Why an arranged marriage is better than a love match

They are seen by many as business deals that have little to do with love. But arranged marriages are far more likely to lead to lasting affection than marriages of passion, experts claim.

OddNaari OddNaari Mar 07, 2011

They are seen by many as business deals that have little to do with love. But arranged marriages are far more likely to lead to lasting affection than marriages of passion, experts claim.

According to research, those in arranged marriages - or who have had their partner chosen for them by a parent or matchmaker - tend to feel more in love as time passes, whereas those in regular marriages feel less in love over time. And within ten years, the connection felt by those in the arranged marriages is said to be around twice as strong.

Relationship experts claim this is because arranged matches are carefully considered, with thought going into whether potential partners' families, interests and life goals are compatible.

This means they are more likely to commit for life - and to stick together through rocky patches.

Those who marry for love, on the other hand, tend to be blinded by passion and so overlook the crucial details. When the going gets tough, they are more likely to view the situation simply as a natural end to their romantic dream - a way of fate telling them something is wrong with the relationship.

With soaring divorce rates and record numbers of single parent households in the West, researchers suggest that it is time to rethink the Western approach to love.

Harvard academic Dr Robert Epstein has studied the subject of arranged marriages for eight years, looking at the approaches taken in cultural groups including Indian, Pakistani and Orthodox Jewish.

He has interviewed more than 100 couples in arranged marriages to assess their strength of feeling and studied his findings against more than 30 years of research into love in Western and arranged marriages.

His work suggests that the feelings of love in love matches begin to fade by as much as a half in 18 months, whereas the love in the grow gradually, surpasses the love in the unarranged marriages at about the five-year mark.

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