Indian men ask Quora ,How long do couples wait to get intimate in an arranged marriage?
New Delhi,July6:The question-answer website, Quora, is a manifestation of the stereotype of shy Indian men (preferably engineers) who are clueless about sex, intimacy, relationships, and somehow always asking for tips and advice.
Had Quora been a person, it would have been the bewildered groom from a 70s Bollywood movie, who is about to step into his bedroom on his “suhaag raat” with a glass of warm milk in his hands, as his sleazy entourage winks and nudges on.
A shallow enough dig into the website, and you will find yourself lost in amazing questions with even more amazing answers (yes that was sarcastic). One question, however, trumps them all: “How long do couples wait to get intimate in an arranged marriage?”
It’s easy enough to laugh it away.
For a change though, this is one question that has received more good answers than any other. And all those answering the question are not only sensible, but also present a reality that the non-engineering cosmopolitan youth of India may not be aware of. Over the years, sex has become less and less taboo. Or so we would like to believe in metropolitan cities with elite privileges of privacy and opportunity.
For the upper-middle class and upper-class youth, sex on the “wedding night” feels like an archaic custom only limited to old cinema. But for a vast section of the country, that’s not so.
A majority of our country, be it in big cities or small towns, have a conservative mindset that has a more traditional, “puritan” approach towards marriage, sex and relationships. They surely have a different kind of experience and expectations on their “suhaag raat”.
There are several factors that come into play. The very first is inexperience. For a lot of woman, sex can be painful. And if not done right, the pain and the trauma stick for a long time. Like one anonymous answer on the thread read, “my wife would often cry really badly whenever I made a serious attempt. The pain was so much on her face that it will turn me off instantly and it would fell as if I am raping her. This continued for 1.5 months. During this, I started thinking too much and started having temporary erection issues, possibly due to anxiety and not been able to do sex for so long after our first night.”
A lot of the answers also reflect a mentality that is as “small-town middle class” as it gets. Women who don’t struggle with sex on the wedding night are probably “experienced”. While most answers did not choose to linger on that point, there were a few who felt more judgemental.
According to the India Today Sex Survey in 2017, casual sex has had a newfound acceptance in India. Both men and women are taking it easy, not freaking out if a partner walks out, exploring more and keeping it simple. The judgement, therefore, may just be isolated.
A large number of answers also reveal something curious. Couple wait. For some it’s a few weeks. For others it can be several months. But they wait and do not “consummate” their marriage till they are comfortable with each other. The problem with arranged marriages – of not getting to know your future spouse better before settling down with them – is this. It is only through open and clear communications with each other can one overcome these hurdles.
Another thing that’s more than apparent from all answers, the wedding night scene with a nervous groom lowering the hood off the coquettish bride’s face, that doesn’t happen in real life. With the sheer number of ceremonies and traditions that have to be dealt with in Indian weddings, the bride and groom are left pretty exhausted by the time they reach their beds.
Ultimately, what one does figure out from this thread, is the fact that sex, whether in conservative settings or not, has to be approached with caution. And if the partners are aware of each other’s expectations and understanding of each other’s trepidations, there really isn’t much that is needed to have a happy life in the bedroom.