We Talked to Students Whose Families Want Them in Arranged Marriages

our parents and Tinder are two things that should never be combined. But that’s what arranged marriages are like. Instead of an app, it’s your parents suggesting who you should hook up with (till death do you part, though).

Let’s clear up that arranged marriages aren’t necessarily forced marriages. Arranged marriages feel like your parents are holding your hand when you decide whether or not you want to swipe right. Some parents grip a little firmer than others. A forced marriage is when they grab the phone out of your hands and swipe for you. But that’s illegal in Canada, the United States, and a bunch of countries in Europe.

VICE: How have your parents tried to set you up?
Sokalan: Ever since I was a kid, my parents would do this thing where when I would say, “I want to be an astronaut,” and ten years later they would turn that into, “You said you wanted to study rocket science.” They did that with marriage, too. They would ask me if I like girls, and obviously, I was really young so I would be like “Gross, no.” So they would say, “OK, so we’ll pick your wife. Is that OK?” and being really young, I was like, “Yeah, sure.” Ten years down the line, that turned into, “You agreed to this. You have to go through with it.” So this summer, my parents want me to go back to Sri Lanka to meet some people. “People” being the keyword. They have a whole roster of girls laid out for me.

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