Arranged marriage is the concept where parents will decide who will be marrying you. There are varying degree of arrangement involve, and is largely culturally based. In the middle east, parts of Asia and Africa, arranged marriage should really be called forced marriage. In a more modern westernised culture, the children will have some involvement in their parent's spouse choices.
Many of us who are married will know how expensive a wedding can be. This is also true for a wedding for an arranged marriage.
Why are you writing about arranged marriage, you might be asking. Well, if we remove the emotional side of wedding and focus of the financial aspects of it, it shows that an arranged marriage has a better chance obtaining financial security. Before exploring the reasons why this might be, let just say that I am not an advocate for an arrange marriage as I am an romantic at heart. I would prefer to be married for love, and then make the financial aspects of it work out positively.
Parents knows best
A lot of people get married in their twenties. Let me say that age again, twenties. Imagine making a decision that is literally that you have to commit to for the rest of the life. Our parents, who has brought up a family and have more experience life longer that you have, would have the necessary knowledge to select a suitable spouse for you. The parents are able to predict how you will be in a family situation and will select the most suitable spouse. We would select a spouse with a lot of emotion, and that may hinder our foresight or how closely we match. A good match means that decisions, especially financial decisions, will be easier to agreed upon.
Rate of divorce
The Australian ABS says that in 2006, the divorce rate is 2.6 per 1000 population, and I have read that 1 in every 2 marriages in expected to end up in divorce in California. Whichever you looked at it, it is quite high. Figures for arranged marriages are hard to come by, but I have heard that it is in the single digit figures, although it would be interested to note how this is measured. If this is true, a low chance of divorce means that a higher chance of your marriage working out. A divorce is always messy and expensive and wasted energy, so it is best avoided.
Consolidation of wealth
In the old days, arranged marriage were popular among the wealthier families, especially the royal families of Europe. They do it for reasons of money, power and control. Many of todays wealthy and powerful families are carefully crafted. The Rothchilds is an excellent example on how arranged marriage has worked out for them.
In modern times, arranged marriage is seen as a way for poorer families to gain some wealth, especially for the poorer spouse.
Rate of Success?
Having suggested three good reasons for arrange marriage, would it work in modern times in a western culture? I have to say that the western culture does not really provide much opportunity for arranged marriages to prosper, but that is only my opinion. I truly believe that for a marriage to work, the human elements must be part of the it. After all, marriage is the coming together of two human beings. However, if you remove these elements, an arranged marriage would have a high chance of success if the spouses approached it with the right mindset. This article from the dailybruin.com has some nice points.
As I write this article, it became clear to me that for a family have a higher chance of becoming financial secure, the parents needs to be successful in their marriage, no matter if it is arranged or otherwise.