Mixed Marriage in Indonesia: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

Mixed Marriage in Indonesia: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

Mixed Marriage in Indonesia: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

On setting out to write about “mixed race marriage”, my initial reaction was “how cringey” because every marriage is challenging. Highlighting differences in race or nationality seems unfashionably outdated (or ‘norak’ in Indonesian). Race is a red herring in relationships, as all individuals are different. And same-sex marriage is still strictly taboo in Indonesia, so we won’t go there. Anyway, here’s a lighthearted look at the good, the bad and the ugly of mixed marriages in Indonesia.

The Good The Bad The Ugly
Children Mixed race couples are blessed with uniquely beautiful children, who get the benefit of two cultures. After moving abroad, your kids won’t appreciate being labeled as “exotic” and asked “where are you really from?” A sense of not fitting in anywhere, exacerbated by racist bullying. Plus, inheriting the worst faults of both parents.
Religion Interfaith marriage results in greater tolerance, respect and awareness. You soon realise that changing your religion for the sake of marriage was a sham. Desperate to become a more serious convert, you end up becoming an ultra-conservative.
Domestic Bliss There’s no better feeling than being in love and starting a family. Within a few years, you realise you had nothing in common with the person you fell in love with. She screams: “You should have married a maid!”

He shouts: “Get off your phone and get a job!”

Extended Family After being all alone in Indonesia, you now have the wonderful companionship of an instant extended family. You resent having to pay for annual holidays, medical expenses and a new house for your in-laws. You refuse to be treated like a human ATM, prompting your in-laws to move in and provide a critical commentary of your personal habits.
Language Improving your fluency in each other’s language means no more communication problems. Despite improved fluency, you’re constantly wondering what the hell your spouse is talking about. You’ve become fluent in curses and hurtful insults, but forgotten the simplest words of love.
Trophy Status Heads turn in admiration, as you make a stunningly beautiful, well-matched couple. People think: “She only married him for his money.” “He only married her because he couldn’t find anyone in his own country.” Your trophy begins to atrophy. You don’t look too good yourself.
Dealing with Authorities You don’t mind being pulled over by a cop or hassled by Immigration because your local spouse can resolve any problem. Local officials will still attempt some extortion just because you’re foreign. When your relationship collapses, your well-connected spouse can easily have you detained and then deported.
Finances Two incomes are better than one, giving you financial freedom. Your spouse soon decides to permanently quit working, leading to permanent arguments about money. You no longer break even after supporting your spouse’s social life, hobbies and shopping.
Parenting With the benefits of two cultures, your children are raised with the “best of both worlds”. You begin to question the wisdom of slapping a kid on the face, shouting at them and locking them in a closet. Your kids have grown up with horrific social disorders and blame their constantly bickering parents.
Divorce Finally, you’re free from the toxic relationship that was destroying you! You can now find someone better, an ideal partner for life! After your third failed marriage, you still don’t realise that your own toxic personality is the cause of your problems. In a desperate effort to save your fourth marriage, you take your spouse to your home country. Upon gaining citizenship, your spouse promptly divorces you and hits you for alimony.
Kenneth Yeung is in a happy relationship and based this article on tedious diatribes from his unhappily married loser friends.

Also Read Mixed Marriages in Indonesia – A Fresh Look

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