Family and Marriage

We’ve probably all heard it at some point, the idea that if a guy wants to know what his intended will be like in later years to look at her mother. Sometimes it might be true but not always.

The strange thing is no-one ever suggests to a woman that they look at their intended’s father to see what he will turn out like. Wouldn’t you think that could be just as valid? Is this as my writer friend suggested a case of sexism? Or is there not such a strong link between fathers and sons as there is between mothers and daughters? Do mothers influence their daughters more in attitudes, expressions and mannerisms than fathers influence their sons? Is that because women usually have more time with their children than men do? Or has that changed with the higher incidence of women working outside the home? It’s something that raises lots of questions about nature or nurture.

More often we’re told that a woman tends to choose a man to marry who is like her own father in physical attributes and also in manner. Surely this should have more to do with the relationship between a daughter and her father? We hear a lot about the relationship between fathers and daughters as against the problematic relationship that often exists between mothers and daughters. I’m inclined to think a lot depends on the balance of the family relationship. If a girl doesn’t get along well with her father she will surely not choose a man who is like him for a husband.

Similarly if a girl gets along well with her mother she may be influenced by her and tend to emulate her. Or she may not. They may understand each other because they are similar, or they may get along better precisely because they are not.

Join me tomorrow for some more thoughts about family relationships and its effects on our choice of a marriage partner.

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