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Parents want me to marry my cousin... watch

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    Come on... you kinda knew this thread was from an Asian, didn't you?

    Long read ahead sorry so apologies in advance.

    So, I'm a British Asian. Pakistani to be exact. I've lived in Britain all my life but was born in Pakistan. Both my parents have large families in Pakistan (6 or 7 siblings each) and before you ask, no my parents aren't cousins, thankfully. This marrying one's cousin thing is quite popular in Pakistan since they want to "keep things in the family" and it's apparantly promoted by Quran as well, although I'm only a moderate Muslim so can't tell if it is or not myself. My aunties and uncles, on my mum's side as far as I know, have married some of their children to each other. Now these children aren't some uneducated layabouts in a tiny village in Pakistan. These people are either aborad and have a university education or have taken over their family business and taken it to new heights. So I'm assuming that they knew the risks and dangers of having children with their cousin...

    Now, I'm 19 and went to Pakistan for the first time in 10 years last year. We stayed at my auntie's house (more of a mansion tbh...) where they had about 5 staff working for them and a driver and 2 bodyguards/watchmen. I felt very uncomfortable about that but that's another topic for another time. So we were there for about a month and the only person my age in that house was their daughter, my cousin, who turned 18 recently I think. I hadn't seen this girl for 10/12 years and couldn't remember how she looked like. Now this girl is very spoilt. She has everything a girl could possibly ask for. She went to a £10k/pa international school in Pakistan and since she's the only daughter in a family with 4 sons they are very protective of her, etc.

    Ok so this girl. When we landed they all came to pick us up from the airport. It was an emotional reunion between my mum and my auntie and there was a lot of greeting/hugging etc and my siser and my cousin, being the only girls there, were talking and from the corner of my eye I could see tha see that the girl was staring at me. She was staring at me the entire time, 20 or so mminutes, that we were there and then for 3 days afterwards but I naturally assumed that this was because she hadn't seen me for so long. After about a week the awkwardness went away and I spoke to her and she seemed very friendly and was the only person there I could actually be around who was in any way similar to me. So for the next 3 weeks she showed me her town, with a bodyguard and the driver with us, and basically I was around her for about 10 hours each day but always thought of her as my cousin. When we were leaving she hugged me and started crying but I again assumed it's because she probably wouldn't see me for a long time and had no attraction topwards her whatsoever and didn't think she did either.

    Last month my mum got a call from my auntie and after a long phonecall my mum told me that my cousin really likes me and wants to marry me. Apparantly she hasn't been herself since I left and has been crying in her room quite often. My mum forced me to call her and I spoke to her and I could notice she was happy to speak to me but she's always been happy so I didn't notice anything different.

    This girl is very nice, caring and attractive to an extent that I'm sure any guy on TSR would be happy to date her. She's been very shielded so I think she's attracted to the idea of a relationship rather than me.

    Anyway, my mum has since been trying to get me to agree to the marriage. She says that I don't have to marry her until I finish my degree but that we have to get engaged this year. I've explained the reasons why it's so wrong but she always manages to mind**** me into a guilt trap somehow. She always gets emotional everytime I try to tell her the reasons, scientific reasons of what would be wrong with out children, I've even shown her studies and examples but she just refuses to listen to me. I love my mum more than anything in the world, she's done a lot for me but I'm running out of time and I really don't know what to do.

    I wrote all this on an iPhone lol so don't give me that tl;dr crap please. Took me agesss to type all that so really need some solid advice.
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    bloody hell! learn to summarise!

    i've had a rough scan... personally my issue wouldn't be with the potential issues of marrying your cousin. more the fact my parents are choosing who i get married to!

    um its a really hard situation :/ if you don't want to do something your parents can't force you to do it. obviously i've grown up in a different culture, but if my parents tried to do anything like that i'd just refuse and if need be leave home and break contact with them.

    maybe try talking to your cousin and try turn her off the idea of marrying you.
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    You don't have to, end of. I know how the feelings seem to be strong but if they're only in one direction it's not worth it...just try and reiterate your point, you don't want to be with her.
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    April Fools?
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    How many fingers do you want your children to have?
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    (Original post by lukimusprime)
    April Fools?
    omg I totally forgot its April fools today But I don't think this is a joke sadly alot of this kind of stuff happens in asian families, one of the reasons I refuse to go to pakistan!
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    Don't jump into things. You barely know her! Even if she is your cousin, what if you end up hating her personality?
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    Come on... you kinda knew this thread was from an Asian, didn't you?

    Long read ahead sorry so apologies in advance.

    So, I'm a British Asian. Pakistani to be exact. I've lived in Britain all my life but was born in Pakistan. Both my parents have large families in Pakistan (6 or 7 siblings each) and before you ask, no my parents aren't cousins, thankfully. This marrying one's cousin thing is quite popular in Pakistan since they want to "keep things in the family" and it's apparantly promoted by Quran as well, although I'm only a moderate Muslim so can't tell if it is or not myself. My aunties and uncles, on my mum's side as far as I know, have married some of their children to each other. Now these children aren't some uneducated layabouts in a tiny village in Pakistan. These people are either aborad and have a university education or have taken over their family business and taken it to new heights. So I'm assuming that they knew the risks and dangers of having children with their cousin...

    Now, I'm 19 and went to Pakistan for the first time in 10 years last year. We stayed at my auntie's house (more of a mansion tbh...) where they had about 5 staff working for them and a driver and 2 bodyguards/watchmen. I felt very uncomfortable about that but that's another topic for another time. So we were there for about a month and the only person my age in that house was their daughter, my cousin, who turned 18 recently I think. I hadn't seen this girl for 10/12 years and couldn't remember how she looked like. Now this girl is very spoilt. She has everything a girl could possibly ask for. She went to a £10k/pa international school in Pakistan and since she's the only daughter in a family with 4 sons they are very protective of her, etc.

    Ok so this girl. When we landed they all came to pick us up from the airport. It was an emotional reunion between my mum and my auntie and there was a lot of greeting/hugging etc and my siser and my cousin, being the only girls there, were talking and from the corner of my eye I could see tha see that the girl was staring at me. She was staring at me the entire time, 20 or so mminutes, that we were there and then for 3 days afterwards but I naturally assumed that this was because she hadn't seen me for so long. After about a week the awkwardness went away and I spoke to her and she seemed very friendly and was the only person there I could actually be around who was in any way similar to me. So for the next 3 weeks she showed me her town, with a bodyguard and the driver with us, and basically I was around her for about 10 hours each day but always thought of her as my cousin. When we were leaving she hugged me and started crying but I again assumed it's because she probably wouldn't see me for a long time and had no attraction topwards her whatsoever and didn't think she did either.

    Last month my mum got a call from my auntie and after a long phonecall my mum told me that my cousin really likes me and wants to marry me. Apparantly she hasn't been herself since I left and has been crying in her room quite often. My mum forced me to call her and I spoke to her and I could notice she was happy to speak to me but she's always been happy so I didn't notice anything different.

    This girl is very nice, caring and attractive to an extent that I'm sure any guy on TSR would be happy to date her. She's been very shielded so I think she's attracted to the idea of a relationship rather than me.

    Anyway, my mum has since been trying to get me to agree to the marriage. She says that I don't have to marry her until I finish my degree but that we have to get engaged this year. I've explained the reasons why it's so wrong but she always manages to mind**** me into a guilt trap somehow. She always gets emotional everytime I try to tell her the reasons, scientific reasons of what would be wrong with out children, I've even shown her studies and examples but she just refuses to listen to me. I love my mum more than anything in the world, she's done a lot for me but I'm running out of time and I really don't know what to do.

    I wrote all this on an iPhone lol so don't give me that tl;dr crap please. Took me agesss to type all that so really need some solid advice.
    That's not funny. Forced marriages are a serious problem.

    Based on your description, I'd guess you're not a British Asian. Maybe you could talk to someone who is, and get a better sense of what is really at stake for those young people.
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    If I were you, I would sit down with my mum and try to get her to understand your point of view. You could tell her that you love and respect her, but you need to be able to make your own decision. You can tell her that one day you want to marry, but to someone of your choice. You can try telling her that although it is important to respects one's cultural traditions and family, it is also important to be free to choose whom you will spend the rest of your life with. I think the problem is a generation gap. Your parents' generation did what they were asked by their parents, so they expect you to do the same, even though times have changed and culture has evolved. All you can do is stand your ground and hope, in time, that your mother will understand that only you know what's best for you.
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    The Quran does not promote the maraige between cousins! Who ever said that is twisting the religion to their own ends!!! The Quran actually says do not force your children into maraige because it will result in unhappiness! The quran say in reference to maraige: 'O ye who believe! Ye are forbidden to inherit women against their will. Nor should you treat them with harshness' Quran, Chapter Women, 4:19. This counts for men as well! there are many Hadiths on the subject, if you do not agree with the maraige do NOT let you parents force or pressure you into it because its completely HARAM
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    Para 1 - Pakistani family, lots of married cousins (who are intelligent too)

    Para 2 - Visited family in Pakistan, met very rich and spoiled 18 YO cousin.

    Para 3 - First week was awkward as all she did was stare. But for the rest of the time we got on really well (I thought of her as cousin).

    Para 4 - Cousin really misses me and wants to marry me.

    Para 5 - This girl is very nice, caring and attractive to an extent that I'm sure any guy on TSR would be happy to date her. She's been very shielded so I think she's attracted to the idea of a relationship rather than me.

    Para 6 - Mum wants the marriage (engagement this year after degree). Emotional blackmail, won't listen to scientific reasoning. What do I do???
    Summarised ^^ You didn't need to write that much!

    Erm, idk what you can do :/ What would your mum do if you just point blank refused?
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    Firstly, I'd like to point out how lucky you are that you were actually told about any arrangement that was going to happen and on an educational level, it seems, the girl isn't just a random pick to gain a British Passport and keep you in line (I know I'm being very stereotypical here). And she likes you. Btw the Quran does not promote marriage among cousins, it actually says do not force your children into marriage.
    Secondly, I think the problem is communication between you and your mum. What does your dad think about all this? You have to sit her down and ask her to just listen to you - you are not arguing, you are not disobeying her but you just want her to see your point and understand how what she thinks is best for you, might actually be bad for you, the girl and your family.
    If you feel she likes the idea of a relationship rather than you, then why not spend time with her after your degree before committing any further? You are only 19! This is something you would have clear up though because if you turn around and say I don't want to marry her anymore after she waits for, well something like that could break the family.
    Also, whilst DNA mutation might mean your children will be born with high risks, a lot of cousins to get married and their children are born as normal so there are both sides to the studies you have mentioned. Hypothetically speaking, if the risks were extremely low, would you marry her?
    I don't really know what else to say other than speak calmly to your mum about how you feel about it all. Good luck
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    Go for it. They do say that "incest is wincest"
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    (Original post by lukimusprime)
    April Fools?
    haha didn't even occur to me... if it is thats a hell of a lot of effort he's put in writing it all
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    I'd assume since your a guy, you'd have more power over an arranged marriage, since i doubt your family could beat and bully you into a forced marriage.

    Take precautions, tell as many people that are close to you as you can. I've heard of way to many Pakistani girls who just haven't come back, i know of one that is now dead... she was only 17.

    Genetic factors that might be taken into account is that any recessive genes that might cause disorders will increase, because you are closely related you will have more of the same genes and less variety which isn't always best.
    However embryo screening means that you can catch these kinds of disorders in the womb. So you can abort an embryo with these disorders.

    If you really love the girl, then nothing else should be in your way - if your willing to spend the rest of your life with this person, then do so - no matter what.
    Though if you cannot see yourself with this person, do not lead them on, tell them straight up - no matter what the consequences.

    Since you are 19 if your parent's really don't like this decision of yours, then i'd suggest you move out, out of your own safety and wellbeing, you can never be too safe. I'm afraid to say that Pakistani parent's aren' t the most understanding, and thats not me being racist since I am half Pakistani (and half Iranian).

    To summerise, do not use genetic factors as an arguement. Do not let your parents tell you what to do, do not feel pressured into this. Do not lead her on.

    Do be honest and supportive.
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    Tell as many people that you know as possible that your family are trying to influence you into doing this.

    Do not contact your cousin, do not speak to her on the phone. Don't let your family guilt you. Any contact is encouraging to her. It's like people who feel a "connection" on a night out and then spend months obsessing over someone, when they take any look, chat or text as proof of their undying love. As a spoiled, sheltered child (which, at 18 and being mollycoddled all her life she practically is) it's going to be so, so much worse. I bet you were one of very few people to treat her relatively normally in her life, so to her you are unique, but that's obviously not basis for a relationship, ignoring the fact she's your cousin! Your family won't be interested in biology/incest and arguments about inbreeding - if other members of your family have they clearly don't care. Religious people are hardly the best for accepting facts based on evolution as it is!

    Your mum should be ashamed for trying to guilt you, but as other people have said - at least you're male and it doesn't sound like they're plotting something, you're less likely to be physically forced into this. The more you raise discontent the better it is though. I'd suggest talking generally about arranged marriages, how you think they're an abomination, you'd never do it, you'd sabotage any relationship like it and get divorced etc. Be as antagonistic as possible against the concept (rather than your cousin, this should help her too "he doesn't want an arranged marriage" instead of "he doesn't want you") so they know it's something you'd never consider or accept.

    Finally, my sympathies to your situation. Every time I read similar stories like this I'm thankful that I'm white and no-one in my family gives the slightest toss about my relationships!
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    ditch your family?
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    (Original post by TheWorld!)
    The Quran does not promote the maraige between cousins! Who ever said that is twisting the religion to their own ends!!! The Quran actually says do not force your children into maraige because it will result in unhappiness! The quran say in reference to maraige: 'O ye who believe! Ye are forbidden to inherit women against their will. Nor should you treat them with harshness' Quran, Chapter Women, 4:19. This counts for men as well! there are many Hadiths on the subject, if you do not agree with the maraige do NOT let you parents force or pressure you into it because its completely HARAM
    This, bloody hell :facepalm:
    OP that's kinda disgusting, if it's true: run for your life.
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    I was under the impression that cousin marrying wasn't in the koran, British muslims have a reputation for being obsessed with marrying their cousins but afaict it's only people with a pakistani heritage who do it to a noticeable extent & muslims with different heritages aren't interested in it.

    course I could always be wrong about that.
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    That is disgraceful; not the idea of marrying your cousin, but the fact that your mum is trying to force it upon you. Yes you love her, of course, every child does, but doesn't equate to you doing anything, absolutley anything. This is a life changing decision - you have to be the master of it, not your mum, dad, uncle or anyone. If this is not what you want, I advise you to stand your ground firmly and say "no".

    Forced marriages are disgraceful. As for it being in the Qur'an, yes. Plus, there's many Hadiths on it - all against the idea. End of.
 
 
 
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