I am a young doctor in my 20s, currently employed and soon about to take my exams to go abroad to practice. My query is about marrying a fellow lady doctor. We have known each other since two years. We both like each other, enjoy each other’s company and have genuine respect for each other. In short, I am in love with her.

My parents feel that, considering that I am a doctor, marrying a rich, foreign national would be the right option. This way one can acquire wealth that cannot be accumulated in a lifetime. And also get nationality of a foreign country. Additionally, it makes moving abroad less cumbersome.

They say that they are not being greedy but practical. Money matters and my kids could have a better life. But the girl that I love comes from a middle-class background, while my family is just slightly more financially stable. The girl is extremely talented and being a doctor, she also plans to go abroad.

‘Should I marry for love or money?’

I am confused and it’s stressing me out.

I am beginning to doubt myself. Does money matter? Are my parents right? If I marry my love, will they blame me if something goes wrong financially?

Kindly provide some insight on the matter Regards,

Dear Confused,
Do you honestly think that a foreign nationality and a spouse’s money will solve all your earthly problems? Anyone who thinks that is incredibly naive. Rich people bring their own set of problems to the table. If you observe people who are married into money, you will realise that some of them feel like they are trapped in a golden cage. That is not to say that this is always the case. But it happens. We have all seen examples of unhappily married rich celebs who eventually break up. And many of us know couples who moved to Canada and divorced shortly after. So think long and hard about what you want out of a marriage. Do you want a partner who you are compatible with? Or are you looking for other factors that you think might make you happy, such as money, regardless of whether you get along with your spouse?

A lot of people can tell you about the misery of being married to incompatible partners. It can lead to some seriously toxic relationships and messed-up lives.

Also, life is unpredictable and things change all the time. Those who have money today can lose it all tomorrow through bad investments or sheer bad luck. Or if you marry someone because of what she’ll inherit from her parents, what happens if her parents outlive you? Or the wife, sensing your greed, refuses to share the inheritance with you?  And will you still want to be with your partner if and when the money is gone? Also a foreign nationality may not seem like such a good idea if your marriage is a nightmare and you end up screaming at each other every single night. I’m not saying this will happen, but it can.

Marrying someone for money or nationality counts as greed. You are marrying the person for reasons other than for who he or she is. Would you like it if someone married you for the money in your bank account? Or for the mansion you live in? It’s almost as if she will have married the bank account or the house. That reeks of greed, right?

Eventually what all of us are hankering after is a happy and smooth life. Neither of which is guaranteed by money or a foreign nationality. Also, parents are well-meaning but they are not always right.

I urge you to marry someone you love and like. Someone you can enjoy life with. Someone you can talk to. Who shares your values and with whom you have things in common.

Yes, money is very important to lead a happy life. However, you being a qualified professional should have faith in your own ability to earn it.

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Published in Dawn, EOS, September 8th, 2019