Arranged Marriage In Thailand :
Arranged marriages are relatively common in several parts of Asia including Thailand. Generally these traditional arranged marriages are carried out based on the decision of the parents, who choose the spouses for their children. However, parents encourage the children to express their opinion regarding the bride or bridegroom only to a certain degree. As the times are changing, the ideology of arranged marriages is also undergoing a change. In the modern age, arranged marriages are fixed based on the decision of the children rather than parents.
Thailand retains a diversified marriage pattern. Generally, three types of marriage patterns have been observed in every Thai society. These include traditional arranged marriages with parents’ involvement in the choice of spouse, modern arranged marriages with self-choice of spouse and live-in relationship. In Thailand, marriages are held according to Buddhist rituals and customs. Thai marriages generally involve blessings of parents from both the families. All the ceremonial rituals during marriage are centered on the couple’s family. The most significant and traditional part of a Thai arranged marriage is the Thai dowry system known as ‘Sin Sodt’. This is a type of reverse dowry system where the groom is expected to pay a sum to the family of the bride before marriage. The dowry amount is determined based on the financial situation of the bride. This determines the value of the bride in the eyes of the groom.
Traditionally, Thai marriages are simple. The engagement ceremony is called ‘Thong Mun’, where the groom gifts his fiancée with gold. The wedding ceremonies are performed inside the house in the presence of a local temple priest. Presence of monks is not necessary during the marriage ceremony. Certain societies even consider the presence of monks as a bad omen.
With the changing times, cross-cultural arranged marriages are becoming increasing popular within the country.