Shalin and Sneha
Once married, Shalin and Sneha still had much to learn about one another, which made the first 24 hours of their marriage an eye-opening experience. "I like one side of the bed," Shalin says. "Suddenly in the first night she was sleeping on that side of the bed, and I'm like: 'That's not my favorite side. How do I tell her?'"

Sneha says she made an even bigger discovery. "The most surprising thing was that I didn't know that he smokes," she says. "I wasn't negative. I wasn't hurt. I was just shocked because it's a big part of your life if someone smokes, and I didn't know about it."

Though arranged marriages are an old tradition, Shalin says compatibility—and eventually love—are always taken into consideration. "The arrangement part of it is when your family comes in and tries to help you find someone who is more compatible within your circle, within your knowledge, within their knowledge," he says. "As we stay together, we begin to understand each other. There's compatibility, and love grows over time. I think it's very difficult for someone to say you love someone within a few moments. It takes time, and you need to have that much tolerance, patience and fun to ensure that you love the person."

When she married, Sneha says she hoped to fall in love with Shalin. Five and a half years later, that dream has come true. "We love each other," she says.

FROM: Marriage Around the World
Published on January 13, 2010


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