LivED It is an ED original style where we write about our personal experiences on experiencing and reviewing any app/place/website which gives us a feeling of coming back for more.
DISCLAIMER: JUST FOR FUN, DON’T GET OFFENDED! And my family members- if you’re reading this, it doesn’t mean it’s OK to open an actual account for me now. Also, this account has since been deleted, and the men I chatted with were informed that it was a social experiment so that no one’s feelings were hurt.
Shaadi.com has come to be both a saviour for quickly-ageing-Indians-who-can’t-find-their-life-partner, and a matter of ridicule for others till they reach that point in their sorry lives.
As an experiment, I created a FAKE ACCOUNT on Shaadi.com under the name “Rita Singh,” entering a fake age, North Indian community, and bio.
I didn’t even upload a profile picture.
Within minutes, I started getting requests to connect, and once I accepted, messages would start to pop in.
“Send your pic” was the most common demand. Of course, I refused, I didn’t want to share my own pictures even under a fake name, and I demurred, saying that I didn’t know them well enough, and didn’t want to share my personal pictures just yet, like a proper Bharatiya naari.
Most people lost interest in chatting after they couldn’t verify if I was pretty or not. Interestingly, these were the same people who began the chat with “Hai dear.”
The Bollywood Lover
There was another interesting conversation with a chap who had the whole “ardent lover” thing going on. He understood that it was “disrespectful to a woman to force her to share pics before she is ready” (his words, not mine), and that he would rather “get to know me for my personality.”
He asked about my family, community, and so on, and even though I provided the barest of details (because this was a social experiment, and I had no actual intention of getting married), he seemed undeterred.
Finally, he asked for my number and if we could meet and talk, simultaneously assuring me that he was all for women’s rights, and his mother had no problem with his wife working after marriage.
The PROGRESSIVE Indian Man!
I somehow found this very funny- it was like he was pulling out the big guns, trying to come across as the PROGRESSIVE INDIAN MAN who would not force his bride into a ghoonghat. It sounded like he was offering me candy, as if he was doing me a great favour by saying that I would be “allowed” to pursue MY OWN FREE WILL after marriage.
It is also interesting to note how he automatically assumed I would marry him after just a few questions.
At this point, I had to put the poor guy out of his misery and tell him that it was just a social experiment I was conducting, and I had no real intention of getting married.
After politely enquiring whether “Rita Singh” is fake, a fact which I confirmed, he wished me luck and disconnected.
And The Moral Of The Story Is…
Not only did this online adventure make me laugh a lot, it also gave me a good insight into the mindset of the “average Indian man” when it comes to marriage.
The first thing that a majority of the men I chatted with considered to be of prime importance was my looks– let’s not get into the fact that most of THEM hadn’t put up profile pictures, either.
With no way of verifying if I looked pretty or like the ghost from Pari, they quickly lost interest.
It’s the sad reality, folks: On the marriage market, looks DO matter!
My second observation was that the few who persisted with the chat even after I refused to lift the proverbial ghoonghat seemed to assume I would marry them instantly, after just a brief introduction. They didn’t feel it necessary to consider the fact that we barely knew each other- as long as I could talk and had lady parts, marriage was a go.
Maybe I’m wrong, but I think this is what desperation combined with male privilege looks like.
Anyway, this experience only proved that matrimonial sites aren’t the best place to meet your soul mate- you’re basically scraping the very bottom of the pan if you have to interact with shady people with a questionable use of grammar.
And of course, you might encounter the occasional fake profile like mine!
Image Credits: Google Images