I have written on this issue before but this topic seems to gain VISHWAROOPAM and take on many facets that will be discussed here.
One of our readers gave us feedback on this dark skinned Indian females marriage dilemma:
" I am not really sure on how I should describe the subject of this matter, but its very hurting for me and those in my shoes. I really hope that you can write about this and teach the educated fools, out there. I belong to a middle class family, my dad is a lorry driver and my mum is a home maker. I have an elder sister, a teacher in government school and still single, turned 30 this year. She is a brilliant girl, really hardworking and been supporting our family all these while. Most of the wedding proposal were rejected by the groom’s side because she is dark. But the worst case was, in a recent wedding proposal, I sent my sister photo to the groom’s sister through watsapp cause nor my sister neither dad owns a smartphone. Obviously they can see my profile picture and they compared our look. The groom’s sister being a teacher herself, messaged me, and this is exactly what she said “If in the family gathering my brother likes you how? Just Joking.. But possible right?” Indirectly she was telling that my sister was not pretty. Just because she is from the groom’s side, that gives her the rights to say whatever she wants. Her brother doesn’t look like Arvind Swamy and this is not “Roja” movie. She doesn’t care how I will feel after reading that and how will my sister feel. I were forced to keep quiet as she was mappilai’s sister. An educated woman can ask me a stupid question like that. It happened before. It was just that they didn’t mention it directly earlier, but this woman went overboard. My parent said we have to bear it because we are ponnu’s family and my sister is 30 years old. So now, she become a choice, people can opt for her or me!!?? My school's Tamil teacher is also having the same problem.. She is dark so no one wants to marry her. My periamma also.. now she is 58 and never married.. all her bright colored sisters got married... The teacher asked my cousin brother to marry her sister who is also dark.. My cousin brother is 36+ and he is also dark. He refused to marry her sister bcos she is dark skinned - he wants a white girl. Over sangat."
Dark skinned Indian girls shamed for being born with the said skin tone
I had the experience too. One of the potential groom and his family who came to ‘check my dark skinned sister out’ went home after guzzling curry puffs, kesari and masala vadai and tea to wash them down and saying,”We will call you.” Call they did, asking my mother if she would marry me off to their son instead because he liked me better than my sis. Another one who came to ‘see’ my the same sis barbarically said that my sister is too dark and that he’d like to marry me. What irked me was, he was shorter than my sis and me and darker than my sis. His height is not an issue if he had rejected my sis based on that but what got to me was that he had the nerve to say that he didn’t like my sister because she is too dark and expected me to marry him. Like how he cannot change his height, my sister cannot change her skin colour and his male chauvinism and male entitlement just shone through.
I don’t understand this idea – some Indian guys and their families who do this match fixing preludes, where they check out the potential bride physically and then set an eye on another girl in the house, the base being that girl is better looking than the bride and that is directly proportional to being fairer than the bride. Excuse me, are you in a cow market for you to choose a cow? Are Indian women decorative items for you to select and spurn at will? What if the girl you came to scrutinize says that your brother is better looking than you and that she would choose him over you? You’ll get bull mad right? Why do you think it is any different for the dark skinned Indian girl you rejected over her sister? Do you have any idea how it would feel for the sister? Do you care about what would ensue next in the family after you leave after eating your fill and issuing your heartless preference, subtly condescending statement?
After the 2 mismatched match fixing happened, I couldn’t look at my sister in the eye. Our relationship got strained. My mother cried and vented out her frustration at me. She told me to not show myself when people come to match fix my sister, accusing that I am causing the delay of my sister’s marriage. My sister began to use all kinds of whitening beauty products, succumbing to this Indian skin tone fetish. My mother blamed herself for not eating enough coloured fruits and drinking saffron infused milk when she was pregnant with my sister like she did when she was pregnant with me. There is always a strife between my mother and sister – she alleges that our mom loves me more because I’m fair skinned. We always blamed ourselves, never the people who came for match fixing and then go on to reject my sister just because she is dark.
Indeed, dark skinned Indian girls who have been rejected by potential suitors are made to believe that the fault lies within themselves. They are told by every Indian aunty to settle for any loser because they have a perceived lesser skin tone. Dark skinned Indian girls of marriageable age are told to play down their expectations when searching for a man to marry. If they are too choosy, they will end up being spinsters, such busybody aunties say. If a dark skinned Indian girl in her 30s is still unmarried, Indian people are quick to comment that she must be meticulous in choosing a husband, hence left on the shelf.
But, all that gets upside down when it comes to some dark Indian guys – no one hardly say anything against them if they demand a fair skinned bride and reject dark skinned Indian girls. That’s the Indian male entitlement. If you want a wife who looks like Tamanna or Hansika make sure you look like Surya or Arya first. What if Indian girls start to reject dark skinned guys solely based on their skin colour? I know some fair skinned Indian girls who reject dark skinned Indian guys but in many, many cases, such guys or their family members malign the girl, “Thimuru pudiche ponnu.” “Velleya iruka le, anthe agambaavam.” To date, I have never heard any dark skinned Indian girls or their family members libel suitors who rejected the said girls as such, being pathetic existences of sour grapes.
The instances where Indian guys reject dark skinned Indian girls far outnumber fair skinned Indian girls rejecting dark skinned Indian guys. This is because the conditioning that dark skin on Indian men is pulchritude. Just see in Indian movies – there has never been a fair male actor paired with a dark female actor up to this minute. Dark skin on Indian men is glorified and dark skin on Indian women is dismissed as unsightly. Let me just pen down a song lyric here from the video below,”Sivappana aanggal ingge sile kodi undu, karuppana ennai kandu kann veithathu enna?” (There are a lot more fair skinned men around. Why did you develop a covetous eye on me, a dark skinned man?) The reply,”Kadal vannam vaanin vannam karu vannam thane.. Kadal vaanam kaanumbothu unnai kanden naane.” (The colour of the sea and sky are dark. When I see the sea and the sky, I see you..) The colour of the sea and sky is blue and it is depicted as dark as in the skin tone of Lord Krishna, Lord Shiva and Lord Vishnu. Subconsciously, all these ideas that dark skin on Indian men should be revered seeped into our minds and Indian movies only fuel it, consolidating this perception further.
Often times, fair skin on an Indian girl wins hands down – her capabilities and capacity relegated as secondary. Also if a fair skinned Indian girl’s features are unattractive, her fair skin would underplay them. “Ponnu kullama, mooku chappeya, kannu chinnatha irunthalum nalla segheppa, azhaga irukku.” Dark skinned Indian girls with foxy, sultry chiseled, symmetrical and sharp facial features are brushed off as not as pretty as fair skinned Indian girls with blunt features.
Mindsets needs to change. Collectively, Indian people should learn to give credit to dark skinned Indian girls’ potential and ability rather than harp negatively over their skin tone. The skin colour on Indian girls ain’t gonna move even a particle of dust – that’s how trifle and useless skin colour is. Indian girls’ potential and abilities will move mountains and make a home – their skin colour won’t. To Indian guys looking for a fair bride, those Indian girls who look like Nayantara or Nazriya, aren’t exactly a dime a dozen. And, Indian guys who look like Simbu or Vidyut Jamwal are not ubiquitous either. Beauty is skin deep. What’s in the heart is what that matters most.
To all dark skinned Indian girls out there, you are worth so much more than your skin colour and if anyone tells you otherwise, don’t believe them. Their small mindedness is not your fault. If anyone downgrades your deliciously choc colour, tell them,”Dark skinned Indian girl I am. Problem?” If they say yes, smile at them saying,”Then it’s your problem, not mine,” and strut away, head held high, bursting with confidence of being a sexy dark skinned Indian girl. Feel sorry for those who failed to see you as the awesome dark skinned Indian woman you are both inside and out. It is your life so marry a man who loves you for all your virtues and convictions and character, not one who nitpicks on your skin tone.