Arranged Marriage vs. Forced Marriage | The Basics Are Discussed

Arranged marriage and forced marriage are two terms that are pronounced mostly when it comes to marriage in many societies. They have distinction in the ways of implementation. 

When it comes to arranged marriage vs forced marriage, forced marriage is a marriage where guardians forcefully give their children in marriage to someone without his/her consent. On the other hand, arranged marriage is planning and giving in marriage with the involvement of two families, along with the consent of the bride and the groom. 

What Is the Definition of Forced Marriage?

In forced marriage, the term “force” clears the intent of the marriage. In a forced marriage, the family members, or guardians like the father or grandfather, force their minor or major children to get married to someone to whom they don’t want. 

What Is the Definition of Forced Marriage?
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The force may include emotional blackmail, physical abuse, mental torture, verbal threats, etc. 

Forcing for marriage is not permitted in Islam, though the marriage will be valid if the bride and groom have made the contract by I’jab Qubol (ask and acceptance). Also, Islam allows the bride to reject the marriage if she really doesn’t want to continue the relationship. But the groom must implement talaq (official Islamic divorce).

On the other hand, forced marriage is illegal in most countries, including the USA. 

What Is an Arranged Marriage?

Unlike forced marriage, arranged marriage between a couple is compelled by their consent. Both families play the role of compelling the marriage. In an arranged marriage, the bride, the groom, or both can consent to the marriage or can reject the marriage. 

Differences Between Arranged Marriage and Forced Marriage

There are several differences between an arranged marriage and a forced marriage, and they are not the same. Though, the primary difference is the consent of the brides/grooms. 

Differences Between Arranged Marriage and Forced Marriage

We have compiled a table to compare the differences between an arranged marriage and a forced marriage. 

Comparison AspectsForced MarriageArranged Marriage
Consent of the bride or groomNo consent is takenConsent is taken
ArrangementArranged and forcibly compelled by both familiesArranged by both families with the cooperation of all sides
SelectionThe family can only select the groom/brideThe family take the responsibility to select the bride and grooms with the choice of the groom and bride
AcceptanceNot accepted by the bride/groomVoluntarily accepted by bride and groom
LegalityIllegalLegal
  • Consent Factor

In forced marriage, the family doesn’t bother about the consent of the bride and groom, especially girls. They forcibly compel the marriage where the consent of the girls is not taken into account. 

On the other hand, in an arranged marriage, families are aware of the consent and will of the bride and groom. The senior members of the family, particularly the father or the grandfather, arrange the marriage. In this case, the girls or the boys can give their consent or not. They can accept or reject the proposal. 

  • Partner Selection

In forced marriage, the family selects the partner for the girl or the boy. There is no choice option for the bride or groom. On the other hand, in an arranged marriage, the girl or the boy can give their opinion and can choose among the choices. 

  • Acceptance of the Marriage to the Bride/Groom

Since they are forced to marry in forced marriage, the bride and groom generally don’t accept their partner. On the other hand, in an arranged marriage, the bride and groom both accept the partner voluntarily. 

  • Legality: Are Arranged Marriages Legal?

Arranged marriage in the USA is legal. Though legal, this is not a part of their cultural practice. Rather, they are individualistic, and most of their marriages are done based on their personal preferences. 

However, arranged marriage is also practiced in many Muslim communities in America, like Bangladesh, Pakistan, India, etc. 

On the other hand, forced marriage is illegal in America[Refrence], as well as in most countries in the world. 

How to Get an Arranged Marriage in America?

In America, arranged marriages are not as prevalent as they are in many other societies. If it fits with your tastes and cultural background, you can still pursue one. You can take the following actions to compel an arranged marriage in the United States:

How to Get an Arranged Marriage in America?

1. Understand Your Cultural Background and Talk to Your Family

Arranged marriages are more common in certain cultural and religious communities. They include South Asian, Middle Eastern Asian, and some East Asian cultures. 

If you come from such a background, you may already have family or community members who can help facilitate the process. Or if you are from America and still have a good relationship with your family, you can talk to your parents. 

They can provide guidance, introduce you to potential matches, or connect you with others who can assist you in your search.

2. Community Events and Gatherings

Attend cultural or religious events, gatherings, or community functions where you can meet potential partners who share your background and values. These types of events can provide opportunities to meet individuals who are also open to arranged marriages.

3. Use Online Matrimonial Services

There are online matrimonial platforms, like Noble Marriage, specifically designed to facilitate arranged marriages within various cultural communities. These platforms allow individuals and families to create profiles and search for compatible matches based on factors. The factors include religion, caste, ethnicity, personal preferences, etc.

4. Be Open and Communicative

In any kind of relationship, even arranged marriages, communication is essential. When speaking with prospective partners and their families, be honest and open about your expectations, values, and preferences. Before proceeding, take some time to get to know one another and make sure there is mutual compatibility and understanding.

6. Seek Legal Advice if Needed

Depending on your specific circumstances, you may want to seek legal advice. This will be required especially if there are immigration or visa-related considerations involved in your arranged marriage.

Remember that every individual and family has their own preferences and approach to arranged marriages. So, it’s essential to respect the boundaries and wishes of everyone involved. 

Additionally, while arranged marriages can be successful, it’s important to ensure that both partners have the opportunity to consent to the marriage. Also, their rights and autonomy must be respected throughout the process.

Ending Thoughts

Arranged marriage and forced marriage are two different things. Because, in an arranged marriage, brides and grooms both give their consent to marry each other. 

On the other hand, a forced marriage is done by denying the bride or groom, or both. Forced marriage is illegal in most countries, including the USA. 

We also shouldn’t practice forcing someone into marriage. Arranged marriage with consent can be a good practice of culture, and religion. 

Talha Ubaidullah
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