Better Late Than Wrong!


This article appeared on ECS Living September 20, 2010.


We find them everywhere—women in their late 20s and also some in their early 30s still ‘not married’. Has this generation turned rebellious or are they united in the mission to ‘wait till the right person comes along’ or is it something else?

When I got a call from ECS office asking me to write an article about women marrying late, I asked myself, why me? But on second thoughts, I realized, why not? I am a 29 year old Nepali woman who is not married. Not Unmarried but “Yet to be married”! See, I have issues with the word ‘Unmarried’. I mean if you actually break it down, it can mean Un- Married, which eventually means, married once but now Un-Married! Which I am not!




As a teenager, I always thought I would get married after graduation, and after I got a job. Most of my friends from school got married after high school or by the time they were 20. But for me it was too early to even think about marriage, and my family supported me in that matter.

I started working fulltime in the media at the age of 21 after I became Miss Nepal. There was a certain sense of independence, and freedom I felt, providing for myself. I had a life of my own; I could do anything, travel wherever I wanted. Since then, I did not want to be anything else but me. I cherished and reveled in it and still do-- my freedom and independence. Especially for women who work in the media, we want a partner, who would accept us with the profession that we are in. I have had issues in my relationships, where my partner would want me to leave my line of work in the media and work on something else. He did not want me to appear in the papers, or on television. He basically wanted me to disappear from the entire hype. At one point, I thought I could give it all up for that person. But then, I realized I was being someone else; something that I was not and I was unhappy. It just wasn’t worth it.

There are many women like me in the media, who go through the same problem. Mahima Pandi Bhattarai, Media person, married at the age of 29 in 2009. She says, “I talked to my husband and the family about not giving up my media career before I got married. Once they were okay with that, after a year, we decided to tie the knot. My career is everything to me; this is who I am, and I wanted someone who would accept that fact, and I got one.”

I am one of those “rare” women, in my friends circle and in the family who is yet to be married. Yes, the pressure is constantly there. I have stopped attending weddings, as the first question people ask me, rather than a “how are you?”, is the dreaded question ,”when are you getting married?” I mean, it used to be, “When are you getting married?” Till about two years back. Now, it’s more along the lines of, “Bihe garne bela bhayena”?(Isn’t it time you got married?) It has become more amusing than irksome! As if, there is an age bracket set by the country or the constitution, that women HAVE to get married at a specific and predetermined age. Who sets these age bars? The society? You? Us? Please feel free to enlighten my bemused state of mind. This question has been a source of ceaseless wonder for the last couple of years.

Sushma Singh, a banker by profession, got married at the age of 39, last year. Yes, 39! She says, “Till the age of 30, my focus was on my career, rather than on marriage. The need to be independent was more paramount before I settled down and I wanted to excel in my career.” When asked, why she chose to marry late, she says,” I didn’t get married for a long time as I never found the right partner. Even the men I met in between, I did not find anyone who could commit to me, in terms of marriage. But once I did, it was an easy decision to make.”

The main issue as to why women (and men likewise) are marrying late, a prevailing trend, is not just because, they are career oriented, ambitious or independent, it’s also about finding the right person that you feel you can spend the rest of your life with. Promi Pradhan, HR Professional who works at Himalayan Bank agrees, “I was in a relationship for 5 years with my husband before we got married. I was 32. I chose to get to know him better before settling down. I had to be completely sure that this was what I wanted.”

One of the most common notion, that all of us have about marriages, is that, women have to change a lot after marriage, the responsibilities, the problems and the adjustments that come along. There is a sort of negative feeling, that we have after hearing stories of bad marriages from friends or people we know. Promi echoes the same skepticism, “I had doubts, about how the relationship would change after marriage, but then after getting married, it has become even better and fulfilling. He is very supportive and I feel lucky that I can confide in him in terms of my career.” Mahima and Sushma , agree on this sentiment. They say that, they too had negative perceptions about marriage, but once they found the right person, it changed completely for the better.

I have seen families giving pressure to women, concerning marriage, and they are obligated to get married because of this. Most of them do work out, touchwood, but some of them don’t. I have dear and near ones, who have been through divorces, or fall prey to bad marriages, as they probably married the “wrong” person, or probably, they couldn’t adjust to the old idea of marriage and got married only because of the constant pressure. “In Nepal, women are pressurized a lot to get married. Because of that, they either are prone to depression or end up marrying the wrong person,” says Promi.

My mother started pressurizing me after I turned 27. At 29, it has kind of reached its threshold. I can sense her frustration when I start talking about the pros and cons of marriage, or if I am totally against it. There have been times, when I have felt worn out because of this pressure. I left for Delhi for a year to get away from this madness. And I did make some mistakes in my relationships because of this continual pressure.

Marriages should happen when you feel it’s right, not when you have to. The key factor is: couples need to be compatible, communicative, flexible, and understood. The question of marriage comes much later.

I have even contemplated, adopting a baby after a certain period. I thought, if I don’t get married till I am 35, then I would love to have a child, and be a mother. The idea remains, if ultimately I don’t get married.

But the main thing, I still insist, is I am not married yet, as I haven’t found the man who would take me as I am. I am a public figure, people talk about me, I am seen in the papers and television; I am confident, strong and independent, yet a child at heart at times .That is who I am, and if they cannot accept that simple fact, and love me as I am, then I am better off being single!

I have nothing against marriages. I do want to get married someday, but I guess until the day finally comes, I will remain “Yet to be married”!
Better Late Than Wrong! Better Late Than Wrong! Reviewed by Nepali Chalchitra on 5:40 PM Rating: 5

24 comments:

  1. Simply intelligent !!

    Malvika, I admire you for that (your wisdom - on marriage & life) !!!!

    Take care & God bless !!!

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  2. hi malvika subba thanks for sharing with me for your life history i will say but the humanbeing life oneday needto be marriage because end of your life you need to be someone to take care about you i know you have a lot of money but still you need to your life partner who can support you and who can love you until you end your life
    thanks and i hope you understood as i mentioned above
    kamal pun

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  3. Hi Malvika Di ,

    you are absolutely right and i totally agree with you. Some people do not accept the way we are. Loving someone changing the character of the partner is not loving. Love is not an agreement.

    Marriage life gets better when there is a bridge of love and trust.

    I wish you have a bright future ahead.

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  4. Hi Malvika di,Namaste...Specaially,Happy Tihar to you.

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  5. its so convincing
    u should kiip on writing..

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  6. please...let her live...

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  7. Loved ur words..this is wat even i think so ..

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  8. Nice to read your little biography. In fact it is the sum of all the sensations and perceptions that have registered in your mind.

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  9. I think Malvika, you would be a good chemestry with a salman khan When you feel marriage should happen.

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  10. S! Malvika i totally agree with u. Me too 29 yrs of age,finished study.I'm fully independent and happy myself. I want to settle down with Mr Right for me but till now i couldn't find such person. I want to do something and like to work in marketing. But the guys whom i met r totally against of this. They don't like us to talk with other guys jus want to look after them n family which is totally against my thought.


    Lets hope we can find Mr Right one day.

    Good luck both of us...
    hehehe

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  11. cant believe it's been 8 yrs, uid been miss npl. time flies... really!! my wishes to u malvika to get the right man with true heart. ppl r selfish mostly, nepalese guys!! they've forgotten the morals, seriously feels like living alone outta complicated relationships!!

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  12. Is it necessary for you to be so aggressive whenever you deal with something or the other?

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  13. though im huge fan of yours but this is truely copy of sex n city....excuse meee oooops....

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  14. hey malvika de i am big fan of urs n i liked n agree about ur feeling .

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  15. Narayan shrestha ,sankhuOctober 4, 2011 at 9:51 AM

    Wow di,you change the concept of early marriage....u r revolutionary writer.hop u ll keep it up.i support u

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  16. HI,

    Nice comment, u have speak out the mind of bachelorette, parents, societal pressure and the Marriage thing. We certainly love to be in it but its not something we should jump into rather we wanna swim it on our own..

    Stay bachelorette until u got the right person MS, do write.

    thank you.!!

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  17. I think Malvika, you would be a think positive.

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  18. Dear Malvika,

    I liked ur article n I appreciate ur thoughts but it's all logical, therotical, therarical , irrational to me ...I have a suggestion for u don't act..ask urself try to be Gautam Buddha sometime....inside u there is a far cry of someone desperate ...if not u r entitled to ur opinion ...live for love of life not life for love ...haha...u r true charisma u r true icon of media ...trust urself ...use ur charm n beauty in right time we may never know will u get to use it in future

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  19. Malvikadi, i totally agree wid ur thoughts. I myself don't want to get marry until i feel right. I am independent, but i need to make my career strong. My parents never gave me pressure of getting marry, instead they ask me to pay attention in my study n my career. Eventhough they(my parents) are just SLC passed students, they raised me ,being educated parents. I don't want my marriage life to be ruin by pressure. We girls need to be confident. Don't be afraid about what if i find old guy or sth else. U end up getting married old guy anyway, not that they are not fine. Our society wants guys to be independent, why not girls to be independent? I am 25, still not interested in getting married yet, i mean i have a boyfriend, but he respects my thoughts. I wish every guys think like that. I am getting married at 35 when i get my PHD.

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  20. i agree wid u

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  21. Hi malvika perhaps this is a rather late comment on your article on "late than wrong". It was beautifully presented and you are married now." thulo badhai". I'm afraid this is going to be much of request than a complimentary comment and this maybe a wrong place to put through. However, I really liked your idea of interviewing the most powerful and intellectual personnel of Nepal society. Honestly, some of them were total unacquainted to my general knowledge. But if I may, could I request you to trick them into answering or shade some views on the present political issues of Nepal. I think it will be great to have some diverse views from some of great minds and people of the country.

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  22. Malvika di!! This article perfectly echoes my feelings and thoughts about marriage. Although I am only 24, I also do think if i don find the mr. right by certain time period of my life, I will adopt a baby and live an independent life. wow! I am not the only one who thinks like this. I am glad to know that. Marriage is important in life, but not a neccessity. It's really refreshing to know that nepali women's life cannot just be defined by marriage status.

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  23. babbal article sis.
    If u cross 20, u'll be nailed down , If u cross 25, u'll be butchered down into pieces-by words ,for simply not getting ''married''.

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  24. Hi malvika dd....nc article..hope to c more...I m a huge fan of urs....tc bbyee

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