasts through the test of time (I certainly believe it will), I still know I will be okay no matter what, because my happiness is not defined solely through my husband, even though he’s a big contributor of it. My happiness is defined by me.

    So Varsha, take CHARGE of your own happiness, and be sure that your vision of your future is one that leaves you feeling warm inside.

    Love,

    Ariana

    1. 8.1
      Anne

      Hello Ariana

      I have had the exact same experience and like I’ve found the strength to walk away months before scheduled wedding. His parents didn’t even want to allow my mom to come to the wedding because my parents are divorced. I do think not wanting to suffer like my mom gave me that strength.  It was the hardest thing for me to do ..stay on my position when I was crying inside. I believe I’ve taken the best decision. I’m happily married today to a man who put me first.

  9. 9
    GL

    I work in an Indian restaurant and it’s been very educational. I would suggest converting to their religion out of respect to their family if that’s something that would sway them and convince your boyfriend to stay. Also, Indians listen to arguments. Argue why you are equivalent to their caste and why it’s a good match. Demonstrate how much you respect, respect, respect…their culture. There are plenty of Indians who accept love marriages. Maybe the family would go along with it if you approach it the right way. In fact I made friends with this Indian who’s girlfriend went to HIS parents. I love Indians, lol. What a culture. Also a sidenote about Indian arranged marriages…only a 1% divorce rate! It shows how dedicated they are to family life.

  10. 10
    Heart broken

    I have been in a relationship with a Indian guy for the last 10 months… We met through work and we were in the same team. He is 30. 5 years younger than me. We really did fall head over heels for each other and everything was right. But I had no idea what complication I was getting myself into…. Due to his age, his mum has been pressuring him to go through arranged marriage and on top of that she was so concerned that he still hasn’t got his perm resident. Due to the stress and pressure out of nowhere I get a shocking surprised from him. He says that his mum is pressuring him and he has nothing to fight for with his mum about us being together because he still doesn’t have his perm resident and he can’t handle the pressure his mum is giving him and he needs to go back to India to start the arranged marriage process. It totally killed me and I have been in tears knowing it’s over for us simply because he decided to go get married to some total stranger just to make his parents happy but now especially reading what others have gone through with their Indian man, I can only say I would never date another Indian man again. If they dont have the balls to fight for their own freedom  then they should just stick to their own kind. I thought maybe there will be a chance for us when he gets his PR… But now all I can see is that there will be more complications …. As if your mother would just accept a non Indian girl because you have your PR….

    i am so disappointed in him … I can’t believe he would just be a dead zombie and keep his mouth shut and just do whatever makes his family happy !! I’m glad it’s over because it seems that if we try to be together it’s going to be me that needs to adjust to the Indian culture, they just sit back and accept me if I meet that expectation….

    I come from an Asian background and guys that only do things just to please their family when it comes to the marriage it’s the wife that will cop all the crap….. If your in-law ain’t happy about you for whatever reason it’s you that needs to make a change and ur hubby will just sit back and not say a word

     

     

     

    1. 10.1
      PO

      Girl, are you me?

      I had a ~10 month relationship with an Indian guy in Australia too. We were seeing each other every day and even signed a lease together. We were looking at buying a house together…

      And then he disappeared. To India, and his arranged bride

    2. 10.2
      Anu

      It’s not about Indian men to non-Indian girl.
      I was in a live-in-relationship for 5 years with a man and we both are from India but from different religion.
      One sudden day he broke up with me as his mother doesn’t want to accept a girl from different religion.
      He didn’t think a single time before asking me to go out of his life.He forgot my love, devotion and support for him in that past years.He also forgot about the happiness we shared and the promises we made to each other.
      Be strong dear.You are not the only one who is going through this.
      There are plenty of Indian couples who go through this everyday.
      Take care!

  11. 11
    K

    To hell with him and his family. Find a man that will treat you right. Even in India there may be a man that is not a wimp and can treat you decently.

  12. 12
    Blondie99

    I can’t tell from this letter how long you have been dating this man and I think that may be helpful.  Is it since 2013?  If so and he’s still unsure and does not love you you need to move on.  But somehow I gather it’s fairly new.  I agree with Evan’s advice tell him how you feel and then decide but I will add a bit more.  I have a very good friend who is Catholic Phillipino and her ex is Hindu Indian.  They met in law school and her parents did not have a problem at all with his ethnicity or religion, as arranged marriages are not the norm.  He told her his family did not either.  They dated for five years, lived together, bought a home together and his parents appeared to be accepted but it turned out all along they were not and he was hiding it from her.  All along they had been looking for another bride for him and trying to break them up.  Eventually one of his sisters felt bad enough to tell her and she was devastated and confronted him and he admitted that he never intended on marrying her that he loved her but loved his family more. He did say he had hoped that eventually they would come around to the idea but always knew that if he he had to chose he would pick family.  A telling sign is that all his siblings were married by arrangement to other Indians.  I recently had a similar situation with a Jewish and Catholic friend wherein very early on one agreed to convert to Judism and raise the children as such but three years in totally pulled the plug on that because of parents influence.  Again all the siblings in her family were married to Catholic men with catholic families.  If you are early in this dating move on.  Don’t waste years like my friends did with sometime that is more likely than not to chose family over you.  Religion is a very polarizing thing and family is strong you can’t fight it.  Look to the siblings if they exist.  How were they married, what control did the parents have?  And I think you will have your answer.

  13. 13
    Rauli

    Wow! I can so relate to eveyone posting here. I am an Nepalese Indian and my bf is a nepalese from Nepal. Even though we are from different countries we still share the same tradition, eat same food, speak the same language etc. We have both been living in the UK for more than 10 years. Ok! So here is my story. We have been going out for nearly three years now. We have been living together for the past year or so. Beautiful relationship, we both love eacj other and we talk about marriage etc. He told his family about us in july 2015. They got ballistic about it and they are forcing him to leave me. They are trying everything in their power to do that. The sad part is my bf has decided to listen to his parents and leave me. He says he cant make them sad. I feel so betrayed, worthless, helpless. Gor bags of emotions running through my head. I havent left my room for a week now.Its so sad that you love someone, give them you all and then they leave you just like that. I am heartbroken but I know I will be fine in time as I didnt do anything wrong.

    we will be fine OP stay strong.

    1. 13.1
      Heart broken

      Rauli, I feel your pain. My ex broke up with me 4 months ago and while I am here still trying to heal he’s out there in the process of an arrange marriage. He’s reason is the exact same because of his family he can’t disagree with his family and instead of trying to fight for himself, he just does whatever his family asks for. Of all the relationships that I have had in this life time this is the most difficult one and I still don’t get it… I am of Asian background and he is Hindu Indian and a lot of my friends including the Indian friends have to told me that this is the best decision. Getting tangled with a guy that has such a cultural and tradition can get very complicated especially with a man who would only do whatever pleases his family even if we did stay together he’s family can still give me a hard time. It is hard and will take time to heal your broken heart but please know that you are not alone!

  14. 14
    burnt twice

    Here I am…for a second time believing that this Indian guy will choose me when it comes to that.

    We met via tinder…had the most amazing connection. Most amazing 3months. The best part was that even when we had a fight we managed to talk about, get through it and learn from it. That is what gave us both hope. That in tough times we could come out happy on the other side.

    Then his parents found out we dating and forced him to break it off. He told me before hand that he will just agree to whatever they say but in no means will it change us. Then a week later he just couldn’t take the pressure and said it’s best we break up.

    now I realise that if he can’t take a stand for what he wants and who he loves…Then he is not worth my love. It’s sad that I believed that we could make it as we knew they would react badly but for him to not fight for me proves that its better that we are apart. 

  15. 15
    Tor

    Hi all, reading all of these comments makes me more frustrated with my relationship. I have been dating an indian guy for the past two years. Im ready to take our relationship to the next level (marriage), but unfortunately he has not proposed to me as he quoted “good thing take time” in which i replied “how much time do you need?”. What really annoys me is that he always talks about his family and their expectations they have of him like when do you want to get married, i want you to meet other girls. This is crazy. I know he really cares about want his parents think. But how do i make him realize his parents dont always know or think whats best for him. There are 3 reasons why i think he wont propose to me. 1. Im non indian. 2. I have a child. 3. What parents say GOES. The reason why im with him is because obviously im love and i dont want to have any regrets leaving him and always wondering what IF. All i have is HOPE.

    Thanks for reading

    1. 15.1
      PO

      I’d get out now. I know a girl who was with her Indian boyfriend for 9 years, and she found out that he was having an arranged marriage to someone else 2 months before it happened.

      Love doesn’t seem to matter to these guys. He used to talk about how much he disliked that aspect of his culture, dowries and arranged marriages, but either he changed his mind real quick or else it was all lies.

  16. 16
    Anonymous

    “Birtn Twice”, the same thing happened to me. Your not alone. We met online too had an awesome two months together.  Strong connection and we communicated so well together. then his parents found out and he broke it off. We had so much fun together. I loved learning about Rasmadan and all he had to say, we really shared a lot in common even though we were very different we really has a lot in common. We were both close to our family and  respected each other and communicated and talked a lot. He was Muslim and I am a white girl. He could not stand up to his parents, sadly.  Such a nice guy too,  but I have since moved on. This was a few months ago. It’s sucks but it’s gets better and you become stronger because of it. Although, I still love, love Indian culture and adore all the beautiful things in it. There are many other wonderful things about the culture.  good luck and I wish everyone well.

    1. 16.1
      green lemonade

      Anonymous, this just happened to me on Sunday. Our stories are eerily similar! He’s Muslim, I’m a white, non-practicing Christian. We also met online and were friends for about half a year before we even met and the thought of dating was in the picture (we didn’t meet on a dating website). I was aware of his feelings of being torn between how he was brought up and how he wanted to live life for himself, and thought he had come to terms with it when we became an official couple 2 months ago and he felt he was ready and willing to walk away from his family, if need be. Then this past Sunday, he broke it off, feeling that he could never make me or anyone happy if he resorted to living cut off from his family. It has been heartbreaking for me, and him, I think. The worst part is not being able to do a damn thing about it. I’m not sure how old your post is, but I hope you have continued to heal.

  17. 17
    Ankita

    Hi.. my situation is the same.. I am or was in relationship with a guy who loved me for 7 yrs.. he constantly told me he loved me but I was involved in very bad family issues.. and also I was with somebody else back then.. we then lost contact for few years.. so about a year bk we met and things clicked n we started dating.. he told me he loved me.. n I fell in love with him too.. he wanted to marry me.. I made him meet my mother n sister n all was ok.. but he kept on pushing the date to talk to his parents.. but when he finally did, they said no.. he told me he loves me but will never go against his parents wishes.. and asked for some time to reason with them.. so fast forward 3 days back.. he told me parents r 50% convinced but they will give final answer after an year ( after his sister’s wedding) .. I said atleast they shd meet me or give me some commitment.. but as soon as I said this, he told me he can’t marry me at all n we should break up.. so today he dumped me.. I am a mess n I really don’t know what to do anymore.. he says he loves me n won’t marry anybody else but won’t marry me either coz he doesn’t wanna hurt his parents.. M in a very bad phase..

  18. 18
    Sue Smith

    I’m an African American woman who’s been knowing my Indian boyfriend for over five years we met in college! Long story short I never gave him the time of day! I tried dating him five years ago, he broke up with me, he disappeared for two years, I was devastated!  He came back we tried it again, once again he disappeared for another two years, I was hurt, but I could move on.

    Last year he contacted me, he stated he needed to start a family, because his father was dying and wanted to give his parents grandchildren.  I’ve haven’t had sex with him at this point, I decided to have sex with him. We were having sex so much, then he told he had to leave for India. I didn’t hear from him for over a month! He came back and we were having sex, I do everything sexually! I notice something was off, once we finished he had to hurry up and leave! Humm that’s unusual, I noticed he’s been  doing that a lot! I don’t talk to him at night anymore, he doesn’t text me back like before, I don’t hear from him everyday. Eventually I asked him, he told me he was married! He didn’t love the woman, he’s not in love with her! He loves me! I’m devastated again! Why? I’m having unprotected sex with this man, I’m in LOVE with this man! I can’t stop having  sex with him knowing he’s married!! Ugh! He told me he’s going through a divorce, he’s not in love her it was arranged, blah, blah!

    I know this is unhealthy and wrong, but the things he says to me. I love you! I need you! You love me, but you’re married!! I need to let this relationship go! I’m so pissed! I’m so hurt! I feel like a fool! He tells me to wait on him and be patient and we can be together! I believe he’s lying! I’m having sex with a married man! He tells me he’s not sleeping with his wife! I’m the only woman he’s sleeping with! I’m so hurt!! I know he’s lying to me, but I’m in love with him! I believe he’s bi-sexual too, because when I was licking his back part, his anus was not tight! I slide my finger and tongue right in! Ugh!! He’s becoming a sex object to me!

    Sorry this is happening to us! I just like having sex with my Indian boyfriend no expectations from him now! I love him, but I know I need to set him free! I’m dating other men, but just sleeping with him only! He’s lied so many times, he’s just an “if” factor! Indian men look at us non-Indian women as play toys! Conquest and Conquer! Trust me I was just like everyone on this post, fell for all his lies and dreams he was selling! I’m hurt because I believe in his lies and let him get my goodies! I didn’t believe his BS over five years, I allowed this during a vulnerable time in my life!

  19. 19
    an explorer

    My Indian ex-boyfriend and I broke up almost a months ago. I have been coping with it okay this time, because last year we broke up for the same reason. I am a Chinese.

    We were classmates for one year (in HK) and he approached me in the beginning. For some reason, our first year was not all full of happiness. There were a lot of dramas and the relationship didn’t fare well. Eventually, he broke up with me when we were about to graduate and he told me there would be no future. I was devastated, begging him to come back to me…. The break-up was very nasty.

    Then we parted our ways. I cried a lot and also tried to talk him back, but he said he couldn’t marry me. After around three months, I became calm and started to move on and was able to totally ignore him on school gathering events, though I still missed him a lot. He also missed me, I could tell. During the 3 months period, I reflected on our relationship. Apart from the possibility of his family being traditional and an arranged marriage was probably there for him, I also pondered on the flaws in my personality, or the way we interacted.

    So after we broke up for 3 months, we met again in a school gather session (he actually asked another classmate to ask me to come). We were drinking till quite late. I asked him out of the bar to spend a few minutes alone with him. He hugged me, telling me he didn’t know what to do. He was holding himself from kissing me. I felt very sad for him. I told him I missed him and he told me he missed me as well. We spent the night together. The next day, he said if we got back together, I needed to acknowledge the fact that there will be no future in our relationship. I said I accepted it and let’s enjoy our time together when we could.

    That’s how we got back again in late last September. Things got really well in our second attempt. Our interaction was very positive and we both got more and more attracted to the other party. And we had so many memorable time.

    But one month ago, he told me to get prepared for his possible move back to India if he could not get a satisfying job here (he had been struggling for quite a long time in the job market). I burst into crying instantly. He said that’s the hard fact in our relationship. He also told me that next year, he might get married (though he didn’t know to whom). He rejected his parents attempt to meet a girl once but he couldn’t reject every time. I said I understood the fact and wish you all the best in your professional life and marriage. And he burst into crying as well. This was how we broke up.

    Afterwards, we talked a few times. He said he had always wanted to go back to India in the longer term and stay with his family. He said I would not get accustomed to his way of living and even if we got married, there will be one day that I would leave him. Plus, although his parents are not those type of super traditional ‘unreasonable’ Indian parents, he didn’t want to challenge the marriage system as well. On the one hand, I admitted that this was something out of his ability, on the other hand, I also hated him and myself for getting back together. Back then, I thought I could cope with break-up nicely this time, but having been in such a good relationship for another year, I love him even more.

    The break-up was devastating to him as well. I could tell from his look and yesterday, he told me that he was actually not mentally well after the break-up. Luckily, in the same week of the break-up, he found a good job, and he went back home for a break. He told me all he did at home was visiting temples and talking to God. Breaking-up to him is also a heart breaking thing.

    Yesterday, we had candid and calm talk. He still loves me and is grateful of the past wonderful 1 year as things changed so much compared to our first part of the relationship. He agreed that we were compatible with each other, and he also imagined life with me in the future. But he said I would leave him one day as things are so different in India (and I admitted that I would get accustomed to life in India as well. I travel to Mumbai and experienced to some degree the life there).

    Life is so not in shortage of harsh moments. I used to think that love conquers everything. In many cases, that’s just wishful thinking. Had marriage been simply between the couples, things would have been easy for so many many families in the world.

    I am still coping with the hole punctured in my heart. Love is still there……

  20. 20
    Anon

    Actually…..its not just Indian men. I was in a 6 yr long relationshop  with an arab and Im Indian.  He made me many promises and we had great times together….however…just about 45 days ago he told me he was confused and was facing too mucj pressure from his family and decided to leave me to marry another woman….who he had never met before.  Its so sad….I mean the one person I thought I gave my life to…just abandoned me  in seconds….I felt so lost the first 30 days…but I feel much better now…and feel like i have so much sense into my head for not wanting to take him back ….I dont think I ever will….he has borrowed money from me…and hasnt returned it….Ive done him numerous favors and he just didnt value me enough….I would make the biggest mistake of my life by letting in a spineless immature BOY in my life again.

  21. 21
    nordic girl

    I was in a long-distance relationship with an Indian man. He’s a Kasmiri pandit. We fell in love quick while he was on a business trip to my country (Finland). I travelled to India often and stayed about 1-2 months at a time (I was able to work remotely so this was not an issue). He wanted to live abroad and marry me etc. He was actually the one who brought up all of these such as marriage, kids, future plans. Mostly I could clearly see he was happy with me. I was incredibly happy with him despite being in a long-distance relationship.

    A few months back his parents found out about me. His mum (while she was visiting him for a few weeks) had found my love letters to him and read all of them! I guess this already gave her a feeling I’m some lunatic as in their culture even hugging your partner is quite a lot to handle (at least for the older generation). These letters were extremely private and intimate!

    My ex tried to speak with her and tell her he wanted to marry me but all she would do was cry, yell and threaten him with suicide. She said anything would have been OK except for a non-Indian woman. He’s very attached (in a weird way) with his mother and he took all of this very hard. When it comes to his mother he’s not able to stand up for himself. I noticed this quite early and ever since his parents found out about us I was mentally preparing for our breakup.

    A week ago he Facetimed me and after a long conversation he said he’s not strong enough to stand up for himself and that he has too many responsibilities. Basically “he’s going to be a puppet of his extended family and deny himself the joy of marrying someone of his own choosing.”. 

    I have had lots of bad moments in my life but our breakup feels unbelievably hard for me to accept. Especially when we were both so happy together.

    I am mad at him, his mother, and mostly at his cowardliness. I try to understand the cultural aspect in this, but I feel like I will never be able to understand it. Worst is that I kept asking him a million times if his family would ever accept me. Since day 1 I was afraid of this happening. He assured me that everything will be fine and it may takes some time for his parents to come around.

    He was not just my partner. He was my best friend, and now he just tells me to “move on” and that 2,5yrs relationship is not really anything.

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