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Our readers write from San Diego, California

(Editor's note: The stories below were written in Mimi Pollack's ESL 103 class at Grossmont College.)

Arranged marriages

by Amasee Alkhalidi (from Iraq)

Many people think that arranged marriages are a good idea, but I disagree with them. I think that this kind of marriage will have many problems in the future because the world has changed. The first problem is that the woman has to take time to get to know this person who will become her husband. She has to be careful with her words and dealings in every situation that connects them. Since he may be a tough man, their life could be uncomfortable the first few months of their marriage. The second problem I see is that the parents choose for their reasons and requirements without cares about what the couple needs. For example, for me, I prefer an educated man who has a lovely personality and likes to help others. In arranged marriages, the parents do not care about these things. They care about his business, money and a suitable life for their daughter. In different words, parents always think about money, so the daughter could be sad in the future when she finds out the real face of her husband. The third problem is the connection between husband and wife. They need to take time to find out a good way to deal with each other. Sometimes they do not find it at all.

The son and daughter have the right to make their own choice and decision as the parents do not own them. Many parents deal with their son and daughter as kids who do not have the ability to make their own decisions. In conclusion, many people think that arranged marriages are a good idea, but I think that everybody has to find a suitable person to be comfortable in his/her life.

Arranged marriages

by Saif Farhan

As a personal opinion, I think arranged marriages have bad results more than benefits. It might be good for a rich family to marry another rich family to ensure their sons and daughters live a good life, but what about how each one accepts the other as a life partner? What if they don't? In my opinion, it is very bad to marry in a traditional way like an arranged marriage. First, that marriage might end up in a divorce, or even worse if they are not going to divorce but live a miserable life. Second, love is the key to happiness. If there is no real love between the husband and wife, then their life is lacking happiness as long as they are married. The third reason is how each person would know the personality of the other, and what he/she likes or dislikes. He/she might not like what the spouse does and that could also end the marriage and as always the kids, "if there are any," will be the main victims. In conclusion, I would stay away from that traditional marriage and always tell my friends to stay away from that idea and depend on their heart and emotions when it comes to marriage, but not the brain, as love is the key for a happy, stable, and successful family.

Arranged marriages

by Sandiren Botrs

As we arrange for vacations, changing homes, or buying a new car, there are some people who arrange for marriage. Arranged marriage can be a good idea if several factors are available. First of all, a couple needs to have a dating period that will give them the chance to get to know each other, love each other and also to know what the negative and positive things are in each other's personality. In addition, a couple must be honest about their previous relationships. For example, if one of them later realizes that his/her partner had a relationship and he/she doesn't know about it, it can be a big deal and will badly affect their marriage. The most important thing is that both of them should know this marriage will be just between them. They shouldn't let anything bother their married life. They must participate in this marriage and be knowledgeable. Couples shouldn't blame the people who introduced them to each other for any problems. I will give a real example about this point. One of my cousin's relatives got married to a girl that his sister-in-law introduced him to. They had a nice party and they had an amazing wedding. After one month, the girl realized her husband had a serious relationship with another lady and that lady was trying to communicate with her husband. She felt bad and asked her husband to get a divorce because he didn't mention that during their engagement period. This couple got divorced. They didn't work to save their marriage. Instead of that, they blamed the relatives who had introduced them. Add to that, their engagement period was eight months. In conclusion, arranged marriages can be felicitous if the couple is mature. In my opinion, every kind of marriage needs to respect the view of marriage (love, honesty, and obedience) to make it like heaven for the family.

Arranged marriage

by Issa Salman

I think arranged marriages are both a good idea and bad idea. It is a good idea when some girls are older, and they want to get married. It is a great idea when they want to match girls and guys. The girls want to find a good guy, and the guys want to find a great girl. In addition, it is a perfect idea to match, and everyone wants to find love and live a pretty life. Every woman wants to find a man to live with him, every man wants a woman with him. That is why I think arranged marriage is good. However, I think it is a bad idea to match young people because they are still young, and they have a long time to find their love. It is a bad idea to match people because maybe they are not interested in each other, and they do not love each other. Sometimes, in our tradition, some families are forcing a girl to marry someone she does not want, and this is a big mistake. In some villages, they force a girl to marry someone she does not want to marry. These are my reasons why I think arranged marriages are a good and bad idea.