Live-in Relationship or marriage? Which is the better option and why? When I saw this topic being discussed by many of the bloggers at one of my favorite blogging communities’, I found myself compelled to talk about this issue.

live-in relationships

While live-in relationships are just too common and acceptable in the foreign countries where every second Indian wants to settle, this concept is still a taboo in India. Today, I am going to look at what’s the status of live-in relationships in India and try to express my views on which one is the better option.

November 2013 was a historic month for this country, for the Supreme Court approved the live-in relationships in India. Yep, for the people who still don’t know about legal status of live-in relationships in India, they’re LEGAL. To law they are, but are they licit to the Indian society?

Are the Indians ready to accept this forbidden concept? At a time when love marriages are still verboten to many, when honor killings are still happening and when the crime against women is at a sharp rise, is it possible for a live-in relationship to survive?

“Live-in relationships are purely for the fulfillment of the physical needs.”

“Live-in relationship is a walk-in and walk-out relationship. There are no strings attached to this relationship, neither this relationship creates any legal bond between the parties.”

“I feel that people who are commitment phobic go in for a live-in relationship. Some people are serious about their live-in relationships too but I wonder what keeps them from getting married.”

 “Marriage helps couples face and fight problems in the relationship. It is economic freedom and the influence of western culture that has led youngsters to such live-in relationships”

live-in relationships

Above are some comments by much acknowledged personalities in our country, including the Delhi High Court. But do these comments present the real picture of live-in relationships?

Marriage helps couples face and fight problems in the relationship. Does that mean people in live-in relationships do not face any kind of problems? Or does that mean live-in relationships break when the problems knock on their door?

Just because you are ready for the ‘entire life’ commitment and you’re very serious about your relationship, you cannot have a strong enough reason of not getting married and continuing your live-in relationship. Is that cognizant?

Because you don’t have that ‘legally married’ tag on your relationship, you don’t have any strings attached. There is no bond of emotional attachment between you and your loved one. Is that perceptible?

Because you live with your girlfriend/boyfriend and you have a chance to get physically involved with her/him, you are living together only to fulfill your physical needs. Does that come from a conscious mind?

Let me tell you what happens when you to enter into a live-in relationship. You have loved that person long enough to decide that you can move in together. You put in a lot of thought for living together can either deepen your love or break your hearts forever. When you both think that you’re completely ready (or you just think you want to live together), you look for an accommodation.

live-in relationships

Here you have to pretend that you’re married even when you’re not for if you fail to do that, you would end up with no accommodation. Now, after a good practice of acting as a married couple, you get a house where you decide to move in. You bring your stuff together, decide where either of you would keep his/her stuff and then it begins.

Previously you only met each other for few hours a day or spent weekends together, now you can even see your love brushing her/his teeth in front of you. The whole privacy of staying alone or away from your girlfriend/boyfriend dies at that very point.

You do everything that a normal married couple would do; in fact you would even pretend to be married in front of your neighbors. The only difference that lies here: You are not legally married and if you guys break up, the girl won’t be able to ask for a part of your property or vice versa.

Is that why live-in relationships are denounced in India? For the people who say live-in relationships are ‘walk in – walk out relationships’, you can even walk out of your marriage. You can go for a divorce and none would say that extra marital affairs aren’t common in India.

If this society is such a clean and old fashioned society, why are there divorces in this country? People are getting divorced for their better half use whats app in excess. What does the ‘Indian Society’ say about that?

People are getting into extra marital affairs and cheat their loved ones and even their families. What does the ‘Indian Society’ say about that?

Women are being disrespected, molested, harassed, raped. What does the ‘Indian Society’ say about that?

Failure of live-in relationship is a major reason of increasing rape cases: Delhi High Court

Even married women are being raped. Five year old girls are being raped. Daughters are being raped by their own fathers. What role was played by live-in relationships in such cases? And I don’t know about the stats, by till now out of 100+ news of rapes I have heard or read about, only 1 of them had a live-in relationship involved.

So, is that a good enough reason to make live-in relationships the culprit?

live-in relationships

Marriages were considered sacred in this country. But that was the time when there were no divorces, extra marital affairs and rapes. That was the time when live-in relationships were bad.

Now is the era when marriage is just a show-off tag in this society. There isn’t a single difference between live-in relationships and marriages except that ‘socially accepted’ tag.

You tell which one is the better? Remember that both are same in all aspects except that the latter one is accepted by the blindfolded society of this country which supports the sanctity of marriage (just the initial ritual of course) and still ignores the crimes done in name of marriage (dowry, domestic violence, extra marital affairs, abuse and divorces).

If you ask me, I find no difference between live-in relationships and marriages. I don’t find any flaw in a live-in relationship and I don’t find any compelling reason for getting married except for getting an approval from the society which has no role to play in my married life.

I am not against marriages but getting married just because people think it’s a good thing isn’t the right thing for anyone, not for you, not for society and definitely not for me.

So, live-in relationships.. I am in their favor.

What do you think about?  Do you also support the viewpoint of live-in relationships being the culprits behind social evil against women in our country? Do you support that live-in relationships really break the rules of our society? What kind of rules do you want to live with? Where people blindly follow a few things from past and ignore many more things in name of those few things?

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  1. I don’t know from where to start.

    After reading this article I just recalled the days, when back in 2008 we had group discussion in our class about live-in relationship and marriage. So being a small town guy, I was not even aware about what is live-in relationship.

    But once students started speaking about it, I came to know about the meaning.

    And the irony was – till the time I was not even aware that such things exists in our society.

    So this was a new learning for me.

    When I just clicked on this article on Facebook, I had very clear thinking in my mind that I am going to support marriage in the comment section.

    But with your great insight, you proved me wrong and became the sole winner here.

    Points which you have pointed in the favor of live-in relation are very sensitive as well as to be noted.

    By paying attention towards these points, government can have control on the various heinous crimes happening in the society.

    But for this we will have to come together. Our society has shaped our mind in such a way that we consider this as a crime. No one would love to see his sister, daughter living with any guy, where there is no relation between them.

    India is such a country where the image of girl is far different than other countries.

    Although live-in relationship is a good move, but I am still in dilemma that how many more decades India will have to wait to adopt this.

    Bravo for your creative thinking and writing on this sensitive topic..

    • You’re right about the Indian society and if you’re expecting it to change , it won’t. Let me tell you why..
      Right now, we are the generation who want a change and if you are hoping the things to be changed in future.. You are actually looking upon your own self.. This generation, you, we are the ones who can change all of this but by the time we get a chance to do that, we already become the part of society which we want to change. By the time our children would want an approval for live-in, we would have become like our elders who would never accept live-in like concept.
      If we want the change, we would have to try and bring it now.. Waiting won’t solve the issue. Indian society has been the same from hundreds of years.. And it would take another hundred years if such a change is desired unless u stand up now and be against it.

    • Hello Rajeev, Thank you for the comment and I am glad that you liked the blog. and you can definitely subscribe to this blog to receive regular updates from the blog.

  2. Thanks for the information about “live-in” relationships, which you give us through this blog. I will share it with my friends who are in a relationship but are not married. This helps them very well. I did not even know about that.


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